Guest post by Lee Crosby, R.D.
My doctor found some suspicious spots in my left breast in 2010. A biopsy showed they weren’t cancer, but that I had a higher risk for cancer down the road. My doctor also found a “thickened” area in my right breast she wanted to keep an eye on.
I was only 30 years old, so that got my attention! I was determined to do everything I could to reduce my future risk. No eating pattern gives 100% protection against cancer. However, I was impressed by research showing that plant-based diets cut cancer risk. I also took up exercise. And all was well for many months. Continue reading “Three Ways to Reduce Breast Cancer Risk”
The world of vitamins and minerals can be confusing and intimidating. There are eight forms of vitamin B alone! In the next few weeks, I hope to bring a little more clarity to vitamins and minerals, the reasons we need them, the different forms they come in, and how much we need to take.
We’ll start right at the beginning with vitamin A.
The food most commonly associated with vitamin A may be carrots! Carrots contain carotenoids, a group of pigments found in yellow, orange and green fruits and vegetables. Carotenoid-containing fruits and vegetables such as carrots, cantaloupe, apricots, broccoli, sweet potatoes Continue reading “Vitamins and Minerals: From A to Zinc”
I picked up a bushel (yes, a bushel) of carrots at a local farm this past weekend. Apparently, it was a great year for carrots around here. With visions of stews, casseroles, and healhy-ish muffins, I hauled the 15 pound bushel of orange goodness home.
First on my recipe list is carrot ginger soup. This is one of those soups that is perfect for cool evenings after spending a day outside. I keep the skin on the carrots, retaining the numerous extra cancer-fighting compounds, including beta-carotene and canthaxanthin. I just give them a really good scrub.
Carrots are nutrition powerhouses. Harvard researchers recently found a strong inverse relationship between diets rich in carrots and the incidence of stroke; women who ate five or more servings of carrots weekly had a 68% lower risk. When 124 lung cancer patients who were not regular smokers were compared with 235 controls in terms of what they ate, carrots were seen to offer the best protection against the disease.
Combine the carrots with anti-inflammatory properties of ginger, and you have a great soup that everyone will love! Continue reading “Dinner Tonight: Carrot Ginger Soup”
I don’t know if you realize it or not, but adequate food sources of pure vitamin A have been missing in our diets for years now. This is in part due to a decrease in the amount of liver and organ meats consumed in the Standard American Diet. It can also be attributed to avoidance of butter, whole milk and egg yolk for fear of rising cholesterol levels. Vitamin A is an essential fat soluble vitamin that is vital for growth and development of all organs, but with a special affinity for eye health. It’s no wonder that science is now witnessing an increase in vision related disorders, with the most dramatic being diabetic retinopathy. At this time of year, vitamin A is also so very important in dealing with the cold and flu season. It’s time to boost your health by getting adequate amounts of vitamin A for good health. Continue reading “Vitamin A for Healthy Immunity this Winter”
Found in many yellow, orange and red fruits and veggies, carotenoids are a class of compounds related to vitamin A. The carotenes include beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein and zeaxanthin.
Beta-carotene, often used in place of vitamin A for supplementation, is converted to vitamin A in the liver when your body needs it. The beta-carotene that is not converted still has antioxidant power. It protects the body against free radicals which cause damage to cellullar genetic material, causing cancer. Beta-carotene has also been shown to protect the body against environmental pollutants and other substances that lead to aging.
Lycopene is a carotenoid that functions as an antioxidant for the prostate gland and has been shown to help lower the risk of prostate cancer. Continue reading “Antioxidant Power of Carotenoids”