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Health Beat: Foods fighting prostate cancer

Published On: Aug 20 2013 11:28:57 AM EDT   Updated On: Aug 20 2013 05:44:33 PM EDT

Bread that can prevent cancer, candy to treat oral cancer.


Researchers are literally cooking up some super-charged versions of our favorite foods to try to prevent or treat some of the most deadly cancers.

From space to your dinner table, food scientist Yael Vodovotz is working to make food powerful enough to prevent and treat some cancers.

At NASA, Vodovotz developed food for a possible mission to Mars. Now, she’s creating bread, packed with soy and almond, that may bring PSA levels down in men with prostate cancer.


"We looked at a group of compounds called isoflavens, which are in soy," said Yael Vodovotz, professor at The Ohio State University in Columbus.

Researchers said isoflavones may prevent cancer, and the almonds have an enzyme that makes it easier for you to absorb them.

Forty men with prostate cancer, including Gordon Renkes, ate the bread three times a day for eight weeks.

"I could never tell that there was anything different about the bread," said Renkes, a prostate cancer patient.

But researchers could tell that it had an interesting effect.

"What we did see was in 65 percent of the men in the study, there was either a decrease or leveling of the PSA," Vodovotz said.

While the findings aren’t conclusive, Renkes is not giving up his bread.

"Eating something to help slow down the progress of a disease is one of the good ways to do it," Renkes said.

Vodovotz hopes those foods will help treat oral and esophageal cancers. When it came to the almond-soy bread, the team was researching how to get food to better absorb, when it made the observation about the PSA levels.

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DOWNLOAD and VIEW the full-length interview with Yael Vodovotz about foods fighting prostate cancer