Berries Curb Cancer

By Charlie Nardozzi

There's plenty of reason to include berries in your garden plans for the coming year. Raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, and muscadine grapes appear to have cancer-fighting potential. According to researchers at Clemson University and the USDA-ARS Natural Products Utilization Research Unit in Oxford, Mississippi, these berries contain a wide range of phytonutrients that can inhibit the growth of certain cancer cells. In lab tests, extracts of strawberries, raspberries, and muscadine grapes reduced by half the growth rate of breast and cervical cancer. Blueberries and blackberries weren't as effective against cervical cancer cells, but did suppress breast cancer cell growth.

This research is part of on-going effort to find out which berries may help prevent or inhibit which cancers. Although these are only lab tests and work hasn't been done on humans yet, results suggest it's a good idea to eat a wide range of fresh, colorful berries to get a full spectrum of phytonutrients and help keep the odds on your side.

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