Seasonal meals help prevent cancer

The way to most men's hearts is still through their stomachs. So what better way to broach the topic of prostate cancer with your loved one than by preparing a delicious meal designed to keep him healthy while grabbing his attention?

Many people -- especially men -- think that eating healthy means giving up the foods they love. That just doesn't have to be the case.

"Home cooks are often surprised that they can still enjoy many of their favorite dishes while maintaining a healthier diet," says Beth Ginsberg, a chef long regarded for her use of natural ingredients.

Indeed, Ginsberg has created a free, easy-to-prepare menu geared toward prostate health -- featuring such seasonal favorites as cream of tomato soup, meatloaf, corn pudding and apple cobbler. All the recipes may be downloaded for free at prostatecancerfoundation.org/menu.

Of course, the recipes all have a healthful twist. Turkey and chicken are combined to replace beef in meatloaf, vanilla soy milk is blended into corn pudding, and soybeans are added to a tasty side dish of peas and wild mushrooms.

"Creating a diet to help prevent prostate cancer not only requires taking things out, such as fat, it also means building in new ingredients such as antioxidants and soy protein," explains Ginsberg.

And it's not just what you cook; it's how you cook it. While eating right for the prostate means adding such ingredients as broccoli and tomatoes -- both of which have been proven beneficial -- it is also important to prepare food the right way.

Charring meats at high temperatures, for instance, can create cancer-causing carcinogens that lodge in the prostate. These may cause errors in reading and replicating DNA, resulting in mutations that can contribute to prostate cancer formation. According to experts, eating an eight-ounce charred steak is the rough equivalent of having your prostate smoke a pack-and-a-half of cigarettes.

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