As many of you know, not only am I an Integrative Nutrition Coach but I am also an Oncology Nurse, and I have given my share of chemotherapy, targeted immunotherapy and more. My husband also had a brush with
cancer, so in our household we are vigilant about making sure we get plenty of cancer preventative nutrients into our diet.
Some of the best cancer fighting vegetables are those in the cruciferous and the allium vegetable family. Common cruciferous vegetables are broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts and cabbage, and vegetables in the allium family are veggies like garlic, onions and leeks. It is believed that the vegetables in the allium family can neutralize the effects of carcinogens in our body as well as help to inhibit tumor growth. (1)
Mushrooms are unique because they contain an amino acid called ergothioneine, which acts as a powerful antioxidant and is able to get inside the mitochondria of a cell to clean up any free radical DNA damage. The mitochondria produces most of the energy of a cell yet most antioxidants cannot get into the mitochondria to do any repair. Ergothioneine, on the other hand, acts as a potent intramitochondrial antioxidant and is able to clean up these microscopic powerhouses. There are other foods that contain ergothioneine but mushrooms are by far the most potent. (2)
Here is a powerful cancer-fighting dish for you to try - and to help repair your mitochondrial DNA. It is honestly one of our favorites.
Are there other foods or supplements you have in your diet to prevent disease? Write a comment below, I'd love to hear from you.
2 medium yellow onions (sliced in 1/4” thin strips)
40 medium sized mushrooms (sliced medium thin)
2 cloves garlic (minced)
1/2tsp ground turmeric
1/2tsp sea salt & pepper (or to taste)
1tsp high heat oil such as avocado or coconut oil (optional)
If using a touch of oil, heat a large sauté pan over medium heat and add the 1tsp of oil. Otherwise, prior to heating the sauté pan, add 1Tb of water to the pan and then put pan on medium heat. Once pan is sufficiently heated add garlic and sauté, stirring often.
Once the fragrance of the garlic is released, add all of the onions to the pan. Initially this will overflow the pan. It is okay, they will soften and simmer down. Stir the garlic and onions often to prevent from sticking. Add additional tablespoons of water to the pan as needed to prevent the ingredients from sticking.
Continue to stir until the onions have shrunk and are beginning to get tender.
Next add the mushrooms and continue to stir to prevent sticking.
Once the onions and mushrooms begin to get soft and tender, add the seasoning (turmeric, sea salt and pepper) and stir to combine.
Once ingredients are sufficiently combined, stop stirring and let the onions and mushrooms begin to caramelize. Press the mixture down flat into the pan to encourage caramelization.
Continue to let the mixture cook and caramelize, lifting and flipping the ingredients occasionally, again to encourage caramelization.
Once sufficiently cooked, tender and caramelized, remove from the stove and place into a serving dish. Serve immediately and store any leftovers in a tightly sealed glass container.