Nancy Dell: Foods to reduce lung cancer risk; Frizzy hair and food


1. What foods reduce lung cancer risk?
Laurie, Agawam

Lung cancer is the number 1 cancer killer of women in America. The American Lung Association has unveiled a new initiative this week called Lung Force to increase awareness about lung cancer and have asked us to wear turquoise as a symbol. Smoking and second-hand smoke are responsible for most lung cancers but some foods can reduce the risk.

According to a study in Singapore, non-smokers can reduce the risk 25% and smokers can reduce their risk by 37% by eating orange and red produce. These include carrots, peaches, oranges, and red peppers. Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, kale and Brussels sprouts kick cancer causing chemicals out of the cell and reduce lung cancer risk 40%. Fatty fish like Salmon and soy foods like edamame also help. Smoking drains the body of the B vitamin folate. So according to studies at the MD Anderson Cancer Center eating spinach, kale and beans which are high in folate cut cancer risk 40%. So in general eat more fish, fruits and vegetables.

2. My hair is dry and frizzy.  What foods help improve this?
Heather, Internet

Just like every other part of your body, the cells that support healthy hair depend on a healthy diet. But it can take longer to notice changes in hair because the nutrients you eat today help fortify the scalp and the hair follicle, from which each strand of hair is born. So a change in your diet affects the new hair but not the ends of your hair that are unhealthy now.

Here are 3 tips to get you started on the road to healthier hair. Eat enough protein – most women need between 50 and 100 grams a day. You can see a dietitian to calculate exactly the amount you need. Without enough protein your hair can be brittle. Eat omega-3 fats found in fatty fish and walnuts. About 3% of the hair shaft is made up of these fatty acid and these keep your scalp and hair hydrated. Eat orange vegetables and fruits. They are high in betacarotene which protects the oils in your scalp.

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