Recently I started eating more mushrooms. I had gotten out of the habit a while back until I saw Julio an acupuncture patient, who had just gotten over cancer. Research suggests eating 10 g or about ¼ cup daily can reduce your risk of cancer by 64%. Even I have to remind myself of these facts especially when I would rather reach for a piece of the pie. I’m all for Cancer Prevention foods are you?

Cancer Prevention And Diet

mushrooms concept of Cancer Prevention

Frankly, I was surprised he had cancer in the past. Since I had known “Julio” years ago as a patient for acupuncture, I had secretly always thought he would develop diabetes based on what he ate daily. Instead his high-stress job and marriage, lots of travel with alcohol and fast food had changed his life forever. He wanted to look at food as a way to prevent the return of cancer in his life so we talked white button mushrooms.

Add Mushrooms

Adding mushrooms to your diet can help anyone reduce their risk of cancer and I believe it’s important in your diet if you can eat them.

Remember my basic principle is to crowd-out foods that aren’t healthy and add in more of the healthy ones, mushrooms even inexpensive ones is food you can add. Most Cancer Prevention foods help fight heart disease or diabetes too.


As a health coach, we are talking about life balance and food is only a fraction of the whole picture. Julio hadn’t really been open in the past life-balance health coaching but now, he was highly motivated to get back on track; at 40 yr old, he had a wake-up call from his body.

Health Coaching

I won’t share his entire story; the important take-away is age doesn’t matter. He got cancer at 37 yr old. Usually, colon cancer is seen in older people. Also most people still believe our genes play a significant role in what disease we will get if any.

It’s Not In Your Genes – Really!

That is because for decades science kept reporting that genetics determined your medical destiny. In 2003, scientists finally accomplished unlocking the genetic code. To their surprise, it only determines eye, hair color, and that sort of things. Our ‘health gene’ from our parents is more like 10% of the equation. Our health is in our hands for the most part.

Back to why mushrooms – Joel Fuhrman, MD (Super Immunity, Joel Fuhrman MD 2011) who has spent years studying our bodies’ immune system is responsible for the ANDI chart popularity. Joel and other researchers found people who eat mushrooms just don’t get cancer often. I’d say that great evidence of Cancer Prevention Properties.

You see cancer can only survive if your immunity is weak. This doesn’t mean you get colds easily, it means you’re food sources and high-stress levels out weight your high-quality micronutrient-rich foods [mushrooms for one] and relaxation time.

cancer and stress

Julio never stopped. He worked constantly and really didn’t take the time for himself. He once mentioned he thought life was supposed to be less happy, after all none of his friends was happy either.

Now that is a scary thought.

Mushrooms Are An Integral Part Of The Human Immune System

Mushrooms contain Antigen-Binding Lectins [ABL]. This substance sticks to abnormal cells in the body. It’s a bit more complicated essentially, it recognizes a molecule on the surface of cancer cells! When it attaches, it calls the body’s defenses to come and take action destroying the cancer. Kind of cool.

Mushrooms also are Angiogenesis Inhibitors – another big word. I love this word though because of what it does in the body. Angiogenesis means making new blood vessels in the fat tissue of the body. If fat can’t get blood it dies instead of grows. This is great for anyone wanting to lose body fat!

It also starves cancer cells of the blood supply. In our body blood brings the food and mushrooms inhibit new blood vessel growth so cancer cells can’t grow. It is plain and simple.

Aromatase Inhibitors is another big word that is relevant to women and cancer. Aromatase is an enzyme that causes women to make too much estrogen, especially if they have excess fat on their bodies’. Again think weight loss and cancer prevention.

cancer prevention

So Which Mushrooms Work Best To Stop Cancer?

I suggest a mix of your favorite mushrooms so you enjoy them. It always makes sense to eat what you like, but it’s also correct certain foods are addictive, period. So when talking

The best to get the highest anti-aromatase activity [most helpful], White Button, White Stuffing, Cremini, Portobello, Reishi, Maitake

Others that have a mild anti-aromatase activity include, Shiitake, Chanterelle, Baby Button.

It doesn’t take much only 10 grams of mushrooms to decrease your risk of cancer by 64%[1]. If you want to reduce your likelihood of cancer by 89% include daily green tea (Zhang M & 124:1404-1408), and green vegetables. The ANDI chart is the best way to find the most beneficial foods for health.

ANDI - NUVal chart

So what happened to Julio? Even with cancer, he was 30 pounds overweight but something has shifted in him. He explained that, in these last few months he’d realize how much he wanted to live. That this curve ball had made him come to terms with a few things regarding his relationship with his wife and mother. That if he didn’t clean up his ‘act’ he’d not see his kids grow up. He wanted to apply for my health-coaching program to lose the weight, and learn how to live a happy, healthy life.

The Wake Up Call

Cancer can be a huge wakeup call for many. Dietary changes are meaningful and effective. Today Julio is self-empowered because of the coaching program and his desire to have a better life. He has the tools and doesn’t see me since the programs are only six months long. How do mushrooms play a role, he eats them daily!

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