The Anti-Cancer Benefits of Horseradish

In Anticancer foods, foods for colon cancer, foods for breast cancer, Breast Cancer, Cancer, Epstein-Barr Virus, Healing Cancer Naturally, inflammation, targeting cancer stem cells, Uncategorized on September 10, 2019 at 12:19 pm

Horseradish, a member of the cruciferous family, contains numerous anti-cancer compounds. The phytonutrients in horseradish up-regulate antioxidant enzymes and detoxification processes which clear toxic compounds from the body, inhibit the growth and spread of cancer, target cancer stem cells, and lower cancer-promoting inflammation.

Cancer Fighting Abilities of Horseradish

Horseradish is rich in isothiocyanates (ITCs), compounds well known to protect against cancer and target its pathways. ITCs restrain certain pro-inflammatory compounds that are associated with chronic inflammation and cancer.  Importantly, ITCs kill off cancer cells, including cancer stem cells, which is essential for preventing metastases.  Read more about cancer-fighting ITCs and other benefits of crucifers HERE.


Pictured here on a bed of watercress, another potent anticancer food

But while ITCs are great, another important compound in horseradish known as glucosinolates helps produce those ITCs. This happens when the flesh of a crucifer such as horseradish is cut or chewed.

According to research published in Vegetable Crops Research Bulletin, “glucosinolates in horseradish inhibit mitosis and stimulate apoptosis [cancer cell death] in human tumor cells. The substances may selectively inhibit the growth of tumor cells even after initiation by chemical carcinogens. They may also protect against tumor development.” [i]

Researchers at the University of Illinois have determined that horseradish is a potent anti-carcinogen as it detoxifies cancer-causing molecules and is absorbed well in the body.[ii] Importantly, they found that glucosinolates in horseradish help detoxify and eliminate troublesome free-radicals in the body. The researchers also discovered that horseradish contains more glucoisinolates than broccoli! Of course, for most of us it is easier to eat large amounts of broccoli than horseradish. Still, it couldn’t hurt to include this powerful root in your diet.

Horseradish is also a potent infection fighter. It contains a volatile oil called sinigrin, which is a natural antibiotic and contains other compounds that target upper respiratory issues such as congestion and inflammation. But that is not all.  Horseradish has been found to fight bacteria and viruses (including Epstein Barr), lower cholesterol, and stimulate the immune system.

For many, the only dose of horseradish consumed is in Bloody Mary’s or cocktail sauce.  So if you had too many Bloody’s in your younger life, know that it wasn’t all bad (and we all look forward, not back). I can’t speak of the mix or the alcohol, but at least you may have ingested a cocktail with some health-promoting, cancer- fighting punch. But this article is not intended to send you to the bar, only to tell you the virtues of horseradish.

Horseradish compliments dishes made with apples, potatoes, cheese, mustard, and eggs, and pairs well with cancer-fighting herbs such as basil, parsley, rosemary and various seeds. And should you be out of wasabi, know that horseradish is a fine substitute (wasabi is often horseradish dyed green 😊)

In your good health,


~~If you don’t know your options, you don’t have any~~

Elyn Jacobs is a holistic cancer strategist and speaker specializing in the prevention and treatment of cancer. She is a Contributing Editor for The Truth About Cancer and is on the Medical Advisory Board for BeatCancer.Org and the Advisory Board to the Radical Remission Project. Elyn has written for numerous journals and publications. She was the former Executive Director of the Emerald Heart Cancer Foundation and the creator and host of the Survive and Live Well Radio Show. To contact Elyn, visit www.elynjacobs.com. Elyn offers consults via Skype, phone, or in person. Elyn does not provide online advice.

Elyn Jacobs does not provide online medical advice. The information provided is for general information only. No online site should be used as a substitute for personal medical attention.

This information is for educational purposes only and is not a recommendation to forgo medical advice and treatment.  This post is not intended to treat, cure, prevent, or diagnose any disease or condition. This post does not represent medical advice nor should it be considered to be medical advice or a replacement for medical advice.  I encourage you to discuss this information with your integrative oncologist, naturopathic doctor, or conventional oncologist. The information provided is from my research and not to be taken as scientific evidence.

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[i] https://www.degruyter.com/downloadpdf/j/vcrb.2009.71.issue–1/v10032-009-0033-8/v10032-009-0033-8.pdf

[ii]  https://aces.illinois.edu/news/cancer-fighting-properties-horseradish-revealed




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