High magnesium consumption may help prevent colorectal cancer. In a new analysis of 61,433 women ages 40 to 75, those with the highest daily intakes of the mineral had a 40o/o lower risk of developing the disease than those with the lowest daily intakes.

Theory: Magnesium lowers levels of insulin (a hormone produced in the pancreas that regulates blood glucose). Elevated insulin levels are associated with colorectal cancer risk.

Self-defense: Eat food containing 300 mg to 400 mg of magnesium daily. Good sources, which contain 50 mg of magnesium per serving, include one cup of cooked or one-half cup of raw spinach...one large banana...one-half cup of cooked oatmeal...two slices of whole-grain bread...and one-half cup of beans. If you include magnesium-rich foods in your diet, there is no need to take a magnesium supplement.

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