All the studies on cancer and nutrition point to eating plant-based foods for their phytonutrients and other special compounds. Aim for five to nine daily servings of all kinds of fruits and vegetables — especially these six superstars.
Broccoli: All cruciferous vegetables 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. Broccoli helps fight breast, liver, lung, prostate, skin, stomach, and bladder cancers.
Berries: All berries are packed with cancer-fighting phytonutrients. But black raspberries, in particular, contain very high concentrations of phytochemicals called anthocyanins, which slow down the growth of premalignant cells and keep new blood vessels from forming (and potentially feeding a cancerous tumour). Berries help fight colon, oesophageal, oral, and skin cancers.
Tomatoes: This juicy fruit is the best dietary source of lycopene, a carotenoid that gives tomatoes their red hue. Lycopene was found to stop endometrial cancer cell growth in a study in Nutrition and Cancer. Tomatoes help prevent endometrial, lung, prostate, and stomach cancers.
Walnuts: Walnut’s phytosterols have been shown to block oestrogen receptors in breast cancer cells, possibly slowing the cells' growth. Walnuts may help to ward off breast and prostate cancers.
Garlic: Phytochemicals in garlic have been found to halt the formation of nitrosamines, carcinogens formed in the stomach and in the intestines when you consume nitrates, a common food preservative. Research found that women with the highest amounts of garlic in their diets had a 50% lower risk of certain colon cancers than women who ate the least.