by: Elizabeth Renter
August 5, 2012
It’s no secret that berries of all kinds have numerous nutritional benefits—mostly due to their antioxidant concentration. The benefits of blueberries, for example, include lowering blood pressure and protection of the heart and liver. But a more obscure berry and fantastic anti-cancer food—black raspberries—may be effective at preventing numerous types of cancer, including colorectal.
Black Raspberries a Fantastic Anti-Cancer Food
According to a study published in the journal Cancer Prevention Research, mice were “engineered” to have intestinal tumors (a troubling thought). These mice were then fed a high fat, low calcium and vitamin D diet, referred to as a “high risk diet” over the following 12 weeks. Some of those mice were given a supplement so that 10 percent of their calories came from black raspberries.
Showing how black raspberries is a great anti-cancer food, the mice who were given the black raspberry addition had fewer tumors than those who were not. The growth of new tumors in these black raspberry mice decreased by 45 percent and the total number of tumors went down 60 percent.
Another group of mice, who was engineered to have intestinal inflammation, saw a similar decrease in new tumors and number of tumors by about 50 percent. The black raspberries actually reduced inflammation.
According to researchers, in order to have the same amount of black raspberries in your diet, you would have to eat four cups of fresh berries each day. While that’s a lot, there’s a good chance that even having a single cup each day could provide some benefit. Like scientists point out, these mice were made to have cancer, the human body is not, so you wouldn’t likely have to gorge yourself on them to have positive cancer-preventing benefits.
In addition to colorectal cancer, berries have also been shown to stop the cellular changes that lead to cancer. They’ve also been shown to stop the growth of esophageal tumors.
Because they can lower inflammation as well, researchers say it’s highly possible that they can protect against inflammatory diseases like cardiovascular disease.
The study, published in August 2008 in “Cancer Research” also found these berries are a great anti-cancer food, as compounds in black raspberries affect hundreds of genes so that cancer can’t as easily spread. Mice exposed to UVB radiation were less likely to develop skin cancer after being lathered in a gel containing black raspberry powder.