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Fighting cancer from the cabbage patch

3:57pm, August 26, 2003

Sauerkraut a health food? Not yet. But midwestern scientists have found evidence that something in this pickled cabbage and related foods blocks the action of estrogen, a hormone that can fuel the growth of breast cancer and other reproductive-tract malignancies.

Nutritionist William G. Helferich of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and his colleagues were trying to tease out why Polish women who have moved to the United States are far more likely to develop breast cancer than their kin remaining in the Old Country are.

One distinguishing factor turned out to be consumption of cabbage. European Poles eat far more.

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