Strawberries, apples, onions, beans, Brussels sprouts along with green and black teas are chock-full of flavonoids – water-soluble plant pigments with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Such were the findings of a study conducted by a UCLA team of the dietary habits of smokers with or without lung cancer, published in the June issue of Cancer.
The study showed that flavonoids might protect against lung cancer by stopping the development of blood vessels that tumors need to grow and spread, a process called angiogenesis, said a researcher at UCLA’s Jonsson Cancer Center, Dr. Zuo-Feng Zhang. He also found that flavonoids might also counteract the damage tobacco smoke does to DNA, noting that flavonoids affect the development of lung cancer in smokers but not in nonsmokers.
Comments from Dr. Esposito
An easy way to ensure that you are getting a broad spectrum of flavonoids is to eat colorful fruits and vegetables. We have always been told to “eat our greens” but the reality is that we should also be eating our reds, yellows, oranges and purples. Each color contains different flavonoids that can affect our health in different ways. A simple rule to follow to maintain overall health and reduce your risk of cancer is to consume foods that are both “alive” and colorful.