Several studies have shown that women who consume fatty foods
may increase their risk of developing breast cancer, although
most of these studies involved postmenopausal women. Now (perhaps
for the first time), a study appears to correlate diet with
breast cancer risk in younger women who have not yet reached
menopause - and perhaps more significantly, it suggests that
eating specific types of fatty foods may increase your risk
of developing this frightening disease.
The results of an eight-year study of more than 90,000 premenopausal
women were reported recently in the Journal of the
National Cancer Institute (JNCI). Participants in the
Nurses' Health Study II were administered two health questionnaires
over a five-year period that asked about how often they ate
fatty foods; 714 developed breast cancer over eight years.
The study's lead author, Dr. Eunyoung Cho, of Boston's Harvard
Medical School, noted the majority of the subjects were premenopausal
at the time of diagnosis.
Even more intriguing was the observation that the quality,
rather than the quantity of foods consumed seemed to account
for the increased risk. Consumption of animal fats (e.g.,
red meat and/or high-fat dairy products) appeared to increase
the risk for developing breast cancer, whereas consumption
of vegetable fats did not.
Although animal fats are thought to have an effect on hormones
that can promote breast cancer, there is speculation that
a chemical unique to animal fats is responsible for the increase,
according to the researchers. Ask your chiropractor about
the essentials of a sensible diet and exercise program that
will keep you healthy, whatever your age. To learn more about
women's health, go to www.chiroweb.com/find/archives/women.
Cho E, Spiegelman D, Hunter DJ, Chen WY, et
al. Premenopausal fat intake and risk of breast cancer. Journal
of the National Cancer Institute July 2003: Volume 95,
Number 14, pp.1079-1085.