There are three main nutritional goals for someone living with cancer. They are:
- To maintain a healthy bodyweight
- To select a nutritional plan that will supply the body with fuel and nutrients for repair and healing and aid in the body’s ability to eliminate toxins
- To prevent recurrence of the cancer and the development of the second malignancy. While it may be overwhelming to administer radical alterations in food choices, it’s got to be understood that if one refuses to make substantive modifications in their lifestyle, everything will stay the same; hence, one’s cancer risk and the potential for recurrence will remain unaltered.
Simply put, the secret to effective and sustained weight control is a five-part process.
- Move toward a plant-based diet – consuming mineral rich foods fulfill the body’s need for nutrients and provides lower calorie and higher fiber foods that usually reduce unhealthy cravings.
- Watch your portion sizes – condition yourself to eat only when you’re hungry and only as much as your body requires. Pausing after each forkful to take a couple of deep breaths will enhance portion consciousness.
- Keep physically active – exercise burns calories, regulates metabolism, relieves stress and may reduce the urge to eat.
- Go slowly – crash diets, skipping meals and excessive exercise are usually short-lived and fail 97 percent of the time. A carefully planned program of a gradual weight reduction, focusing on healthy eating and exercising will provide sustained results.
- Learn to control our response to life’s stresses – this may play a major role in weight maintenance and uncontrolled cravings and binging. It is the regrets of the past and the fears of the future that proliferate much of our unresolved stress. Learning to live in the present can often have a dramatic effect on our ability to reduce stress in our lives.
Achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight is an essential component of cancer prevention and treatment. Gradually reducing body fat and keeping it off is a strong step in the direction to help protect against cancer and assist in its treatment. Although every cancer patient requires an individual nutritional and therapeutic protocol, there are some important general guidelines which may give the body the best chance of preventing or recovering from cancer or other debilitating degenerative diseases.
Top Foods that Fight Cancer
- Broccoli and cruciferous vegetables
- Dark green leafy vegetables
- Grapes and grape juice
- Legumes (dry beans, peas, and lentils)
- Squash (winter)
- Whole grains
Pumpkin Spice Overnight Oats
With just five minutes of prep time the night before, you’ll have an easy grab-and-go breakfast that will keep you satisfied all morning. These hearty, pumpkin-spiced oats are packed with fiber, protein and cancer-fighting polyphenols. Whole grains like oats can improve your digestion, aid in weight control, and lower your risk for colorectal cancer. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (or any type of milk)
- 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1 Tbsp ground flaxseed
- 2 Tbsp pumpkin puree
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- Pinch of salt
Directions – Stir together all ingredients in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add to a mason jar with a fitted lid. Refrigerate and store overnight.
Makes 1 serving.
Per Serving: 330 calories, 7 g fat, 50 g carbohydrate, 17 g protein, 8 g dietary fiber, 280 mg sodium.
French-style Spinach and Cheese Omelette
A healthy breakfast is the perfect opportunity to start your day off on the right track. This French-style omelet is fluffy and golden with the rich flavor of Parmesan cheese and sautéed spinach. Eggs provide protein and B vitamins and at only 80 calories each, they’re an easy, healthy meal option. Make the recipe as is, or mix it up with leftover veggies. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 2 cups baby spinach, firmly packed
- 2 Tbsp. grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 2 large eggs
- 1 Tbsp. cold water
- 1 tsp. canola oil
- 1 tsp. unsalted butter
- Freshly ground pepper
- Canola cooking spray
In dry, medium skillet over medium-high heat, cook spinach, stirring often until leaves collapse and spinach is tender, about 4 minutes. Cool spinach on plate, then squeeze out most of its moisture. Finely chop spinach and place in small bowl. Place cheese in another bowl.
Using fork, beat eggs, water and 3 or 4 grinds pepper just until egg yolks and whites are combined. Set aside.
Set omelette pan or skillet with 7-inch bottom over medium-high heat for 1 minute. Coat pan lightly with cooking spray. Add oil and butter, lifting and swirling pan to coat lower sides. When butter stops foaming, pour in eggs. Using flexible spatula, push edges of set egg toward center of pan so unset eggs flow out. When top of omelette still has some unset egg in center, slide pan off heat. Sprinkle on cheese. With handle toward you, arrange spinach across center of omelette.
Returning pan to heat with handle toward you, immediately use spatula to fold third of omelette near you over center. Lift, jerk sharply and tilt pan away from you so omelette slides forward. Using spatula, roll omelette over and slide it onto plate with seam side down. Serve immediately.
Makes 1 serving.
Per serving: 278 calories, 21 g total fat (8 g saturated fat), 3 g carbohydrate, 18 g protein, 1 g fiber, 341 mg sodium.
Banana Waffles with Blueberries
These banana waffles are soft, fluffy and made with whole-wheat flour and oats that make them delicious and high in filling fiber. Whole grains provide more fiber and phytonutrients than their refined counterparts. The oats provide polyphenolic substances that can help reduce cancer-promoting inflammation. Top with fresh blueberries and walnuts for a healthy start to your day. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 1 medium banana
1 large egg
1½ cups milk
1/4 cup canola oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cup white whole-wheat flour or whole-wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 cup quick cooking oats
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 cup toasted, chopped walnuts
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 cups fresh blueberries
- 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
Prepare Blueberry Sauce below.
Preheat waffle iron. For golden brown waffles set browning control on medium. For crisper, darker waffles set browning control to higher setting.
In large mixing bowl, mash banana with fork. Add egg, milk, oil and vanilla extract and stir together. Add flours, oats, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Stir together until just combined. Batter will be lumpy.
Spray both sides of waffle iron with cooking spray. Pour batter in center of waffle iron (amount will vary depending on waffle iron size; check manufacturer’s instructions for amount). Cook until waffle iron indicates waffle is done, about 3-5 minutes.
Remove waffle from iron and place on serving plate. Top waffle with walnuts and blueberry sauce and serve.
Waffles are best served when made to order. Cooked waffles may be kept warm in oven or toaster oven set on 200 degrees F. Waffles will lose crispness upon holding. Freeze leftover waffles in plastic storage bag and reheat in toaster or toaster oven.
In small saucepan over medium heat, warm honey, stirring until thin, about 2 minutes.
Turn off heat and add blueberries and lemon juice. Let sauce sit until ready to use.
» Makes six 6½-inch waffles.
Per serving (waffles): 302 calories, 16 g total fat (2 g saturated fat), 33 g carbohydrate, 9 g protein, 4 g dietary fiber, 405 mg sodium.
» Makes 2 cups sauce; eight 1/4 cup servings.
Per serving (blueberry sauce): 54 calories, 0 g total fat (0 g saturated fat), 14 g carbohydrate, 0 g protein, <1 g dietary fiber, <1 mg sodium.
Raspberry Almond Muesli
Muesli is an easy make-ahead breakfast with all the goodness of oatmeal and none of the cooking. A combination of raw rolled oats, fruits, nuts and buttermilk, this traditional Swiss dish is served cold and kick-starts your day with plenty of nutritious fiber. Adding a variety of berries and nuts like this recipe can also help you get the nutrients you need without a lot of calories and indirectly lower your cancer risk. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 1/2 cup quick cooking oats (not instant)
- 1 Tbsp. ground flaxseed
- Pinch of salt
- 1 container (6 oz.) fresh raspberries, divided
- 2 Tbsp. honey
- 2 Tbsp. reduced-fat unsweetened shredded coconut
- 3 Tbsp. sliced almonds, divided
- 1 cup buttermilk, light or regular
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup fresh blueberries, for garnish
- 8 fresh blackberries, for garnish
In medium mixing bowl, combine oats, flax and salt.
In smaller bowl, use fork to coarsely mash 1 cup of raspberries with honey and set aside. Set remaining raspberries aside for garnish.
In dry medium skillet over medium-high heat, toast coconut, stirring constantly with wooden spatula, until it is golden brown in places and still pale in others, about 2 minutes. Immediately add toasted coconut to oats. Wipe out pan.
Return skillet to heat, add almonds, and toast, stirring constantly, until smaller bits are golden brown, about 4 minutes. Immediately spread nuts on plate. Measure and set aside 1 tablespoon toasted almonds and add rest to oat mixture.
To oats, add buttermilk and vanilla and mix until well combined. Add raspberry mixture and stir to combine thoroughly. Divide muesli between two bowls or decorative glass dessert dishes. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 to 12 hours.
To serve, arrange remaining raspberries, blueberries and blackberries over top of muesli. Sprinkle on remaining toasted almonds. Serve chilled muesli immediately.
Makes 2 Servings.
Per serving: 411 calories, 15 g total fat (4.5 g saturated fat),61 g carbohydrate, 14 g protein, 15 g dietary fiber, 281 mg sodium
These tasty muffins are packed with cancer-fighting beta carotene and vitamin A. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Canola oil spray
1/2 cup skim milk
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
1/4 cup canola oil
1 tsp. dried grated orange zest
1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 tsp. nutmeg 1/4 tsp. salt
Directions – Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray muffin tin lightly with spray oil. In a medium bowl, beat egg, milk, pumpkin, oil and grated orange zest, mixing well. In a separate bowl, mix together dry ingredients. Mix into pumpkin mixture.
Spoon batter into greased muffin tin, filling each 1/2 to 2/3 full, and bake until pick inserted in middle of muffin comes out clean, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven and set on wire rack to cool, about 5-10 minutes.
Remove muffins and allow to cool completely on rack. Serve immediately or store in plastic bag or other sealed container, but do not refrigerate. (If making more than one batch, extras can be frozen.)
Makes 9 muffins.
Per serving: 191 calories, 7 g. fat (less than 1 g. saturated fat), 29 g. carbohydrate, 4 g. protein, 1 g. dietary fiber, 134 mg. sodium.
Easy Baked Apples with Walnuts and Raisins
Nothing says fall quite like the warm, spiced dessert of baked apples. Packed with fiber, particularly pectin fiber, apples help gut bacteria produce compounds to protect colon cells. Sprinkled with walnuts and raisins, this recipe also contains beneficial omega-3 fat and cancer-protective flavonoids and phenolic acids. Enjoy for dessert or top with yogurt and granola for a sweet, nutritious breakfast. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Makes 6 servings.
Per serving: 151 calories, 3.5 g total fat (<1 g saturated fat), 31 g carbohydrate, 2 g protein, 4 g dietary fiber, 5 mg sodium.
Strawberry Chia Smoothie
Smoothies aren’t just a summer fad. This breakfast blend of fruit, milk and seeds is full of protein, calcium and fiber to get your day started right. Strawberries contain ellagic acid, which may act as an antioxidant and decrease inflammation. Chia seeds are loaded with fiber, rich in omega-3s and a good protein source. A sweet quickfix with the same amount of fiber as a bowl of oatmeal for less than 250 calories. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Makes 1 serving.
Per serving: 249 calories, 5 g total fat (<1 g saturated fat), 44 g carbohydrate, 9 g protein, 9 g dietary fiber, 90 mg sodium.
Apricot Pecan Bars
Give your kids a breakfast boost with these homemade apricot bars. Unlike many packaged granola bars, our recipe contains whole grain oats, loaded with soluble fiber, selenium and B vitamins. Eating whole-grain snacks is a great way to get more fiber into your family’s diet for long-lasting energy and lower cancer risk. Real dried apricots pack vitamin A and potassium while pecans add a hearty crunch and, with silken tofu, gives extra protein power. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Moroccan Seven Vegetable Tagine
Tagines are flavorful stews named for the pot they’re cooked in. But you don’t need a special pot for this adaptation – a large Dutch oven will do the trick just fine. This recipe features a simple combination of fall vegetables, chickpeas, herbs and spices. Butternut and other winter squash are packed with vitamin C, fiber and cancer-preventive carotenoids. Aromatic spices like turmeric are being studied for their ability to suppress inflammation. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Makes 6 servings. (8 cups)
Per approx. 1½ cup serving: 149 calories, 2 g total fat (<1 g saturated fat),
Warm up on a cool evening with this spiced-up vegetarian chili. Black beans fill you up and keep you satisfied thanks to their dietary fiber and high protein. Red sweet peppers and onion add depth and flavor to this comforting dish. Making a meatless meal has never been easier so take the challenge to eat more vegetables and less meat. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Carrot and Apple Soup
This fall soup is full of deep orange carrots and bright red apples, colorful representations of the changing season ahead. Both foods contain cancer-fighting fiber and other potent protective compounds like beta-carotene (carrots) and quercetin (apples). A blender or food processor makes this dish decadent and creamy without a lot of calories. sponsored recipe
- 1 Tbsp. canola oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 medium leek, white part only, rinsed well and chopped
- 1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2- inch slides
- 1 tart apple, peeled, cored, and chopped
- 3 cups fat-free, reduced-sodium chicken broth
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 3 Tbsp. minced fresh mint leaves, for garnish
- In a Dutch oven or large, heavy pan, heat the canola oil over medium-high heat until hot. Add the onion and leek and sauté for about 4 minutes, until the onion is translucent.
- Mix in the carrots and apple. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often. Add the broth, cover, and bring to a boil over high heat. Then reduce heat to low and simmer for about 30 minutes, until the carrots are very soft. Remove the pot from the heat and set the soup aside to cool slightly.
- In a blender or food processor, puree the soup in batches until smooth. Return soup to pan and heat to very hot before serving. If soup is too thick, add more broth, as desired. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve, garnishing each serving with mint.Makes 6 servings.Per Serving: 92 calories, 4 g fat, 15 g carbohydrate, 3 g protein, 4 g dietary fiber, 84 mg sodium.Prep Time: 30 minutesCook time: 1 hour
Lime and Chicken Soup with Avocado
Chicken soup may be a winter staple, but zesty lime and fresh avocado can easily dress this dish up for a rainy summer day. This recipe features a medley of colorful veggies, Italian herbs and juicy citrus. Limes are an excellent source of vitamin C. They’re also packed with phytochemicals like limonoids and flavonoids, making them an excellent part of any cancer-protective meal. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, chopped
- 3 stalks celery, thinly sliced
- 1 medium jalapeño pepper, seeded, diced
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast
- 1 cup frozen corn
- 1 can (14.5 oz.) no salt added diced tomatoes
- 6 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 1½ tsp. Italian seasoning
- 1 tsp. oregano
- 1/4 tsp. cumin
- 3 medium limes, 2 cut in half, 1 cut into 6 wedges for garnish
- 1/2 bunch cilantro, rinsed, chopped
- 1 medium avocado, cut into 1/2-inch cube
In soup pot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Sauté onion, celery, jalapeño and garlic for 6 minutes or until tender. Add whole chicken breast, corn, tomatoes, broth, Italian seasoning, oregano and cumin to pot. Stir to mix ingredients. Over high heat bring soup to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 55 minutes.
Remove chicken breast to large platter and shred using two folks. Return chicken to soup.
Over strainer to catch seeds, squeeze juice of 2 limes into soup. Add cilantro and gently stir. Ladle soup into serving bowls. Top each bowl with avocado, garnish with lime wedge and serve.
Makes 6 Servings.
Per serving: 258 calories, 12 g total fat (2 g saturated fat),
18 g carbohydrate, 24 g protein, 4 g dietary fiber, 589 mg sodium.
Sweet Potato Chile with Peanuts
From The New American Plate Cookbook: Recipes for a Healthy Weight and a Healthy Life
This vegetarian one-pot meal will warm you up on even the coldest of winter days. Earthy sweet potatoes and carrots form the base and provide cancer-fighting fiber and carotenoids. Tomatoes, peppers and onion add even more flavor and nutrition. Ready in just 30 minutes; serve over a whole grain for a balanced, cancer preventive dinner.
- 2 Tbsp. canola oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 medium green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 medium red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into bite-sized chunks (about 4 cups)
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted roasted peanuts
- 1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes in juice
- 1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste
- 2 cans (4 ounces each) diced mild green chiles with liquid
- 4 to 6 Tbsp. chili powder, to taste
- 1 Tbsp. ground cumin, to taste
- 1 Tbsp. sugar
- Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- In a large, heavy pot, heat the canola oil over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, and bell peppers and sauté, stirring occasionally, for about 8 minutes, until vegetables are golden. Add the garlic and sauté stirring constantly for 30 seconds, until fragrant. Stir in the sweet potatoes, peanuts, tomatoes and juice, tomato paste, chiles and their liquid, chili powder, cumin and sugar.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low immediately and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, for 15 to 25 minutes until the sweet potatoes are just tender. Halfway through the cooking process, adjust the seasonings, adding more chili powder and cumin, if desired. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.
Makes 10 servings
Per Serving: 385 calories, 15 g fat (2 g saturated fat), 55 g carbohydrate, 11 g protein, 8 g dietary fiber, 409 mg sodium.
Prep Time:15 minutes
Cook time:30 minutes
Peach and Basil Salad with Fresh Mozzarella
Our delicious salad marries summer’s juicy, sweet peaches and aromatic basil with slightly briny, velvety fresh mozzarella. This quick to fix, simple salad has an enticing bouquet – peaches are related to roses after all – and lots of vitamin C, beta-carotene, calcium and fiber. It would be peachy-keen to serve as a light main or side salad at your next summer soirée. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 1 lb. peaches, sliced into wedges, then cut crosswise (frozen may be used)
- 8 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese, cut in 3/4-inch cubes
- 1 cup loosely packed fresh basil, torn into medium pieces
- 2 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tsp. rice vinegar
- Pinch salt
- Freshly ground black pepper, optional
In large mixing bowl combine peaches, mozzarella and basil. Drizzle on oil and vinegar, add salt and pepper, if using, and toss gently until evenly coated. Serve immediately or refrigerate up to 4 hours.
Makes 4 servings. Yield: about 5 cups.
Per Serving: 211 calories, 12 g total fat (6 g saturated fat), 13 g carbohydrate, 15 g protein, 2 g dietary fiber, 351 mg sodium.
Photograph by Heather Victoria Photography
Summer Fruit Salad with Creamy Orange Dressing
A sweet and savory salad can make for some of the best summer fare. This twist on fruit salad features all the colorful favorites in the traditional dish with the addition of an ambrosia dressing. Melon, grapes, blueberries and pineapple all contain fiber, vitamins, minerals and a variety of cancer-fighting phytochemicals. Top it all off with orange, coconut and creamy cottage cheese for a bold and zesty flavor without a lot of added sugar. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 1 medium organic navel orange
- 1/2 cup small-curd cottage cheese
- 2 tsp. balsamic vinegar, preferably white
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 2-3 drops hot pepper sauce
- 1 cup blueberries
- 1 cup honeydew melon cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1/2 cup red grapes halved lengthwise
- 1/2 cup fresh pineapple cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 medium peach or nectarine cut into 3/4-inch slices then cut each slice in thirds
- 6 Boston lettuce leaves, for garnish
- 1 Tbsp. reduced-fat or regular unsweetened shredded coconut, for garnish
Using swivel-blade peeler, remove two 1-inch x 2-inch strips of zest from orange. Chop zest and set aside.
Slice off top and bottom of orange. Stand orange on one end and cut away peel and white pith. Cut orange in half vertically and put one half aside. Holding other half of orange over bowl of mini food processor, slip knife between flesh and membrane on each side of segments to release flesh. Squeeze remaining membrane juice into bowl. Pulse processor 3 or 4 times to coarsely chop orange. Add cottage cheese, vinegar, salt, and whirl until dressing is almost smooth puree. Add chopped zest, 2 or 3 drops hot sauce and whirl to combine.
In mixing bowl, add blueberries, melon, grapes, pineapple, and peach or nectarine. Mix fruit with 1/2 cup dressing. (Refrigerate leftover dressing up to 24 hours as dip for celery and carrot sticks or apple slices.)
Line platter with lettuce and spoon fruit salad on top. Cut remaining orange half crosswise and arrange slices around fruit salad. Sprinkle coconut on fruit salad.
Makes 6 servings.
Per Serving: 83 calories, 1 g total fat (<1 g saturated fat), 16 g carbohydrate, 3 g protein, 2 g dietary fiber, 277 mg sodium.
Pasta Salad with Chicken
This light pasta salad makes a great side dish or snack. It features flavorful herbs and veggies tossed in a light, olive oil dressing. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
6 oz. (or about 1 3/4 cups dry) whole-wheat fusilli
8 oz. cooked chicken breast, skinless and cut into thin strips
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
2 medium tomatoes, seeded and diced
2 cups lightly steamed broccoli florets
2 scallions, thinly sliced, including green stem
1 clove garlic, minced
3 Tbsp. chopped kalamata olives (capers may be substituted)
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
1 tsp. Italian herbs
1-2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
Salt and pepper to taste
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/2 avocado, pitted, peeled and diced small
Directions – Cook pasta al dente per package directions. Transfer to colander to drain and rinse thoroughly with cold water to cool.
Gently mix all ingredients together in large salad bowl, except oil, lemon juice and avocado. (If not serving immediately, refrigerate.)
Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice. Toss gently again until pasta is well coated.
Add avocado and give the salad a final gentle toss immediately before serving.
Makes 4 servings (about 2 cups per serving).
Per serving: 407 calories, 15 g total fat (2 g saturated fat), 45 g carbohydrate, 27 g protein, 9g dietary fiber, 174 mg sodium.
Kale with Peaches and Walnuts
Dark, leafy greens such as kale are an excellent source of fiber, folate, carotenoids, and lutein. These all help to reduce the risk of cancer. This recipe features kale sautéed with sweet peaches and toasted walnuts for a mild but sweet dish. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
1/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
1 1/2 pounds curly kale (about 12 cups lightly packed, washed and chopped per directions below)
1 Tbsp. grapeseed or canola oil
1/3 cup thinly sliced shallots
3/4 cup apple juice
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
1 peach, thinly sliced
Directions – Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bring large pot of water to a boil. Spread nuts in pie pan or on baking sheet. Roast for 5 minutes. Stir and bake 3 minutes longer. Immediately transfer nuts to plate to cool, and set aside.
To remove hard stem from leafy part of the kale, hold leaf in one hand, upside down and closed like a book. Pull center stalk away from leaf and down. Tear stemmed leaves into 2- to 3-inch pieces; there should be about 12-14 lightly packed cups. Add kale to pot of water, pushing it down with wooden spoon. Cook until kale is bright green and crisp-tender, 3-4 minutes. Do not overcook. With slotted spoon, transfer kale to colander and set under cold running water to cool.
Save as much cooking water as desired, to drink and use in soups. It will keep 3 days in refrigerator, 2 months frozen.
A handful at a time, squeeze most of moisture from kale. To chop kale, place clumps on cutting board and cut crosswise into thin slices.
Heat oil in heavy, medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallots and cook until limp and translucent, 3-4 minutes.
Add kale, pulling it apart into shreds. Add apple juice, cayenne, salt and black pepper to taste. Stir occasionally, for 5-6 minutes, or until kale is cooked to your taste and most liquid has evaporated. Spoon kale into shallow, wide serving bowl. Sprinkle on nuts and arrange peaches over kale. Serve hot or lukewarm.
Makes 4 servings
Per serving: 220 calories, 10 g fat (1 g sat fat), 31 g carbohydrates, 8 g protein, 5 g fiber 90 mg sodium.
Lime Pork Tenderloin
Pork tenderloin marinated with lime juice is a lighter way to enjoy pork. Limes have limonoids, which researchers are finding may have promising anti-cancer potential. As a red meat, AICR recommends limiting to 18 ounces per week for cancer prevention, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy small portions occasionally. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 4 large cloves garlic, minced
- 3 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
- 2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 tsp. unsulphured blackstrap molasses
- 1 tsp. low-sodium soy sauce
- 1/2 tsp. chili powder, or to taste
- Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1½ lb. pork tenderloin
- 1 small red apple, optional for garnish
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In large mixing bowl combine garlic, lime juice, 1 tablespoon oil, molasses, soy sauce, chili powder, salt and pepper. Place tenderloin in bowl, turning to completely coat with marinade.
Heat large ovenproof pan or cast iron skillet over high heat. Add remaining oil. When oil is hot, use tongs to place meat in skillet, being careful to avoid splatter. Turn tenderloin every 2-3 minutes for even searing to seal in juices.
Remove pan from burner. Pour remaining marinade over meat and brush to coat well. Add 3 tablespoons water to bottom of skillet, not on tenderloin.
Place pan in oven. Cook approximately 30 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted into center reads 145 degrees. Remove skillet from oven and allow tenderloin to rest for 5 minutes before slicing.
For garnish, if using, cut apple in thin slices.
Cut tenderloin diagonally in 1/4-1/2 inch slices. Arrange slices on plate, garnish with apple slices, and drizzle with remaining juice from pan.
Makes 6 Servings.
Per serving: 185 calories, 8 g total fat (2 g saturated fat),
2 g carbohydrate, 24 g protein, 0 g dietary fiber, 90 mg sodium.
Cashew Stir-fry with Broccoli and Pork
Stir-frying is a quick and easy way to cook vegetables so that they retain their vibrant color and healthful nutrients. This recipe combines cancer-fighting broccoli, protein-rich pork and the nutty crunch of cashews. Broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables contain glucosinolates, compounds that may help decrease inflammation, a risk factor for cancer. Serve over brown rice for a healthy boost of fiber. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- In large non-stick skillet or wok heat 1 teaspoon oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, pepper and carrot and sauté for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove vegetables and set aside.
- Heat another 1 teaspoon oil over medium-high heat and stir-fry broccoli for 3 to 4 minutes. Remove broccoli and set aside with vegetables.
- Heat last teaspoon oil over medium heat and stir-fry pork, garlic and red pepper flakes for 4 to 5 minutes or until pork is no longer pink. Stir in scallions and ginger and sauté for an additional minute. Stir in vegetables. Add soy sauce and broth. Cook 1 to 2 minutes.
- Divide rice among four dinner bowls and top each with stir-fry. Sprinkle cashews on top and serve.
Makes 4 servings.
Per serving: 369 calories, 15 g total fat (3 g saturated fat), 41 g carbohydrate, 1 g protein, 4 g dietary fiber, 374 mg sodium.
American Irish Stew
St. Patrick’s Day is a great time to experiment with different Irish staples like root vegetables and lean meat. This stew boasts hearty vegetables like carrots and parsnips, which contain carotenoids, potent antioxidants that help maintain healthy cells. A moderate amount of beef gives the one-pot a full flavor and powerful protein. Give this meal a real cancer-protective punch by pairing it with something green – a fresh salad or some steamed veggies. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Makes 6 servings.
Per 1¼ cups serving: 370 calories, 8 g total fat (2 g saturated fat), 43 g carbohydrate, 32 g protein, 6 g dietary fiber, 427 mg sodium.
Vegetable and Lamb Kabobs
Our Vegetable Lamb Kabobs are brimming with colorful peppers, tomatoes, squash, onion and a smart-size 3-ounce portion of lean lamb chunks. These kabobs align with AICR’s recommendations to eat a variety of vegetables and limit red meat. An easy-to-make, versatile marinade of olive oil, lemon juice, herbs and garlic infuses the kabobs with zing and cancer-fighting phytochemicals. Fire up the grill to enjoy the appetizing whiffs of these mouthwatering, charbroiled beauties. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 1/3 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
- 2 large cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp. minced fresh marjoram or 1 tsp. dried marjoram
- 1 Tbsp. minced fresh thyme or 1 tsp. dried thyme
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (about 2-3 medium lemons)
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
- 1 lb. leg of lamb, fat trimmed and cut in 1 inch chunks
- 1 medium red onion cut into quarters, separated into 8 (2-3-layer) chunks
- 1 large green bell pepper cut into 8 pieces
- 1 medium yellow squash cut into 12 slices
- 8 cherry tomatoes or 1 large tomato cut into 8 wedges
- 4 wooden or metal skewers
- Cooking spray
If using wooden skewers, soak these in water for 10-30 minutes.
In mixing bowl, combine parsley, garlic, marjoram, thyme, oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Remove 1/4 cup marinade, put in small bowl, cover and refrigerate for brushing kabobs while cooking later.
To mixing bowl, add lamb and combine with remaining marinade. Cover bowl and refrigerate lamb a minimum of 30 minutes or overnight.
On each skewer, arrange 2 chunks onion, 2 pieces bell pepper, 3 pieces squash, 2 tomatoes and 4 pieces lamb in desired pattern. For pretty pattern skewer in this order: squash, pepper, lamb, onion, tomato, lamb, squash, lamb, tomato, onion, lamb, pepper, squash. Discard used lamb marinade. Brush kabobs liberally with reserved marinade.
If grilling, prepare grill and preheat on medium high. If cooking in oven, set top rack to second rung (at least six inches from broiler) and turn on broiler. Prepare broiler pan with cooking spray.
Cook kabobs uncovered 6-8 minutes on each side. Before turning, brush kabobs with reserved marinade. Use meat thermometer to test for desired doneness: medium-rare is 145 degrees F, medium is 160 degrees F and well done is 170 degrees F.
Serve kabobs with Radish and Cucumber Raita or plain Greek yogurt mixed with fresh herbs such as mint or dill.
Braised Kale with Black Beans and Tomatoes
Dark leafy greens, like kale, are excellent sources of iron, folic acid, fiber, and carotenoids. Black beans are an excellent source of protein and fiber. Incorporate these foods into your diet with this recipe for Braised Kale with Black Beans and Tomatoes. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 1 bunch kale (about 8-10 leaves)*
- 2 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 5 large or 6 medium plum tomatoes, seeded and diced (2 cups)
- 2 garlic cloves, halved lengthwise
- 1 can (15 1/2 oz.) black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1½ cups fat-free, reduced-sodium
- Chicken or vegetable broth
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Directions – Using a sharp paring knife, slice off the hard, central vein of each kale leaf. Stacking 3 to 4 leaves at a time, cut them crosswise into half-inch strips. Rinse in a colander or sieve and shake well, leaving some moisture clinging to leaves.
In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Sauté onion until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add kale and mix until wilted, about 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and garlic. Cook, stirring, until tomatoes soften slightly, about 3 minutes. Add beans and broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until kale is tender, about 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Serve as a side dish or over brown rice for a main course.
Makes 4 servings.
Per serving: 177 calories, 4 g. total fat (less than 1 g. saturated fat), 28 g. carbohydrate,10 g. protein, 8 g. dietary fiber, 591 mg. sodium
Zesty Asian Turkey and Mango Stirfry
Eating a variety of fruits and vegetables is essential to a healthy diet. This salad features fruit, vegetables, and even a lean protein to create a healthy, balanced meal in one dish. The mango and fish sauce give the stir-fry a fun, zesty flavor, and stir-fry dishes are quick and easy to throw together, so you can be enjoying it in no time! This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
2 Tbsp. fish sauce
3 Tbsp. lime juice
1 tsp. cornstarch
1 tsp. brown sugar
2 Tbsp. canola oil, divided
1 lb. turkey fillets, cut into 1-inch pieces
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. minced ginger
1/4-1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper or to taste
4 cups small broccoli florets
1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth, water may be substituted
2 mangoes, peeled and sliced
5 scallions, cut into 1-inch pieces, including green stems
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
6 lime wedges
Directions – Combine fish sauce, lime juice, cornstarch and brown sugar in a mixing bowl. Set aside.
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in large skillet or wok over high heat. Add turkey, stirring frequently until cooked through, about 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to plate and set aside.
Add remaining oil, garlic, ginger and red pepper to skillet or wok. Cook, stirring constantly, for 30 seconds or less.
Add broccoli and broth. Cook, stirring constantly, until broccoli begins to soften, about 2 minutes. Add mangoes and scallions. Cook, stirring constantly, for about 1 minute.
Add the fish sauce mixture and turkey. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens and the turkey is heated through, about 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in cilantro, basil and mint.
Serve with lime wedges.
Makes 6 servings.
Per serving: 200 calories, 6 g total fat (<1 g saturated fat), 18 g carbohydrate, 21 g protein, 2.5 g dietary fiber, 548 mg sodium
Hazelnut Chocolate Blini With Raspberry Drizzle
This beautiful special occasion dessert is perfect for brunch. Blini are crepe-like pancakes made without a leavening agent. This recipe features hazelnut flour, sweet raspberry sauce and dark chocolate. Research has shown that the heart-healthy phytochemicals in dark chocolate, called flavonoids, may also boost antioxidant defenses for cancer prevention. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 6 oz. fresh raspberries at room temperature, divided
- 3 Tbsp. sugar, divided
- 1/4 cup whole hazelnuts, chopped
- 1 Tbsp. unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 2 oz. dark chocolate (70 percent)
- 2 tsp. canola oil, divided
- 1 large egg
- 2 Tbsp. hazelnut flour (finely ground hazelnuts)
- 1 large egg white
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tsp. butter
Set aside 12 whole raspberries. Puree remaining berries in mini food processor. Place strainer over bowl, add berry puree and strain to remove seeds; there should be about 1/3 cup puree in bowl. Mix in 1 tablespoon sugar. Drizzle 1 tablespoon puree in a ring, avoiding the center, in 4 shallow soup bowls. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon chopped nuts over raspberry sauce in each bowl. Set bowls aside.
In small bowl, combine all-purpose flour and baking soda. Set aside.
In medium bowl, microwave chocolate with 1/2 teaspoon oil. Stir melted chocolate and cool to room temperature.
Separate egg, placing white into an impeccably clean mixing bowl. Add yolk to melted chocolate, stirring to combine. Stir in hazelnut flour; mixture will become grainy and thick. Set aside.
To bowl with egg white, add second white and salt. With whisk or electric mixer on medium-high, beat whites until they look white. While beating, slowly add remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and continue beating until soft peaks form.
Add one-fourth of whites to chocolate mixture, using soft spatula to fold and mix, scooping chocolate up from bottom of bowl, until combined but still quite streaky. Add remaining whites and gently fold to combine, leaving mixture slightly streaky. Sprinkle on flour and baking soda mixture and very gently fold until almost combined. Mixture will collapse somewhat; do not over mix.
In heavy medium skillet, melt butter with 1 teaspoon remaining oil until water drops sizzle when flicked into pan. Dollop a heaping tablespoon of batter into pan, nudging edges to form 2½ -inch blini. Repeat, making 4 blini. Cook until tops are shiny, puffed and some bubbles appear on surface, 2 to 2½ minutes. Watch carefully, adjusting heat so blini do not burn. When blini are almost set but still flexible, use pancake turner to carefully turn them. Cook until blini resist a finger pressed gently into center of top, 1 to 1½ minutes, adjusting heat as needed.
Place 2 blini each in center of 2 bowls. Garnish each with 3 whole raspberries. Repeat, rubbing pan with 1/2 tsp remaining oil and making 4 more blini with remaining batter. Serve immediately.
Makes 8 blini, 4 servings.
Per serving: 277 calories, 18 g total fat (5 g saturated fat), 25 g carbohydrate, 6 g protein, 5.5 g dietary fiber, 157 mg sodium.
Berry Yogurt Popsicles
Layers of mashed red cherries, blackberries and white Greek yogurt make for a healthier, lower sugar version of store-bought treats. Berries are rich in phytochemicals like anthocyanins and ellagic acid, compounds that counter inflammation and act as antioxidants. This recipe is easy to follow and a great activity to do with kids on summer vacation. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 1½ cup pitted fresh or frozen cherries
- 1/2 cup fresh or frozen blackberries
- 1 Tbsp. honey
- 24 oz. vanilla Greek yogurt
- 12 (3 oz.) paper cups and 12 popsicle sticks
In small mixing bowl mash cherries and berries. Drizzle on honey and mix together.
In paper cups, layer alternating spoonfuls of yogurt and fruit until full. Place popsicle stick or plastic spoon in each cup. Freeze.
When ready to serve, tear paper cup off popsicle and enjoy.
Makes 12 paper cup popsicles.
Per serving: 69 calories, 0 g total fat (0 g saturated fat),
12 g carbohydrate, 5 g protein, 1 g dietary fiber, 18 mg sodium.
Chocolate Banana Streudel
Being healthy doesn’t have to mean missing out on decadent desserts. Healthy substitutions and portion control can help make any favorite food a part of our New American Plate. Bananas and chocolate are a classic combination offering fiber, potassium and flavonoids. Top with fresh strawberries for added nutrition and a pop of color. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
- Cooking spray
- 8 (9″ x 14″) sheets phyllo pastry*
- 2 Tbsp. canola oil
- 8 Tbsp. whole-wheat panko
- 3 oz. dark chocolate (72 percent), finely chopped – until it resembles grated chocolate, divided
- 4 just-ripe large bananas, peeled and halved crosswise
- 1 large egg, beaten with 1 tsp. water
- 8 large fresh strawberries
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Coat baking sheet with cooking spray and set aside.
Place a sheet of phyllo with narrow end toward you. Brush it lightly with oil. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon panko over phyllo. Set a banana half 2 inches above bottom of phyllo. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon chocolate over and around banana. Lifting bottom edge of phyllo up over banana, roll it over, covering banana. Fold in sides, then finish rolling banana in phyllo. Transfer phyllo roll to prepared baking sheet. Repeat, wrapping remaining banana halves. Brush top, sides and ends of phyllo rolls liberally with beaten egg. Using small, sharp knife, make 2 diagonal slits in phyllo to let steam escape. Discard remaining egg
Bake phyllo rolls for 12 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool baked phyllo rolls on baking sheet for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, cut bottom tip off each strawberry. Placing strawberry with bottom toward you and rotating blade of a sharp knife at 45-degrees, make 4 or 5 vertical cuts from base to near top, just below hull. Gently press on strawberry to fan out slices.
To serve, transfer warm phyllo rolls to individual dessert plates. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon grated chocolate over each roll. Place a fanned strawberry on plate, and serve.
*If you can find only 13″ x 18″ sheets, cut in half to make 13″ by 9″ sheets.
Makes 8 Servings.
Per serving: 182 calories, 8 g total fat ( 28 g carbohydrate, 3 g protein, 3 g dietary fiber, 42 mg sodium.
If you make cookies during the holidays or get involved with cookie swap parties, you’ll want to try this versatile gingersnap recipe. These cookies, flavored with warm spices, can easily be modified for chewy cookie adorers or crisp cookie lovers. Whole-wheat flour and earthy spices provide additional cancer-fighting nutrients that many cookie recipes lack. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Makes 24 cookies.
Per serving: Per 1 cookie serving: 75 calories, 3 g total fat (1 g saturated fat), 12 g carbohydrate, 1 g protein, <1 g dietary fiber, 80 mg sodium.
Square Apple Pie
This incredibly easy apple version is baked in a rectangular dish with only a top crust for easy baking consistency. Apples are one of our top cancer-fighting foods with good reason. They’re a good source of fiber and the antioxidant, quercetin, a flavonoid being studied for its anti-inflammatory properties. A combination of healthful spices, whole-wheat flour and less sugar and butter makes it a delicious take on a traditionally decadent dessert. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Red Velvet Cupcakes
These vibrant cupcakes don’t need artificial dyes to give them their red hue. The secret ingredient here is beet, which adds the perfect coloring and packs fiber, manganese and iron. Beets are also full of folate, a B vitamin that is essential for producing and repairing DNA and may play a role in cancer protection. This recipe is from the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Cream Cheese Frosting
Photo credit: by Sharon Palmer.
Date, Walnut and Dark Chocolate Cookies (Vegan)
This recipe borrows the natural sweetness of Medjool dates, along with the rich flavors of walnuts and dark chocolate, to craft a delicious, healthy version of this classic cookie. Enjoy this sweet treat with your loved ones, pack them into a lunch box any day, or serve them with fresh fruit or sorbet the next time you host dinner guests. Recipe provided by American Institute for Cancer Research.
- 1/2 cup soft dairy-free margarine spread, at room temperature
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 Tbsp. honey
- 1 cup white whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1-1/2 tsp. egg replacer**
- 1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
- 1/2 cup diced, pitted Medjool dates
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips or broken dark chocolate pieces
- Preheat the oven to 375ºF.
- Mix together margarine, vanilla, and honey in a small bowl.
- Combine the whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, and egg replacer in a separate bowl.
- Add the flour mixture to the margarine mixture and mix well to form a crumbly dough.
- Stir in the walnuts, dates, and chocolate chips.
- Shape the dough into walnut-sized balls and place about 3 inches apart on a baking sheet.
- Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown.
Makes 20 cookies.
Per Cookie: 122 calories, 6 g total fat (1 g. saturated fat), 16 g carbohydrate, 2 g protein, 2 g dietary fiber, 82 mg sodium.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
*Note: These cookies store very well in an airtight container in the freezer.
**Note: Vegan egg replacers can be found in powdered form. Examples include Ener-G, VeganEgg, Bob’s Red Mill Egg Replacer.
Strawberry & Cheese Refrigerator Pie
Indulge by skipping the shortcake and whipping up this lower-calorie dessert for more flavor and less guilt. A whole-wheat crust is layered with simple, low fat ingredients and topped off with fresh strawberries. Just one cup of these berries provides a whole day’s worth of vitamin C, and eating strawberries has been shown to increase blood levels of vitamin C and total antioxidant capacity. This recipe provided by American Institute for Cancer Research.
Makes 8 servings.
Per serving: 262 calories, 11 g total fat (3.5 g saturated fat), 39 carbohydrate, 3 g protein, 2 g dietary fiber, 219 mg sodium.
Walnut Chai Tea Loaf
This recipe uses chai tea to infuse the bread with flavor and walnuts to add crunch and antioxidants. Simple baking substitutions — using applesauce, whole-wheat flour and egg whites — make it a guilt-free treat. Wrap each loaf in colorful cloth as a gift or enjoy it yourself with a favorite cuppa or our decadent chocolate chai. This recipe provided by American Institute for Cancer Research.
Cherry Chocolate Bread Pudding
his recipe for bread pudding combines the goodness of whole-grain bread with health-promoting compounds in chocolate and cherries. Dark chocolate is packed with flavonoids, a group of phytochemicals that act as antioxidants. Cherries get their dark red hue from anthocyanins, currently being studied for their ability to inhibit the growth of cancer cells. Recipe provided by American Institute for Cancer Research.
|*This is an unsweetened refrigerated coconut milk beverage with ~50 calories per 1 cup.|
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- In small bowl, soak cherries in apple juice or water to plump them. Drain well, and set aside.
- Stack bread slices and using serrated knife, cut off crust. Cut bread into 1/2-inch cubes; making about 7 cups.
- In large mixing bowl, combine cocoa, sugar and salt. Add 1/3 cup of coconut milk, and whisk until smooth. Add remaining coconut milk, and whisk to combine well. Add eggs, egg whites and vanilla and whisk until well combined. Add cubed bread and drained cherries, mixing gently until all bread is moistened. Set mixture aside to soak for 30 to 60 minutes.
- Coat 9-inch square baking dish with cooking spray. Stir mixture again to evenly distribute cherries. Spread mixture in prepared pan. Sprinkle on chocolate chips and almonds.
- Bake until knife inserted in center of pudding comes out clean, 40-45 minutes. Cool on rack until just warm. Cut pudding into 12 pieces, and serve. Or cool completely, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight. Serve this bread pudding cold or at room temperature.Makes 12 servings.Per serving: 176 calories, 4 g fat (2 g sat fat), 31 g carbohydrates,
5 g protein, 3 g fiber, 232 mg sodium.