Good things do come in small packages, according to the latest study looking at how a specific plant-based food – in this case, nuts – may affect how long we live.
The new research, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, found that people who ate nuts at least five times per week had an 11 percent lower risk of dying from cancer than the nut avoiders. And those who included at least 1 ounce of nuts daily (a small handful) had the lowest rate of mortality from all causes, 20 percent less than those who ate none.
One point to note about this finding is that it’s a correlation, meaning it links eating nuts to mortality, it doesn’t prove cause-and-effect. There are numerous factors that play a role in living longer, and the researchers attempted to statistically rule these other factors out, including their weight, physical activity, high cholesterol, alcohol intake and other aspects of their diet. Continue reading →
The curly leaves of kale can be much more than a garnish on holiday plates. If you’re confounded by how to prepare kale, you can reap its cancer-fighting benefits in our Health-e-Recipe for Pasta Shells with Garlicky Kale.
Chopped, one cup of these ruffled green or purple leaves contains more than a day’s worth of antioxidant vitamins A and C, plus good amounts of vitamin B-6, calcium and magnesium. Kale also provides cancer-preventive phytochemicals like sulforaphane, quercetin and kaempherol — preserved in this dish by quickly braising the kale for only 3 minutes.
Garlic’s generous allium phytochemicals add more protection and flavor, as do the red pepper flakes. Whole-wheat pasta boosts the cancer-fighting fiber in this dish to 7 grams per serving. And with 13 grams of protein per serving, adding some lean protein or beans can bring the protein total to 20-30 grams. Top it all with some slivers of roasted red bell pepper for a festive look.
Find more delicious cancer-fighting recipes at the AICR Test Kitchen. Subscribe to our weekly Health-e-Recipes.
For cancer prevention, the evidence is pretty clear: vitamins, minerals and other supplements alone don’t work. Not relying on supplements is one of AICR’s recommendations for cancer prevention — a recommendation made after analyzing the global research.
Now a review of the research supports this conclusion, finding that many popular supplements do not protect against both cancer and heart disease, the two leading causes of death in America. At least among healthy individuals. And some supplements may possibly cause harm among certain groups of people. The report was published by the US Preventive Task Force, an update to their 2003 report with similar findings.
The analysis reviewed all the new evidence since the last report, collecting only “good quality” studies. At the end of it, there were 26 new studies.