10 Super Diet tips for preventing cervical cancer
Cervical Cancer is deadly but preventable!
HPV vaccines are available today. Early detection is life-saving. Also, the diet may play a role in preventing cervical cancer!
Do you know???
Almost 80% of cervical cancer cases, today, occurs in low-income countries. This is because of unawareness, inaccessibility and unavailability. Unawareness about the disease. Inaccessibility of HPV vaccines. Unavailability of the proper treatment facility. As such, low-cost preventives like nutrition from food can change the complete dynamics!!!
Nutrition in the prevention of cervical cancer
Research says that dietary factors may play a role in the prevention of cervical cancer. Antioxidants, carotenoids, flavonoids, and folate equips the body to fight HPV infection. It prevents the HPV virus from transforming the cells in the cervix into cancerous.
Research also says that low intake of fruits and vegetables may cause a 3-fold increase in the risk of cervical cancers.
Dietary tips for preventing Cervical cancer
1. Design a diet rich in vitamins
Research shows that Vitamin E has a beneficial effect on cervical health. Sunflower seeds, almonds, hazelnuts, and peanut butter are rich sources of vitamin E.
Vitamin A help maintains healthier cells in the cervix. Papaya, oranges, sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach, pumpkin and mangoes are rich in vitamin A. Studies state that carotenoids, a source of vitamin A, helps in preventing cervical cancer.
Antioxidants are available in abundance in foods rich in vitamin C. WHO suggests that there is some evidence highlighting the importance of eating fruits and vegetables. Studies show that very low intake of fruits and vegetables, (less than 2 servings or 200 g/d) is related to increased risk of cervical cancer. However, there may be a little additional benefit for intakes higher than about 400 g/d.
B vitamins are important for the healthy cervix. Vitamin B6 supports healthy immune function. For example, Vitamin B 6 deficiency may lead to a deficiency in antibody formation. It might also lower the production of white blood cells. Folate and Vitamin support healthy cervical cells. Women with low dietary intakes of vitamins B1, B2, B12 and folic acid may be more at risk of cervical cancer.
Zinc is responsible for the production of more than 200 essential enzymes. It contains superoxide dismutase. SOD helps in providing protection against cervical cancer. It destroys harmful free radicals and boosts the immune system.
3. Folate to fight Cervical Cancer
Studies quote that foods rich in folate may help reduce the risk of cervical cancer in a woman with HPV.
Foods rich in folate include Avocados, Orange juice and Strawberries. Chickpeas, Fortified cereals and Lentils are also great sources.
4. Flavonoids to Reduce Cervical Cancer Risk
Flavonoids are a potent protector against cancer. A diet rich in fruits and vegetables is crucial in preventing cervical cancer.
Foods rich in flavonoids include apples, broccoli and Cabbage. Cranberries, garlic, lettuce, onions and Spinach also work great.
5. Go for Green Tea
Research says that green tea can reduce cervical cancer cell growth. It contains epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) and polyphenols. These antioxidants help in preventing cervical cancer.
EGCG and poly E have a positive impact on cancer cell growth inhibition. These compounds also have a positive impact on the cell cycle and apoptosis induction in cervical cancer cells.
6. Chew some Cruciferous Vegetables
Cruciferous vegetables are rich in Indole-3-carbinol (I3C) and sulforaphane (SFN). It is a phytochemical that helps in keeping healthy cells healthy. They exhibit anti-inflammatory effects. Research reveals that cruciferous vegetables may significantly decrease the incidence of carcinogenic fatality.
Cruciferous vegetables help in decreasing uncontrolled cell growth. It also helps in enhancing programmed cell death. Foods like Brussels sprouts, kale, and broccoli are powerful cruciferous vegetables.
7. Ditch the Fad Diets
The whole idea of dieting is wrong!!! Rather it is healthy eating at right times that works wonders to your body. Fad diets deprive the body of useful nutrients. The cells need a variety of nutrients for healthy functioning.
8. Say no to Nitrates
Food manufacturers use nitrates in processed food items. This nitrate converts into nitrites in the body, which can turn into nitrosamines. Scientific evidence suggests that nitrosamines can cause cancer.
9. Check for Glycemic index
Avoid foods that have a high-GI. High GI carbohydrates might increase the risk of several types of cancer. Also, high-GI foods stimulate the production of hormones that are proven to promote tumour proliferation and cancer progression.
10. Beware of Aflatoxin
There is emerging evidence that food toxins can cause cervical cancer. Fungi that grow on food can produce carcinogenic substances. Aflatoxin is such a poison produced by a fungus.
Tips for preventing cervical cancer
- Go for annual Pap smears for early detection
- Get vaccinated against HPV
- Practice safe sex
- Quit smoking
- Avoid processed foods
- Quit Alcohol
- Avoid stress
Cervical Cancer: Diet Is Only Part Prevention
Though these foods offer a shield against cervical cancer, there is not adequate evidence to it. More proven ways like HPV vaccination for prevention and Pap Smear test for detection are more effective. However, nutritional status is an important factor affecting HPV persistence and progression.
Cervical cancer is a lifestyle cancer. And a few conscious alterations in diet and lifestyle can go a long way! Thus, maintaining a well-balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables is crucial to combat cervical cancer.