How eating green helps you avoid colon cancer

December 16, 2018 GMT

Gang Green Nation is fan-central for the New York Jets football team.

But since gangrene is also the name for limb-threatening cell death, fans may have been better off calling their group Jolly Green Giants ... er ... Jets — after all, fresh, frozen and canned vegetables are the real winners.

The Jets had five wins, 11 losses last year, slightly better than Dr. Mike’s beloved Cleveland Browns, who had a perfect season of 0 wins, 16 losses!

In fact, your front line of defense against inflammation and colon cancer turns out to be from the giants of green veggies: broccoli, kale, collards and other cruciferous plants.


Researchers in London have found a couple of health-promoting chemical building blocks contained in those powerful veggie defenders. They’re released in your gut when you digest the above-mentioned nutritional linemen and their teammates cauliflower, cabbage and Brussels sprouts. Once let loose to play in your intestinal tract, they help create a team that encourages your body to regulate inflammation and modulate immune cell activity.

The researchers were amazed to find that when these veggies were fed to mice, they not only prevented colon cancer, but in mice that had colon cancer, they reduced the number and size of tumors and made some of them benign!

So, do you need another reason to make a healthy serving of these defensive players a big part of your daily diet? Enjoy munching on these Green Giants (dip them in chickpea hummus) when watching football. At least you know then, for sure, you’ll be a winner.

Mehmet Oz, M.D., is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Mike Roizen, M.D., is chief wellness officer and chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into “The Dr. Oz Show” or visit www.sharecare.com.