Many of my patients have relatives that have died of breast cancer. Many of my patients also live with fibrocystic breast disease. They ask me what to eat to reduce risk and get healthier? I have been reading a recently released book that I highly recommend . All the info that I write about here in this post comes from the book- the title of this nutritional powerhouse is called “How Not to Die” and it is written by Michael Greger, M.D. the founder of a fabulous website: nutritionfacts.org.
Recommendations to reduce risk of breast cancer include limiting alcohol. If you drink, keep it to an absolute minimum and make it red wine or better yet skip the alcohol and drink purple grape juice or eat purple grapes with seeds. Eat mostly plant foods- have one tablespoon of ground flaxseed daily which can help reduce precancerous changes in breast tissue cells. Other beneficial plant foods to consume include broccoli sprouts (recommended 1/4 cup daily), increase broccoli (the ultimate detox veggie) and increase organic collard consumption. 25 grams + of fiber may reduce risk in general so the more plant foods you include, especially soluble fiber, the better. The ingestion of strawberries, pomegranate, and white mushrooms may suppress a cancer promoting enzyme.
Phyto-estrogens in the form of organic soy whole foods appear to increase survival rates and reduce risk. Choose whole soybeans like edamame or a cup of organic soy milk to get you started. Stay away from processed soy like fake meats and junk food. Move away from consuming so much animal meat protein and embrace more plant protein like beans and legumes which when combined with a whole grain like brown rice make a healthier meal. Complete plant proteins include buckwheat, soy and quinoa.
Sleep in a dark room to increase your exposure to melatonin which can reduce risk. Use dark blinds or even a sleeping mask to drown out the city lights. Embrace a regular sleeping routine- 10 pm to 6 am versus taking on shift work which is disruptive and more health negating.To sleep better and reduce risk further don’t forget to exercise daily. Walk a moderate pace for an hour. Regular exercise is the key to sleeping better. You will fall asleep easier and stay asleep for longer.
Drink more green tea for a slight reduction in risk. Every little thing that you do helps, if you are mindfully aware that food is, in fact, medicine. That knowledge helps you make empowered choices to support your health every day!
To read further and find the research related to these claims- pick up “How Not To Die” by Michael Gregor, M.D. Until next time, be well.