Do foods high in glycemic index increase breast cancer risk?

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Eating foods with a high glycemic index (GI) can make your blood sugar rise higher and faster after eating. Theoretically, that could cause unhealthy levels of hormones like insulin, which seem to promote development of some cancers, including breast.

However, research suggests that glycemic index by itself has little to no relation to breast cancer risk.

The Research

An analysis of 19 studies found no link between breast cancer risk and diets high in GI beyond what could occur by chance. Even glycemic load (GL), which takes portion size of foods into account, showed no significant link to breast cancer risk. The links were not consistent and could reflect other qualities of those diets. Another analysis that included only studies with a stronger design that follows people over time (called prospective cohort studies) found a weak five to six percent increase in breast cancer risk when comparing diets at the very highest to the very lowest glycemic index or glycemic load, respectively. Read more… “Do foods high in glycemic index increase breast cancer risk?”

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    Health Talk: How many vegetables should I be eating? What about my kids?

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    Q: I keep seeing recommendations about cups of vegetables, but I’m confused about how many I should be eating. What about my kids?

    A: If you’re like most adults, you should be aiming for 2 to 3 cups of vegetables a day, as seen in the Healthy U.S.-Style Eating Pattern from the Dietary Guidelines. This amount also holds for children ages 9 and older. Targets for children age 8 and under, are less – about 1 to 1.5 cups a day.

    “Cups” of vegetables mostly refers to a portion equal to one measuring cup for raw or cooked vegetables. For lettuce, spinach or other raw leafy vegetables however, two cups count as a cup. A medium carrot, celery stalk and small pepper each count as half a cup. If you don’t want to measure, an average adult fist is a rough guide to a 1-cup portion. So you can aim for one to two fist-size portions of vegetables at lunch and dinner each day. Read more… “Health Talk: How many vegetables should I be eating? What about my kids?”

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      Health Talk: Do eggs increase ovarian cancer risk?

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      Right now, the research does not show any strong link between eggs and ovarian cancer risk. There have been a few studies that have found a modest increased risk of ovarian cancer among women with the highest weekly egg consumption compared to those who don’t eat eggs. However, the studies that show a link are usually the study types more likely to have problems accurately estimating egg consumption and controlling for other potential influences on risk.

      And many studies examining this link have not adjusted for being overweight, which increases ovarian cancer risk. A recent analysis of the global research on eggs and ovarian cancer risk by the American Institute for Cancer Research found that current evidence is too limited to support any conclusion. More research is needed.

      42372485 - eggs in a bowl with whisk

      Theoretically, high consumption of eggs’ cholesterol could lead to formation of compounds that pose risk. Yet it’s also possible that eggs’ rich content of choline (an essential nutrient) could play a role in maintaining healthy DNA to reduce cancer risk. Read more… “Health Talk: Do eggs increase ovarian cancer risk?”

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