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Eating An Anti-Cancer Diet
Beth Ley Knotts, Ph.D. (Nutritionist)
For healing or prevention of cancer of any kind, avoiding cancer-causing foods is certainly important (processed foods, highly acidic foods, glyphosate-contaminated foods, etc.), but here I want to focus on some simple anti-cancer steps you can incorporate into your diet.
The goal is to lower your toxic load and improve your body’s ability to detoxify, fight off inflammation and free radicals and support your bodies natural immune system. I will list some of the top cancer-fighting foods, drinks, herbs and supplements to help you get there.

1. Lower your toxin intake.
2. Support the body’s healing, cleansing and detoxifying processes.
3. Focus on eating healthy, nutrient-rich foods to support all of your body’s functions.

It is important to reduce or eliminate the following products and substances from your life in order to halt toxin accumulation and reduce free radical, cellular damage:
Commercial Health and Beauty Products: The things we put in our mouths and use on our skin or hair, such as commercial shampoos, makeup and cleansing products, are often loaded with potential carcinogens. Visit the Environmental Working Group’s SkinDeep database to look-up your favorite products and determine if you should switch to another brand.
Household Cleaners: Indoor environments are often concentrated sources of pollution. Lower your toxin load by switching to natural cleaners or making your own instead of using products that are filled with chemicals. Unnecessary Medications: All medications pass through and burden the liver. High use of acetaminophen is rapidly overtaking alcohol as the number one cause of liver disease. Work with your physician to lessen the amount of medications you are taking.
Plastics: Compounds in plastic containers, plastic wraps, the lining of metal cans, and paperboard containers can all leach compounds that disrupt the neuroendocrine system. This is especially true when plastic is heated, which is why one should never microwave plastic containers, store hot food in plastic, or leave plastic water bottles anywhere where they will become hot (such as in your car).
Even if you eat healthy foods regularly, environmental toxins bombard you at all turns. You may also want to periodically try intermittent fasting to help with detoxification.
The organs responsible for detoxification and elimination are the skin, respiratory system, kidney, liver and digestive tract. These often get overburdened and re-circulate toxins in the bloodstream.
Although fiber is an important part of digestion, elimination, detoxification and a source of probiotic support — too much fiber can stress a weakened or hyper-reactive immune system. Juicing, steaming and lightly cooking raw foods, using green powders and cutting back on or eliminating whole grains can ease digestion and make many nutrients more readily available.

Drink Clean Alkaline Water
I recommend drinking alkaline water which you can create with an alkaline water pitcher or by adding lemon or lime juice. Increase your intake of greens and green juices/smoothies. Cancer cells do not thrive in an alkaline system. You can easily check your urine pH to see your pH level. Your goal is 7.4 or a bit higher.
Tap water can contain hundreds of unregulated substances ,such as pesticides and heavy metals to hormones and other pollutants. Bottled water is even less regulated, which means it’s not necessarily a good alternative, not to mention the plastic bottles they come in. Filtered water and many bottled waters will often test acidic, which will lower your pH of the body.
I suggest buying an alkaline water pitcher that can be used at home to remove chlorine, fluoride and other pollutants from the water you drink and cook with and adds alkalizing minerals to raise the pH of the water.

Cook Foods At Lower Temperatures and Avoid Burnt and Fried Foods
Eliminate fast food, french fries, chips, cakes, cereals and crackers. These will contain the carcinogen acrylamide.
Frying, baking, broiling or roasting are more likely to create acrylamide. On the other hand, boiling and steaming appear less likely to do so. Longer cooking times and cooking at higher temperatures can increase the amount of acrylamide in foods further.
If you must eat bread, do so only occasionally and avoid over-toasting or burning the bread! Eat only organic grains to avoid glyphosate contamination. Sprouted grains are preferred.

Avoid Processed Grains and Sugar
Our bodies make best use of food in its natural state, which is why added sugar or processed/refined grains are so harmful. The more processed and altered that a food is, the more unnatural and harmful it becomes. Processing reduces nutritional value, increases inflammation, increases glycemic index and lowers pH, making them very acidic.
Refined sugar (including sugary drinks), wheat flour, boxed pastas, frozen dinners, powdered cheese and heat-treated vegetable oils — these processed foods are at the heart of a whole host of diseases and disorders. Wheat, soy and corn products are highly subsidized by the U.S. government, making them very cheap and widely available for production of highly processed and refined products. Food allergies associated with these foods are subsequently on the rise and can contribute to leaky gut syndrome and improper nutrient absorption.
These foods are also often loaded with pesticides, herbicides, GMOs and heavy metals.Increasingly, the seeds from which they are grown are genetically engineered. The solution? Buy organic, sprouted whole grains and eliminate all soy and corn products.
Check ingredient labels to be sure you’re not consuming high amounts of added sugar/sweeteners. Brown rice syrup found in some snack bars and non-dairy beverages may contain high arsenic levels.
Watch out for low-fat or fat-free foods, dairy-free and gluten-free foods, rice milk and foods containing artificial sweeteners. Many times these foods contain chemical additives in order to replace fat, wheat or dairy ingredients.
Try alternative grains like quinoa or buckwheat into some meals, rather than eating bread, instant rice, crackers, pasta, cereal, etc.
Consumer Reports testing found that basmati rice grown in California contained the lowest levels of arsenic; all types of rice, except sushi and quick-cooking rice, from Texas, Louisiana, and Arkansas contained the highest levels of inorganic arsenic in a Consumer Reports testing.

Eat More Cancer-Fighting Foods
Your best bet to combat cancer and a host of other conditions, is to eat real whole foods and to eat lower on the food chain (less meat). Research suggests these are some of the top cancer-fighting foods to eat regularly:
Cruciferous Vegetables: Broccoli, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage and kale are all members of the Brassica or Cruciferous family. Studies has found that these cruciferous vegetables are a potent source of antioxidants and studies find them to be powerful weapons against bladder, breast, colon, prostrate, stomach and rectal cancers.
Vitamin A (Beta-carotene): The orange-red plant compound found in fruits and vegetables are the precursors to Vitamin A, a potent antioxidant that is proving helpful to those with breast and ovarian cancer. Vitamin A boosts the immune system. It has proven to be effective in battling breast cancer and head and neck tumors. Vitamin A may also be helpful for battling skin, cervical, colorectal, esophageal, ovarian, pancreatic and stomach cancers. Foods that supply vitamin A include liver, carrots, sweet potato, kale, spinach, grass-fed butter, eggs and winter squash.
Vitamin C: Vitamin C is an antioxidant the aids the immune system. It has proven effective against bladder, breast and mouth cancers. Foods high in vitamin C include berries, peppers, oranges, papaya, guava, broccoli, kale, brussel sprouts, peas and cauliflower.
Lycopene: This is found in tomatoes and in even higher amounts in tomato products. Lycopene acts as a scavenger for singlet oxygens, which are theorized to damage DNA and cause cancer. Lycopene is naturally found in high concentrations in prostate cells, which may account for its specific effect on prostate cancer. Also helpful for lung and stomach cancers.
Garlic: Allium vegetables such as garlic, onions and chives have antibacterial properties, DNA-defense and cancer-halting processes that seem to work against breast, colon, esophageal, rectal and stomach cancers.
Green Tea and Oolong Tea: The polyphenols in green tea are powerful antioxidants that have been found to destroy leukemic cells in lab cultures. They recognize and halt the proliferation of abnormal cells. Oolong tea also contains theophyllines and theobromines (also in green tea) that reduce the risk of many types of cancers.
EV Olive Oil: Olive oil contains phytonutrients that reduces inflammation in the body. It may reduce the risk of breast and colorectal cancers.
Calcium Foods: Calcium, particularly when combined with vitamin D3 form, may reduce cancer by 35 to 60%. Calcium helps prevent cancer and rectal cancers. Some studies have also found that it helps reduce breast cancer and ovarian cancer risk. Sunlight exposure and marine oils such as cod liver oil or krill oil are great sources of vitamin D that help with calcium absorption. Calcium should ideally be obtained from foods like organic dairy products (raw dairy if possible), leafy greens, almonds, beans and fish.
Eliminate pork and pork products. Pork is highly acidic and at high risk for carrying diseases. Instead of eating processed meats like deli meats, sausage or hot dogs, purchase fresh, organic quality meats such as grass-fed beef, pasture-raised chicken or turkey, and wild-caught fish.

Support Your Immune System, Raise your pH and Detox With Supplements and Herbs

Eating a healthy diet is first, but there are also certain herbs and supplements that have been shown to help lower inflammation, boost the immune system, raise your pH and help decrease cancer risk. The specific supplements you choose may depend upon the type of cancer you have.

These include:
  • Omega-3 fatty acids: Omega-3’s are important because the Western diet is so unbalanced with an overabundance of inflammatory omega-6’s. Omega-3’s are needed for a healthy balance of inflammation in the body.
  • Chlorella and Spirulina: These single-celled algeas are a source of vitamin B12 and bind with heavy metals, helping to eliminate them from the body. Chlorella also contains Chlorella Growth Factor (CGF) which is very anti-cancer. These are also among the most potent alkaline foods/supplements you can take to boost your pH.They also have potent detox abilities.
  • CLA: Conjugated linoleic acid boosts the immune system and may reduce the risk of developing colon, rectal and breast cancers.
  • Medicinal Mushrooms: These disease-fighting mushrooms have specific polysaccharides such as beta glucans that boost the immune system, reduce tumor growth and combat cancer.
  • Melatonin: Melatonin is a hormone that helps to regulate our sleep and waking cycles. This hormone’s levels are closely linked to immune system function. Getting at least 8 hours of sleep and reducing stress will boost your melatonin levels. For individuals over age 45, supplementing may be helpful.
  • Iodine: Especially important for breast, ovarian, and stomach cancers, etc.
  • Beta Glucans: Boosts immune system specifically against cancerous cells.
  • Resveratrol: Powerful free radical fighter.
  • Selenium: Antioxidant and Anti-Cancer (but not recommended for prostate cancer). Too much selenium can be toxic, but doses as high as 300 mcg. have been shown to reduce certain kinds of cancer, including the colon, esophagus, lungs and liver.
  • Astaxanthin: Powerful anti-inflammatory and free radical fighter.
  • Alpha Lipoic Acid: Powerful anti-inflammatory and free radical fighter.
  • Ginger: Powerful anti-inflammatory
  • Flax Lignans: Especially for hormone-related cancers
  • Green Tea: Green tea is an excellent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, and helps protect against metastasis of certain kinds of cancer.
  • Curcumin: May kill cancer cells and slow tumor growth.Curcumin may block cancer cells from multiplying killing colon, breast, prostate, and melanoma cancer cells, slowing tumor growth.
  • Vitamin D-3: Supports the immune system.
  • Essential Oils: Many essential oils are very anti-cancer, most notably, frankincense, lemon, other citrus, lemongrass, lavender, thyme, clary sage and turmeric. They can be used topically or taken internally.

Foods included in an anti-cancer diet. Here are the basic tips on eating.

The quality of your diet is closely linked to your overall health and ability to prevent cancer. However, other factors are also important for cancer prevention, such as exercise, avoiding medication and toxin exposure, not smoking or consuming too much alcohol, sleeping well and controlling stress.

1. Eliminate foods you consume that are known to increase cancer risk.

2. Choose as much organic foods as possible.

3. Eat at home as much as possible or carry your own food with you.

4. Reduce animal protein intake and eat a plant-based diet as much as possible.

5. Focus on alkaline foods to boost your pH.

6. Focus on whole foods... avoiding all processed foods.

My top picks for cancer-fighting foods to eat more of:

Choose Organic as much as possible!

Fruits and Veggies
Bell peppers
Berries (fresh or frozen)
Bok Choy
Brussels Sprouts
Leafy greens like spinach or spring mix
Lemons and limes
Mushrooms, especially medicinal ones
Pomegranates (especially prostate cancer)
Sweet potatoes
Tomatoes and tomato products

Wild caught fish, especially salmon
Free range chicken or turkey (small amounts)
Black, red or pinto beans
Garbanzo beans

Dairy - in limited amounts... if any
Choose Organic only

Cooking oils
EV Olive Oil
EV Coconut oil
EV Avocado oil
EV Grapeseed oil

Wild rice
Brown rice
Black rice
Steel cut oats

Nuts and seeds
Flax seeds (freshly ground)

Green Tea
Herbal Tea
Stevia (liquid extract only)
Alkaline water
Lemon water

My top picks of foods to avoid to fight/prevent cancer:

All GM foods
Wheat, especially refined white flour
Any foods sprayed with glyphosate. (LINK) -
Eat Organic and Non-Genetically Modified Foods

Conventionally-raised chicken or turkey
Conventionally-raised beef
Processed meats - lunch meats, bacon, sausage, hot dogs, etc.
All fried foods
Hydrogenated oils found in processed foods, margarines, etc.
Microwave popcorn
Processed boxed foods
Microwaved foods
Sugar - all forms
High fructose corn syrup
Artificial sweeteners
Soda pop
Hard liquor
Artificial ingredients

Additional Reading:
Eat Organic and Non-Genetically Modified Foods

The Worst Chemical Food Additives to Avoid

Top 12 Cancer-Fighting Foods