Well, it sure got people’s attention, we’ll say that for sure. But is it accurate?
Last week a blog post from an organization called the Institute for Natural Healing picked up on one of the 10 AICR/WCRF Recommendations for the Prevention of Cancer first published back in 2007. That blog post has since gone viral (it’s been shared tens of thousands of times across many different social media platforms), and has attracted the attention of the news media, who have now approached us for comment.
Neither AICR nor our international partners, the World Cancer Research Fund, have any connection to the Institute for Natural Healing, whose website sells “natural” dietary supplements to treat conditions ranging from cancer to heart disease to male potency. (AICR/WCRF’s report and continuous updates have found that when it comes to cancer, it’s better to rely on whole diets, not dietary supplements, to reduce your risk.)
Last week’s INH blog post specifically spotlighted the AICR/WCRF recommendation to avoid processed meat (a category which includes hot dogs, sausage, bacon and cold cuts — for more information, see the AICR Blog post “What is Processed Meat, Anyway?”). That recommendation, at least, is real. It is the conclusion of an independent panel of leading scientists convened by AICR/WCRF who, following the largest, most comprehensive review of international research ever undertaken, judged the evidence that processed meat increases the risk of colorectal cancer to be convincing. This review was published in 2007 and was subsequently confirmed in 2011. Continue reading
Cancer research often makes splashy headlines, especially if the study appears to contradict conventional wisdom or seems to offer a potential cure. If you don’t read past the headlines, you may think that scientists are finding cures but doctors aren’t staying up to date.
But while these studies may have a role in how we understand causes and treatment of cancer, no single study by itself can be used for practicing evidence-based care. Health professionals have to go beyond the headlines and put the research in context before it becomes part of evidence-based practice. The question they ask is: Is this study really a game changer or simply another piece of data to add to the overall body of evidence?
Your doctors, nurses, dietitians and other health care providers don’t always have the time to sort through all the research and decide by themselves how to apply all the new studies to their practice. Continue reading
Evidence is strong that consuming high amounts of dietary fiber protects against colorectal cancer. Previous research has suggested that fiber may play a role in colon cancer prevention due to its interaction with trillions of bacteria in our gut.
Now, a study adds to that evidence by focusing on advanced colorectal adenoma, a non-cancerous tumor that has the potential to develop into cancer.
The study, published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, suggests that a high-fiber diet promotes healthy gut bacteria and its byproducts.
Gut microbiota are the microorganisms that live in our digestive tracts – in our stomach, intestines, and colon. We have about 10 trillion human cells in our body, but we have way more – about 100 trillion – microorganisms residing in our gut. A growing body of research is showing that these microorganisms are important to our health – from training our immune system, to producing vitamins and fighting off harmful bacteria. Continue reading