While years of dietary research have not turned up any absolutely
harmful or helpful factors, the following may have some benefits
when it comes to breast cancer prevention:
|Don't eat too much
||Avoid becoming overweight, as obesity
can increase cancer risk.
|Eat smaller meals
||Studies on rats indicated that eating
smaller meals (and less overall) reduced cancer in these
|Eat low-fat foods
||Although fat consumption didn't emerge
as a major factor in the Nurses' Health Study, because
fat is higher in kilojoules per gram than carbohydrates
or protein, it creates greater body weight, which is a
|Dig into fruits and vegetables
||Fruits and vegies replace fat with
fibre and a variety of nutrients, Eating foods high in
beta-carotene is an important protective factor - taking
vitamin A in pill form doesn't have the same effect. Aim
to eat at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables (not
counting potatoes) a day.
|Increase your fibre intake
||As well as fruit and vegetables eat
more whole grains such as oat bran and brown rice
|Cut down on animal fat
||Saturated fat is implicated in breast
cancer. One factor may be the build up of pollutants in
the fatty tissue of animals. Avoid or cut down on fatty
meat and high fat milk. Trim all visible fat off meat.
||There is no medical evidence that
organic food reduces risk. However there is concern that
pesticides and chemicals in food increases cancer risk.
If you can't get organics or can't afford them, wash all
fruit and vegetables thoroughly in water with a couple
of drops of detergent to remove pesticide residues.
|Watch the barbecue
||There is some evidence that eating
charred meat might increase the risk of breast cancer,
but the link is not yet clear. Once reason scientists
looked at barbecuing and grilling, is that they found
the most effective way to induce cancer in mice is to
rub them with one group of chemicals formed when meat
|Get enough folate/folic acid
||This is critical if you drink alcohol.
An analysis from the Nurses' Health Study suggest that
women can reduce their alcohol-related breast cancer risk
by getting plenty of folic acid through their diet (it's
found in whole grains, cereals and leafy green vegetables)
or with daily multivitamin supplements.
|Copy the Japanese
||Japanese women in Japan have a significantly
lower incidence of breast cancer than western women. This
has been attributed to a number of things including higher
intake of fish vs meat and use of soy products in moderation.
|Cut your alcohol intake
|| Drink alcohol only in moderation.
|Consider antioxidant supplements
||Take a supplement containing betacarotene,
vitamins C and E and selenium. Some health foods such
as wheatgrass also contain all these antioxidants. Note
that taking antioxidants in food is best if you can.
|Some specific foods to
|| Brazil nuts
||Honeydew melon, linseed meal, spinach,
wheatgrass juice, dark lettuces, broccoli, lean meat,
||Carrots, wheatgrass juice, spinach,
papayas, mangos, rock melons, kumera
||Tofu, soy milk, soy and linseed bread,
other soy products
||The mono-unsaturates may actually
reduce breast cancer risk. A large scale Spanish study
looked at the effects of cooking with oil and found that
women who used the most olive oil had a significantly
lower risk of breast cancer
||Salmon, tuna, anchovies, sardines
||Deep green and yellow vegetables such
as broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, spinach, cauliflower
||Oat bran, wheat bran, fruit and vegetables.
Raspberries, strawberries, apples and pears are high in