Can food help in the fight against breast cancer?

Summit BC Foods

October is breast cancer awareness month.

There are campaigns across the country talking about knowing what symptoms to be on the look out for and how to lower someone’s risk.

Food is one weapon being used in the fight against one of the most common cancers in women.

Registered dietitian Jody Pannozzo from  is a big fan of incorporating food into people’s daily meals to help battle certain medical conditions from skin cancer and pain.

When it comes to breast cancer, she has a list of potential cancer fighting foods that have showed promise.

-Crucifer Vegetables: Broccoli, Cabbage and Cauliflower

Pannozzo said the nutrients in cauliflower help strengthen the immune system and protect against the development of cancer.

Cauliflower boasts high amounts of vitamins C, K and folate as well as potassium. It contains fiber, which helps to lower cholesterol and improves blood sugar control.

She said cauliflower comes in white, orange, green and purple varieties and when buying, choose cauliflower heads that are uniform in color, feel very solid and have no loose sections or brown spots.

When it comes to storing cauliflower, Pannozzo said to store them in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to five days and that steaming or microwaving cauliflower will preserve its vitamin content better than boiling.

How to use it in recipes:

  • Try cauliflower “rice” in stir-fry recipes
  • Thick slices of cauliflower can be lightly greased, spiced and baked to make cauliflower steaks
  • Roast cauliflower with garlic and onion for a savory side dish
  • Make a cauliflower pizza crust
  • Try cauliflower tatter tots
  • Grill cauliflower with lemon and sesame oil
  • Try mashed cauliflower with Parmesan and garlic
  • Steam cauliflower and drizzle with olive oil and seasonings

-Grapes-resveratrol – Pannozzo said you don’t have to drink wine to get some of the disease prevention protection it provides.

-Garlic-clove a day – According to The National Cancer Institute, “Several population studies show an association between increased intake of garlic and reduced risk of certain cancers, including cancers of the stomachcolonesophaguspancreas and breast,” Pannozzo said.

-Mushrooms – Basic white button mushrooms have been shown to have some amazing potential when it comes to breast cancer prevention. If you’re looking for a dish to use mushrooms, Pannozzo has an easy recipe to try out.

DPP: Quinoa and Garlic Mushrooms

Mushrooms are low in calories and packed with immune boosting antioxidants! These antioxidants may also play a role in preventing heart disease and various cancers.

Enjoy this recipe as a meatless Monday meal or pair with a lean protein like chicken or fish.


  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 16 oz. package of fresh, sliced mushrooms
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


In a large saucepan, cook quinoa according to package instructions and then set aside. (Microwavable quinoa can be used for convenience.)

Heat olive oil in large skillet over medium high heat. Add garlic, thyme and mushrooms. Stir until mushrooms are tender. Use salt and pepper to season. Stir in cooked quinoa until well combined. Garnish with Parmesan cheese and enjoy!

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