Vegetables show potential help to cancer treatment and prevention
Substances called isothiocyanates (ITCs) in broccoli were found to show promise to fight against cancer, according to a study in the Journal of Medicinal Chemistry.
Broccoli contains high levels of vitamin C, dietary fiber and multiple nutrients with potent anti-cancer properties, such as diindolylmethane and small amounts of selenium.
This vegetable is thought to be linked to reduce the risk of developing cancers such as prostate cancer, lung cancer and breast cancer.
The isothiocyanates also are found in cauliflower, watercress and other cruciferous vegetables.
Fung-Lung Chung and colleagues suggested that isothiocyanates may help to prevent cancers by supporting the tumor suppressor gene p53, which is crucial to keep cells healthy and prevent them growing abnormally.
The researchers used the substances to test several cancer cells, including lung, breast and colon cancer, and found the substances stripped the decayed p53 but would keep the normal one.
Drugs targeting ITCs could improve the current cancer treatment and may help prevent cancer.
To help prevent cancers and other chronic diseases, experts recommend 4 to 13 servings of fruits and vegetables daily, according to the National Institute of Health.
Stephen Laua and editing by Denise Reynolds