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Veggie Chemical Repairs DNA Damage That Prevents Cancer

The healthy reputation of broccoli, among other vegetables, as a cancer fighter is growing by leaps and bounds, thanks to its ability to jump-start the repair of DNA within cells.

New research has uncovered a chemical compound called I3C -- found in broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage -- that boosts a patient's level of BRCA proteins that prevent faulty genetic information to be passed on to future generations of cells. On the flip side, the presence of faulty BRCA signaling heightens one's risk of some cancers, including prostate, breast and ovarian.

One important caveat: Scientists also identified genistein, the chemical found in soybeans as being just as beneficial as those in broccoli and cauliflower. Unfortunately, that could cause even bigger problems if the soy you typically eat is processed, rather than the fermented kind.

And, if you're a young woman trying to conceive, consuming fermented soy products create problems for you too.

Getting back to vegetables, please pay attention to which ones you eat. Although this food group is among the healthiest on the planet, be aware of your body's unique nutritional type when selecting the right veggies to eat.

British Journal of Cancer, Vol. 94, No. 3, February 13, 2006: 407-426 Free Full Text Study

BBC News February 7, 2006

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