Category Archives: Healthy Food

Inspired by World Cancer Day

By Hui Xie-Zukauskas

WCD_WeCan n ICanWorld Cancer Day (February 4th, each year) is a global observance and initiative to fight cancer. The theme of 2016 World Cancer Day is “We can” and “I can”, being selected by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC).

We can and I can – clarity, simplicity and forcefulness.

Much focus of World Cancer Day goes towards raising awareness of cancer, reducing risks of cancer, and learning how to prevent, detect and treat cancer early. To help achieve this goal, I’d like to bring one thing to the spotlight: Lifestyle modification.

Why? Only 5–10% of all cancer cases are attributed to genetic or inherited mutation. 35- 40% of cancer can be prevented by a major lifestyle change.

Next, how can you modify lifestyle to a healthier, livelier one? I’ve given a lot of information and strategies through CancerPreventionDaily.com. Here are 7 quick and effective tips:

1.      Quit smoking, period. This is not only for the individual but also for your loved ones and many, many others.

2.      Avoid or limit alcohol. Have we seen enough how alcohol takes a toll at physical, mental, emotional and social levels?

3.      Get physically active! Walk, run, jump, play or gardening … do whatever you can at where you are to move each day.

4.      Eat smart. Diet is intimately linked to diseases, as English Proverb cautions, “Don’t dig your grave with your own knife and fork”. In developing cancer, processed meats and foods speed it up, while a plenty of fresh vegetables and fruits slow it down.

5.      Maintain a healthy weight. It is well-accepted that obesity is a significant risk factor of several types of cancer. Taking the above actions will benefit weight loss.

6.      Avoid over-exposure to sun.

7.      Remember early detection.

Cancer is preventable disease. With hope and love, we all can do our own part and contribute to prevention or cure of cancer, ultimately making a difference in saving lives.

 

Image credit: worldcancerday.org

Foods to Stop Abdominal Obesity and Inflammation

By Hui Xie-Zukauskas

Big Belly-and-diet-1349596-mAre you a woman with a waist measurement of over 35 inches or a man with a waist of over 40 inches?

If so, you need to keep reading and engaging in this topic. There is an increasing concern about abdominal obesity, which has been identified as a risk factor of cardiovascular disease and cancer.

How bad is it?

Abdominal obesity, so-called “big tummy”, is the accumulation of excess intra-abdominal fat tissue, which promotes the release of inflammation-causing chemicals and subsequently causes inflammation. On top of that, chronic inflammation is harmful to your body and a root for many chronic illnesses such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes and arthritis. So, “big tummy” should not be taken lightly.

Several factors might contribute to increased abdominal fat, including sex hormones, growth hormone, and local production of cortisol, a “stress hormone”. Dietary fructose is involved too. So, you cannot shrink your waist size overnight, and there is no a magic pill for it. However, you can simply start with modifying your diet.

How can you do it?

Is there any food that can improve your belly towards a healthy, active anti-inflammatory way? Yes. Here are the topmost eight approaches you can focus on:

1.      Oily fish: salmon or tuna

Fatty fish like salmon, tuna and sardines, are not only good proteins but high in omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce inflammation. To rip most benefits, eat these fish a few times a week, and cook them in healthy ways, such as grilled or baked, not deep fried, dried or salted.

2.      Healthy fats: olive oil and avocado

Let’s face it. Fat adds delicious taste, but not all fats are created equal. So, sprinkle olive oil and avocado over your salad, or mix them with your dishes.

 3.      High fiber foods: whole grain, oatmeal

A diet study on nearly 90,000 people in 2010 found that those consuming at least 10 grams of fiber daily (especially the kind in whole grains) had waists about three inches smaller than those eating very little fiber.

4.      Tomatoes

Tomatoes are a rich source of vitamin C and lycopene, known to reduce inflammation throughout the body, along with supporting the immune system. Cooked tomatoes contain even more lycopene than raw ones, so does tomato sauce.

5.      Kale and other green leafy vegetables.

Kale is one of the stars among green leafy veggies, which can make up key components in an anti-inflammatory diet. More than forty-five individual flavonoid antioxidants have been identified in kale, including quercetin and kaempferol. Quercetin has been shown to possess a strong anti-inflammatory property. Moreover, kale facilitates the body’s detoxification processes, which are crucial in flushing out inflammatory substances, such as those built up from processed foods.

6.      Nuts and nuts-based fiber bars

Nuts such as almonds and walnuts, are wonderful snacks, and a great source of inflammation-fighting fats and antioxidants. There are so many good things about them — rich in fiber, calcium, vitamin E, and alpha-linolenic acid (a type of omega-3 fat).

7.      Low-fructose food: lemon, prune, and cranberries

These fruits contain little fructose. Research findings demonstrate that reduction in fructose improves several risk factors associated with cardiovascular disease. In addition, low-fructose diet may be an effective intervention in cancer development.

8.      Spice like garlic, ginger and onions

Garlic and ginger have been used since ancient times, as powerful punches to combat inflammation. Garlic can help ward off a range of chronic illnesses, attributing to its antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral and anti-inflammatory nature. Ginger is rich in antioxidants too. Onions are loaded with antioxidants, particularly quercetin. Many people tend to ignore them, but these foods do add an appreciable taste to your dishes.

Overall, diet can play an important role in lowering the risk of various cancers, and in reducing the hazard of chronic inflammation. A diet with the above beneficial foods helps shrink your waist size; in the long run, it can boost your anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer force.

What else can you do to speed up the progress?

Regular exercises, drinking more water or tea instead of coca and sweet beverages, reducing stress level, and a good night sleep as well, can all add up to burn your abdominal fat.

 

Image credit: By julosstock

Eat Broccoli for Protection from Carcinogens and Air Pollutants

By Hui Xie-Zukauskas

Broccoli n Green handsI like this quotation from Robert Louis Stevenson – “Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds that you plant.” The wisdom applies not only to our life, but also to human health and earth health.

Today, let’s have a talk on broccoli, particularly what’s new and the long-term benefits from it.

A compound in broccoli, sulforaphane, has been shown to have anti-carcinogenic properties in many studies previously. Research indicates the chemopreventive and chemotherapeutic potential of sulforaphane in solid tumors and possibly in blood cancer, based on its anti-proliferative, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant and anti-cancer activities.

Recently, researchers have discovered that the same compound contained in broccoli also helps our bodies naturally remove carcinogens and some toxins present in heavily polluted air. These environmental toxins include benzene, a known carcinogen; and acrolein, a lung irritant. The clinical study was published in the journal Cancer Prevention Research in June.

Let’s think about it. Is this a better and safer way for our humans to reduce health risks from air pollution? Certainly is, especially without drugs or chemicals. In this way, a natural product helps the body defend unavoidable environmental pollutants. Again, it proves that food is the best medicine!

As you may know, benefits of broccoli extends to various health issues such as preventing heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, allergies, osteoarthritis, and some ulcers as well as skin damage by UV radiation (effective when applied topically). Needless to say, how easily it can be done when integrating broccoli into daily diet, right? You can eat in raw (e.g. salads) or in cooked dishes after steaming, boiling, or quick-frying, etc. You can also mix it to veggie juice or smoothies.

The bottom line is – Eating more broccolis can go a long way towards enhancing your nutritional status as well as protecting you from environmental pollutants, cancer and some chronic illnesses.

Reference: Egner PA, Chen JG, Zarth AT, Ng D, Wang J, Kensler KH, Jacobson LP, Munoz A, Johnson JL, Groopman JD, Fahey JW, Talalay P, Zhu J, Chen TY, Qian GS, Carmella SG, Hecht SS, Kensler TW. Rapid and Sustainable Detoxication of Airborne Pollutants by Broccoli Sprout Beverage: Results of a Randomized Clinical Trial in China. Cancer Prevention Research, 2014.

 

Image credit: by lockstockb, Avolore

Strategies and Tips for Healthy Dishes for Hot Summer Days

By Hui Xie-Zukauskas

green and red healthy foodImagine that on a hot summer evening you just came back from work and you want to avoid staying around the stove to cook a family dinner. As you know, fast food or a colorful meal-in-box is not always healthy, and dining at restaurants can be costly. Let’s say that going out is not an option. So how do you fix the dinner quickly?

Yes, dinner planning during the summer is a challenge. But we have to eat, right? That’s why I want to provide some solutions for hot weather, weird schedules, busy days, tired cooks, or a lack of cooking magic.

Here are the top FIVE principles to help you make a hot summer day dinner easy and healthy:

1. Plan ahead strategically.

-          Bake and Freeze: When you bake some foods during the weekend, it makes your week-day dinner easier and less time-consuming to prepare.

-          Cook and fridge: for example, hard-boiled eggs and chicken slices/cubes can be done in advance.

-          Have a theme or a focus. We can develop a cycle by rotating dishes without repeating the same meal two days in the row. For example, we could have a theme like chicken-veggie pasta for Monday, tuna fish salad for Tuesday, veggie and ravioli on Wednesday, shrimp-veggie pasta for Thurs, pizza for Friday, Salmon, veggie and brown rice for Saturday, and veggie/tofu for Sunday, but without being strictly tied to the same order each week. It actually make meals diverse and less boring; and when you get used to it, you don’t need to think too hard about what to have for dinner.

2. Make it easy.

Buy some fresh or semi-cooked dishes during your grocery shopping, then you just warm the dish and eat. Another idea is to stock some fresh baby carrots, chopped celery, lettuce, tomatoes, blueberries or grapes, or some veggie wraps and potato salad, in your refrigerator, and then you can have a ready-meal or no-cook dinner. Fresh, light and simple foods also calm your mind!

3. Ensure it’s fresh and healthy with cancer prevention in mind.

Healthy and delicious dishes don’t need to be complicated. On hot summer days, cool, light, fresh dishes are recommended. Eat something light with green-leafy veggies or watermelon—sweet and super hydrating—and limit greasy and deep-fried dishes. Remember to drink a lot of water or other fluids!

4. Exercise creativity and have fun!

I used to take my lunch to work in this way, i.e. in a “create your own dish” fashion. Prepare all veggies, fruits, nuts, meats, and dressings by setting them out just like a salad bar, then everyone can take whatever they like to have a “rainbow” on the plate. Alternatively, for a family dinner, put together the foods you have—from whole wheat bread to fish or chicken, from veggies to a fruit cake, then you can have a “Cancer Prevention Picnic” in your back yard while watching the sunset!

5. Make it quick.

When you follow the tips and ideas mentioned above, your dinner will be ultimately a quick-fix.

Follow these solutions and your meals prep should be less stressful, less troublesome, and take less time. A bonus is that you and your family will have healthier dishes and that’s reason to be happier too!

 

7 Natural Nutrients and Powerful Antioxidants for UV Protection

By Hui Xie-Zukauskas

Fruits-Veggies_4566Have you ever gone for grocery shopping, wondering how to take advantage of natural foods for your UV protection? Or you might be just thinking loud “Help me – Help me with a shopping list for natural resources of antioxidants that fight UV and Sun damage!

Hey, this is a health-smart idea or initiative. After all, UV radiation causes DNA damage leading to skin aging and skin cancers. Although the skin holds many protective mechanisms against UV damage, the combination of accumulated exposure and UV-induced immunosuppression can overwhelm the skin’s natural defense. There are a myriad of natural resources for your protection.

To combat UV’s harmful effects and strengthen your skin defense, I’m going to put seven types of super foods and nutrients on the spotlight in this post, and talk about how they provide UV protection.

1.      Carotenoids

Carotenoids micronutrients can scavenge free radicals that cause DNA damage to skin, and protect skin injury and/or problems resulting from sun damage and UV radiation. In general, colorful veggies and fruits with bright natural pigments are signals of carotenoids-rich foods, such as carrots, red, yellow or orange peppers, and oranges.

2.      Lycopene

Tomatoes are lycopene-rich super food; and lycopene can neutralize the harmful effects of UV light by scavenging skin-damaging free radicals. Additionally, tomatoes also contain beta-carotene and vitamin C. In the summer, as well as in all seasons, it is so easy and refreshing to include tomatoes in virtually any dishes from salad to pizza and side dish. Grape/Cherry tomatoes can be excellent snacks!

3.      Resveratrol

Resveratrol has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-aging, and anti-viral properties. It also exerts cardioprotective, neuroprotective and analgestic actions. Research shows that resveratrol can regulate cellular activities in response to radiation and thus minimize UV radiation-initiated damage. Furthermore, resveratrol can neutralize free radicals generated from UV rays and counteract their harmful effects. Grapes are an superb source of resveratrol. Other foods containing resveratrol include wine, grape juice, cranberries, cranberry juice, and peanuts.

4.      Flavonoids

Dark chocolate is a wonderful source of flavonoids, which is well known for the protective benefits of the heart and blood vessels. Interestingly, research also suggests that dark chocolate protects the skin from sun damage. So, give yourself a treat or an excuse to consume it regularly, but not excessively. In addition, flavonoids-rich natural cocoa butter helps preserve skin’s elasticity and moisture.

5.      Green tea

Green tea is loaded with polyphenol antioxidants, which have protective effect on UV-induced skin inflammation, oxidative stress and DNA damage. Green tea is also rich in catechins, which are known to have extremely powerful antioxidant properties. A cup of iced green tea in hot summer days serves as not only a beverage to ensure adequate hydration and promote youthful skin, but also a guard to prevent UV-induced DNA damage and reduce skin cancer risk. Green tea can be a great substitute for Coke or other sugar-packed soft drinks.

6.      Salmon

We all know that salmon provides an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids. However, do you know that salmon helps build your skin defense? Research shows that Omega-3 essential fatty acids may protect skin damage and premature aging from UV radiation, this is because salmon also contains astaxanthin, a powerful antioxidant that can scavenge free radicals produced from the skin after sun or UV exposure. Additionally, astaxanthin helps alleviate the pain and inflammation associated with sunburn.

7.      Greens

Go greens! And you’ll never go wrong. Green leafy veggies are delicious, nutritious, and they help protect your skin damage from sun and UV radiation. Greens are the great sources of beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin, vitamin C and E – a full spectrum of carotenoids micronutrients and vitamins.

Certainly, dietary intake of antioxidants in terms of UV protection is considerably slower than topical application achieved by using sunscreens. However, an optimal supply of natural antioxidant micronutrients in the skin can enhance skin antioxidant defense against UV radiation damage, support your long-term wellbeing, and maintain your skin health and glowing appearance.

I hope that today’s grocery checklist is valuable for your UV protection and particularly beneficial for people at the greatest risk of skin cancer and other cancers as well.

 

Image credit: by Fruits-Veggies_4566

Fresh and Fast Salad for Cancer Prevention

By Hui Xie-Zukauskas

healthy-greens-1369011-sAt CancerPreventionDaily, our commitment is to sustain hope and provide tools that help you take specific steps to stay healthy and reduce cancer risks. Today, I’d like to share with you our cancer prevention salads – it’s fresh and fast!

Ingredients and Recipes

Step 1: Mix the following ingredients together.

  •  lettuce
  •  arugula (unique flavor)
  •  tomatoes
  •  mushrooms
  •  potatoes (pre-cooked in cubes)
  •  eggs (hard-boiled and diced)
  •  raisins or craisins
  •  sunflower seeds

Step 2: Add your choice of salmon/tuna or chicken.

Step 3: Sprinkle some dill over the salad, along with 1-3 table spoons of olive oil (depending on the amount). Then add salt, pepper and salad dressing to your taste.

Variations

  • Use tofu for protein.
  • Use watermelon or grapes as alternatives of antioxidants, lycopene, vitamins.
  • Use almond or walnuts as nuts alternatives.
  • Use chives or basil as herb alternatives.

Although most of the veggies I described here were right from our vegetable garden, there are plenty of veggies or fruits that are tasty and nutritious.

The Principles of Cancer Prevention Salad

  1. Start with green veggies: Spinach, lettuce or Romaine lettuce, Broccoli, or combination.
  2. Build on colors (so-called “Rainbow”): Tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, or carrots. Fruits such as watermelon, peach, orange or grapes are welcome mixers.
  3. Include protein: Chicken or fish (e.g. salmon, tuna). In addition, beans, eggs (hard-boiled then sliced or diced), nuts and seeds can be good choices for vegetarians.
  4. Mix with cancer-fighting ingredients: Avocado, olive oil, minced garlic, or even lemon. Red wine vinegar or freshly-ground pepper can also be used.
  5. Garnish with healthy herbs: Basil, chives, rosemary or your favorites, fresh or dried. They go with the above salad components easily. Don’t have herbs? Sprinkle a few pieces of green onions.
  6. Remember raisins ─ a tasty trick! Otherwise, add grapes for natural sweetness – much healthier than synthetic sweeteners and sugar.

The bottom line is – summer salads are refreshing and easy with a nice variation. Importantly, they contain immune boosting and cancer-fighting nutrients.

 

Image credit: by MeiTeng

A New Strategy for Developing Healthy Habits

Ghandi-Quote_Keep thoughts positiveMahatma Gandhi once said, “Your beliefs become your thoughts, your thoughts become your words, your words become your actions, your actions become your habits, your habits become your values, your values become your destiny.”                                                      

This wisdom from Gandhi can be applied not only for the sake of inspiration for personal development but also for motivation to develop healthy habits. Today, let’s talk about a strategy for many seemingly small battles that may be necessary for living a healthy lifestyle.

This strategy is to embrace Gandhi’s chain of connections, thoughts → words → actions → habits, by starting out with thoughts and then formulating those thoughts into words, which then influence your actions and finally lead to healthy habits.

For example, if you feel a craving for sugar or sugar-rich food, tell yourself “I can pass it up” or “I want to eat healthier food,” and say it out loud. Then do something to counteract the desire for sugar, such as eating some veggies or fruits or taking a walk. Each time when your craving comes back, think about your valuable health, repeat your words and your practice, realizing that the process of thoughts-words-behaviors-habits is connected with your results.

Since too much stress can influence us to eat too much or make other unhealthy choices, it is also very helpful for developing healthy habits to do the following: If you feel stressed out, give yourself a break. Shift your focus to relaxation or find something to laugh about. This can help keep your mind healthy, which is important because a healthy mind and healthy brain guides you to function more effectively as you move toward accomplishing whatever you do.

Let me reinforce this new strategy by citing another famous quotation from Gandhi – “Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.”  

 

Image credit: By getorganizedwizard.com

How to Avoid Too Less or Too Much of Vitamin D

By Hui Xie-Zukauskas

Vit D Nature-MadeVitamin D is known for its critical role in forming and maintaining strong, healthy bones, but it also links to a broad spectrum of health benefits, such as those for cardiovascular and neurological functions. Most of us mainly acquire vitamin D from exposure to sunlight. However, sun’s UV rays cause skin cancer. So, there is a health conflict, right?

Today, we’ll talk about solutions to this problem, i.e. how to make sure you get enough vitamin D for your health, but not too much.

How much do we need?

For general population, the recommended amount of vitamin D daily intake for an individual aged 1 to 70 is 600 IU. This amount can be increased to 800 IU/day for those over 70 years old. It’s important to know that the recommendations are made based on an assumption of minimal or no sun exposure.

Three ways to get vitamin D

1.      From the sun, with sun protection

The most beneficial effect of sun exposure is the production of vitamin D in the skin. However, it is essential to practice sun care and protection. We’ve published several blogs covering various strategies and tips for sun protection. You can use these resources.

Because UV radiation from the sun can cause skin cancer and because there are other sources where you can acquire vitamin D safely and inexpensively, let’s next look at how to meet your need through diet and vitamin supplements.

2.      From food

Foods rich in vitamin D include fish (esp. swordfish, salmon, tuna contain high vitamin D), beef liver, milk fortified with vitamin D, yogurt, cereal and orange juice fortified with vitamin D. You can integrate these foods to your diet intentionally.

3.      From supplement

Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) is the natural form of vitamin D produced in the skin after sun exposure. It is available as a single ingredient in over-the-counter vitamin supplement, and also commonly incorporated into calcium supplements and multivitamins.

In summary

Sensible sun exposure, certain foods rich in (or fortified with) vitamin D, and vitamin D supplementation should help improve the vitamin D status not only for bone health but for lowering the risk of developing or dying of cancer.

Words of wisdom:

Vitamin D deficiency can cause health problems, but vitamin D overdose can cause intoxication such as hypercalcemia, renal and hematologic abnormalities. Never take a large dose of vitamin D to prevent cancer since the evidence is inconsistent and inconclusive.

 

How Fiber Protects You Against Colon Cancer: New Evidence

By Hui Xie-Zukauskas

You’ve heard that consuming enough fiber can protect you from colon cancer. Do you know why? Today, I’d like to help you understand why fiber could be your secret weapon to fight colon cancer, based on some new research evidence.

Fiber in ColonThe top secret: It’s in a receptor termed G-protein-coupled receptor 109A (GPR109A), as outlined in this schematic illustration. The question is how it plays a role in colon cancer. In other words, how does this receptor, GPR109A, carry out the mission?

First, GPR109A is a tumor suppressor, which means it protects a cell from its progression to cancer, just as a brake in a car. It is located on the colon epithelial cells, the cells covering the surface of your gastrointestinal tract (and of course, other cavities in the body). Like other receptors, GPR109A needs the binding of a ligand (i.e. a lock and key contact) to form a biochemical complex then subsequently alter the receptor conformation and cellular function.

Next, what is the ligand (the key) for GPR109A (the lock)? In this case, GPR109A recognizes not only nicotinate / niacin but also butyrate, a product from bacteria fermentation of dietary fiber.

Now, let’s focus on butyrate.

When butyrate binds to GPR109A, the activation of this receptor triggers a signaling pathway that can set off –

-    the immune cells in the colon to produce anti-inflammatory molecules.

-    the same immune cells to communicate with T-cells, a group of specialized defenders to fight different germs and infections and to strengthen your immunity.

-    the epithelial cells to produce and release cytokines. Cytokines are proteins that regulate immune system and adaptive immune responses.

Here is good news – these events happen only in the colon! So, if you consume plenty of fiber-rich foods, with the aid of good bacteria in the colon to digest them, you’ll have a sufficient supply of butyrate.

This provides one more reason why fiber-rich foods promote your colon health. Collectively from research findings, plant-based foods’ intake has been inversely associated with the risk of colon cancer. A higher intake of vegetables has also been associated with a lower risk of colon cancer.

Niacin also activates GPR109A, which might explain why other nutrients such as niacin (vitamin B3) from plant-based foods has been linked to a reduced risk of colon cancer. Noticeably, niacin has been used as a cholesterol-lowering drug, but serious side effects may occur at a higher dosage, and a prescription from your doctor is needed.

In brief, butyrate- or niacin-activated GPR109A signaling can suppress chronic inflammation and promote cancer prevention. Ultimately, you need plant-based, fiber-rich foods to defend colon cancer.

 

How to Consume Enough Daily Fiber for Cancer Prevention

By Hui Xie-Zukauskas

Imagine a fiber’s tale. “I am a fiber, and my nickname is “Tough Carb”. Together with my sibling soluble and insoluble kinds, I am largely wrapped up in foods like fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Passing through your body, I bind with fats, help nutrients get better absorbed, move the bulk through the intestines, and promote a faster traffic to eliminate the waste your body doesn’t want. At the end, I still survive – remaining unbroken.”

What a fabulous job done by a “personal healthcare agent”! Well, I have more good news for you – Research indicates that a diet high in fiber can lower colon cancer risk. Specifically, every 10 grams of daily fiber intake reduces the risk of colon cancer by 10%.

Now the questions are how much fiber you need each day and how you can meet your goal to prevent colon cancer? Here I offer 5 meal-strategies that can help you effortlessly incorporate fiber into your daily diet and support the healthier, happier colon.

How much fiber do we need?

It is recommended that we eat 25-35 grams (g) of fiber per day. Sounds impossible or difficult? Don’t worry. A rule of thumb is – consume at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables and 3 servings of whole grains each day. This is based on the fact that fiber is abundant in whole grains, fruits and vegetables, nuts and legumes.

Fiber-rich breakfast ideasHow do you integrate 25-35 g of fiber into your diet on a daily basis?

Here are 5 meal-strategies to get your 25-35 grams each day with ease:

1. Breakfast: Have oatmeal or high-fiber cereal, fiber-rich breads or English Muffins, and more desirable, add fruits.

Breakfast is the most important meal of a day. However, many people skip it. Think about this. A cup of rolled oats (dry) contains nearly 10 g of fiber, and Quaker Instant Oatmeal (3 g of fiber per pack) is also available in all grocery stores. So, if you have 2 packages of oatmeal (6 g of fiber), a slice of whole wheat bread (5-6 g of fiber per slice; depending on brands), and add some fruits like berries, bananas or raisins to your cereal or oatmeal (extra 1-2 g fiber), you’ve got a nice jumpstart, and it’s not hard. Plus, a bonus gain – fiber can boost your energy for a fantastic day ahead!

Broccoli_10972132. Lunch: Eat plenty of veggies and beans. Use whole wheat or whole grain bread to make your sandwiches. Have an apple as a part of salad or desert. Broccoli, one of anti-cancer foods, holds a good supply of fiber; 4.0 g per ½ cup (raw), 5.0 g in 4 spears (frozen) and 9.3 g per cup (fresh, cooked). Beans and fish (esp. salmon) are also excellent protein sources to replace animal meat.

3. Dinner: Eat whole-wheat pasta, brown rice or potato (with skin), plus a variety of vegetables and olive oil. Add beans to your soup. Do you know cooked black beans contain 19.4 g of fiber per cup? How about whole-wheat pasta with chicken and colorful veggies?

whole-wheat-fig-bar4. Snacks: Take All-bran, Multi-grain crackers or high-fiber bars, fresh or dried fruits, as well as nuts and seeds, when you on the go. Fig is one of the highest fiber sources. Try Nature Bakery’s Whole Wheat Figgy Bars or Whole Wheat Blueberry Figgy Bars, they are individually-wrapped, delicious, and reward you another 2-4 g of fiber (2 g fiber per serving, 2 serving per pack). (But I’m not paid for “Ads”. :) )

5. Drinks: Drink more fruit/Veggie juice (fiber-rich) or soy milk (1-1.5 g of diary fiber in per 8 oz cup). See Martha Stewart’s recipes of making delicious green juice at home, which are affordable too.

Eventually, it’s your choice to include foods you desire. But the key is to eat a lot of fiber-rich foods (i.e. plan-based food).

Some folks consider that healthy foods taste boring, especially those from the grocery stores. I sympathize that, and the fix is – to get fresh fruits and vegetables from your local farmers’ market; those foods are yummy and refreshing!

As a final note, a balanced, fiber-rich diet is not the only tool to prevent colon cancer; exercise should go hand-in-hand with it.

 

Image credit: By aaronsg, quakeroats.com, rachelg, lockstockb, and naturesbakery.com