Top 5 Foods for Breast Health
As a leading cause of death in women, breast cancer directly or indirectly touches the lives of women in Malaysia. Yet, many women are still unaware of breast cancer and breast health; as many remain nonchalant about getting screened. This is alarming as younger women are being diagnosed with breast cancer these days.
As important as early detection is for prevention, here are some foods to eat that will help promote good breast health.
- Cruciferous Vegetables
Vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, kale, cabbage, collard greens all belong to this group. Not only they’re high in Vitamin A and C, cruciferous vegetables are also rich in phytochemicals called indoles and sulforaphane. This help fight cancer by neutralizing toxins and eliminate carcinogens from the body before body cells damaged. Best cooking methods are blanching or sautéing.
- Plant-Based Protein
Numerous studies found that plant-based proteins have protective properties against breast cancer development. Lentils and legumes are rich in protein, fiber, folic, iron and antioxidants to protect our cells from cancer cells.
Turmeric has been used for centuries in the practice of traditional Chinese and Indian medicine to treat diseases. In recent years, a number of laboratory studies on cancer cells suggest that curcumin does have anticancer effects. It is especially effective at helping to treat breast cancer, colon cancer and skin cancer.
Not only flaxseeds are a good source of omega 3, that are good for the heart and brain; flax seeds are also rich in lignan. According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, lignans show promise for significantly decreasing breast cancer risk in post-menopausal women. Lignans can bind to estrogen receptors and inhibit the onset of estrogen-stimulated breast cancer.
- Healthy Fats
Omega-3 fatty acids also provide lignans. Some of the best sources of omega-3s are cold water fish like salmon, tuna, sardines and herring, Plant-based source of omega-3s are flaxseed, walnuts, avocados, chia seeds, olive oil and etc. This fatty acid can boost immunity and slow down the growth of tumors.
Written by: Jasmine Lim
(Love Earth Nutritionist)
[Bachelor of Science Degree in Dietetics (major) &
Food Science (minor) lowa State University, USA]