What to Eat


Fresh or frozen berries might inhibit a tumor's ability to form blood vessels, and without a blood supply, the tumor cannot survive.

Other foods can help prevent cancer from forming in the first place.

Scientific studies can be confusing or even contradictory, but the consensus among doctors and researchers is that a daily diet rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains can protect against a wide range of cancers.

Substitute fish, poultry or beans for red and processed meats whenever possible.

Not all of the following cancer-fighting foods are suitable for people undergoing treatment. Cancer patients have special dietary needs they should discuss with their physicians. 


Berries are bursting with compounds that can slow the growth and metabolism of cancerous cells. An antioxidant in raspberries has been shown to inhibit cervical cancer growth and may decrease pancreatic cancer risk and skin cancer cell division.

Citrus fruits

Rich in vitamin C, which may fight breast cancer, citrus fruits may also reduce the risk of esophageal cancer. The fruits' pectin may lower the risk of ovarian cancer and delay the growth of cancerous cells in men diagnosed with recurrent prostate cancer. Peel and eat oranges and grapefruits in sections because spooning them out leaves behind a white membrane packed with cancer-fighting flavonoids.


Tomatoes contain lycopene, which is linked to a decreased risk of pancreatic and prostate cancers. Go ahead and hit the sauce - heating tomatoes does not destroy lycopene; in fact, it enhances it. Ounce for ounce, tomato paste, spaghetti sauce and ketchup contain more lycopene than a raw tomato.

Whole grains

High intake levels of whole grains correlate with reduced pancreatic, colon, endometrial and ovarian cancer risks.


Red varieties contain high levels of resveratrol, which can decrease or stop the growth of breast, prostate, pancreatic, stomach, liver and colorectal cancers.

Tart cherries

This fruit naturally depletes the body of cancer-causing substances. They can also slow the growth of cancerous cells, particularly in the case of colon and breast cancers.


Pomegranates contain four chemical components that have been shown to inhibit prostate cancer cell growth. Antioxidants found in pomegranates and their juice may also help prevent breast and lung cancer cells from dividing and can even kill cancer cells.

Leafy greens

Green is good - leafy greens, such as spinach, can decrease the risk of breast, colon, skin, lung, head, neck, ovarian and stomach cancers. Watercress intake, in particular, is associated with decreased ovarian cancer.

Cruciferous vegetables

Studies suggest that broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, cabbage and bok choy help ward off prostate, lung, breast, head, neck and pancreatic cancers. The compounds in cruciferous vegetables have been shown to keep cancers from forming, as well as to slow the growth of tumors that are already present.

Garlic and onions

Garlic may reduce stomach cancer and women's risk of colon cancer. Onions may play a role in fighting lung, colon, bladder, skin, prostate, stomach and endometrial cancers, as well as leukemia. Red and yellow onions pack the most nutritional punch.

Nuts and seeds

Nuts and seeds contain healthy monounsaturated fat, which has been shown to protect against breast cancer. The mineral selenium - found in certain kinds of nuts - may inhibit the development or growth of prostate, lung and bladder cancer cells, while also protecting against colon cancer.

Green tea

Tea is the best source of anti-cancer compounds called catechins, and green tea contains about three times as much as black tea. One study showed that drinking three or more cups of green tea each day reduced the recurrence rate of Stage I breast cancer.

Red wine

Drinking moderate amounts of red wine may decrease the risk of kidney cancer and Hodgkin's and non-Hodgkin's lymphomas. But beware: Drinking moderate to heavy amounts of alcohol has been shown to increase the risk of cancers of the upper airway and digestive tract, as well as breast and colorectal cancers. Even one glass of alcohol a day may increase a woman's risk of getting breast cancer. 

Dark chocolate

Extracts of dark chocolate can inhibit the formation of breast, colon and prostate cancers, and can decrease the division rate of liver cancer cells.