Author: CTCA Nutrition Team
Whether you have been diagnosed
with cancer and you’re interested in eating
to boost your immunity and help
with recovery or you’re simply looking
to improve your diet in the interest of
overall wellness and prevention, you’ll
want to be aware of a powerful player in
the nutrient lineup: antioxidants.
Antioxidants are compounds that
protect cells from damage to their genetic
material caused by agents known
as free radicals. This type of damage to
cells may increase the risk of developing
cancer. Studies have shown that consuming
an antioxidant-rich diet can play
a significant role in reducing the risk of
cancer as well as other conditions, such
as heart disease. An antioxidant-rich
diet should not only include the recommended
five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables but also feature generous
servings of legumes, nuts, seeds, and
Here is a list of some of the most
common antioxidants and where they
can be found:
Carotenoids are found in fruits and
vegetables that are orange, dark green,
deep yellow, and red. Examples include
bell peppers, carrots, spinach, kale,
sweet potatoes, tomatoes, and oranges.
Bioflavonoids are found in citrus fruits,
whole grains, soy, berries, honey, tea,
and other plant foods.
Vitamin C can be found in fruits and
vegetables such as kiwis, strawberries,
cantaloupe, papaya, oranges, tangerines,
grapefruit, tomatoes, pineapple, red
and green peppers, sweet potatoes, kale,
kohlrabi, and broccoli.
Ellagic acid is found in numerous fruits,
nuts, and vegetables, including blackberries,
raspberries, strawberries, cranberries,
pomegranates, wolfberries, walnuts,
pecans, and other plant foods.
Anthocyanidins are found in black and
red currents, red cabbage, eggplant, blueberries,
and açai berries.
Selenium is found in Brazil nuts, fish,
poultry, meat, and whole grains.
Lycopene is found in tomatoes, grapefruit,
watermelon, and papaya.
Vitamin E (gamma-tocopherols) is found
in walnuts, peanuts, and pecans.
Seek out antioxidants whenever possible,
and look for recipes, like chicken with
mango salsa on the following page, that
incorporate these powerful players.