Cut Colon Cancer Risk With These Foods
Colorectal cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer in both men and women. But what many don’t know is that almost half of colorectal cancers can be prevented with just a few healthy lifestyle changes.
You see, one of the major contributors to cancer of the colon and rectum are some of the foods you eat every day.
For example, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classifies processed meat as “carcinogenic to humans” and red meat as a “probable carcinogen.”
And, as it turns out, these classifications may be well-founded.
What Are the Risks of Eating Red and Processed Meats?
As part of the World Cancer Research Fund International Continuous Update Project, the relationship between food and beverage intake on colorectal cancer is constantly updated.
In the latest analysis of 111 unique studies, researchers found that every 100 grams (about 3.5 ounces) of red and processed meat eaten daily increases the risk of colorectal cancer by a whopping 12%.
When you consider the foods we eat on a daily basis, this can present a real health threat. After all, it’s not uncommon to enjoy bacon or sausage with breakfast, a hamburger or deli sandwich for lunch, and then a cut of red meat at the centerpiece of the evening meal.
And on top of that, if you enjoy an alcoholic beverage or two on a regular basis, it may further add to your risk. The analysis found that every 10 grams of ethanol consumed daily increases the risk of colorectal cancer by 7%. (A standard alcoholic drink contains 14 grams of ethanol.)
However, other foods can actually slash your risk of developing this potentially deadly form of cancer…
Whole Grains Linked to Lower Chances of Colorectal Cancer
According to the new report, vegetable and fish intake showed some protective benefits against colorectal cancer. But the real winner was whole grains. The researchers found that every 90 gram increase in daily whole grain consumption decreased the risk by 17%.
This means replacing processed grains and cereals with whole grains may be one of the best things you can do to protect yourself against cancers of the colon and rectum. Some of the grains that fall into this category include barley, quinoa, buckwheat, oats, millet (or finger millet), brown rice and whole-wheat products.
Alice Bender, MS, RDN, head of AICR Nutrition Programs offers the following advice: “Replacing some of your refined grains with whole grains and eating mostly plant foods, such as fruits, vegetables and beans, will give you a diet packed with cancer-protective compounds and help you manage your weight, which is so important to lower risk.”
And whole-grains aren’t all that can help ward off this form of cancer, researchers have found that even coffee may lower your risk of colorectal cancer — check out Drinking Coffee May Ward Off Colon Cancer to learn more.
Colorectal Cancer Statistics, 2017. American Cancer Society. © 2017 American Cancer Society, Inc.
Vieira AR, et al. Foods and beverages and colorectal cancer risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis of cohort studies, an update of the evidence of the WCRF-AICR Continuous Update Project. Ann Oncol. 2017 Aug 1;28(8):1788-1802.
Alcohol, Processed Meats Increase Colorectal Cancer Risk, Updated Findings. IACR’s Cancer Research Update. May 2017.
New report: Whole grains link to lower colorectal cancer risk for first time. Press Release. International Agency for Research on Cancer. Sept 2017.
Dana Nicholas is a freelance writer and researcher in the field of natural and alternative healing. She has over 20 years of experience working with many noted health authors and anti-aging professionals, including James Balch, M.D., Dr. Linda Page, “Amazon” John Easterling and Al Sears M.D. Dana’s goal is to keep you up-to-date on information, news and breakthroughs that can have a direct impact on your health, your quality of life… and your lifespan. “I’m absolutely convinced that America’s misguided trust in mainstream medicine – including reliance on the government to regulate our food and medicine supply – is killing us, slowly but surely,” she cautions. “By sharing what I’ve learned throughout the years I hope I can empower others to take control over their own health.”