Recent studies have shown that there are many vegetables that are effective in fighting and preventing many different types of cancer. They should not be used in place of traditional treatment for those who have been diagnosed with cancer, but can be used as part of a cancer-fighting regimen. The benefit of fighting cancer with vegetables is that they are far less likely than traditional treatments such as chemotherapy to cause sickness and harm to other parts of the body.
Cauliflower, Broccoli, and Cabbage
This family of cruciferous vegetables, including but not limited to cauliflower, broccoli, and cabbage, releases a chemical called Phenethyl-isothiocyanate when they are chewed. This chemical induces cancerous cells to turn against themselves, which can greatly reduce the size of cancerous tumors.
Although it can sometimes be difficult to stomach spicy foods when you are feeling sick, hot peppers have been shown to reduce the size of tumors in pancreatic cancer, a very aggressive and usually fatal form of cancer. The chemical in peppers that makes them spicy, capsaicin, is the element that caused cancer cells to kill themselves, leading to the conclusion that the spicier the pepper, the more effective it is. Maybe the cancer just can’t take the heat!
One study found that simple powdered ginger was highly effective in killing cancer cells, not only through the typical method of cancer cells killing themselves, but also through a more unusual form of cancer cell self-cannibalization. This is especially good because cancers that are resistant to chemotherapy can be targeted through ginger.
Carrots are one of the earlier vegetables to have been found to fight cancer. Studies have been a bit inconclusive on what exactly in them is effective, but they suggest that carotene (the element that makes them orange) has an effect, as does falcarinol, a natural pesticide found in carrots.
All Other Vegetables
As a cancer prevention tactic, eating a variety of vegetables is sure to increase the healthy functioning of your body by making sure it has all the vitamins and minerals it needs to fight off cancer and any other disease or illness! Generally, raw vegetables (in their crunchy form, or juiced from that crunchy form) are most effective, but if you can’t stand it raw, go ahead and cook them to get at least some benefit!
Vegetable Compounds Combat Cancer: Scientific American
Eat Carrots to Fight Cancer: News-Medical