One of AICR’s Recommendations for Cancer Prevention is that mothers breastfeed their babies, with research showing that being breastfed can help reduce future cancer risk by helping the baby stay a healthy weight as an adult. Now a recent study suggests a new way in which breastfeeding may offer protection from cancer as well as other diseases, finding that young adults who were breastfed have a lower risk of chronic inflammation compared to those not breastfed.
There is a growing body of research suggesting inflammation increases the risk of many chronic diseases, including some cancers. Overweight and obesity, a risk factor for eight cancers, may produce a low level state of chronic inflammation.
AICR also recommends breastfeeding because research suggests it protects mothers against breast cancer. With August being National Breastfeeding Month, the study adds another potential benefit to the many recognized positives of breastfeeding.
Study authors used data from almost 7,000 participants who were part of national study on adolescent health. Twenty years ago, the participants were teenagers going to middle and high school. They, and many of their parents were interviewed. Then in 2007-2008, when the participants were 24–32 years old, their levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) were measured from a blood sample. CRP is a marker of inflammation. Continue reading
If you want to know how much sugar food manufacturers are adding to your foods, today’s your last day to tell the FDA. That could make a difference to how much added sugars people consume, suggests a recent study, which found that Americans are getting far more of our added sugars from sugary beverages than desserts or candy combined. And, for the most part, we are purchasing those sugary products from stores.
The study, published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, also found that almost 15 percent of Americans’ daily calories comes from sugars added to our foods or drinks.
For cancer prevention, cutting down on sugary beverages is one of AICR’s 10 recommendations. Sugary sodas and other beverages link to weight gain, and being overweight links to increased risk of eight cancers.
In an average American’s day, sodas and energy sports drinks was the largest source of added sugars, making up 34 percent. Grain desserts, such as cookies and other baked goods, was the next largest category coming in at 13 percent; fruit drinks, candy and dairy desserts followed, at 8, 7 and 6 percent, respectively.
Is eating organic food better for reducing my cancer risk?
It’s one of the most asked questions we get – especially now, with a new review of the research suggesting that organics contain more antioxidants than conventional foods.
With all the research on fruits, vegetables and other plant foods and cancer, AICR hasn’t had a lot to say about organics. There has been relatively little research on organics and cancer risk, with no clear conclusions except one: eating a diet that is mainly from plants – whether they are organic or conventional – reduces the risk of cancer.
The new analysis, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, included 343 studies from 1992 to 2012. (1992 was when the European Union started regulating organic farming; about 70% of the studies were from Europe.)
The authors looked at how organics and conventional plant foods compared in vitamins, minerals and groups of phytochemicals that have shown antioxidant — and cancer-protective — activity in lab studies. The researchers also compared levels of pesticide compounds.