Think Pink: Preventing cancer with healthy food

Think Pink: Healthy eating can keep you cancer free

FOX19 - When you look at Becky Santoro you see a bubbly red head. And Becky has a lot to smile about, she's lost 47 pounds.

While you never ask a woman's weight, she's happy to share her weight loss success.

"My family, its diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol and I see the struggle; my mom is even a breast cancer survivor," said Santoro.

But Becky's action went beyond her own health and says she wanted to teach herself how to take better care of her son and prepare healthier meals.

Including introducing him to more fruits and vegetables while reducing his sugar and fried foods.

Exactly what Lisa Andrews, Sound Bites Nutrition owner, and Becky's registered dietician wants to hear.

She says it helps in the long term to establish healthy eating habits early. In fact, a new study in the British Medical Journal suggests it could prevent breast cancer for some down the road.

The study says that what women eat as teens can affect their breast cancer risk decades later.

Other studies found specifically fruit consumption like, apples, bananas and grapes during teenage years was linked to a 25 percent reduced risk of breast cancer diagnosis in middle age.

"Fiber actually helps to bind up high levels of estrogen and we know there is a connection between excess estrogen and certain cancers," said Andrews.

She adds high fiber from foods like broccoli, edamame and blueberries can help you gut.

"If you promote the health of your bowel, you're going to have a much better immune system and prevent cancer and heart disease," said Andrews.

Start simple, find fruits and vegetables you and your family like. Lisa says a lot of myths say fresh is ALWAYS better than frozen and that's not true.

She's also a big fan of lentils, particularly for women because they're really high in fiber and iron.

Some of Andrews' patients have breast cancer or are survivors, she encourages people to change their lifestyle, like Santoro before a diagnosis.

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