Does chocolate really fight cancer? Yep—you read it right. Studies have shown that compounds called polyphenols slow the growth of cancer cells. And one ounce of dark chocolate contains almost as many polyphenols as a cup of green tea, and twice as many as a glass of red wine (two widely touted sources of the compounds). Just remember that the operative word is “dark.” Look for chocolate that consists of more than 70 percent cocoa. Lighter milk chocolates don’t cut the mustard when it comes to polyphenol content.
Of course, you can’t eat chocolate from dawn to dusk and expect to be healthy. Stick to a full-size chocolate bar a couple of times a month or a mini one every day. Remember, one key to good health is to eat a wide variety of wholesome foods. And chocolate isn’t the only cancer-preventing all-star. Nutritionists give top marks to these 10 superfoods, too:
- Apples (preferably organic)
- Berries of all kinds
- Cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, and cauliflower
- Dark green or red leafy veggies, like romaine and leaf lettuce, Swiss chard, kale, and collard greens
- Grapes, especially red and purple varieties
- Legumes, including beans, peas, lentils, and peanuts
- Whole grains, including whole wheat flour, oatmeal, and brown rice
This tasty Marvelous Multi-Nutrient Smoothie beverage delivers almost all of the vitamins and minerals that you need each day for tip-top health.
1 cup of green grapes
1 cup of vanilla yogurt
½ apple, chopped (but not peeled)
1½ cups of fresh spinach
1 tbsp. of flaxseeds
1 cup of ice cubes
Measure all of the ingredients into a blender in the order listed, and blend for 30 to 45 seconds, or until the contents are thoroughly liquefied and freely circulating. Then drink up, or pour the mixture into a travel cup and take it with you.
But wait—there’s more! In 2014, the American Association for Cancer Research found that nearly half of all cancer deaths could have been prevented. The study is quick to point out that it is not the intent to blame the cancer victim, but to help persuade folks to adopt a healthier lifestyle.
Here’s the thing: Few, if any, diseases strike more dread in our hearts than cancer. So it’s all too easy to panic when yet another study pops up claiming that some chemical, food, or activity (or inactivity) causes cancer. But don’t crawl into a cave and stay there. Instead, use your common sense and get your body into tip-top shape through healthy eating and staying active.
More and more scientific studies are showing that regular exercise can help prevent cancer, ease the side effects of radiation and chemotherapy, and lessen the chance that cancer will occur. And here’s the BIG news: If you have cancer, exercising on a routine basis can cut your risk of dying from it by 53 percent. So get a move on—yesterday!