The root causes of breast cancer are complex and multifactorial, with possible causes including poor diet, exposure to environmental toxins, genetics, high stress levels, and hormone imbalances.
However, studies suggest that 30 percent to 40 percent of all kinds of cancer can be prevented with a healthy lifestyle and diet – factors that are fully within your control!
Since inflammation and hormone imbalance are two of the underlying issues that dictate cancerous tumor initiation, progression, and growth, it’s important to consume plenty of cancer-fighting foods – those with antioxidants, hormone balancing abilities, and natural anti-inflammatory phytonutrients. This means avoiding packaged and processed foods and focusing on foods that do not contain antibiotics, GMOs, chemicals or toxins.
These are the foods that I recommend you consume daily for hormone balance and breast cancer prevention:
1. Lemon Water
Lemon water simulates liver function, which helps your body naturally detox and get rid of any unwanted toxins. Lemon water also makes the body more alkaline – cancer can’t grow in an alkaline environment. Sip room temperature lemon water on an empty stomach first thing in the morning, as well as throughout the day to keep your body in an alkaline state.
2. Cruciferous Vegetables
Cruciferous vegetables are well known for their cancer-fighting abilities. Many are rich in glutathione – a peptide consisting of three essential amino acids that help promote T-cell function (critical for a strong immune system), protects us against environmental toxins and can help to fight cancer.
Also, cruciferous veggies, such as kale, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts, contain flavones and indoles that are particularly effective at battling estrogen excess. Add one or two kinds of cruciferous vegetables to your meals each day in the form of roasted veggies, soups or stir-fry. You can also dip them in hummus for a healthy snack.
Other veggies like onions and garlic can also help to lower cancer risk and give each of your meals a flavor boost!
3. Chia Seeds and Flax Seeds
Among the most powerful anti-cancer foods are flax and chia seeds, which are a rich source of lignans. Lignans help to decrease the “bad estrogen” in your body and can inhibit cell growth in breast tumors. I recommend consuming 1 Tablespoon a day of these cancer-fighting superfoods.
Avocados are considered an antiestrogenic food – they contain plant sterols that block estrogen receptors on cells and reduce estrogen absorption in your body, which helps to increase progesterone levels. Having balanced amounts of estrogen and progesterone is essential for breast cancer prevention. Try consuming ½ an avocado per day for prevention.
5. Healthy Fats
Your body needs various types of fats to create hormones, including saturated fat and cholesterol. These essential fats are fundamental building blocks for hormone production, and also keep inflammation levels low. My favorite sources of anti-inflammatory, healthy fats include coconut oil, avocados, and wild-caught salmon and cod.
Berries are rich in polyphenols and antioxidants, including anthocyanins, ellagic acid, and resveratrol. These polyphenols and antioxidants attract and neutralize highly reactive molecules called free radicals that could otherwise damage body cells in ways that initiate cancer development.They also help to reduce inflammation. I recommend consuming 1 cup of berries each day to help reduce your risk of breast cancer.
It’s often easier to prevent disease than it is to correct it once it’s already occurred, this is especially true in the case of cancer – a disease for which we have yet to find a cure. Focus on taking good care of your body – nourish yourself with nutrient-rich, cancer-fighting foods, supplement as needed, and ensure that your hormones are balanced.