While it has long been assumed that a person’s diet plays an important role in how at risk they are for certain types of cancer, the theory has never been so close to being proven as it is now. This comes from a new dietary study performed by researchers in London, Helsinki, Netherlands, Pittsburgh and more. The findings showed a link between anti-cancer foods and how they reduced a person’s risk of cancer.
What the Study Showed
The purpose of the study was to test how a change in diet could affect cancer risk markers. So families in South Africa and America were chosen for the study, and they were given the other country’s diet for two weeks. Now no one expects cancer to develop after just two weeks of changing a diet, but the study wasn’t looking for actual cancer. It was looking for an increase or decrease in biological markers that have been shown to have connections to cancer.
The American diet of sausage and pancakes, hamburgers and fries and meatloaf and rice were given to the South African family. The American family ate meals that were full of maize, pineapple, okra, tomatoes and corn dogs.
After two weeks, changes were becoming apparent. The American family showed a decrease in intestinal cell turnover rate. This has been shown to decrease the chance of developing colon cancer. The African family showed the exact opposite, as their turnover rate for intestinal cells increased. The bacteria in the guts of these participants showed that the American diet was increasing the cancer risk and the South African diet was decreasing it.
Now, none of this is absolute proof that one family would develop cancer and the other would not. There are many factors that can affect someone’s chances for developing cancer, and they can include not just their diet but also environmental toxins, purity of the drinking water, exposure to disease, cigarette smoking and others such variables.
But the study does show that those who eat a diet that is conventionally American would be at a higher risk for cancer. So the key is to eat a lot of anti-cancer foods, such as leafy green vegetables, fruits, and fiber. This explains why the researchers mostly attributed that increased risk to a lack of fiber. The average American eats less than the daily recommended amount of 50 grams of fiber, which is said to be enough to greatly reduce the risk of developing colon cancer.
Without that essential fiber, the colon can experience a buildup of fecal matter and toxins that cause the body harm. And while fiber is not the only difference between these two diets that were tested in the study, it is the one that has the most noticeable effect on colon cancer risk.
It is obvious from this study that changing one’s diet has an almost immediate effect on the body as well as on certain risk factors and on overall health. The change to a different diet with more fiber is not only beneficial in reducing the chance that a person will suffer from cancer later on, but it also provides immediate benefits such as an increased energy level, feelings of wellbeing and more.
A diet that is low in fiber, like the one that most Americans have, is one that is taking over the world slowly but surely. As fast food becomes ever more available throughout the world, it becomes easier than ever for people to subsist on food that is not healthy for them and that will eventually lead to serious illnesses.
Now cancer is a disease that does not onset suddenly and without warning signs. It is something that happens over time. If it is to be prevented, then action needs to be taken over the long term. Simply switching for a few weeks to a different diet that has more fiber is not going to stem the chance of cancer. This is something that needs to be done throughout one’s life. And it is not too late to start making changes that can have a positive effect.
While eating more anti-cancer foods is no guarantee that cancer won’t come for you at some point, it is certainly a very good way to deter it, and of course, the other benefits of eating a healthy diet will make your life more pleasant.