Rubbing an extract made from broccoli sprouts on your skin may help you to prevent skin cancer, according to Johns Hopkins researchers.
Broccoli, and the sprouts in particular, contain a chemical called sulphoraphane, which activates cancer-fighting enzymes inside your cells.
The researchers spread broccoli sprout extract on the skin of six people, then exposed them to high levels of ultraviolet (UV) radiation. The areas of skin covered by the extract had 37 percent less redness and sunburn than skin not covered -- both indications of skin damage that could lead to cancer.
Sunscreen, meanwhile, did not offer any protection against the UV rays, the researchers said.
Whereas sunscreen works by deflecting UV rays, and therefore must be reapplied often to work, broccoli sprout extract works by penetrating skin cells and stimulating their natural cancer-fighting mechanism.
Since sulphoraphane extract from broccoli sprouts appears to fight cancer in your skin, the researchers believe it may be effective against cancer in other organs as well.
I just love it when a commonly available natural food is found to be more effective than any related man-made product. In this case, broccoli sprouts form a more superior protection for you skin than any chemical sunscreen.
If you were reading this newsletter 10 years ago you will know that I was promoting broccoli spouts even back then as an effective cancer adjunct. I was actually among the first to spread the word about the power of broccoli sprouts for your health.
Broccoli sprouts have been found to prevent UV damage in the past. In 2005, broccoli sprout extract applied to the skin of hairless mice counteracted the carcinogenic response caused by exposure to ultraviolet light.
Eating broccoli sprouts can also help you to fight cancer, particularly breast and prostate cancers. A diet rich in broccoli sprouts even reduces H. pylori infection, a cause of gastritis and an important factor in stomach cancer.
So if you enjoy broccoli sprouts, feel free to sprinkle them on your meals generously.
However, keep in mind that even with all of their anti-cancer properties, broccoli sprouts, and broccoli, are not necessarily the best veggies for everyone.
Personally, I do not care for broccoli, and that is a giant clue that my body is telling me to avoid this food. As it turns out, I am a protein Nutritional Type and broccoli pushes my biochemistry in an unhealthy direction.
So listen to your body. If you love broccoli and its sprouts, please do indulge in them, but if not, there are plenty of other veggies out there for you. However, that concern is not a significant issue if you are going to apply the sprouts externally, as not enough would be absorbed to affect your biochemistry.
A Note About Sunscreen
A pure broccoli-extract sunscreen certainly would be a major improvement over current sunscreens on the market, which are loaded with dangerous synthetic chemicals.
Perhaps some innovative manufacturer will come up with one. But even if they do they will be severely handicapped by the FDA. Why? Because the best studies in the world could show it works, but anyone who said that and attempted to sell it could receive severe legal reprimands from the FDA and even the FTC. So you would be out of luck, as there are too many barriers for most companies to provide these innovative natural solutions to you.
Yes indeed, the drug companies made very sure that they would grease the legislative wheels with hundreds of millions of dollars in lobbying efforts so they could virtually eliminate their competition -- and limit your choices to a near monopoly of dangerous, expensive drug options from their cartel.
Keep in mind also that a study in the April 2004 Journal of Chromatography found that there is significant penetration -- of all sunscreen agents they studied -- into your skin.
So when you use most sunscreens, your body is absorbing synthetic chemicals, and with experts' recommendations to apply generous amounts of the product every few hours, you will likely be absorbing a fair amount. Some of these chemicals are quite dangerous. Octyl methoxycinnamate (OMC), which is present in 90 percent of sunscreen brands, was found to kill mouse cells even at low doses.
Remember, it is wise to avoid putting anything on your skin unless you would consider eating it, as it will eventually wind up in your bloodstream from either route.
Ironically, many sunscreen ingredients also break down in the sun, which renders them ineffective (and completely defeats their purpose). Even the above study found that sunscreen didn’t offer any protection against UV rays.
This is one reason why I don’t recommend using sunscreens. The other reason why you’re better off avoiding them is because as they block your body's absorption of ultraviolet radiation, they also prohibit the production of vitamin D in your skin.
A lack of sunshine, which leads to low vitamin D levels, was recently found to contribute to 600,000 cases of breast and colorectal cancers every year.
So even if you frequently go out in the sun, as long as you are wearing sunscreen, your body simply can’t make enough vitamin D, which will increase your risk of:
For more important sunshine advice, including how to keep your vitamin D levels where they should be during the cold winter months, please read my brand new special report: Over a Million People Die Every Year From Lack of Sun Exposure.