Cancer sucks. I hate to even write about it. I hate everything it does to people's bodies and to people's families and to people's lives. Cancer is such a horrible beast and I've watched too many loved ones suffer at its unmerciful feet. While cancer has its own agenda, and takes the lives of even the healthiest people, I still feel it's my duty to share that your risk of cancer can be decreased if you treat your body well.
If cancer already has you in its grip, there is hope. There is healing. There is power. As your body gets beat down and ravaged by this disgusting disease, you have the power within you to put up the most amazing fight ever.
While your physicians are doing their best with the medicine they have, you can also play your part by feeding your body amazing, whole foods. Foods that will increase your vitamins and minerals and antioxidant levels, putting you in the best position ever to fight back.
If you don't have cancer, this post will help explain how you can prevent it from the start. Cancer prevention is possible and choosing some healthy lifestyle habits now, can truly decrease your risk of cancer in the future. One of my favorite cancer prevention methods is juicing.
Juicing for Cancer
Juicing is an amazing way to flood your body with tons of essential vitamins, nutrients, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients and carotenoids and flavonoids. We often get sick, with cancer or other ailments, due to toxins in our bodies. Toxins arrive in our bodies through our food, our environment and our bad habits, such as smoking or drinking.
Toxins can cause damage to our cells. According to the National Cancer Institute, "Cancer is caused by changes to certain genes that alter the way our cells function. Some of these genetic changes occur naturally when DNA is replicated during the process of cell division. But others are the result of environmental exposures that damage DNA."
Obviously, eliminating these negative environmental exposures can lower your risk of cell damage. Avoiding cigarette smoke, UV rays, or even chemically-based bath products can decrease the amount of toxins going into your body. Increasing vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants can also help fight off free radical damage.
Rice University in Texas explains the importance of antioxidants in cancer prevention. They state, "Antioxidants are intimately involved in the prevention of cellular damage- the common pathway for cancer, aging, and a variety of diseases."
They go on to state that "Epidemiologic observations show lower cancer rates in people whose diets are rich in fruits and vegetables. This has lead to the theory that these diets contain substances, possibly antioxidants, which protect against the development of cancer.
Which Fruits and Vegetables Should You Juice for Cancer?
Celery is a vegetable I never paid much attention to until recently. I always thought its high water content left it low in vitamins and nutrients but boy I was totally wrong. Celery actually has plenty of nutritional benefits.
This LiveScience article is a great read on all the benefits celery has to offer. This seemingly insignificant plant is chock full of potassium, fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C and calcium. If that wasn't enough, celery also boasts antioxidants and phytonutrients.
This study found that "high intake of Chinese cabbage, chives, carrots and celery was inversely associated with lung cancer, and the risk was reduced by 50% among subjects with high consumption of these vegetables."
Antioxidants, flavonoids and phytonutrients are often linked with reduced risk of cancer. LiveScience goes on to mention a recent study that looked at the flavonoids present in celery- apigenin and luteolin. The study found a link between these flavonoids and pancreatic cancer cells dying. Another study found that apigenin might be "protective" when it comes to pancreatic tumors and similar results were found in a study about breast cancer.
When your mother always forced you to eat your broccoli, she truly did have your best interests in mind. Broccoli is an amazing superfood that tastes good when prepared in a variety of ways, even in a juice!
LiveScience gives another great write-up about the benefits of broccoli. Broccoli is high in fiber, potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin A and protein. Broccoli is also extremely high in vitamin C. Oranges are always the first thing to come to mind when it comes to vitamin C but they aren't the be-all, end-all. Aside from vitamin C, you'll also find a little bit of magnesium, zinc, iron and phosphorus.
As you can see, broccoli really shines as a healthy food option.
When it comes to cancer, one of the most important things broccoli has to offer is a great amount of antioxidants and phytochemicals. As mentioned, antioxidants are integral to fighting off damage caused by free radicals and may aid in cancer prevention.
Phytochemicals are also a useful component of many fruits and vegetables, broccoli included. According to UC Davis, "Phytochemicals are a large group of plant-derived compounds hypothesized to be responsible for much of the disease protection conferred from diets high in fruits, vegetables, beans, cereals, and plant-based beverages such as tea and wine."
There are hundreds of phytochemical compounds, all with different biological functions. Including a large variety of plant-based foods in your diet will help ensure you receive maximum benefits. The phytochemicals in broccoli are especially good for the immune system. They include important carotenoids such as beta-carotene.
This study showed that a natural compound found in broccoli called sulforaphane actually helps inhibit breast cancer stem cells.
Check our recipe for anti-cancer broccoli & sweet potato soup right here
When I first started researching fruits and vegetables that might help with cancer prevention I came across bilberry. I had never even heard of it before, have you? This article states that bilberry is a relative of the blueberry and has been used for centuries in medicine and food. In the past it was used to treat diarrhea and scurvy, among other conditions. Today it's used for a multitude of things, most importantly, cancer prevention!
What makes the bilberry a cancer fighter is that it contains important antioxidants called anthocyanosides. Dr. Axe's article explains that "These antioxidants scavenge the body for free radicals, with the intention of helping to prevent or reverse damaged cells." Bilberry is also very high in vitamin C, a very important nutrient when it comes to immunity and disease protection.
According to this study berries, including bilberry, have anticancer potential. There is some data from experimental studies that show this is the case when bilberry is used alone or in conjunction with other berries.
When researching what to put in my body I always want to get to the source of the information. Sure, someone can tell me tomatoes are useful in cancer prevention but I want them to prove it. That's why I love finding studies like this one that show that the "intake of lycopene or other compounds in tomatoes may reduce prostate cancer risk."
You can guarantee I'm secretly sneaking tomatoes into every dish I serve to the men in my life!
To further explain, tomatoes contain an important compound called lycopene. Lycopene is a phytochemical that acts as an antioxidant. Antioxidants help eliminate the damage caused by free radicals. Some studies conducted over the last few years have shown that lycopene can help "prevent prostate, lung, and stomach cancers." On top of that, lycopene may also aid in lowering your risk of cardiovascular disease by reducing your levels of bad cholesterol and lowering blood pressure.
I was amazed at all the truly wonderful stories I came across when researching the benefits of carrots when used as a source of cancer prevention. These seemingly insignificant (and cheap!) vegetables really provide a great array of cancer-fighting nutrients, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
Story after story popped up with great news about carrots. There was a study in China that found carrots can help "reduce the risk of prostate cancer by a fifth. Men who ate carrots at least three times a week were 18 percent less likely to develop a tumour."
The UK Sunday Express also mentions important natural compounds found in carrots called polyacetylenes. These help protect the plant from being attacked by pests and diseases. Polyacetylenes are only found in the carrot family or other closely related species (like ginseng). These compounds are important because they can help reduce inflammation and tackle cancer. Polyacetylenes actually helped reduce cancer growth in rats!
Even this chemo-free cancer survivor blogs about his amazing experience with healing his body through raw carrot juice. Amazing!
Now all this talk of juicing and its numerous benefits for cancer means I have to leave you with some amazing "Juicing for Cancer" recipes, created by yours truly.
If you are truly trying to fight cancer, you may want to even try adding additional super greens to your juice. A friend of mine suggested this Perfect Food Raw powder on Amazon. It will give your drink that extra boost of organic, raw sprouts, probiotics and vitamins.
When you're juicing, always remember that you don't need to be too specific with your ingredients. No matter what types of fruits or vegetables you put in your juice you are going to be receiving a host of benefits. Recipes are just there to help you understand what goes well together.
If you are still looking for more recipes to help with cancer prevention check out Fully Raw Kristina on YouTube.
Final Thoughts on Juicing for Cancer
As you can see, juicing is an amazing way to help prevent cancer and decrease your risk of disease. Some of the best fruits and vegetables to introduce into your diet include:
All these foods provide some amazing benefits when it comes to cancer prevention. We learned that foods rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytonutrients are stellar cancer-fighters and can do amazing things for your body.
Which of these awesome foods do you incorporate into your diet? Please comment below and let me know if you try one of my cancer prevention juice recipes.