Cancer fighting benefits of garlic consumption

A few years ago, I wrote to you about a pair of cancer-fighting foods, the pomegranate and garden-variety broccoli. But that's not ALL the news in the world of natural foils for that most dreaded of all diseases.

I have also extolled the cancer-fighting benefits of garlic consumption - especially for stomach and colorectal cancers. Garlic is also an enemy of cancer - this powerful herb is likely able to counteract the carcinogenic effects of over-cooking meat and eggs. First, some background about the cooking part: I've always stressed that the closer you can eat your meats and eggs to raw, the better they are for you - provided they've been handled sanitarily, of course. This is true on multiple counts.

The first is that the more you cook anything, the more you burn, boil, or braise away the healthy nutrients. The second is this: Cooking eggs and meat at high temperatures (overcooking, in other words), produces a chemical compound called PhIP, which many believe can cause DNA changes or metabolize common, harmless bodily enzymes into carcinogens - especially those that cause breast cancer.

Now here's the interesting garlic-cure part: A component of ordinary garlic called DAS (diallyl sulfate) has been proven to inhibit these killer PhIP enzymes. A team of scientists at Florida A&M University infused human breast epithelial cells with both DAS and PhIP. At every stage of study in the test, the PhIP did indeed increase the expression of the suspected cancer-causing enzyme - at times up to 40-fold. But the added DAS completely prevented the enzyme from becoming carcinogenic by triggering a genetic alteration in the enzyme that renders it harmless

The results of the study were presented at an American Association for Cancer Research meeting in Baltimore, Maryland. My Advice: Always eat steak as rare as you can take it (and eggs as runny). But if you can't stomach beef unless it's well done, a liberal sprinkle of garlic may help keep it as healthy as it can be - especially for you gals. And, as you know, overcooking meat creates homocysteine, which is highly atherogenic. Take 800 micrograms of folate in tablet form with your overcooked (yuk!) meat.

And in even more good news for food-cures that help fight cancer in women

Ovarian protection that suits to a tea!

According to an Associated Press report, some Swedish research suggested that daily consumption of several glasses of tea may have a profound effect on the incidence of ovarian cancer - one of the leading causes of cancer deaths in women. The study involved over 61,000 Swedish women over a period of 15 years.

The results: Those who drank 2 or more cups of tea every day enjoyed as much as a 46% reduction in their risk of developing ovarian cancer. Drinking less than this amount still helped measurably, but not nearly as dramatically as the 2-cups-and-up crowd. Though the research didn't isolate benefits by tea types, most respondents were habitual drinkers of the black tea varieties.

However, both black and green teas contain the powerful antioxidant polyphenols thought to slash cancer risk. These compounds are found in tea, wine, coffee, some fruits, chocolate (sugar-free) and other sources. But then, you already knew that if you've been a reader of mine for more than a fortnight. Now if only they'd make some garlic tea to drink with overcooked meats, we'd really have something