Allison Avery
April 22, 2013

You know that some people are more genetically prone to getting breast cancer than others.

But did you know that eating broccoli and cauliflower might reduce your risk of breast cancer if you carry a certain genetic sensitivity? In a recent study performed in China, women who were genetically inclined to get breast cancer lowered their risks by about 50% through eating a diet rich in cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, bok choy, etc.) “These vegetables are the major source of some chemicals thought to be important for cancer protection,” says study author Jay Fowke, PhD, assistant professor of medicine and cancer epidemiologist at Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center. “Since this gene is not something you can go out and easily get screened for, the take-home message for all women right now is just that eating these vegetables is good for everyday health.”

Be nice to your breasts by eating cruciferous veggies raw; thats the best bet to get the most benefits from them, Fowke says. Youll still get some of the good stuff if you cook them, too. Heather Bauer, RD, author of The Wall Street Diet suggests making Cauliflower “Mashed Potatoes”: Steam a head of cauliflower (about six cups) for 11 minutes, drain it, then put it in a food processor with 31⁄2 ounces 2% fat Greek yogurt; add salt, black pepper, and minced garlic to taste, and top with grated Parmesan cheese.

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