<
HOME ABOUT US TABLE OF CONTENTS BLOG FAQ ABSTRACTS DOWNLOADS RESUME CONTACT INDEX


Cancer Prevention by Diet (Updated July 2010)

Prevalence
Type
History
Consciousness
Studies
LI Input

PREVALENCE : Prevalence of Cancer

Approximately 2,100,000 new cancer cases were diagnosed in 1997 in the US. Among them were 181,600 new cases of breast cancer (180,200 in women and 1,400 in men), 178,100 new cases of lung cancer, 334,500 new cases of prostate cancer, 131,200 new cases of colon and rectum cancer (94,100 of colon and 37,100 of rectum), 26,800 new cases of ovarial cancer, 49,400 new cases of cancer of the uterus (14,500 of the cervix and 34,900 of the body of the uterus), 27,600 new cases of cancer of the pancreas, 26,300 new cases of leukemia, 61,100 cases of lymphoma, 54,500 new cases of bladder cancer, and 800,000 new cases of skin cancers. (Cancer Statistics 1997. CA. Vol. 47. no. 1 January/February 1997 The American Cancer Society, Inc.)

[ Top ]   

TYPE : Types of cancer

Type Diagnosed Death New Case/Death Ratio
  Prostate 344,500 41,800 12.49%
  Breast 181,600 44,190 24.33%
  Lung 178,100 160,400 90.06%
  Colon and Rectum 131,200 54,900 41.84%
  Lymphoma 61,100 25,280 41.37%
  Bladder 54,500 11,700 21.46%
  Uterus 49,400 10,800 21.86%
  Oral Cavity 30,750 8,440 27.44%
  Pancreas 27,600 28,100 .
  Leukemia 26,800 14,200 52.90%
  Ovary 26,600 13,300 50.00%
  Total 1,382,400 560,000 40.54%

Last (1997) estimates of new cancer diagnosed, of the number of resulting deaths, and the new cases to death ratio for the most frequent cancers and for the total of all cancers.

The table above gives only the numbers of new cases in 1997. The National Institute of Cancer estimates that in 1997 in the US, more than 7,500,000 people were suffering from cancer.

The publication "Cancer Statistics 1997" from the American Cancer Society contains more cancer related statistics.

[ Top ]   

HISTORY :

For more than 15 years, a considerable effort has been under way in the US to delineate preventive methods to reduce the burden of cancer.

Research for prevention methods has highlighted the role of three main factors: behavior, lifestyle , and diet. The consciousness that diet is implicated in the cancer process is relatively new.

[ Top ]   

CONSCIOUSNESS :

The first impulse toward the consciousness that diet is implicated in the cancer process came from the US. National Academy of Science (NAS)., a private, nonprofit society of scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare .

In 1982 the NAS published a landmark report linking cancer and diet.

"Based on a thorough review of the scientific evidence, this book provides the most authoritative assessment yet of the relationship between dietary and nutritional factors and the incidence of cancer. It provides interim dietary guidelines that are likely to reduce the risk of cancer as well as ensure good nutrition (NAS). "

Browse the NAS' large choice of publications.

[ Top ]   

STUDIES : Numerous Studies on the Prevention of Cancer by Diet

After the issue of this report, numerous studies have been published on the subject of cancer and diet.

"Food, Nutrition and the Prevention of Cancer: A Global Perspective." was edited September 1997 by the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR).
The 660-page report is a comprehensive examination and analysis. The report contains more than 4,500 studies on the prevention of cancer by diet.

The report concludes :

"Our dietary choices play a central role in helping protect us against cancer. That conclusion, drawn from the review and analysis of more than 4,500 research projects, is the foundation of the American Institute for Cancer Research's Diet & Cancer Project and the key message from the report produced by the project, Food, Nutrition and the Prevention of Cancer: A Global Perspective."

The following is the "Advice to Individuals" presented in the AICR report:

" Recommendation 1 : Choose predominantly plant-based diets rich in a variety of vegetables and fruits, pulses (legumes) and minimally processed starchy staple foods.

Recommendation 2 : Avoid being underweight or overweight and limit weight gain during adulthood to less than 5kg (11 pounds).

Recommendation 3 : If occupational activity is low or moderate, take an hour's brisk walk or similar exercise daily, and also exercise vigorously for a total of at least one hour in a week.

Recommendation 4 : Eat 400-800 grams (15-30 ounces) or five or more portions (servings) a day of a variety of vegetables and fruits, all year round.

Recommendation 5 : Eat 600-800 grams (20-30 ounces) or more than seven portions (servings) a day of a variety of cereals (grains), pulses (legumes), roots, tubers and plantains. Prefer minimally processed foods. Limit consumption of refined sugar.

Recommendation 6 : Alcohol consumption is not recommended. If consumed, limit alcoholic drinks to less than two drinks a day for men and one for women.

Recommendation 7 : If eaten at all, limit intake of red meat to less than 80 grams (3 ounces) daily. It is preferable to choose fish, poultry and meat from non-domesticated animals in place of red meat.

Recommendation 8 : Limit consumption of fatty foods, particularly those of animal origin. Choose modest amounts of appropriate vegetable oils.

Recommendation 9 : Limit consumption of salted foods and use of cooking and table salt. Use herbs and spices to season foods.

Recommendation 10 : Do no eat food which, as a result of prolonged storage at ambient temperatures, is liable to contamination with mycotoxins.

Recommendation 11 : Use refrigeration and other appropriate methods to preserve perishable foods as purchased and at home.

Recommendation 12 : When levels of additives, contaminants and other residues are properly regulated, their presence in food and drink is not known to be harmful. However, unregulated or improper use can be a health hazard, and this applies particularly in economically developing countries.

Recommendation 13 : Do not eat charred food. For meat and fish eaters, avoid burning of meat juices. Consume the following only occasionally: meat and fish grilled (broiled) in direct flame; cured and smoked meats.

Recommendation 14 : For those who follow the recommendations presented here, dietary supplements are probably unnecessary, and possibly unhelpful, for reducing cancer risk.

Tobacco : Do not smoke or chew tobacco. ("Food, Nutrition and the Prevention of Cancer: A Global Perspective.". The American Institute for Cancer Research. September 1997.)"

[ Top ]   

LI INPUT : The Contribution of the Longevity Institute to the Prevention of Cancer by Diet

While the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) is optimistic concerning the potential effect on cancer of research and education in diet and acknowledges the role of vitamins, minerals, fats, fiber and phytochemicals :

"Today an increasing understanding of the role of vitamins, minerals, fats, fiber, phytochemicals in helping to control cancer risk offers each of us the opportunity to make simple changes for lower cancer risk. (AICR)"

While the AICR advises in its recommendation 1 :

"Choose predominantly plant-based diets rich in a variety of vegetables and fruits, pulses (legumes) and minimally processed starchy staple foods.

the opinion of the AICR concerning the potential beneficial effects of dietary supplements on cancer - expressed in its recommendation 14 is disputable

"For those who follow the recommendations presented here, dietary supplements are probably unnecessary, and possibly unhelpful, for reducing cancer risk. (AICR: recommendation 14)"

Dietary supplements are "vitamins, minerals, fats, fiber, phytochemicals" that have to be supplemented because they are no longer inherent components of our diets.

The opinion of the AICR on the "probably unnecessary, and possibly unhelpful" dietary supplements "for reducing cancer risk" is questioned by LI.

The "1996 Guidelines on Diet, Nutrition, and Cancer Prevention" from the AICR takes for granted that the "predominantly plant-based diets rich in a variety of vegetables and fruits" - proposed in their recommendation 1 - possesses all the vitamins, minerals, fats, fiber, phytochemicals it should contain.

There are good reasons to doubt the above and particularly to verify the mineral content of our food and hence to question the intrinsic value of a diet that is predominantly plant-based diets rich in a variety of vegetables and fruits.

The opinion of the AICR is that dietary supplements are useless to reduce the risk of cancer.

See another opinion in Newsletter9 and at the American Institute for Cancer Research. The book: Stopping Cancer Before It Starts explains the science behind the current recommendations for lowering cancer risk.

[ Top ]   

     Copyright © 2003-2010 Edmond Devroey                                                                                            Web Design by DNL