CRESTVIEW — When it comes to defeating or preventing breast cancer, like many other forms of the disease, what we eat can make all the difference.
Cutting down on our fat intake and boosting our fiber intake are two ways to ward off breast cancer, North Okaloosa Medical Center nutritionist Patricia Ferman said.
"You don't want to have a lot of fat, which goes along with a lot of our American diets," Ferman said.
She cited a study by the Department of Human Biology and Nutrition Sciences at the University of Guelph, Ontario, that found good nutrition is "a leading environmental factor in the prevention of breast cancer."
"Specific types of fat, particularly monounsaturated fat and the ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids, demonstrate more potential to influence breast cancer risk," an abstract of the study stated.
Commenting on "The Dr. Oz Show" website, Dr. Rachel Beller lauded the role of omega-3 fats.
"Why do you need omega-3s? Well-regarded research suggests that omega-3s enhance overall well-being and are particularly important for breast health," Beller wrote.
Breast-healthy, low-fat, high-fiber meals are far from bland. Here are some tasty treats for your family.
Better Breakfast Müsli
Müsli is a traditional European high-fiber, low-fat breakfast grain cereal. Making your own is not only healthier, but also saves on the cost of the processed kind found in the cereal aisle.
2 cups traditional oatmeal (not instant)
1 teaspoon ground Ceylon cinnamon
1 teaspoon granulated orange peel
1 teaspoon chia seeds or sunflower seeds
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup dried apples
1/2 cup fried berries such as blueberries, raspberries, etc.
1 cup fat-free flake cereal, such as Corn Flakes, Total, Wheaties, etc.
Directions: Combine all ingredients in an airtight plastic cereal container or airtight countertop canister.
Serve one cup of the müsli with a small cup of fat-free yogurt mixed in. Sweeten with honey if desired.
Smoked Salmon Sandwich Lunch
Does smoking fish reduce those cancer-fighting omega-3 fats?
Nope, says Norway's National Institute of Nutrition and Seafood Research, which did extensive studies on the subject, reported in the Harvard (University) Heart Letter.
This recipe for a tasty Scandinavian open-face sandwich is one option for lunch or for an hors d'oeuvre.
6- to 8-ounce package of smoked salmon (lox has more sodium than the flaky style)
1 package Wasa Light Rye, Whole Grain or Multi Grain crispbread (all are fat-free, cholesterol-free and have lots of fiber)
Leafy greens such as baby spinach or field greens
Duke's mayonnaise (this is most definitely not fat free, so don't use a lot of it. But it's oh-so-tasty!)
Thin lemon slices
Directions: Top six to eight pieces of Wasa bread with leafy greens. Arrange 1 ounce smoked salmon on each, topped with a small dollop of Duke's mayonnaise. Garnish with lemon slice.
Raspberry Mango Tilapia
This variation of a recipe by Dr. Julia Greer from her "Anti-Cancer Cookbook," is high in antioxidants, vitamin C and beta carotene.
4 talapia fillets (1.5 to 2 pounds total)
1 cup fresh raspberries
1 peeled and diced mango
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
1 teaspoon fresh minced mint
juice from 1/2 small lemon
Fresh pepper and season salt to taste
Directions: Season the fillets with fresh ground black pepper and season salt to taste. Bake the fish in a 450-degree Fahrenheit oven about 10 minutes or until the fish flakes easily with a fork.
Meanwhile, mix the raspberries, mango, cilantro or parsley, mint and lemon juice in a non-metallic bowl to make the salsa.
Serve the tilapia on four dinner plates, topped with equal amounts of salsa. Garnish with a sprig of mint, parsley or cilantro.
Contact News Bulletin Staff Writer Brian Hughes at 850-682-6524 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @cnbBrian.