A recent study published in the International Journal of Cancer suggests that high consumption of vegetables and fruits can lower the risk of developing breast cancer in women. What the researchers found was that this applies especially to cases with aggressive tumors, such as HER2-enriched, ER-negative and basal-like tumors.
Certain vegetables were associated with a lower risk of developing breast cancer
The study shows that the participants who ate more than 5.5 portions of vegetables and fruits every day had an 11% lower risk of breast cancer than the women who ate no more than 2.5 servings. But it also seems that certain vegetables – those of the family Cruciferae, called cruciferous vegetables (such as broccoli and cauliflower), as well as orange and yellow vegetables were particularly associated with lower risk of breast cancer.
Antioxidants are particularly important
According to the researchers, some constituents of these foods, like antioxidants and other micro-nutrients, could also play a crucial role in the reduction of breast cancer risk. Maryam Farvid from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston, the lead author of the study, mentioned that previous studies have indicated an association, but “they have been limited in power, particularly for specific fruits and vegetables and aggressive subtypes of breast cancer”. Farvid also went on to say that this new research emphasizes how important it is to consume large amounts of vegetables and fruits to prevent breast cancer.
In the past, there have been several studies that found an association between high fiber intake and reduced risk of developing breast cancer. However, the researchers mentioned that in this specific study, the benefits of the vegetables and fruits are not linked to their fiber content. Therefore, it is definitely recommended for women to include as many vegetables and fruits as possible in their diets, if they want to prevent breast cancer.
Jasmine holds a Master’s in Journalism from Ryerson University in Toronto and writes professionally in a broad variety of genres. She has worked as a senior manager in public relations and communications for major telecommunication companies, and is the former Deputy Director for Media Relations with the Modern Coalition. Jasmine writes primarily in our LGBTTQQIAAP and Science section.