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Triggered by uncontrollable cell growth, cancer can start almost anywhere in your body. Although you might not be able to modify your risk in some cases, a healthy diet has been proven to be a potent way to reduce the likelihood of the condition. Express.co.uk spoke to Hussain Abdeh, Superintendent Pharmacist from Medicine Direct, about the summer treat that could cut your risk of four cancers.
Zesty yet refreshing, citrus fruits offer just the right amount of taste and coolness during the summer months.
However, research also suggests that the sour snacks could also help stave off cancer.
Mr Abdeh said: “The antioxidants found in citrus fruits can track down and neutralise free radicals within the body, which has a neutralising effect on them.
“This plays a part in stopping them from damaging the body’s healthy cells, which makes them less vulnerable to becoming cancerous.”
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Another potent part hidden in the colourful fruits is their high soluble fibre content.
The expert said: “Citrus fruits also have a higher rate of soluble to insoluble fibre compared to most other fruits and vegetables.
“This can help to aid digestion and lower inflammation in the body.”
According to Science Direct, inflammation is considered to be a driver for cancer while also promoting tumour growth.
As there’s a variety of colours and flavours to choose from, Mr Abdeh also explained what to reach for when it comes to citruses.
He said: “Oranges are one of the best citrus fruits for a wide range of antioxidants and nutrients, including vitamin C.
“Lemons, limes and grapefruits are also high in phytonutrients, which are types of antioxidants that can help to protect the body from cell damage and other problems.”
What’s more, the research suggests that citrus fruits may play a role in preventing various cancer types, including colon, prostate, pancreatic and breast cancer.
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However, the expert noted that the research into this is “not conclusive”.
For example, a study, published in the journal Medicine, found that eating citruses could “significantly” reduce the risk of the cancer that forms in the thin, flat cells lining the inside of the oesophagus.
However, this same benefit wasn’t observed for cancer that begins in the cells of mucus-secreting glands in the muscular tube.
Another research, published in the journal Frontiers in Pharmacology, also highlighted the role of citrus juices as a “potential resource against cancer” after looking at 22 research papers.
Currently, there’s more research needed to draw a firm conclusion on citruses and various cancers.
Plus, it’s also important to not overdo it on the refreshing snacks. Mr Abdeh said: “You should eat citrus fruits as part of a balanced diet, as eating too much can result in the likes of diarrhoea and stomach aches.
“Try to eat one or two pieces a day as part of your five a day.
“Eating the whole fruit is always best as fruit juice can lose a lot of the natural goodness, especially if it has been concentrated.”
The expert concluded that it’s also important to eat a variety of healthy foods while getting enough exercise and maintaining a healthy lifestyle to reduce your chances of the dreaded disease.
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