...with more fruits and vegetables
Alarmingly, one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime, according to the National Breast Cancer Foundation. Unfortunately, most will never know the root cause. Though many risk factors such as physical inactivity, being overweight, poor diet or frequent alcohol consumption may be avoided, often times, many diagnosed patients do not exhibit any established factors. While this can be discouraging, a recent study adds to the body of evidence that suggests that there is something impactful you can do when it comes to diet!
Researchers from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health analyzed diets from over 180,000 women as part of the Nurses’ Health Study and Nurses’ Health Study II. They found eating more than 5½ servings of fruits and vegetables resulted in 11% lower risk of developing breast cancer. Consuming large amounts of fruits and vegetables was particularly associated with lower risk of more aggressive tumors. Orange and yellow vegetables—think bell peppers, carrots and sweet potatoes—that are rich in vitamin C and beta carotene, and cruciferous types like broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower appeared to be especially beneficial. These benefits cited by researchers were independent of fiber content. Their research also suggests that meeting fruit and veg requirements early on, years before diagnosis, may be significantly important in reducing tumor initiation.
It’s never too late to make changes to your diet, eating fruits and vegetables is easily one of the best things you can do for your health. Don’t wait! Take advantage of the potential to reduce the risk of many chronic diseases, breast cancer and others simply with a (delicious) change in food choices.
Published October 1st, 2018