Breast cancer is the second most common non-skin cancer in women worldwide, and the disease causes more than 500,000 deaths each year. Breast cancer is initially treated with a combination of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. Aggressive treatment is also followed by a 10-year hormone therapy with tamoxifen, which shuts off estrogen production and prevents cancer recurrence. The combined toxicity of chemo, radiation and tamoxifen weakens your immune system and causes premature menopause. You can experience nausea, fatigue and other postmenopausal syndromes. Weight gain, osteoporosis and sudden increase of blood cholesterol are highly possible if you are taking tamoxifen.
You can help improve your prognosis and alleviate your adverse reactions to treatment through a low fat, high calcium diet. Focus on foods with high concentrations of compounds that naturally kill cancer cells, reduce your blood pressure and cholesterol, and balance your hormones. The following are 4 foods you should eat during breast cancer treatment.
Almonds are the best therapy snack for breast cancer. They are extremely rich in powerful antioxidants like vitamin E, manganese, selenium, as well as essential phytosterols which prevent tumor growth and improves your overall immunity. Almonds are also beneficial for your heart, mind and bones. They are high in mono and polyunsaturated fatty acids, calcium, magnesium, phosphorous and copper. These nutrients help lower your blood pressure and cholesterol, reduce your anxiety level and prevent the loss of bone mass.
Broccoli is the best dark green to eat during cancer treatment. This vegetable provides a rich supply of all basic nutrients and is especially high in vitamin C, folate and pantothenic acid. Increased vitamin C intake during chemo and radiation can help make up for your weakened immunity and prevent skin burns. Folate and pantothenic acid can help suppress after-treatment reactions. Folate also promotes red blood cell regeneration which can speed up your recovery after chemotherapy. In addition to these, broccoli has also two of the most powerful natural anti-cancer agents, diinodylmethane and sulforaphane. Eating raw broccoli can effectively deter tumor growth in even the more aggressive cancer types.
Fungal foods are your super allies for fighting cancer. They are high in fiber and provide nutrients vitamins C and the B complex. They are also a great source of pantothenic acid, selenium, potassium and phosphorous. Exotic Asian mushrooms have long been established to help with detoxification and extend life. The extracts from the mushroom Phellinus linteus have proven effectiveness against breast cancer. One study has found that women who eat at least 10 grams of fresh mushrooms every day can reduce their breast cancer risks by 64%. Dried mushrooms also work, but they are less effective at about 50% reduction of cancer occurrence.
4. Green Tea
Green tea is a superfood for cancer treatment. Drinking green tea helps you flush out toxins, increases your metabolic rate, reduces your blood pressure and improves the flexibility of your blood vessels. Green tea contains the unique compound L-theamine which helps you deal with stress and calms your mind. Green tea is also rich in the anti-cancer antioxidant epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which is highly effective in inhibiting breast cancer growth. Studies have found that the combined use of green tea and tamoxifen produces better results in cancer treatments than tamoxifen alone.