This month, Breadfast is going pink in observation of Breast Cancer Awareness month. Breast Cancer is the most common cancer for women (and more rare for men), but it is treatable if detected early. Awareness and education of the disease is crucial, because it can save lives. In support of this, we are donating 20% of all our pink muffin proceeds to the Baheya Cancer Foundation. Find out more in our previous Breast Cancer Awareness post here.
Like most cancerous diseases, there is no magic formula or miracle food that can ward off breast cancer. However, most studies conclude that exercise, a healthy weight, and a balanced diet to reduce the risk of breast cancer. Since breast cancer makes up about 25% of all cancers for women, let’s take a look at the foods that can help prevent the disease for yourself and your loved ones. (Hint* it’s quite similar to the list of immune boosters that we have in this blog post!)
Refined carbs such as white bread, pasta, pizza dough, white rice, and pastries are foods you should stay away from, but your body needs the nutrients and fiber from whole grains. Examples include unprocessed wheat, rye, oats, corn, bulgur, brown rice, and barley.
Look for leafy, dark green vegetables like kale, spinach, and arugula. These will be more beneficial for your body than the light green types of vegetables like iceberg lettuce. Foods such as broccoli and cauliflower are also loaded with lots of healthy nutrients that can help prevent the disease. Some researchers have also discovered that the beta carotene in carrots can interfere with cancer cell development and growth.
If you have a sweet tooth, instead of reaching out for cake, dessert, candy, or some other processed sugar, make yourself a fruit salad instead! Fruits that are known to be beneficial in the fight against breast cancer include citrus fruits like lemons, oranges, and grapefruit; peaches, apples, pears; and antioxidant-rich berries.
If you are a fan of yogurt, you’ll be happy to hear that yogurt – specifically greek yogurt, is also a great immune booster. Fermented foods in general like kimchi and miso enhance your health because of the beneficial bacteria and probiotics.
Your body also needs healthy fats as a source of energy. Make sure that you have a healthy intake of foods like avocados, seeds, nuts, and olive oil.
Fish, Chicken, Eggs
Another great source of healthy fat is fish, especially fatty fish like salmon and sardines. Eggs and chicken also provide your body with the proper type of protein, while red meat (beef, lamb, etc.) can be harmful for you if consumed in large quantities.
Legumes and Beans
Beans and legumes (green peas, lentils, chickpeas, soybeans, and peanuts) are also a great source of nutrients. Soy products in general such as tofu and soy milk reduce inflammation by reducing obesity and the risk of heart disease, thus also reducing the risk of breast cancer.
In general, regular exercise that gets your heart pumping, maintaining a good body weight, and a healthy diet can limit your risk of getting breast cancer, and affect your well-being if you do have it.
Look out for foods that are high in fiber, vitamin D, antioxidants, and beta carotene. On the other hand, foods with processed sugar, fried/fatty foods, red meat and processed meat, and refined carbs like white bread can increase your chances of getting breast cancer. For a better breakdown of nutritional sources in healthy foods, check out our immune booster chart here.
In a nutshell – do your best to eat healthy and stay healthy! Take care of yourself Breadfasters, your body will thank you. #breadfastcares