While many of those diseases sound inevitable, in fact, they are preventable, with the help of foods that boost immunity. Below, Eat This, Not That! has rounded up the best-ever foods for certain diseases—eat them and live a longer, happier life.
Eat This, Not That! #1 Diabetes Blocker
A recent American Journal of Clinical Nutrition study of more than 200,000 people found that a higher consumption of the fruits—rich in anthocyanin, an antioxidant—was associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes, and they’re also known to help with with obesity control. The ones you want: Blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries, which are are all especially rich in flavonoids.
Eat This, Not That! #1 Cancer Preventer
According to a 2015 Food Chemistry study, the antioxidants found in white tea not only help protect healthy cells against potentially carcinogenic oxidative damage, but they can inhibit the reproduction of existing colon cancer cells. And that’s not the only magic elixir out there: Drop two sizes with these 4 Teas That Melt Fat.
Eat This, Not That! #1 Skin Saver
In early 2015, The Journal of the National Cancer Institute reported on a study in which researchers followed more than 447,000 people over ten years. They discovered that those who drank four or more cups of coffee a day were 20 percent less likely to be diagnosed with skin cancer than those who drank none. (You need the fully loaded version, however—there was no such association found among those who drank decaf.)
Eat This, Not That! #1 Heart Protector
A diet of heart-healthy fats, like those found in flax seeds, raises good HDL cholesterol levels. Plus the seed, which can be added to everything from smoothies to cereal, contains a huge dose of heart-protecting fiber as well. Use ground seeds to maximize your omega-3 intake. Protect yourself from other diseases—and lose up to 16 pounds in 14 days—with this list of The 9 Best Flat-Belly Superfoods.
Eat This, Not That! #1 Breast Cancer Beater
<strong>Whole-grain cereal with fruit</strong>
For every 10 grams of fiber consumed daily a women’s breast cancer risk decreases by 7 percent, according to research. And it’s easy enough to get: A bowl of Fiber One topped with a sliced apple or half a cup of raspberries provides 18 grams.
Eat This, Not That! #1 Blood Pressure Reducer
A study of over 2,000 adults revealed that those who consume just 2% of their total daily calories from yogurt have a lower incidence of hypertension than those who eat the creamy stuff less often. And some yogurts also carry a nice dose of potassium, a proven blood-pressure reducer. An 8-ounce container of Stonyfield’s Organic Smooth & Creamy yogurt, for example, contains up to 11% of the day’s recommended intake, more than you’d get from a small banana. To get the benefits and tone your body, start your day with one of these Best Brand-Name Yogurts for Weight Loss.
Eat This, Not That! #1 Lung Cancer Fighter
According to Harvard researchers, lung cancer patients with the highest intake of Vitamin D had a better survival rate than patients with a low intake of the vitamin. Milk is a great source of the nutrient—but make sure you’re sipping at least 1%. While skim is lowest in calories, vitamin D is fat-soluble; milk without fat makes it difficult for your body to absorb the vitamin.
Eat This, Not That! #1 Cholesterol Slasher
Black beans contain soluble fiber, the type of fiber your body can digest; it’s a key nutrient in helping to reduce “bad” LDL cholesterol levels and total cholesterol levels, too. Aim for at least five grams of the nutrient a day—a half cup of black beans will get you half way there!