Women health

 Diet for skin cancer patients

A growing body of research suggests that diets rich in specific nutrients might be beneficial and certainly won't harm.

You have a complete body skin examination every two years with your dermatologist. You keep shaded areas at the beach or pool, wear a wide-brimmed hat outside, and don sunglasses. A broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or greater should always be worn outside, and it should be reapplied at least every two hours. Like the plague, you stay away from tanning beds.

What else can you do to prevent skin cancer after taking all of these precautions? Perhaps you believe the response is "no." Eating as healthily as you can, though, is another important tactic you can employ.

The most prevalent cancers in America are nonmelanoma skin cancers (NMSC), which include basal and squamous cell carcinomas (BCC and SCC). A recent study suggests that specific dietary adjustments may be one strategy to reduce the 5.4 million instances of NMSC that are treated in even more than 3 million people each year.

Sun Damage Protection

UV (ultraviolet) rays from the sun or from tanning beds are the main cause of skin cancer. More than 419,000 incidents of skin cancer are connected to indoor tanning every year in the U.S., and over 90% of nonmelanoma cancers and 86% of melanomas are linked to solar UV.

Free radicals, unstable, unfavorable oxygen molecules that cause inflammation, harm cell function, and alter the DNA of your skin, are one of the main ways that UV exposure damages the skin. Skin cancer can develop as a result of these mutations, which are alterations in your genes.

According to studies, minerals such as vitamins and other so-called antioxidants may help fend off free radicals and stop the harm they produce, which can result in skin cancer. The depletion of antioxidants in the body, according to a 2002 study published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology, greases the wheels for skin damage caused by UV radiation. Therefore, it stands to reason that replenishing these protective compounds could strengthen the compromised defenses.

A recent study has shifted the scales in favor of antioxidants after years of controversy over whether they may actually make a difference in a person's risk of acquiring skin cancer. Dermatologists are advising patients to gorge on foods high in these nutrients more frequently than ever before. Many also recommend using topical products that include them, such as sunscreens.

Although both supplements and foods can help with illness prevention, most nutritionists place more emphasis on food because the combination of many dietary nutrients is what makes them most beneficial. The effects of taking individual vitamins may vary, and taking too much of them could be hazardous. To help prevent skin cancer, many physicians advise including antioxidants in your diet, such as the vitamins C, E, and A, zinc, selenium, beta carotene (carotenoids), omega-3 fatty acids, lycopene, and polyphenols. They are present in many wholesome, ordinary foods.

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A beta-carotene

By becoming vitamin A in the body, this substance can provide you with specific health advantages. The risk of several cancers may be decreased by diets rich in fruits and vegetables that are high in beta carotene, while supplements have not been shown to help prevent skin cancer. The ability of the immune system to combat illness is also strengthened by beta-carotene.

Where to get it: Look for orange-colored fruits and vegetables like mangoes, carrots, squash, sweet potatoes, cantaloupe, and apricots.


The red lycopene pigment may help shield your skin from UV damage in the same way that it shields tomatoes from oxidative stress. According to a 2010 study published in the British Journal of Dermatology that followed patients routinely consuming tomato paste against a control group that didn't, the lycopene eaters were 40 percent less likely to get burnt after 10 weeks. According to numerous studies, lycopene may reduce the incidence of a number of malignancies.

Where to get it: This red-pigmented antioxidant can be found in a variety of foods, including tomatoes, watermelon, guava, papaya, apricots, pink grapefruit, and blood oranges.

Tea's Polyphenols

According to studies, consuming green or black tea can lower your risk of developing skin cancer. However, there is more support for green tea, with multiple research demonstrating its advantages. Green tea contains polyphenols, which are plant compounds with potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and tumor-inhibiting capabilities. It has also been discovered that green tea polyphenols can repair DNA in sun-exposed skin, minimizing cell damage. By absorbing UV ray damage and scavenging free radicals, green tea has been shown in the lab to help prevent UV-triggered skin cancer whether it is consumed or administered topically. According to a recent study, if you drink four to six freshly made cups of tea daily, the polyphenols in tea may greatly lower your risk of developing skin cancer.

It can be found in just-brewed green or black tea.


Those with higher intakes of selenium have a 40% lower risk of cancer mortality and a 31% lower risk of cancer at any site, according to a recent large evaluation of 16 research involving more than 144,000 participants.

Where to get it: All the selenium you require can be found in just one to two Brazil nuts per day. This mineral is also abundant in meats like chicken and grass-fed beef.

Vitamins C

It was long known by scientists that vitamin C is hazardous to cancer cells due to several of its characteristics. Although no one has found strong evidence that it prevents skin cancer or lowers skin cancer mortality, broad studies have connected greater blood levels of the vitamin with a decreased overall risk of cancer fatalities.

Where to get it: Certain vegetables, such as leafy greens, broccoli, and bell peppers, as well as citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, limes, strawberries, and raspberries, are good sources of vitamin C.

Vitamins D

The best-documented advantages of vitamin D include bone development and immune system support, but a 2011 study from the national Women's Health Initiative discovered that women with a history of nonmelanoma skin cancer who took low doses (400 international units, or IU) of vitamin D along with calcium supplements had a lower risk of developing melanoma. Similar results have been shown for breast, colon, and rectal cancer. In response to sun exposure, the skin manufactures vitamin D. The daily allowance of 600 IU advised by the Institute of Medicine and The Skin Cancer Foundation for the average individual between the ages of 1 and 70 should be obtained through diet and supplements, however, as unprotected sun exposure damages the skin.

(400 IU is advised for children under 1 and 800 IU for people over 70.) Look for vitamin D3, which is the best form of vitamin.

Where to get it: If you can handle the flavor, one tablespoon of cod liver oil has more than double the daily necessary amount of vitamin D. Additionally, fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, and tuna are excellent suppliers. It is frequently added as a fortifier to everyday foods like milk and orange juice. And you can find trace amounts in cheese, cow liver, and egg yolks.

Vitamins E

This vitamin may be able to effectively prevent skin cancer through a variety of dietary mechanisms. A known antioxidant, it assists in preventing free radical damage, absorbs UV energy, has strong anti-inflammatory properties, and enhances the capacity of the skin and veins to function as protective barriers. Supplementing with vitamin E may have adverse effects including issues with bleeding and bruising.

Where to get it: Sunflower and other seeds, spinach, soybeans, and wheat germ are all excellent sources of vitamin E. Almonds as well as other nuts are also good sources.


In order to effectively combat cancer and other diseases, it keeps the immune system in good shape. Additionally, it assists the body's antioxidants in becoming active. A 2017 small research of men published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition discovered that even a minor increase in dietary zinc could help the body replenish antioxidants and reestablish immunological functioning. It raised the number of proteins essential for DNA repair while decreasing the kind of DNA damage that might cause cancer.

Where to get it: Meats high in zinc include lamb, cattle, and shellfish as well as legumes like hummus, chickpeas, lentils, and black beans.


Despite the fact that two antioxidant supplements have lately generated compelling proof as skin cancer fighters, dietitians still generally advise getting your nutrients from foods rather than supplements.


Is a kind of vitamin B3 also known as niacinamide? Niacinamide has been widely known thanks to several studies conducted in Australia by Diona Damian, MD, and her associates, which have caused a rush in vitamin supplement stores. According to her research, nicotinamide lowers by 23% the incidence of new basal cell carcinomas, squamous cell carcinomas, and skin precancers in people who have already experienced these lesions. She has also conducted a preliminary study that suggests nicotinamide may offer people with melanoma comparable advantages.

DNA repair enzymes in the skin attempt to repair UV-induced damage to the skin, but they are never able to completely undo it. Skin cancer and aged skin might result from residual damage. To restore the energy reserves in the skin that are exhausted by these repairs, nicotinamide is available orally and topically. This strengthens the immune system's capacity to repair the harm. Nicotinamide also lessens the inhibition of the immune system caused by UV exposure.

Podium leucotomos

This antioxidant, which comes from a fern, is an essential component in a number of goods and is possibly the best-known example of the so-called "edible sunscreens" available right now. It lessens free radicals, those possibly cancer-causing oxygen molecules brought on by UV radiation, which studies have shown helps protect both UVA- and UVB-induced toxicity and DNA damage. It has been discovered that the supplement increases the amount of time you may spend outside before your skin begins to tan, and a recent study demonstrated that taking 240 mg of it twice a day prevented sunburn. It raises a chemical that has been shown to decrease cancers and acts as an anti-inflammatory as well.

More people, more pleasure

Foods offer additional advantages when paired with other foods, much as nutrients do when combined organically in foods. You build up more weaponry for your anticancer army the more varied and colorful the foods you eat. Your body can fend off damage and disease with the aid of waves of potent antioxidants, immune boosters, and anti-inflammatories found in hearty, nutrient-rich, diverse meals.

The renowned Mediterranean diet, a plant-based diet abundant in active, powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatories, is one effective program combining a plethora of anticancer elements. It combines the traditional diets of people who reside in the Mediterranean region, and it includes nutrient-dense foods like tomatoes, citrus fruit, fresh herbs, fish with a high omega-3 fatty acid content, wine, and olive oil. It also includes cruciferous and green leafy vegetables. In an Italian study involving more than 600 individuals, those who stuck to the diet reduced their risk of developing melanoma by 50% as compared to those who did not.

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