Eating Vegetables Could Prevent This Common Type of Cancer

A Harvard study shows that the health benefits of vegetables might lower your risk of developing breast cancer.

Eating 2 to 2-1/2 cups of vegetables every day can give you a real wellness boost. The benefits of vegetables like collard greens, Brussels sprouts and beets include strong bones, healthy red blood cells and a robust immune system!

Here’s one more reason to eat your leafy greens—a study from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health suggests that women who eat fruit and vegetables on a daily basis could have a lower risk of developing breast cancer.

To conduct the study, Harvard researchers looked at surveys that participants completed every four years. The experts also considered other risk factors for breast cancer including family history, weight and smoking habits. In the past, research has always suggested an association between eating fruit and vegetables for breast cancer prevention, but this study actually confirms the link!

(We’ll have to add “preventing cancer” to our list of reasons to try a plant-based diet.)

What Vegetables Should I Eat?

The research found that cruciferous vegetables (like broccoli and Brussels sprouts) along with yellow and orange vegetables (like sweet potatoes) had the strongest link to lowering the risk. In other words, you need to eat the whole rainbow!

“While a diet with lots of fruits and vegetables is associated with many other health benefits, our results may provide further impetus for women to increase their intake of fruits and vegetables,” says senior author Heather Eliassen, associate professor at Harvard Medical School and Harvard Chan School and associate epidemiologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

Based on this particular research, the experts are staying that the antioxidants and micronutrients in many common fruits and vegetables could play an important role. (No wonder so many nutritionists eat leafy greens.) Your everyday vegetables could have a miraculous cancer-preventing ability!

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Charlotte Grainger
Charlotte Grainger is a creative feature writer, with a flair for food, health and lifestyle pieces. Her work has been seen in a number of national publications including Beyond Words Magazine, Reader's Digest and Psychologies. When she’s not typing away, you can find her trying out new recipes or binging Netflix shows— sometimes simultaneously.