Antioxidants Role in Health – Part 7:  Blue & Purple Phytonutrients

Antioxidants Role in Health – Part 7: Blue & Purple Phytonutrients

Part 6 in this series on antioxidants showed that the Green phytonutrients convey a host of benefits beyond being fantastic antioxidants, including protecting you against many types of cancer and improving eye health. It turns out that the blue and purple phytonutrients can also significantly reduce your risk of cancer while helping provide a broad array of benefits for memory, heart disease and diabetes. (more…)

Antioxidants Role in Health – Part 6: Green Phytonutrients

In Part 5 of this series, we introduced you to the Orange and Yellow Phytonutrients, many of which have been shown to help improve vision and eye health. Many of the foods that contain green phytonutrients also help improve eye health. In addition, the green phytonutrients convey a wide variety of unique health benefits.

Eye Health

Lutein and zeaxanthin are green phytonutrients that have been shown to maintain good vision while reducing the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration. While these two nutrients are widely found in various supplemental formulas, they are also plentiful in foods, including kale, spinach, leafy greens (turnip, collard, and mustard), romaine lettuce, broccoli, green peas, kiwifruit, and honeydew melon.

Cancer Risk Reduction

Another key group of green phytonutrients are the indoles, which includes indole-3-carbinol and diindolylmethane. These compounds are not only potent antioxidants, they have also been shown to convey significant protection against a variety of cancers. In fact, these indoles have been shown to significantly reduce the risk of breast and prostate cancers while reducing the risk of tumor growth in most types of cancer, including melanoma.

Indoles seem to exhibit their cancer-protection by altering estrogen metabolism to produce less-carcinogenic metabolites. It also seems to directly inhibit the growth of reproductive cancer cells. Indoles are readily found in a variety of vegetables, including broccoli, cabbage, brussel sprouts, bok choy, arugula, Swiss chard, turnips, rutabaga, watercress, cauliflower and kale.

Chlorophyll is another potent antioxidant that is found in all green vegetables. Chlorophyll has also been shown to have anti-cancer properties. Research has shown that chlorophyll can bind to potential carcinogens and interfere with how they are absorbed in the human gastrointestinal tract; these  studies suggest that these effects help lower the risk for certain types of cancers, including liver and colon cancer.

Another group of antioxidants that have been found to reduce the risk of cancer are the Blue & Purple Phytonutrients; these will be the subject of our next post.

  1. Hsu, J; Dev, A; Wing, A; Brew, C; Bjeldanes, L; Firestone, G (2006). “Indole-3-carbinol mediated cell cycle arrest of LNCaP human prostate cancer cells requires the induced production of activated p53 tumor suppressor protein”.
  2. Kima DS, Jeong YM, Moon SI, Kwon SB, Park KC (2011).” Indole-3-carbinol and ultraviolet B induce apoptosis of human melanoma cells via down-regulation of MITF” Pharmazie.Dec;66(12):982-7.
  3. Kundu A, Quirit JG, Khouri MG, Firestone GL (2017). Inhibition of oncogenic BRAF activity by indole-3-carbinol disrupts microphthalmia-associated transcription factor expression and arrests melanoma cell proliferation. Mol Carcinog.;56(1):49-61.
  4. Kundu A,Aronchik I,Quirit JG, Firestone GL (2014). The antiproliferative response of indole-3-carbinol in human melanoma cells is triggered by an interaction with NEDD4-1 and disruption of wild-type PTEN degradation. Mol Cancer Res.;12(11):1621-1634.
Eating Your Way Out Of Pain

Eating Your Way Out Of Pain

The sensation of pain comes from many places. Obviously, there is a nervous system component; after all, it is our nerves that transmit the signals that alert us to pain and it is our brain that responds to those signals. In addition, there are structural components – if your leg is broken, it must be reset in order for the healing process to proceed quickly; if you have a subluxation in your back or neck, you’ve got to see a chiropractor or osteopath to help you get that corrected so the nervous system can respond appropriately.

However, the degree of our pain, and the length we suffer with that pain is to a large extent the result of chemical messengers that are created in response to an injury. This is called inflammation. However, how this inflammatory process plays out is largely dependent on what we eat. (more…)

Hydration Myths

Hydration Myths

“I drink 64 ounces (or 3 quarts, or 2 gallons) of water a day – there is no way that I’m dehydrated!”

We hear statements like this a lot. And, while compared to most people you meet, you may drink way more water than they do, chances are you are still dehydrated. (We’ve tested thousands of people for hydration status and it turns out that only about 1% of people tested are properly hydrated.) (more…)