It seems like every other week the media are extolling the virtues of yet another “superfood” but what actually IS a superfood?
According to Wikipedia “superfood is the term sometimes used to describe food with high pyhtonutrient content that may confer health benefits as a result”
It’s often reported that we need lots of antioxidants in our diet in order to keep illness away but do we know why? Well in short, antioxidants fight oxidants (otherwise known as “free radicals”) which contribute to many illnesses including cancer and heart disease.
Foods like blueberries, beetroot, almonds and apples are often listed as some of the superfoods that help fight cancer and other illnesses but in my opinion, these are just foods that we should be consuming on a regular basis to maintain optimum health. To class them as superfoods deems them as almost “extra special” and infers that we should only turn to them when we are in need of an energy or health boost. My advice to anyone wanting to have more energy, feel lighter and brighter, improve skin, hair and nails as well as getting rid of the mental fogginess we often find ourselves stuck in, INCREASE YOUR RAW INTAKE. Living foods = Energy
Here is a list of the foods I believe are absolutely vital for someone faced with cancer.
*Apoptosis = When the cancer cell decides to end its own life = Cancer cell suicide = GOOD!!!!
It is a powerful antioxidant and detoxifier and its catechins promote apoptosis. Green tea must be steeped for at least five minutes – ideally ten minutes – to release the catechins.
Portabello, oyster, shiitake, maitake, enoki, thistle and crimini mushrooms contain polysaccharides and lentinian, which stimulate the reproduction and activity of immune cells.
Turmeric is THE most powerful natural anti-inflammatory source available. It helps stimulate apoptosis in cancer cells and inhibits their growth. It has also been shown to enhance the effects of chemotherapy and reduce tumour growth. For it to be effectively assimilated by the body, turmeric must be mixed with black pepper and ideally, dissolved in oil such as olive, canola or linseed.
The compounds found in garlic promote apoptosis in colon, breast, lung, prostate cancer as well as leukaemia. This compound also exists in onions, leeks, shallots and chives. Garlic is much more easily assimilated by the body when crushed and dissolved in a drop of olive oil.
Ginger is brilliant at alleviating nausea. It also acts against certain cancer cells and helps reduce the creation of new blood vessels (which the cancer cells use for their own growth). For nausea, try drinking half an inch of peeled ginger either whole or grated steeped in warm water.
Tomatoes are rich in lycopene which has been proven to improve survival rates for men suffering from prostate cancer. However, the tomato must be cooked for the lycopene to be released.
The principal edible seaweeds available to us are nori, (used more commonly for sushi), wakame, dulse, kombu, arame and kelp. These seaweeds contain molecules that slow cancer growth, especially colon, breast, prostate and skin cancer.
Omega 3’s can be found in fatty fish or high-quality fish oils. Be conscious that the bigger the fish you eat, the higher it is in the food chain and therefore more likely to have been contaminated by mercury, PCB’s (Polychlorinated biphenyl) and dioxins, which pollute the ocean floor and when consumed, toxify the body!
Berries contain ellagic acid as well as polyphenols which stimulate the elimination of cancerous substances and inhibit cancer call growth. Found in strawberries raspberries, blueberries, blackberries and cranberries.
Anti-inflammatory flavenoids are found in oranges, tangerines, lemons and grapefruit. These are said to stimulate carcinogenic detoxification by the liver. Tangerine skin also contains flavenoids that penetrate brain cancer cells promoting apoptosis. Grate tangerine skin into a cup of warm water and drink. (Choose organic tangerines to avoid ingesting any pesticides the fruit may have been sprayed with)
Contains more cancer-fighting lycopene than tomatoes. Leave 30 minutes between eating melon and other fruits as their digestion times differ and could leave you with a gurgling tummy!
Pomegranate juice is extremely anti-inflammatory and is a potent antioxidant . It has also been proven to substantially reduce the development of prostate cancer.
Sunshine! Vitamin D has been shown to considerably reduce the risk of several types of cancer so make sure you get 20 minutes a day for your Vitamin D injection.
Obviously this list is not exhaustive as there are many other things that can be done, aside from choosing your food wisely to boost happiness and health. I would recommend that everyone, whether facing illness or not, to eat “consciously” and in doing so consider whether what you are about to eat is going to nourish you and give your body what it needs to work efficiently.
I shall blog soon on what I call “Real Superfoods“.
Until then, try introducing some of the above into your diet. Even if you are not faced with an illness, they can all be used as preventative methods. Don’t wait til it’s too late!