Cancer-Fighting Whole Grains: Are They Trending on Your Plate?

Today is Whole Grains Sampling Day – a great time to try one (or more) of these delicious cancer-fighting foods.Cereals - maize ,wheat, barley, millet, rye, rice and oats

Whole grain foods are fiber-rich and they promote health in many other ways. But most Americans fall short of the US Dietary Guidelines’ recommendation to make at least half of their grain choices whole grains.

You an explore new choices, one step at a time. Here are some tips I’ve shared with patients and ways that I swap out refined grains for delicious whole grain foods:

If your day typically starts with coffee and a donut or even a white flour bagel:

  • At Home: Try a whole wheat tortilla – Spread on some peanut or other nut butter, add banana or apple slices, roll it up and eat it at home or on your way to work or school.
  • On Your Way: Choose the oatmeal to go at the coffee shop or fast food drive through. Ask for the nuts, fruit and sugar on the side to keep the calories right for you.

For lunch – whether you bring your own frozen meal or grab a sandwich at the local deli:

  • Frozen entrée – take a close look when you’re shopping in the freezer aisle and choose one that includes brown rice.
  • Deli sandwich –ask for whole wheat bread or roll; or look for soup that includes barley or wild rice.

Dinner  - this can be a great time to gradually add more whole grains for you and your family:

  • Spaghetti dinner – cook half whole-wheat thin spaghetti and half white flour spaghetti and top with your favorite sauce.
  • Try whole grain muffin or cornbread mixes for a great accompaniment to your stew, soup or salad meal.

Check out our latest Foods that Fight Cancer- Whole Grains, for ways to start replacing your refined grains with whole grains along with recipes and tips for buying and storing them.

What are ways you put whole grains on your plate?


Study: Daily Fruits and Veggies for Fewer Cancer Deaths, Longer Life

If you need another reason to grab an apple today, a new study may get you inspired. The study suggests that eating just a few fruits and vegetables a day reduces the risk of dying from cancer and an earlier death. And the more produce people ate, the lower their risk of dying during the course of the study.fresh fruits and vegetables isolated on a white background

The study was published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health.

From AICR’s report along with other research, there is already an established link between consuming high amounts of fruits and vegetables are reduced risk of certain cancers. This study both strengthens and adds to the research by focusing on mortality, from cancer, along with heart disease and any cause.

The study included approximately 65,000 participants, ages 35 or older, who represent the population of England. They had answered questions annually about how many and what types of fruit and vegetables they had eaten, as well as other health habits.

After an average of 8 years, the people who were eating seven or more fruits and vegetables each day had a 33 percent reduced risk of dying from any cause compared to their non-produce eating counterparts. Even consuming one to three fruits and vegetables a day reduced risk of death by about 10 percent, compared to those who ate none. The link was even stronger when excluding those who died during the first year of the study, which may have been due to illness. Continue reading


Make-Ahead Healthy Lunches, Your Way

AICR’s Recipe March Madness – down to the Final 4 today – inspired me to share a recent kick I’ve been on to make a one-pot dish on Sunday that I pack for lunches throughout the week. With a little preparation and planning (and it doesn’t take much!) I end up with about 5 delicious and inexpensive lunches filled with cancer-protective nutrients.canstockphoto14256168

I start with a grain and cook 1 cup dry (to yield about 2 to 3 cups cooked) according to package instructions. Lately I’ve been using quinoa because it cooks fast, is delicious and packed full of protein and fiber, but you could also use brown rice, farro, bulgur or another whole grain. I cook it in a low sodium vegetable broth instead of water to give it a little extra flavor. Once cooked, let the grain cool in the fridge.

Next I pick a few ingredients to mix in, always with some added vegetables and/or fruit. Then I pack it into individual containers so I can grab for lunch in the mornings.

Here are three versions you can make with a few simple additions to the already prepared grain-base. When you make dishes like this, you can change the ingredients based on what you have around! Continue reading