Friday, July 19, 2013

Chemically Reducing Cancer Risk with Diet

Cancer Protection Compound Abundant in Broccoli Sprouts

Taken from

September 15, 1997
Media Contact: Marc Kusinitz
Phone: (410) 955-8665

Dr. Paul Talalay holds broccoli sprouts
Photo: Keith Weller
Dr. Paul Talalay displays broccoli sprouts.
2100x1585, 300dpi TIFF JPEG, (2.7 MB)
"The young sprouts that we have found . . ."

JOHNS HOPKINS SCIENTISTS have found a new and highly concentrated source of sulforaphane, a compound they identified in 1992 that helps mobilize the body's natural cancer-fighting resources and reduces risk of developing cancer.
"Three-day-old broccoli sprouts consistently contain 20 to 50 times the amount of chemoprotective compounds found in mature broccoli heads, and may offer a simple, dietary means of chemically reducing cancer risk," says Paul Talalay, M.D., J.J. Abel Distinguished Service Professor of Pharmacology. Talalay's research team fed extracts of the sprouts to groups of 20 female rats for five days, and exposed them and a control group that had not received the extracts to a carcinogen, dimethylbenzanthracene. The rats that received the extracts developed fewer tumors, and those that did get tumors had smaller growths that took longer to develop.
In a paper published in tomorrow's issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Talalay and his coworkers describe their successful efforts to build on their 1992 discovery of sulforaphane's chemoprotective properties. Work described in the study is the subject of issued and pending patents.
A systematic search for dietary sources of compounds that increase resistance to cancer-causing agents led the Hopkins group to focus on naturally occurring compounds in edible plants that mobilize Phase 2 detoxification enzymes. These enzymes neutralize highly reactive, dangerous forms of cancer-causing chemicals before they can damage DNA and promote cancer.
"A comparable amount of chemoprotective activity . . ."

Dr. Jed Fahey examines
young broccoli sprouts
Photo: Keith Weller
Dr. Jed Fahey examines young sprouts.
1500x2100, 300dpi TIFF JPEG (2.3 MB)
Sulforaphane "is a very potent promoter of Phase 2 enzymes," says Jed Fahey, plant physiologist and manager of the Brassica Chemoprotection Laboratory at Hopkins, and broccoli contains unusually high levels of glucoraphanin, the naturally-occurring precursor of sulforaphane.
However, tests reported in the new study showed that glucoraphanin levels were highly variable in broccoli samples, and there was no way to tell which broccoli plants had the most without sophisticated chemical analysis.
"Even if that were possible, people would still have to eat unreasonably large quantities of broccoli to get any significant promotion of Phase 2 enzymes," Talalay says.
Clinical studies are currently under way to see if eating a few tablespoons of the sprouts daily can supply the same degree of chemoprotection as one to two pounds of broccoli eaten weekly. The sprouts look and taste something like alfalfa sprouts, according to Talalay.
Talalay founded the Brassica Chemoprotection Laboratory, a Hopkins center that focuses on identifying chemoprotective nutrients and finding ways to maximize their effects. Brassica is a plant genus more commonly known as the mustard family, and includes in addition to broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale, cauliflower and turnips.
"Man-made compounds that increase the resistance of cells and tissues to carcinogens are currently under development, but will require years of clinical trials to determine safety and efficacy," Talalay notes. "For now, we may get faster and better impact by looking at dietary means of supplying that protection. Eating more fruits and vegetables has long been associated with reduced cancer risk, so it made sense for us to look at vegetables.
"Scientists currently need to continue to develop new ways of detecting and treating cancer once it is established, but it also makes sense to focus more attention on efforts to prevent cancer from arising," he adds.
Fahey and Yuesheng Zhang, M.D., Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow, are also authors on the PNAS paper.
Work in Talalay's laboratory is supported by the National Cancer Institute, philanthropic contributions to Brassica Chemoprotection Laboratory, and grants from the Cancer Research Foundation of America and the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Talalay is establishing the Brassica Foundation, a foundation that will test and certify chemoprotective vegetables such as sprouts to raise funds for chemoprotection research.

Hypertext version of the FDA's Dietary Guidelines for Americans (at USDA)

Cancer Research Foundation of America

American Institute for Cancer Research

The Diet and Cancer Link

National Cancer Institute CancerNet
Info for health professionals, statistics, journals:
Info for patients and the general public

Johns Hopkins Oncology Center

Making healthy food choices doesn't have to break the bank.

Would you spend a penny for a cup of broccoli??? Of course you would! What if I included to say that it contains a power house of nutrients that can improve your health dramatically. Don't believe me, some people only follow a doctor's advice, listen to the good Doctor Greger here:

Check out this video if you are still not convinced:

Want even more medical proof, watch this video:

The really great thing is you can grow this amazing food all year long without ever having to step outside. I grow mine in the kitchen. See my post here:

One tablespoon of broccoli seeds will yield about 2 cups of sprouts. That is a ton of food for just pennies. The important thing to remember is how nutrient dense this food is. A little goes a long way. One can easily add about 2 tablespoons of fresh sprouts to any meal. We put them in the morning green smoothie, on salads, in raw puddings (recipe below) or in wraps. But the majority of the time I personally just grab a handful a day and gobble them up...I am hooked on them!


How do these little sprouts help one suffering from stomach problems? Read this article taken from Digestive Health.

Posted in Digestive Health on February 21, 2011
The uncomfortable abdominal pain of gastritis and ulcers often comes on after eating. And that's why doctors typically focus on eliminating offending foods from the diet to help treat these conditions. But what if eating certain foods actually helped to relieve your symptoms?   
Food as Medicine. Gastritis and ulcers are most often caused by an infection with Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori), which increases the stomach's sensitivity to acid-mediated injury by decreasing cells' ability to protect against it. It follows, then, that the most effective foods to combat the symptoms of gastritis and ulcers are those that either fight the H. pylori infection or reduce the acidity in your stomach.
Research suggests that one such food is -- broccoli sprouts -- can inhibit H. pylori growth in the gut.
  • Broccoli sprouts. A chemical in broccoli sprouts known as sulforaphane has an antibacterial effect on H. pylori. Broccoli sprouts are three- to four-day-old broccoli plants that look like alfalfa sprouts and taste like radishes. They contain more sulforaphane than mature broccoli and are tasty sprinkled on salads or added to sandwiches. 
A study of 48 individuals with H. pylori infection, published in the journal Cancer Prevention Research, found that those who ate 70 g (about 1 cup) of broccoli sprouts a day for eight weeks had less stomach infection and inflammation than people who ate a similar amount of alfalfa sprouts, which do not contain sulforaphane.

Many people complain that eating a healthy, whole foods diet is too expensive. Sure some other foods may seem cheaper that fresh fruits and vegetables but are you getting anything from them nutritionally or are you making your health slowly deteriorate by consuming these processed foods? Consider how cheap it is to grow your own excuses! Anyone can make healthy food choices even on a budget, you just have to want to!

 Mixed Berry Pudding

by Elizabeth @


10 oz bag of organic harvest berries (Cascadian Farm)

1/2 C purified water

2 bananas

1 C organic kale

1/2 C fresh broccoli sprouts

2 Brazil nuts

2 T chia sees

2 capfuls organic vanilla extract

Fresh organic blueberries to garnish

In a high speed blender, blend all of the ingredients, except blueberries, until creamy smooth. Pour into serving bowls and top with fresh blueberries. Enjoy!

+JMJ+ Today I am grateful for a new start. I get so much joy waking up each morning, knowing that I have the opportunity to do better than the day before.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Vegan Milkshake and a Wedding

Twenty-three years ago I married the man I've loved for the past 30 years. We met in 1983 in our hometown. It was the summer before my Senior year and his Junior year in high school. It was a  Friday night dance at Polaski Hall and I spotted him staring at me as he leaned against the DJ's speakers. I remember my girl friends and I laughing about it and thought nothing of it as we continued to dance to those amazing 80's songs that we all still love today. What I  wasn't expecting was him walking up to me and asking me to dance; I said yes and the rest is history. From that day on our soon to be relationship was being laid out before us. It slowly took off as we each had to break up with the people we were "dating" at the time.
 We dated/courted each other for the next 7 years!! We both had college plans ahead of us and knew it was imperative that we accomplish our educational goals before we get married. A great portion of our courting had to be done long distance. I went off to college first spending my first 2 years of study at Michigan State University. Eric joined me at MSU when I was entering my Sophomore year. We didn't see each other as much as we thought we could as we both were serious about our studies and I was active in my sorority, Alpha Chi Omega. But it was nice being in the same town again and not having to keep in touch with just letters.
 We were distanced again when I transferred to Ohio State University after 2 years at MSU, to finish my last 3 years of college. I was double majoring in Dental Hygiene and Education. My time was spent with my nose in the books and keeping in touch with Eric, writing letters almost daily and trying to afford the occasional long distance phone call. He transferred to another school in Michigan before entering The Illinois College of Optometry in Chicago.
 Once I graduated from OSU I began looking for jobs and a single studio apartment in Chicago that I could afford. I was a little scared to move to such a big city and live all by myself. Not to mention the anxiety of interviewing and starting a new job as a Registered Dental Hygienist. But one thing that made me confident that I could pull it all off was knowing that my best friend would be living just a short distance from my studio, and also the fact that Eric was just a short car ride away. But again academics came first and Eric was constantly buried in books. He decided to propose to me a few years before he would graduate.
My parents had moved down to SW Florida the summer I graduated from high school so we were married in one of the most beautiful towns on the West coast. Planning the wedding with my parents long distance was not as tough as you'd think. Everything went smoothly due to the fact that my Mom is a stickler for details and she knew all of my likes and dislikes.
 July 7, 1990 was the joyful date. Our wedding was absolutely beautiful. We were married at St. Ann's Church and had the most amazing reception at a beachside resort. Here are some pictures I took of our photo album, so they are not nearly as beautiful as the originals.

Then after that lovely dinner reception my parents had a second reception in their home, fully catered and decorated. We had several people come from out of town and my parents wanted us all to have more time to be together--it was amazing! The next day Eric and I headed down to Key West for a fun-filled honeymoon. We did the normal sightseeing, snorkeling, sunset cruises and eating at the wonderful restaurants. We even rented mopeds and had a blast exploring the island.
When we returned to Chicago we had to move all of my stuff from my studio down to the Southside where we had found an apartment close to Eric's school. Our first "home" together, it was a very exciting time! We spent the next 2 years there before moving down south, to the city where we were married, and we have been here ever since. Living, laughing, and raising our 5 beautiful children. We have so much to be grateful for but the one thing that I am most grateful for today is our love. Happy Anniversary honey, I love you more and more with each passing year.
December 2012

July 7, 2013

How about a recipe? I made this Mylkshake for the children and they loved it!! A super simple way to get cruciferous vegetables into a child's diet unsuspectingly.

Raspberry Banana Mylk Shake

by Elizabeth @

5 ripe bananas
1 C purified water
10 oz frozen raspberries
1 1/2 C raw cauliflower
1 tsp pure vanilla extract or 1 vanilla bean
Blend all ingredients in a high speed blender and Enjoy!

+JMJ+ Today I am grateful for my husband whom I've spent the last 30 years loving.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Sweet Energy Soup

Today's green monster of a soup is a Sweet Energy Soup recipe that I created this morning by just listening to what my body was craving. This made a whopping 42 ounces of green goodness and YES, I ate it all myself....I can put away the raw foods! This will count as two meals, breakfast and lunch. I stay satisfied after eating this until dinner time.

My last post discussed the myth that is floating out there that one must consume animal flesh to get protein, well as the articles stated nothing could be further than the truth. I consume more absorbable protein as a vegan that any carnivore hands down. What about iron you might ask?? Don't worry, it's in the dark leafy greens and sprouts! No excuses, vegan is the way to go for optimal health.

 This soup is loaded with protein, vitamins, minerals, fiber, omega 3's, amino acids and enzymes--over the top nutrient dense. Give 100% vegan a try for a few days and you will not believe how fantastic you feel.

The nutrient breakdown of the sunflower greens is:

Nutritional info:
Vitamins A, B, C and E
Calcium, Chlorophyll, Iron, Magnesium, Niacin, Phosphorus, Potassium
Amino Acids
Protein: 20-25%

And the nutrient breakdown of the broccoli sprouts is:

Nutritional info:
Vitamins A, B, C, E and K
Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc Carotene, Chlorophyll, Trace Elements, Amino Acids Antioxidants
Protein: 35%

Here is my recipe for you to try. By the way, children LOVE this, 3 of my youngest all gather round me while I eat this begging for bites; even after they all just consumed their morning green smoothie!! They just love their greens--beautiful!

Sweet Energy Soup

by Elizabeth @


1/4 of a small Haas avocado

5 ripe bananas

2 C frozen mango

1/2 C raw cauliflower

3 C kale, organic

3 C sunflower greens (see past posts of mine on sprouting)

1/2 C broccoli sprouts

1/2 C purified water

2 T Organic India Whole Husk Psyllium Fiber

1 T chia seeds


Blend everything in a high speed blender, pour into a very large bowl and enjoy!

+JMJ+ Today I am grateful for the time I was able to spend with my beautiful niece. She came home from Spain and we were celebrating the fact that she just completed her Master's Degree in Madrid. Congratulations Elizabeth Ara!!!

Banana Cream Pie Smoothie Lately I've been blessed with fresh, green, Florida coconuts from my neighbor's trees. We enjoy drinking...