As my contribution to Breast Cancer Awareness Month I will publish an anti-cancer recipe here every day throughout the month of October, in addition to my usual evidence-based blog posts.
Echoing the Breast Cancer Fund’s “Prevention is Power” Campaign, I want to empower you to do what you can to prevent cancer – not just breast cancer, but all other types of cancer too. By eating foods with cancer-protective properties three (or more) times a day, you can boost your body’s defenses against the disease in small but significant – and tasty! – ways.
The recipes I will be posting here are a collection of my own anti-cancer favorites as well as recipes from other talented authors and bloggers. They include breakfasts, main meals, snacks and drinks, and are supported by scientific information about the health benefits of the ingredients they contain.
Today I will kick off with a fruity yet nourishing raspberry smoothie whose rosy color echoes that of the pink ribbons of October. This recipe is from my book, Zest for Life, The Mediterranean Anti-Cancer Diet, and makes a satisfying breakfast, snack or a tasty after-school snack for kids.
Raspberries are rich in cancer-protective plant chemicals such as ellagitannin and anthocyanins, which have been shown to reduce inflammation, to prevent the spread of cancer cells and to trigger their self-destruction (apoptosis). Raspberries and flax seeds are also an excellent source of lignans, plant compounds that are converted by our gut bacteria into estrogen-like substances that can help balance hormone levels in the body – very important in breast cancer prevention.
You can use fresh or frozen raspberries, preferably organically grown to reduce your exposure to pesticide residues. To ring in the changes, you can use other berries here too, such as blueberries or blackberries – or a mix of various berries. Makes 2 servings.
7oz/1 heaping cup/200g raspberries, fresh or frozen
2 tbsp almond butter
5fl oz/⅔ cup/150ml almond milk (unsweetened, if possible)
7oz/scant 1 cup/200g plain yogurt
1 tbsp finely ground flax seeds
1 tbsp slivered almonds
Place all the ingredients (except the slivered almonds) in a blender and whizz into a creamy smoothie. Add a little more milk if necessary to adjust thickness. Pour into tall glasses and sprinkle with almonds. Serve immediately.
Copyright Conner Middelmann-Whitney. Conner is a nutritionist, cooking isntructor (check out her anti-cancer cooking videos on YouTube) and author of Zest for Life, The Mediterranean Anti-Cancer Diet, a cancer-prevention nutrition guide and cookbook anchored in the traditional Mediterranean diet. It is available at Amazon and all other online bookshops, and as an eBook on Kindle.