Can Eating Avocados Assist in Preventing Breast Cancer?

Nearly 60 % of Americans claim they have avocados on their favorite foods list. Odds are, you probably do too! But did you know that avocados may also be protective against
reproductive cancers like breast cancer as well?

Avocatin B and Carotenoids in Avocados Fight Cancer

Avocados have dozens of benefits for health, not the least of which is the presence of phytonutrients which can target cancer cells.

One key substance in avocado is Avocatin B. This is a kind of fat distinctive to this fruit (avocados are not a vegetable, but a single-seeded berry).  According to a 2015 report printed in the journal Cancer Research, Avocatin B was found to fight acute myeloid leukemia (AML), a rare form of cancer. 

The researchers of the joint study, which hailed from several institutions in Italy and Canada, found that this substance was able to get rid of not only regular cancer cells but also cancer stem cells. Healthy cells remained untouched.

Of equal, if not more, importance on the cancer prevention track are the kinds of antioxidant carotenoids found in avocados. You might recollect carotenoids in carrots and other bright fruits and vegetables since it is responsible for creating plant pigment.

According to the California Avocado Commission, avocados contain eleven dissimilar kinds of carotenoids. Lutein is one kind that research has shown can affect cancer cells directly. 

While lutein alone has been found to decrease the risk of prostate cancer in earlier studies, a 2005 research conducted by investigators at the University of California, in Los Angeles, USA found that lutein was even more active when the extract of whole Hass avocado fruit was introduced to prostate cell lines. 

The whole avocado was up to 60 % more effective in going after prostate cancer cells than cleansed lutein alone.

A 2012 research published in the journal Cancer Causes and Control delivered more evidence as to the chemoprotective effects of avocados on prostate cancer. It followed two hundred and nine (209) newly-diagnosed men and two hundred and twenty-six (226) cancer-free men in Jamaica. In the research, a high consumption of monounsaturated fatty acids (in the form of avocados) “decreased the risk of prostate cancer.”

Antioxidants in Avocados Reduces Breast Cancer Risk

No studies have yet been carried out on avocado extract and breast cancer directly. The results from the prostate studies stated above, however, are relevant for anyone who is on a healing path with breast cancer. Some of the same cancer-causing mechanisms exist for breast cancer as with most reproductive cancers in both men and women.

Some research studies connect lutein consumption with breast cancer prevention directly.  According to the Harvard-sponsored Nurses’ Health Study, consumption of foods that contain lutein, such as kale, avocados, and spinach, can reduce the risk of breast cancer. 

A 2014 Chinese research study also found that higher serum levels of lutein were linked with a 51 % reduction in breast cancer risk.

As if all this wasn’t enough, avocados are also a high-fiber food, contain significant amounts of essential nutrients like B vitamins and potassium, can help make your hair and skin glow and are great for brain health.

What’s the bottom line? Eating avocados is an all-around win-win for breast and prostate cancer prevention and for your overall good health!
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