In the July issue of Women's Health Letter, I told you about Elizabeth. She is an identical twin. And about 10 years ago, she found out that her sister had breast cancer. Elizabeth knew she was genetically predisposed to get it too. She was scared. But now, nearly a decade after her twin sister was diagnosed with breast cancer, Elizabeth is still cancer-free, probably because she decided to get serious about protecting her health.
In that issue, I walked you through some of the choices she made and why they were so important. One of the most important areas we addressed was diet. The great news for you is that you can take these same steps to increase your body's cancer-preventative powers. And today, I want to share one easy way — a tasty recipe — you can use to keep your chances of developing breast cancer lower.
One overarching guideline for avoiding cancer has to do with weight management. As you age, you need to maintain a balance with your weight. You don't want to be overweight, but it's important that you aren't underweight either. If you weigh too little, you may be susceptible to nutritional deficiencies, and you won't have a bit of cushion to lose if you become ill. But if you weigh too much, you're storing unwanted hormones and toxins in your fat, making you vulnerable to a variety of illnesses, from metabolic syndrome to cancer. Women who are more than 20 pounds overweight and have waistlines greater than 36 inches should strongly consider losing a few pounds and reducing their waistlines to no more than 34 inches.
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One of the best ways to lose this weight and help prevent cancer is by reducing your intake of sugar and processed food. As we normalize our insulin and leptin levels by avoiding sugar and refined fructose, we will drop extra pounds and avoid speeding the growth of cancer. Try eating a Mediterranean diet heavy in plant-based foods and low in fatty meats. Make sure you're getting enough fiber, and consider taking a probiotic, such as Advanced Probiotic Formula as well to aid your digestion. If you have existing digestive issues, consider taking Integrative Digestive Formula.
Now for the fun part. If you want a delicious way to add more fiber and nutrients to your diet, try vegetable soup! Here's one of my favorite recipes. It's delicious, and it's full of ingredients with proven breast cancer-fighting properties.
Ingredients (organic when possible):
* 1.5–2 lbs. zucchini (Zucchini is high in fiber, manganese, vitamin C, and even omega-3 fatty acids.)
* 2–4 stalks (according to your taste) of celery (Researchers have found that apigenin and luteolin, potent flavonoids found in celery, have pancreatic cancer–killing abilities in the lab as well as the ability to slow the progression of breast cancer tumors in mice.)
* Handful of parsley (Parsley has been shown to blunt the progression of cancer cells.)
* Don't peel the vegetables. Simply scrub them clean, then cut them coarsely, add to a pot, and cover with a small amount of water.
* Simmer for 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes.
* Blend by carefully transferring the contents to a blender or using an immersion blender. For a creamier texture, add a bit of grass-fed butter or olive oil.
If you like, you can modify this recipe by substituting or adding other healthy picks, such as chard, kale, carrots, onions, garlic, and string beans. This can be an easy and tasty part of any breast-cancer prevention diet.
Better Health and Living for Women,