Research indicates that eating a variety of plant foods, such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains and beans can reduce the risk of numerous cancers. To receive the most nutritional benefits, try filling half of your plate with fruits and vegetables, and a quarter with whole grains or beans.

The following five foods are excellent nutritional options and may help reduce the risk of cancer:

  1. Berries: Berries provide a variety of nutrients that can ward off cancer. These fruits contain Vitamin C, fiber and ellagic acid – a phytochemical that has been shown to slow cancer growth. No berry is superior to another, so enjoy your favorite or try something new!
  2. Cruciferous Vegetables: This type of vegetable is a very common and you’re likely familiar with many. These veggies include broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, turnips, kale, collard greens and more. These vegetables contain a slew of antioxidants and phytochemicals, which help fight cancer. So eat up.
  3. Garlic: Although it’s not friendly to the breath, garlic can be powerful in preventing cancer in the gastrointestinal tract and it adds flavor to almost any dish.
  4. Legumes: Legumes include kidney or black beans, split peas and red lentils. They are all high in fiber and protein, and contain health-promoting substances that protect the body from cancer.
  5. Tomatoes: Tomatoes are given their red color by the phytochemical, lycopene, which is a potent antioxidant. Tomatoes can help reduce the risk of cancer, especially in the lungs, breasts or prostate.

Staying healthy and helping prevent cancer doesn’t have to mean changing your entire diet – just making smart food choices outlined above may help. And as always, please consult your physician or healthcare provider before starting any diet plan.