Category Archives: spinach

Spinach influences gene expression to cut colon cancer risk in half

by John Phillip 

(NaturalNews) Colorectal cancers represent the fourth most prevalent form of the disease with more than 150,000 cases diagnosed each year and more than 50,000 deaths. Forward-thinking nutrition researchers understand that this particular form of the disease is largely preventable through lifestyle changes including healthy diet, exercise and smoking cessation. The newly emerging science of Epigenetics is shining a light on the specific mechanism of food-based nutrients to influence genetic expression helping to prevent many diseases, especially colon cancer.

Researchers from Oregon State University’s Linus Pauling Institute have reported the result of their work in the journal Molecular Nutrition and Food Research that demonstrates how spinach consumption neutralizes carcinogens in cooked foods to alter cancer stem cells and slash colon cancer risk. This study adds to the growing body of research that shows the potent nature of fresh, unaltered foods to prevent chronic diseases and the role of Epigenetics in cancer, or the ways in which gene expression and cell behavior can be changed even though DNA sequence information is unaltered.

Regular spinach consumption cuts colon tumor formation in half

The lead study author, Dr. Mansi Parasramka noted “Cancer development is a complex, multi-step process, with damaged cells arising through various means… this study showed that alterations of microRNAs affect cancer stem cell markers in colon cancer formation.” The researchers specifically targeted the damaging acrylamides and heterocyclic amines (HCAs) that form when meats and other food sources are heated at high temperatures. These compounds influence microRNAs and genetic markers to increase risk of colorectal cancer.

Scientists know that cancer development is initiated by small changes in DNA sequencing, or mutations that result in uncontrolled cell growth. The rapidly emerging field of Epigenetics is showing how dietary, environmental and lifestyle influences can directly influence the expression of genes to promote or prevent many cancer lines and heart disease, diabetes and neurological disorders as well.

MicroRNAs, once thought to be genetic ‘junk,’ are now recognized as critical components to the Epigenetic equation as they determine which areas of our genes are expressed or remain silent as a result of environmental influences such as diet. The researchers monitored 679 known microRNAs to find out how they responded or were expressed when exposed to different food sources.

The study team found that consumption of spinach can partially offset the damaging effects of many food-induced carcinogens. In tests with laboratory animals, the leafy greens cut the incidence of colon tumors almost in half, from 58 percent to 32 percent. The researchers concluded “The good news about epigenetics and microRNA alterations is that we may be able to restore normal cell function, via diet and healthy life style choices.” While spinach was found to exert a powerful effect on genetic expression to inhibit colon tumor formation, a varied diet of fresh, uncooked vegetables will yield a health-promoting shield to protect against many forms of cancer and chronic disease.

Sources for this article include:
http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mnfr.201200117
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120620213215.htm
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-06/osu-slc062012.php
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/246888.php

About the author:
John Phillip is a Health Researcher and Author who writes regularly on the cutting edge use of diet, lifestyle modifications and targeted supplementation to enhance and improve the quality and length of life. John is the author of ‘Your Healthy Weight Loss Plan’, a comprehensive EBook explaining how to use Diet, Exercise, Mind and Targeted Supplementation to achieve your weight loss goal. VisitMy Optimal Health Resource to continue reading the latest health news updates, and to download your Free 48 page copy of ‘Your Healthy Weight Loss Plan’.

10 Best Foods For Your Buck

Plan your menus around healthy, nutrient-packed staples that won’t give you sticker shock at the checkout.
Make the most of your grocery budget by stocking up on these versatile natural foods that are good for your health and wallet.

Peanut butter

Why it’s a 10 best:This popular pantry item offers protein and heart-healthy unsaturated fats.
 Use it it: Snacks, sandwiches, sauces, and baking goods. 
 Cost: About 20¢ for 2 tablespoons


Eggs

Why they’re a 10 best: Eggs are a good source of lean protein, and also contain vitamin B12, riboflavin and phosphorus.

Use them in: Omelets, frittatas and salads
Cost: About 13¢ per large egg

Oats

Why they’re a 20 best: This grain helps lower LDL (bad) cholesterol.
Use them in:  Baked goods, breakfast and to stretch ground-meat dishes
Cost: About 17¢ per ½ cup for quick-cooking oats

Apples

Why they’re a 10 best: This fruit is a good source of vitamin C and is full of both soluble and insoluble fiber.
Use them in: Salads and baked goods; as a snack
Cost: About 60¢ each, depending on variety and season

Spinach


Why it’s a 10 best: This leafy green is loaded with vitamins (A, C, K and folic acid) and manganese.
Use it in: Salads, pasta dishes, casseroles, soups and stews
Cost: About $1 for 5 ounces of fresh spinach

Beans

Why they’re a 10 best: This tasty staple provides lean protein that’s full of fiber, calcium, folic acid and iron and other minerals.
Use them in: Salad and stews
Cost:  About 35¢ per ½-cup serving (canned)

Frozen vegetables


Why they’re a 10 best: They provide fiber and an array of nutrients, depending on which veggies you buy.
Use them in: Sides and casseroles
Cost: About 40¢ per serving

Sweet potatoes

Why they’re a 10 best: These spuds are very filling (because they contain fiber) and a source of vitamins A and B6.
Use them in: Main and side dishes
Cost: About $1 each

Brown rice

Why it’s a 10 best: Brown rice is a whole grain and a source of vitamin B6, magnesium, copper, zinc and manganese.
Use it in: Soups, salads and side dishes
Cost: About 37¢ per ½ cup (cooked)

Canned tuna fish

Why it’s a 10 Best: This fish is a healthful lean protein and contains omega-3 fatty acids.
Use it in: Sandwiches, casseroles and salads
Cost: About 75¢ for 3 ounces

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