Foods that fight cancer - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Foods that fight cancer

The Centers for Disease Control lists cancer as the second leading cause of death in Americans, behind heart disease.

While some of the key risk factors like genetics and environment can play a major role in getting the disease, Ayla Sarnoff - who is a cooking instructor with the non profit organization The Cancer Project - says what you eat can play a huge role in fighting off cancer.

"The best diet for cancer prevention and survival is whole food, high fiber and low fat," says Sarnoff.

She says the best way to achieve this diet is by eating whole grains, fruits, veggies, leafy greens and nuts.

Something she says is vital - not only to overall health but especially for those with a weakened immune system.

"So if you have had cancer before, you're a survivor you want to keep your immune system strong and healthy to prevent a reoccurrence and that's a really easy way to do it," says Sarnoff.

Your best bet is to buy what's in season and to buy a variety of colors - she says the darker the fruit or vegetable, the more antioxidants.

She adds every single fruit and veggie has a color-coded guide to your health.

For example, red fruits and vegetables like tomatoes and watermelons have the antioxidant lycophene, which has been proven to cut prostate cancer risk. Orange colored fruits and veggies contain beta carotene a very powerful antioxidant that supports the immune system and fights off free radical cells. While yellow and yellowish orange fruits and veggies like lemons,grapefruits and peaches carry large amounts of vitamin C and can inhibit tumor cell growth. Green veggies contain folate and have been known to build healthy cells destroy cancer cells and support the immune system while blue and purple fruits and veggies can destroy free radicals.

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