Cruciferous vegetables have once again been linked to cancer prevention, according to a new study that found a reduced risk of bladder cancer in men who were frequent consumers.
Harvard researchers followed the eating habits of nearly 48,000 middle-aged men for 10 years. Those who ate more than five servings a week of cruciferous vegetables-cabbage family members such as broccoli, cauliflower, kale and Brussels sprouts-were half as likely to develop bladder cancer as those who ate one serving a week or less, no matter how many other vegetables they ate. Broccoli and cabbage were the most protective.
Yellow, green leafy and carotenoid-rich vegetables conferred no protection against the disease, the sixth most common cancer in the U.S. The researchers surmise that phytochemicals unique to cruciferous vegetables enhance the action of enzymes that defuse carcinogens.
Journal of the National Cancer Institute, April 7, 1999.
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