Cruciferous How it helps cancerhttp://www.whfoods.com
How people get cancer► Ifpotentially toxic molecules are not properly and rapidly detoxified in the liver, they can damage cell membranes and molecules such as DNA within the cell nucleus. Such damage can start a chain reaction that may eventually lead to carcinogenesis--cell deregulation and uncontrolled growth.
2 methods of ridding cancer► Cauliflower and other cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, cabbage, and kale, have compounds which may help prevent cancer. These compounds appear to (1) stop enzymes from activating cancer- causing agents in the body, and (2) increase the activity of enzymes that disable and eliminate carcinogens.
Plant Chemicals► We now know that cruciferous vegetables contain both glucosinolates and thiocyanates (including sulforaphane and isothiocyanate). These compounds increase the livers ability to neutralize potentially toxic substances.
Cancer► New Research Explains How Cruciferous Vegetables Prevent Cancer► Cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, kale and Brussels sprouts help prevent cancer. When these vegetables are cut, chewed or digested, a sulfur-containing compound is brought into contact with the enzyme, resulting in the release of a highly reactive compound called isothiocyanates. Isothiocyanates are not only potent triggers of the liver’s Phase II enzymes, which detoxify carcinogens, but research recently conducted at the Institute for Food Research in the U.K. shows one of these compounds, allyl isothicyanate, also inhibits cell division and stimulates programmed cell death in human tumor cells.
How it works in colon cancer► Cell replication (when the parent cell divides to form two daughter cells) occurs in a four-stage process. After the cell divides (the first stage), pole structures are created called spindles (the second or metaphase). If anything interferes with the construction and deconstruction of these spindles, the cell division process stops, and the damaged cells commit suicide. Researchers, have shown that isothiocyanate disrupts the metaphase, thus preventing the cell division of the colon cancer cells. Their research are published in the July 2004 issue of Carcinogenesis. (June 3, 2004)
How it works in breast cancer► Sulforaphane, a compound formed when cruciferous vegetables are chopped or chewed, is already known to trigger the liver to produce enzymes that detoxify cancer-causing chemicals, inhibit chemically-induced breast cancers in animal studies, and induce colon cancer cells to commit suicide. Now, a study published in the September 2004 issue of the Journal of Nutrition shows sulforaphane also helps stop the proliferation of breast cancer cells, even in the later stages of their growth. (October 19, 2004)
Prostate cancer► Scientists tested turmeric (spice), a concentrated source of the phytonutrient curcumin, along with phytochemicals abundant in cruciferous vegetables including cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kale, kohlrabi and turnips.► When tested singly, both cruciferous and curcumin greatly retarded the growth of human prostate cancer cells implanted in immune-deficient mice. In mice with well- established prostate cancer tumors, neither cruciferous and curcumin by itself had a protective effect, but when combined, they significantly reduced both tumor growth and the ability of the prostate cancer cells to spread (metastasize) in the test animals.
Combinations of foods► The researchers believe the combination of cruciferous vegetables and curcumin could be an effective therapy not only to prevent prostate cancer, but to inhibit the spread of established prostate cancers.► Use sautéed cauliflower spiced with turmeric.► For protection against prostate cancer, cut cauliflower florets in quarters and let sit for 5-10 minutes; this allows time for the production of phenethyl isothiocyanates, which form when cruciferous vegetables are cut, but stops when they are over-heated.
Kale► Kale stands out as an anti-cancer food. It’s the organosulfur compounds in this food that have been main subject of phytonutrient research, and these include the glucosinolates and the methyl cysteine sulfoxides. Although there are over 100 different glucosinolates in plants, only 10-15 are present in kale and other Brassicas. Yet these 10-15 glucosinolates appear able to lessen the occurrence of a wide variety of cancers, including breast and ovarian cancers.
Cataracts► Inaddition to its unique organosulfur compounds, kale is well-known for its carotenoids, especially lutein and zeaxanthin. These carotenoids act like sunglass filters and prevent damage to the eyes from excessive exposure to ultraviolet light. Studies have shown the protective effect of these nutrients against the risk of cataracts, where increased eye cloudiness leads to blurred vision. In one study, people who had a diet history of eating lutein-rich foods like kale had a 50% lower risk for new cataracts.
Broccoli► Like other cruciferous vegetables, broccoli contains phytochemicals--sulforaphane and the indoles--with significant anti-cancer effects. Research on indole-3- carbinol shows this compound helps deactivate a potent estrogen (4-hydroxyestrone) that promotes tumor growth, especially in estrogen-sensitive breast cells, while at the same time increasing the level of 2- hydroxyestrone, a form of estrogen that can be cancer-protective. Indole-3-carbinol has been shown to suppress not only breast tumor cell growth, but also cancer cell metastasis (the movement of cancerous cells to other parts of the body).
Tumors► When researchers at Johns Hopkins studied the effect of sulphoraphane on tumor formation in lab animals, those animals given sulforaphane had fewer tumors, and the tumors that did develop grew more slowly and weighed less, meaning they were smaller. http://www.brassica.com/sci/patents.htm
Broccoli versus Sprouts►A study published in the September 2004 issue of the Journal of Nutrition found sulforaphane also helps stop the proliferation of breast cancer cells, even in the later stages of their growth. (If broccoli isnt one of your favorite vegetables, remember that a tablespoon of broccoli sprouts contains as much sulforaphane as is found in a whole pound of adult broccoli.)
Sprouts► Researchers estimate that broccoli sprouts contain 10-100 times the power of mature broccoli to boost enzymes that detoxify potential carcinogens! A healthy serving of broccoli sprouts in your salad or sandwich can offer as much or even more protection against cancer as larger amounts of mature broccoli.
Stomach cancer► Regularly eating broccoli sprouts may help prevent stomach cancer by reducing Helicobacteri pylori (H. pylori) infection, which is known to cause gastritis (stomach inflammation) and peptic ulcer, suggests a study published in an early 2005 issue of Inflammopharmacology.► The research team, led by Akinori Yanaka of the University of Tsukuba, Japan, found that in patients with H.pylori infection, a diet including 100 grams of broccoli sprouts per day (about 3 ounces) resulted in a significant reduction of H. pylori and pepsinogen (a biomarker in the blood indicating the degree of gastritis).
Broccoli sprouts vs. alfalfa sprouts► The Japanese team recruited 40 patients infected with H. pylori. Each day for two months, 20 patients ate a diet with 100 grams of two or three-day old sulforaphane-rich broccoli sprouts each day for two months, while the remaining 20 ate a diet with 100 grams of alfalfa sprouts instead.► "We wanted to test alfalfa spouts together with broccoli sprouts," Yanaka explained, "because the chemical constituents of the two plants are almost identical, except that 100 grams of broccoli sprouts contain 250 milligrams of sulforaphane glucosinolate whereas alfalfa sprouts contain neither sulforaphane nor sulforaphane glucosinolate."► (Glucosinolates, naturally occurring compounds in cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower and cabbage as well as broccoli, are enzymatically converted into sulforaphane and other bioactive components when the sprouts are chewed or cut.)► At the end of the two-month dietary regimen, patients consuming 100 grams of broccoli sprouts per day showed significantly less H. pylori and markedly decreased pepsinogen (an indicator of gastric atrophy). Those eating alfalfa sprouts did not show any effect.
Cabbage► The study included hundreds of Polish women and Polish-born women in the U.S. who are part of the Polish Womens Health Study, a case- control breast cancer study. Participants were given a food frequency questionnaire that assessed their cabbage consumption when they were 12 to 13 years old and as adults.► Compared with women who ate only one serving or less of cabbage per week during adolescence, those who ate four or more servings were 72% less likely to develop breast cancer as adults.► In Poland, women typically eat an average of 30 pounds of cabbage and sauerkraut per year, while American women consume just 10 pounds per year. Polish women also traditionally eat more raw cabbage and sauerkraut in salads or as a side dish.
Raw cabbage► Cabbage foods were categorized as raw (raw sauerkraut and fresh cabbage), short-cooked (steamed sauerkraut and cabbage), and long- cooked (hunters stew, cabbage rolls, and pierogi). Cabbages protective effect was seen only for raw and short-cooked cabbage, not long- cooked, which was eliminated from the analysis. To promote the production of the most glucosinolates, slice or chop your cabbage and let sit for 5-10 minutes before cooking, and cook lightly, steaming or sautéing for 5 minutes or less.
Parsley► Parsley’s volatile oils – particularly myristicin – have been shown to inhibit tumor formation in animal studies, and particularly, tumor formation in the lungs. Myristicin has also been shown to activate the enzyme glutathione-S- transferase, which helps attach the molecule glutathione to oxidized molecules that would otherwise do damage in the body. The activity of parsley’s volatile oils qualify it as a “chemoprotective” food, and in particular, a food that can help neutralize particular types of carcinogens (like the benzopyrenes that are part of cigarette smoke, charcoal grill smoke, and the smoke produced by trash incinerators).
Beets► The pigment that gives beets their rich, purple-crimson color--betacyanin--is also a powerful cancer-fighting agent. Beets potential effectiveness against colon cancer, in particular, has been demonstrated in several studies.