All cruciferous veggies (think cauliflower, cabbage, kale) contain cancer-fighting properties, but broccoli is the only one with a sizable amount of sulforaphane, a particularly potent compound that boosts the body’s protective enzymes and flushes out cancer-causing chemicals, says Jed Fahey, ScD. A recent University of Michigan study on mice found that sulforaphane also targets cancer stem cells—those that aid in tumor growth.
Helps fight: breast, liver, lung, prostate, skin, stomach, and bladder cancers
Your Rx: The more broccoli, the better, research suggests—so add it wherever you can, from salads to omelets to the top of your pizza.
Adding another to the list of cancer fighting foods, ginger, a cousin spice of super anti-cancer substance turmeric, is known for its ability to shrink tumors. The subject of one study based out of Georgia State University, whole ginger extract was revealed to shrink prostate tumor size by 56% in mice. The anti-cancer properties were observed in addition to ginger’s role in reducing inflammation as well as being a rich source of life-enhancing antioxidants.
This bright green herb, overlooked as “just a garnish” by many, has lately caught the attention of the medical community. Parsley contains apigenine, a natural oil that has been shown to prevent angiogenesis – the growth of blood vessels that supply cancerous tumors with nutrients. The apigenine from parsley cuts off the blood supply to a tumor, acting similarly to the prescription drug Avastin.
A phytochemical in mint leaves has been found to cut off the blood supply to cancer tumors, resulting in their untimely death. It’s yet another example of the healing power of nature and the medical efficacy of phytochemicals found in your own garden. Julep anyone?
Apart from offering strong tangy flavor, dill has many medicinal properties, which come from certain compounds called Monoterpenes. The protective Monoterpenes, are stimulants and activate secretions of an enzyme called glutathione-S-transferase (an power anti-oxidant) which is very effective in neutralizing carcinogens, particularly free radicals, thereby protecting from cancer. The essential oils present in dill are also a natural stimulant and activate bile and digestive juices while encouraging peristaltic motion of the intestine.