Friday, 17 August 2007

Addicted to red meat? You're more likely to have recurring colon cancer

Saw this article in New Paper online.

It is dated on August 17, 2007. This article can be found at,4136,138980,00.html?


COLON cancer patients who stuff themselves with red meat, french fries and dessert may raise their chances of suffering a relapse and dying early.

But switch to a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, poultry and fish, and they can significantly lower the risk of a relapse.

Researchers at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute found that patients who favour such a Western diet were three-and-a-half times more likely to have a recurrence of colon cancer than those eating poultry, fish, vegetables and fruits.

Previous research has found that certain lifestyle choices and diets play an important role in the risk of developing cancer.

But few studies had measured the role of food in the recurrence of colon cancer and the risk of dying, the researchers say in a study published in the 15 Aug edition of the Journal of The American Medical Association.

Researchers looked at 1009 patients suffering from stage III colon cancer, in which the tumour is present in the colon and lymph nodes.

Said Dr Jeffrey Meyerhardt, the study's lead author: 'Our results suggest that people treated for locally advanced colon cancer can actively improve their odds of survival by their dietary choices.'

However, Ms Mary Young, a vice president of the National Cattlemen's Beef Association in Colorado, noted that the study did not implicate any one food as raising health risks.

'However, as a dietitian, I would not recommend the (Western) dietary pattern identified in this study because it does not include the variety and moderation important to a healthy diet. Instead, I recommend people choose a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, and lean meats, such as lean beef,' she said in a statement.

Researchers are now conducting more analyses to determine which nutrients or food groupings may be linked the closest to increased recurrence risks. - AFP

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