Technically speaking, tomatoes are fruits because they have seeds, but they are used as vegetables because of their savory flavor. No matter what you consider them, tomatoes are nutritional powerhouses.
Green tea comes from Camellia sinensis, the same species of plant that black tea comes from. Both green and black tea contain the powerful antioxidants polyphenols and flavonoids, but unlike black tea, green tea is not fermented. Green tea has received more attention because it appears to have higher levels of catechins (an antioxidant) than black tea.
Studies that have shown benefit suggest that drinking three to five cups of green tea a day may offer protection.
Nuts (especially Brazil nuts and walnuts)
Nuts contain heart-healthy mono- and polyunsaturated fats. That said, they’re still high in calories, so portion control is important. You don’t want to outweigh their health benefits by gaining unintentional extra pounds. This nutrient density can be a good thing if you’re struggling with cancer-related anorexia and weight loss, because a small amount will provide a decent supply of weight-sustaining calories.
Beans, peas, and lentils
Beans, peas, and lentils are good sources of protein and are high in fiber. They’re an excellent replacement for red and processed meats, providing muscle-building protein without the saturated fat. They also contain folate, which can keep the DNA in your cells healthy, and they may offer additional cancer protection via their phytochemicals.
Cruciferous vegetables, or flowering vegetables, as they’re sometimes called, get their name from their appearance. The four-petal flowers from these vegetables resembles a cross or “crucifer,” which aptly lead them to be named cruciferous.
Leafy greens are an excellent source of fiber, folate, carotenoids like lutein and zeaxanthin, and flavonoids. Most of these compounds have antioxidant activity that can protect your cells from damage. Lutein and zeaxanthin are also protective for your eyes and may reduce the risk of developing macular degeneration, which can cause blindness.
Wild salmon is an excellent source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids. A 3-ounce portion provides about 2,500 mg of omega-3 fatty acids and 500 mg of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). The American Heart Association recommends eating fish twice a week as part of a healthy diet.
Berries are a good source of fiber, vitamin C, ellagic acid, and the phyochemical anthocyanidins, which give many berries their distinctive color. They also contain catechins and the bioflavonoid quercetin.
Berries have garnered considerable media attention regarding their numerous health benefits for a variety of ailments.
Yogurt or kefir
Both yogurt and kefir are good sources of protein from whey, which may help with muscle maintenance and immunity. The good bacteria calledprobiotics in these foods also help to keep your digestive tract and immune system healthy.
Dark chocolate is a good source of antioxidants, which may help lower blood pressure and protect your heart, and an ounce a day is all it takes to reap the benefits of this superfood without getting too many calories.
In addition, dark chocolate appears to contain compounds that have antidepressant qualities. Because cancer can lead to depression, dark chocolate may be a natural way to get a bit of a boost in the mood department.