Eating lots of vegetables like carrots, collard greens, cabbage, and broccoli could reduce breast cancer risk, especially in African American women.
According to researchers working on the “Black Women’s Health Study,” fruits do not have the same benefit.
A diet high in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and fish led to a lower risk of “estrogen receptor-negative” breast cancers among African American women. The estrogen receptor-negative form of breast cancer, which is insensitive to the hormone estrogen, is more common in this population than among white women. It is also more difficult to treat and more often fatal than estrogen-sensitive cancers.
The study found that African American women who ate at least two servings of vegetables a day had a 43 percent lower risk of ER-negative breast cancer compared with women who ate fewer than four servings of vegetables each week.
Women who ate three or more servings of vegetables a week had a 17 percent lower risk of developing breast cancer than women who ate vegetables less than once a month.
Most Americans do not meet the recommendation of five servings of vegetables per day, based on a 2,000-calorie diet. In addition to potential protective effects against breast cancer, higher vegetable consumption can lead to many health benefits, including a lower risk of cardiovascular disease.
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