Over 50,000 people this year are expected to die from colon cancer. This deadly disease is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. And it hits seniors the hardest.
But an exciting new study may have just revealed a solution. One that could one day help save thousands of lives a year. And it was uncovered in the most unlikely of places: inside grape skins and seeds.
Fruit extract can help keep us healthy
You may already be familiar with resveratrol. Experts say this grape-based compound can help keep us healthy.
Researchers believe resveratrol is at least partly responsible for the so-called French Paradox. The mystery that allows the French to eat a rich fatty diet, but still stay slim and heart healthy.
This phytonutrient helps protect heart health, promotes better blood sugar control and stimulates faster calorie burn. And studies have revealed it could lend a hand in the fight against macular degeneration and Alzheimer’s diseases.
Plus the natural antioxidant has shown promise in fighting breast and prostate cancer cells.
And now Penn State scientists say the same polyphenol could play an important role in beating colon cancer too.
Grape compounds target cancer
Resveratrol and grape seed extracts are very effective at killing colon cancer cells both in lab experiments and within mice.
But, according to the research published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine while the combo annihilated the cancer cells it didn’t harm any of the surrounding healthy tissues.1
Equally as exciting, say the researchers, is that the pair didn’t just tackle any old run of the mill cancer cells. The tag team effectively targeted colon cancer stem cells. These cells are capable of self-renewal, and are believed to be the driving force behind cancerous tumors.
Tag team proves power in pairs
Neither low-dose resveratrol nor grape seed extract alone was as effective as the combination of the two.
But as a pair they cut colon cancer tumors by 50 percent.
According to experts these findings match what we already know about cultures with primarily plant-based diets. Eating a variety of plants, and parts of plants, is linked to significantly lower rates of colon cancer.
Penn State researcher Jairam Vanamala added, “This seems to be beneficial for not only promoting bacterial diversity, but also preventing chronic diseases and eliminating the colon cancer stem cells.”
While more research needs to be done to understand exactly how the resveratrol and grape extract work their anti-colon-cancer magic you don’t have to wait around for the results.
Make sure you’re menu includes a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, different parts of the plants and plants of different colors. There are resveratrol and grape seed extract supplements available as well.
Help fight colon cancer BEFORE it starts with grape seed compounds.
1. “Grape compounds suppress colon cancer stem cells in vitro and in a rodent model of colon carcinogenesis,” BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2016; 16 (1)
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