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Can We Eat to Fight Cancer?

What cancer-fighting foods can you incorporate into your diet?

This is the question posed by researcher William Li in his fascinating TED Talk of the same name. And quite simply, the answer is yes.

I have been aware for some time that research suggests sugar and processed foods might actually assist the growth of cancer in our bodies. Instead of worrying what we shouldn’t eat to avoid cancer, however, now we can focus on what cancer-fighting foods we should eat that cut off cancer’s supply lines and beat it at its own game.

Angiogenesis, Cancer and Diet

Your body regulates the delivery system of blood vessels (which carry oxygen and other nutrients) throughout the body through a process called angiogenesis. It is angiogenesis that can either help your body heal itself, regulate its natural processes, or, when angiogenesis is out of balance, cause disease to develop and spread throughout our bodies. You see, cancer cells and tumors develop when fed, which is exactly what angiogenesis does. It delivers oxygen and nutrients directly to cancerous cells and allows them to flourish, sometimes as a rapid and untreatable rate.

According to Mr. Li’s research, diet accounts for 30-35 percent of the environmental causes for cancer, and imbalanced angiogenesis is the common denominator between every type of cancer. This is significant. Instead of just avoiding particular foods that contribute to cancer growth, now we can ask ourselves: what should we eat to fight cancer? Mr. Li puts forth some pretty convincing evidence that if we consume certain natural anti-angiogenic substances (food, drink, spices, etc.) we can in fact lower our chances of developing cancer.

This is SO exciting! Someone very close to me is battling Hodgkin’s Lymphoma right now and I found this information on the influence of different foods to be empowering. There are many foods that fight the microscopic cancers that are constantly developing in our bodies.

How to Fight Cancer with Food

Many foods, spices and beverages can naturally inhibit angiogenesis. Here?s a quick list of some of my favorite anti-angiogenic foods:

  • Red wine
  • Turmeric
  • Ginger
  • Garlic
  • Soy
  • Apples
  • Raspberries
  • Olive Oil
  • Dark Chocolate
  • Green Tea

As if we all needed another reason to love red wine: resveratrol, which is found in red grapes and red wine, inhibits angiogenesis by 60 percent. Drinking just a single glass of red wine can actually help you starve cancer! Sounds like a pretty simple way to combat cancer, if you ask me!

Going Further

Those are just a handful of delicious, every day naturally anti-angiogenic foods that you can easily incorporate into your diet. I recently found this amazing site that will provide you with many more anti-angiogenic foods plus fantastic recipes that you can try out for yourself. I swear by Rachel’s Eat to Beat Brownies and my family does, too!

I never thought fighting cancer could be this simple. I start each day looking at a list of the most beneficial foods, just to remind myself how small choices can make a big difference. I try to work in as many foods and drinks from the list as possible, which leaves little room for other not-so-healthy options. For instance, turmeric is at the top of the list of foods that fight cancer so I drink a cup of turmeric tea every night before bed. It has become a habit I enjoy and I end the day by giving my body a boost.

Your body works days and night to help prevent disease?give it a little extra help by starving that cancer with anti-angiogenic food!

Suzanne Schaper is a Board Certified Massage Therapist serving Lenexa and Overland Park, KS. She loves sharing her knowledge for health and wellness with her customers. "A life free of pain and disease is a more full life." Suzanne enjoys assisting her customers in their pursuit of health and happiness.

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