After being diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008 and undergoing chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery to remove her tumour and one of her breasts, Vicky Sewart from Devon was advised to take Tamoxifen - a drug commonly issued during the post-cancer remission stage.

However, Sewart refused.

vicky stewarts breast cancer
Vicky Sewart believes her strict superfood diet has kept her cancer-free

Instead, she launched into a health regime of exercise and ate a diet of 'anti-cancer' ‘superfoods', including spicy turmeric, instead of taking the powerful drug as she wanted to avoid any nasty side effects (which can include blood clots, and strokes).

Although health experts and doctors were at first skeptical about the so-called superfoods and their ‘healing’ powers, Sewart has remained cancer-free for four years and claims that her strict diet and lifestyle changes “made cancer cells commit suicide”.

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“The doctors absolutely will not say that the diet is going to do anything to help the cancer in any way, other than to say a healthy diet is going to help in the fight against any disease,” Sewart said, reports the Telegraph.

“This was four years ago and I think attitudes are changing a bit now so that these ideas are running alongside the more usual treatments.

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  • Women With Bigger Breasts Have Higher Risk Of Breast Cancer, Finds Genetic Study

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  • Stress Speeds Spread Of Breast Cancer, Suggests Study

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“I believe absolutely enormously that my diet has assisted my recovery."

Sewart began her lifestyle overhaul by cutting out dairy products and eating more ‘superfoods’ like red berries, garlic, ginger and turmeric spices and followed a strict organic, vegan lifestyle.

She also prepared all her food from scratch, made her own body lotions from natural ingredients. Something she has kept up for the last four years.

“I decided that I was going to help myself and do as much as I could," she said.

During her time following the strict superfood diet, Sewart provided blood and urine samples for experts who are compiling national research.

Thought to be the largest of its kind, the research will involve 56 hospitals around the UK and 3,400 cancer patients and is aiming to shed light into alternative cancer therapies.

However, although Sewart swears by the power of her superfood diet - a leading cancer charity has warned cancer patients not to ditch Tamoxifen just yet.

vicky stewart breast cancer superfood
Vicky Sewart, pictured during her battle with breast cancer

“It’s not recommended that alternative therapies are used in place of conventional medical therapy,” Sara Hiom from Cancer Research UK, said in a statement.

“There is little scientific or medical evidence to indicate that alternative therapies are more effective than the proven treatments used by cancer specialists on the NHS.

“We would urge anyone to talk to their specialist if they’re contemplating them."

Although it hasn't been proven that curry spices combat breast cancer, they do have a host of health benefits. Take a look...

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  • 10 Ways To Spice Up Your Life

  • Cinnamon

    Cinnamon isn't just a great way to sweeten up your pastry or morning coffee, it also has great weight-loss properties, too. According to a recent study by <a href="http://care.diabetesjournals.org/" target="_hplink">Diabetes Care</a>, a simple teaspoon of cinnamon a day rapidly reduces blood sugar levels, as well as cholesterol by 26%, meaning it helps protect against diabetes, weight-gain and cardiovascular disease.

  • Paprika

    Hot and spicy paprika contains capsaicin, whose anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects may lower the risk of cancer (also found in cayenne and red chili peppers).

  • Black Pepper

    The staple in all our kitchen cupboards, black pepper contains piperine component (which creates its pungent taste) as well as boosting the metabolism by as much as 8% for sveral hours after ingesting. Freshly ground pepper packs the most piperine.

  • Mustard Seeds

    These spicy-tasting mustard seed not only pack a punch on your taste buds, but helps boost the metabolism. This helps the body burn fat quicker - by up to 25% and around 45 calories per average meal. According to a recent study by <a href="http://www.brookes.ac.uk/" target="_hplink">Oxford Polytechnic Institute</a>, the mustard seed's thermogenic property is best as burning off the fat.

  • Cayenne

    The main ingredient in the cayenne pepper is capsaicin, which is known for its fat-burning abilities and thermogenic properties. These stimulate the central nervous system to produce heat in the body, that goes onto increase calorie burning. A recent study featured in the <a href="http://www.nature.com/ijo/index.html" target="_hplink">Journal of Obesity </a>found that these type of spices increase fat oxidation, which ramps up energy and stimulates the nervous system - all beneficial to helping the body shed weight.

  • Turmeric

    Thanks to its preventative and curative ingredient, curcumin, a rich anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory agent, turmeric is best at reducing inflammation in the muscles and joints. This spice is also believed to be a great breast cancer-preventing food and is more effective than over-the-counter pain killers, like aspirin and ibuprofen, according to the <a href="http://www.vedanet.com/" target="_hplink">American Institute for Vedic Studies</a>.

  • Coriander

    According to the <a href="http://www.springer.com/medicine/internal/journal/10620" target="_hplink">Digestive Disease and Science</a>, coriander rapidly decreases the painful symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Coriander contains an anti-spasmodic agent that helps relax contracted digestive muscles, which cause stomach cramps. It's also good at relaxing the artery, which subsequently helps lower blood pressure.

  • Fennel Seeds

    Fennel can be classed as a vegetable, herb or spice but whatever you label it, it's anti-inflammatory agents provide pain relief for menstrual cramps. Fennel contains a liquorice-tasting oil called anethole and phytoestrogen, an oestrogen-like compound. This is proven to reduce menstrual cramps and is as strong as an over-the-counter ibuprofen.

  • Ginger

    Ginger has long been used as a spice which helps ease all types of nausea. Previous studies from the <a href="http://www.umich.edu/" target="_hplink">University of Michigan</a> and <a href="http://nymu-e.web.ym.edu.tw/front/bin/home.phtml" target="_hplink">National Yang-Ming University</a>, Taiwan, found that ginger reduces the release of vasopressin - the key hormone that plays a role in motion sickness. Ginger also has great gastric mobility abilities, and aids healthy digestion.

  • Oregano

    Oregano is a major source of thymol and carvacol - two antibacterial agents that fight off infection. It's also packed with super strength anti-oxidants, so much so, it has quadruple the amount of antioxidants found in blueberries.