Monday, March 30, 2009 | 4:52 am

Fructo-oligo-saccharides (FOS)

These promote the growth and activity of friendly bacteria in the gut. A naturally occurring compound found in fruits and vegetables, FOS are non-caloric substances that are not broken down by the digestive tract. It passes through us easily, inhibiting the growth of’the baddies’ and enhancing the growth of healthy organisms like bifidobacteria. A healthy immunity within the digestive system helps to prevent the formation of many types of cancer.

Genistein – Phyto-oestrogens

One of the most powerful and fascinating of plant ingredients available today is genistein, a plant hormone in soybeans that has been found to profoundly influence our hormone cycles and health. Soy contains phyto-oestrogens, or weak plant oestrogens such as genistein. The power in these phyto-oestrogens lies in their gentleness and their remarkable ability to adapt to your body’s particular needs.

Phyto-oestrogens latch on to the same receptor sites as oestrogen in your body and may help prevent hormonally linked cancers. Like a light switch, they can both turn on oestrogenic effects and turn them off, depending on what your body needs.

Soy protein is believed to reduce the frequency of menstrual cycles by increasing the length of the follicular phase. This may play a role in decreasing one’s risk of developing breast cancer. Phyto-oestrogens such as genistein could be a safer alternative to using tamoxifen in the treatment of breast cancer. Studies on animals have indicated that genistein may also reduce the risk of skin cancer.

Finally, genistein can help prevent excessive new blood vessel growth. Cancerous tumours grow by creating a rich network of new blood vessels. By inhibiting this ability, genistein may slow cancer down.

Green Tea

A simple, tasty and age-old beverage, green tea has potent health-enhancing flavonoids. Green tea seems to protect against several cancers and heart disease. This is good news, since after water, tea is the most popular beverage in the world.

Black tea is dried, crushed, fermented and then dried again. Green teas are not crushed and oxidized; instead they are steamed, then rolled and dried. A cup of green tea contains about 400 milligrams of polyphenols, which are highly beneficial to our health. One of these polyphenols, known as EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate), is a potent antioxidant.

The flavonoids (substances that act like antioxidants) and polyphenols found in green tea may decrease one’s risk of developing many types of cancer including oesophageal cancer, sarcomas and stomach cancer. Green tea decreases a person’s risk of forming polyp-like growths in the lower colon that can lead to colorectal cancer.

Green tea is believed to block the formation of carcinogenic substances such as nitrosamines and it promotes detoxification of harmful agents such as heavy metals and excess oestrogen. Studies show that green tea drinkers have a reduced risk of colorectal and pancreatic cancer. Its active ingredients uniquely boost the body’s immune system, protecting against disease and cancer formation. It also helps to promote weight loss, prevents tooth decay, lowers cholesterol levels and encourages healthy heart function.


(posted in Cancer | tagged Cancer)

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