October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Breast cancer is one of the most common kinds of cancer in women. About 1 in 8 women born today in the United States will get breast cancer at some point.
The good news is that most women can survive breast cancer if it’s found and treated early. A mammogram – the screening test for breast cancer – can help find the cancer early, when it’s easier to treat.
National Breast Cancer Awareness Month is a chance to raise awareness about the importance of finding breast cancer early. Make a difference! Spread the word about mammograms, and encourage communities, organizations, families, and individuals to get involved.
Dietary choices to help prevent breast cancer
No single food or diet can prevent or cause breast cancer, but a person’s dietary choices can make a difference to their risk of developing breast cancer or their overall well-being while living with the condition.
Breast cancer is a complex disease with many contributing factors. Some of these factors, including age, family history, genetics & gender, are not within a person’s control.
However, a person can control other factors, such as smoking, physical activity levels, body weight, and diet. Some researchers have suggested that dietary factors could be responsible for 30–40% of all cancers.
Breast cancer can start in different places, grow in different ways, and require different kinds of treatment. Just as particular types of cancer respond better to certain treatments, some cancers respond well to specific foods.
The following foods can play a role in a healthful diet in general, and they may also help prevent the development or progression of breast cancer:
- a variety of fruits and vegetables, including salad
- foods that are rich in fiber, such as whole grains, beans, and legumes
- low fat milk and dairy products
- soybean-based products
- foods rich in vitamin D and other vitamins
- foods, particularly spices, with anti-inflammatory properties
- foods — mainly plant based — that contain antioxidants
Dietary patterns that prioritize these foods include:
- A southern diet that is high in cooked greens, legumes, and sweet potatoes
- A Mediterranean diet, which emphasizes fresh fruits and vegetables and healthful oils
- Any “prudent” diet that contains plenty of fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and fish
Spinach Lentil Soup
- 1.5 cup red lentils (Ref Notes)
- 8 cups vegetable stock/water
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 small onion
- 1 tbsp garlic, minced
- 1 large tomato, chopped
- 1 large carrot, chopped
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 tsp cumin powder (optional)
- 1 tbsp mild curry powder
- 1 tsp paprika
- 3 cups spinach, tightly packed
- salt and pepper to taste
- half lemon wedge
- fresh coriander leaves
Heat oil in a heavy bottom pot. When medium hot, add chopped onion followed by garlic. Saute 2-3 minutes. The onion will start to soften and there should be no more raw smell of garlic.
Stir in chopped tomato and carrots. Saute for a minute and let the veggies soften.
Add all the spices turmeric, cumin, curry powder, paprika. Saute for a minute. This helps to develop the flavor.
Stir in washed lentil and stock/water to the pot. Season with salt.
Once it comes to a rolling boil, reduce the flame and let it cook covered for another 20 minutes.
When the lentil is almost cooked and carrot is tender, add spinach to the pot.
Mix well and let it simmer for 5 more minutes.
Stir in fresh lemon juice. Adjust the seasoning and add more salt and pepper if required.
Garnish with fresh coriander leaves when serving.