1. Tomato Sauce: Men who eat a lot of tomatoes, or tomato sauce gives them a hedge against prostate cancer. So say researchers at Harvard, who studied the eating habits of more than 47,000 male health professionals. They found that men who ate tomato sauce two to four times per week had a 35 percent lower risk of developing prostate cancer than men who ate none. A carotenoid called lycopene, which tomatoes contain in abundance, appeared to be responsible.
2. Oysters: Two to three oysters deliver a full day’s supply of zinc, a mineral critical for normal functioning of the male reproductive system. Scientists are divided over reports that sperm counts have declined over the last 50 years. Nutritional deficiencies do seem to be the cause of certain cases of low testosterone. In one trial, 22 men with low testosterone levels and sperm counts were given zinc every day for 45 to 50 days. Testosterone levels and sperm counts rose.
3. Broccoli: A recent Harvard study finds that cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli, may protect against bladder cancer. It’s one of the most common cancers in this country, and affects two to three times as many men as women. Scientists analyzed the diets of nearly 50,000 men and discovered that those who ate five servings or more per week of cruciferous veggies were half as likely to develop bladder cancer over a ten-year period as men who rarely ate them. And broccoli and cabbage were singled out as the most protective foods.
4. Peanut Butter: Heart disease is the leading killer of men and women, but men fall victim at an earlier age. The peanut plan also caused a drop in blood fats called triglycerides and did not decrease HDL, the “good” cholesterol. The AHA diet raised levels of triglycerides and lowered levels of HDL.
5. Watermelon: Foods rich in potassium can reduce the risk of high blood pressure and stroke. Watermelon, a rich source of this mineral, has more potassium — 664 mg — in one large slice than the amount found in a banana or a cup of orange juice.
1. Papaya: This tropical fruit packs about twice the vitamin C of an orange. Add it to your arsenal against gallbladder disease, which afflicts twice as many women as men.
2. Flaxseed: Scientists see the tiny reddish-brown seed, rich in estrogenlike compounds called lignans, as a potential weapon against breast cancer. An exciting report at last year’s San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium showed that adding flaxseed to the diet of women with breast cancer effectively slowed tumor growth.
3. Tofu: Foods high in soy protein can lower cholesterol and may minimize menopausal hot flashes and strengthen bone.
4. Buffalo Meat. Due largely to menstruation, women tend to be anemic more than men. And low iron levels in blood can cause severe fatigue. To get a good dose of iron, try bison. Bison, or buffalo, meat is lean and has what diet-conscious women want — lots of iron and less fat than most cuts of beef. Buffalo meat can help boost energy and lower weight.