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For those interested in research on diet and cancer

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I suppose if I was just looking at life expectancy or maybe thinking about heart health that would be a very reasonable decision to take. And in fact, it is very similar to the diet I was following before dx with the exception that I was eating much too much dairy. But having bc, I would also factor in bc rates in those countries, maybe from this table:

http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/hea_bre_can_inc-health-breast-cancer-incidence

But my decisions about diet were more targeted than that - my decision making process went like this: first I needed to lose weight fast, and I have - 4 stone in 15 months. That meant eating masses of vegetables. I then decided to eliminate dairy because to me the evidence was strong enough that I couldn't take the risk of continuing, and because I couldn't lose weight if I didn't. Put bluntly if the choice was cheese on toast or an earlier death, even if the chance of it being the correct decision was only 5%, I would still take it - people do chemo for less benefit. I haven't eaten red meat for a long time, so no change there, I've never liked meat and would just eat chicken maybe once a week. I then gave up alcohol except for the occasional glass, because again the evidence is very strong for the link with bc, and to help weight loss. Then I decided to make all my meals from whole foods, low sugar, organic where possible, and very high in vegetables. Having taken all those decisions for general health as well as bc reasons, I finished up with a diet similar to an Asian diet almost by accident.

But I would also add that I haven't taken my decisions just based on population statistics and correlations that can be faulty. My biggest decision - eliminating dairy - came after reading as much as I could about IGF 1 - and I read probably over 100 research papers. I find the evidence for the role of IGF 1 in cancer progression very strong, and dairy raises IGF 1 levels more than any other food. Dairy also promotes growth in bones more than any other food, and having active bone mets, that seemed intuitively a bad idea - although I don't have enough knowledge of the processes involved to know for certain. But as dairy is unnecessary for bone health, again why take the risk? So another of my strategies has been to keep IGF 1 levels low. The same with oestrogen - and the evidence that diary raised human oestrogen levels was just the icing on the cake. It seems meat consumption does also, but that isn't an issue for me. Finally sugar - I've read a lot about insulin and breast cancer and there seems enough evidence linking raised insulin levels and breast cancer to make cutting sugar out worth while - again it's helped with the weight loss .

Sorry that was longer than I planned - but I just wanted to explain that I wasn't blindly following the diet of any particular country, quite a lot of thought has gone into it.

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

And the mid-European diet.
The Germans and Austrians whose diet consists of meat, more meat, a bit more meat, some pickled vegetables and 4 gallons of double cream do very nicely in the longevity stakes.

Lemongrove
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Finty I don't find your posts in the slightest bit annoying. All I'm saying is that if you insist on posts being supported by academic sources, there is a danger that people will not post, and this could lead to lack of balance.

With regard to life expectancy and breast cancer rates in Japan/ China/South East Asia, you might find it interesting to look at the most recent World Health Organization Data (see link below). You will need to click on the life expectancy by region tab on the left hand table, and then click summary at bottom of the first table.
I think when you have read it you may think twice about the South East Asian Diet, and instead adopt the Eastern Meditteranean Diet.

http://apps.who.int/ghodata/?vid=710

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I'd certainly agree it's likely to be multifactorial and not solely down to diet.

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Finty - I don't see how war casualties are relevant to life expectancy. Russia lost 21% of all men and 6% of all women in the WW2. 20 million dead.
Yet Russian life expectancy in 1958 was 72 for women and 63 for men.

Ok Elinda I was being glib - of course food shortages were significant in Occupied Japan - but they still ate the same diet of fish, rice and seaweed. Albeit in smaller quantities.

The point is that for most of the people who make money out of writing books about cancer diets Japan is always cited as some kind cancer-free nirvana where all you have to do is suck on a lump of kelp and you'll live to 100. Japan is a complex and changing society that is now apparently experiencing rapid growth in BC rates. As is China.
Is that because they are now eating McDonalds instead of sushi? I doubt it.
I think the increase in BC rates has everything to do with Asian women slowly changing their lives to match us in the West - taking the contraceptive pill and using HRT/IVF, having fewer children and having them later in life, drinking alcohol etc. All the usual stuff.

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I suspect it has a lot to do with wealth and the quality of health care in those countries. For all that breast, prostate, bowel and ovarian cancer are diseases of wealth, there are many more diseases of poverty.

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

If food was freely available then I hardly think they would have been on the brink of starvation. Perhaps it was more to do with disruption of life ie. not being able to farm, fish etc. and bad harvests? I don't know you'd need to ask an expert on Japanese post war history that one.

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I don't know much about life expectancy data calculations. Would the fact these are small countries potentially mean that the data could be easily thrown by different factors? It does seem a bit odd that these small countries are at the top.

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

The Japanese also lost over 4% of their population - nearly 1 in 20 people - in WW2, compared to less than 1% in the UK, which I would expect to have a major impact on life expectancy figures.

But in any case life expectancy is a factor of many things of which diet is only one, so it requires a very complex analysis to untangle all the confounding variables. It's actually what makes the China Study so interesting to me, because they were able to study a population that all have a very similar genetic background, and that have a very high percentage (over 90) of inhabitants living in the same county as they were born - so exposed to the same environmental influences. They also tended to eat the same diet their entire lives, of locally produced food. So comparisons between areas were much easier to make than say comparing Japan to the UK.

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

But I thought the cancer diet argument went that the Japanese diet consisted of a simple diet of rice and fish and seaweed!
All freely available around the islands of Japan!
Rationing in Britain did not end until 1954 and even after that there were still massive shortages right up until 1958.
We weren't exactly flourishing over here - and yet we were still living longer on our lard and gristle diet.

I just had a look at a different reference for countries with longest life expectancy and it is even more interesting - Iceland, Denmark, Sweden, Australia. All countries with high BC rates.
Given that BC is a predominantly geriatric disease it stands to reason that the longer people live the more likely it is they will develop cancers.

There is a similar theory of course that says that the reason developing nations appear to have lower cancer rates is because they die of other things before they get cancer - as well as having unreliable stats.

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I don't know much about Japanese history that they were occupied after the war until 1952.

From what I've read, millions of people were made homeless becuase of the war and the country became very poor. They were on the brink of starvation up until around 1950. So I doubt very much the Japanese diet was all it should have been then or in the immediate years following that.

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

In 1950 life expectancy for Japanese men was 60 and for women it was 62.
UK life expectancy in 1950 was signicantly higher - 65 for men and 72 for women.
As the claim is that the established Japanese diet is and has always been life enhancing - how come, even with the deprivations of post war rationing, we managed to outlive them?

Incidentally the other current high life expectancies are in San Marino, Monaco and Andorra. All of which (apart from being piddling little places!) are Western European cultures with a high consumption of meat and booze!

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

My point was in response to Msmolly's last comment not in response to Finty's comment on life expectancy.

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

It's a good point. Could this be to do with average human life span (as opposed to expectancy)? I think there is some debate as to whether life span is fixed or can increase.

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

According to this link Japanese women have had the longest life expectancy in the world for the last 25 years:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/aug/01/japan-women-life-expectancy-rises

So it's interesting that the generation exposed to all that nuclear fallout is still doing better than us. I'm sure cancer rates did rocket after 1945 - but maybe their diet protected them for higher rates? That is what Campbell found in the Philippines, where the toxin exposure was widespread, but only those in a certain diet group went on to develop liver cancer.

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

But Japan is a supremely advanced nation that has as much access to those medical advances, screening etc as us - probably more!
But even so the difference in average life expectancy between our nations is hardly significant. There is greater disparity between Surrey and parts of Glasgow!
So if the Japanese diet is so uniquely fabulous and they have access to the best modern medicine - how come they aren't outstripping everyone in the longevity stakes?

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

With regard to long life span, any damaging factors in our Western lifestyle/environment/food would be off set by huge medical advances including many medications and screening. For example, screening for high blood pressure and treating it will be preventing things like strokes. The advances in screening for and treating cancers is another example. And of course, another big one is care of the pregnant woman and prevention of death during child birth.

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

This is a very interesting discussion.

With regard to DDT from what I've read about this, it was used agriculturally from around the mid 1940s. It was actually banned until the 1970s in the UK. They say that the egg that made us would have been in our grandmother and therefore our generation are probably one of the most highly exposed as it would have been in the food chain while we were in utero too.
I found this interesting article from BBC about residuals of DDT.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/5145450.stm

Please don't get me wrong, I'm not for a minute suggesting a simple cause and effect with regard to breast cancer. However, we do know that DDT has many damaging effects on all life forms.

I became interested in such toxins when I was diagnosed with endometriosis. One theory is that endometriosis is linked to dioxins. Like DDT this is a Persistant Organic Pollutant also sometimes referred to as the Dirty Dozen such as by WHO (includes DDT and dioxins among others). This is because they persist in the food chain and in the environment.

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

If you are looking at environmental factors - there was nothing so toxic to a populace as the bombs of Nagasaki and Hiroshima.

However - the massive Japanese atomic cancer "timebomb" has never really materialised thankfully - although there are increases.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7917541
This study notes that BC rates in Hiroshima and Nagasaki are among the lowest in the world.

I find it hard to accept that the typical Western person's exposure to chemicals over a lifetime is in any way comparable to anything approximating the severity of nuclear fallout!

I don't really subscribe to the idea that people of days gone by were exposed to fewer carcinogens- DDT was in common use along with scores of other appalling pesticides that are now banned. Asbestos was everywhere - in rooves, bricks, even in the plaster on the walls. Lead plumbing in every building. Lead paint on walls and doors. Lead paint on children's toys! I remember my grandmother kept cleaning bottles in her pantry that had skull and crossbones on them - god knows what was in them.

If in the West we are under such massive assault from our food and from the evironment why, overall, are we living longer than we have ever done? Life expectancy here is 80.1 and in Japan it is 82.9.
Not really that great a difference if our Western culture is supposed to be so dreadfully toxic is it?

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I'm sure you're right that birth rates have a very strong impact, but then if you look at the Shanghai rates increasing 31% in 10 years when similar effects aren't seen elsewhere in China, it suggests that there is more in play.

One thing that I found very interesting in The China Study - sorry, I know you are not a fan, but bear with me - is the suggestion that diet is not initiating cancer but is promoting it when it is initiated by carcinogens. Your great-grandmother would presumably have been exposed to far fewer carcinogens than you were 70 years later - environmental as well as the smoke and alcohol. I don't think anyone really knows the impact of the exposure to thousand of different chemicals in our environment, even if levels of individual chemicals are found to be safe, nobody has tested the combined effect. And he does not at any stage suggest diet is the only factor - just an important one, particularly in the wider sense that lifetime diet effects age of menarche, circulating oestrogen levels etc.

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

That is a heck of a leap in China - and at no point in the article is the issue of the only child policy mentioned!
But then they wouldn't would they.
So much easier to blame wicked Western hamburgers than an appalling state enforced human rights violation that has resulted in the genocide of countless female babies.

I notice several anti-abortion groups on the interent are highlighting the relationship between one child policy and increase in BC - but are blaming the actual abortions!
And that kids is how to manipulate facts in order to make a point!

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Oops - cross posting - I shall have a look at the links.

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I think 'oestrogen exposure' is an oversimplification.
The female reproductive endocrines and breast tissue changes are much more complex than just that.
I'll post again what I posted on a previous page Finty -

"Valerie Beral, head of the Cancer Research UK epidemiology unit at Oxford University, said that to blame Westernisation was to miss the central cause – changes in child-bearing.
"We don't need to seek subtle explanations when we know the main one. China has gone from the six-child family to the one-child family in a couple of generations. Most women in the past had six or seven children – it was fairly standard across the world. Each child was breast fed for two to two-and-a-half years, which meant they stopped ovulating and didn't conceive. The hormonal changes that occur around child-bearing and during breast-feeding are protective for life.""

This makes sense to me.
The number of children women have had has decreased enormously across the globe - and most obviously in China where numbers have been forcibly restricted for 30 years now. I think these changes in our societies holder greater clues to female cancers than what we ingest.

The human female is at her most fecund in her teens. Women should be breeding like rats in our early years - that is really what our bodies are designed to do and many poor societies in developing nations still function that way.

My great-grandmother had 11 kids - which wasn't unusual for her day. She was very fat - always had been. Very fertile obviously (so awash with oestrogen?). She ate the typical diet of her age - lots of butter, lots of cream, fried in lard, fatty meat and disgusting lumps of offal, plenty of home made cakes and sugary preserves.
But she didn't drink alcohol. She didn't smoke.
She lived into her mid 80s with no health problems at all.

And then fast forward 70 years and there is me. Always been a fussy health foody type - slim and fit. Veggy and vegan all my life. But I drank alcohol regularly and smoked for a good few years. Massive fertility problems. Finally have child aged 42 - and then cancer dx a year later.
I am the only woman for 4 generations to have cancer.

People are quick to poo-poo anecdote but I think my family history illustrates the point quite well.

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

And this one on the rising rate of bc in Shanghai - the rates of increase are startling, a 31% increase in 10 years:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21568058/ns/health-cancer/t/breast-cancer-rates-jump-china/#.TldwjV0snTA

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

This has some information on current breast cancer risk factors in Japan:

http://jjco.oxfordjournals.org/content/29/3/137.abstract

It suggests that body weight, earlier menarche and height are an issue - just as they are here. I have also read - can't remember where - that breast feeding is declining in Japan, which is also assumed to effect bc rates.

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I'm really sorry Lemongrove I'm not trying to annoy you, but I honestly don't know how to progress the discussion without knowing what the information is. And as Elinda says, I will get my head bitten off if I proffer an opinion not supported by evidence.

Msmolly I think you make a very good point about figures in developing countries, but I suspect China is the exception, at least from the 1970's onwards - although that of course is very recent in epidemiological terms. In the 1970's Chou EnLai was dying of cancer and initiated a nationwide survey to collect information about cancer. The survey covered 12 common cancers, and 650,000 (!) workers were recruited to survey 96% of their citizens. It resulted in the famous cancer maps of China. Although I am only guessing, I would imagine having set up such a huge database, they will have maintained it since then to some degree. The maps are fascinating because they show huge geographical variations in cancer rates amongst a population with a very similar genetic background. Some counties had cancer rates 100 times higher than other counties - by comparison in the US the largest differential is usually 2 or 3 times higher in different areas.

I'm interested in your views about the single child policy - is your point that the mothers will have had a higher lifetime exposure to oestrogen by having fewer children?

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I thought we'd moved on subject wise but it seems there is still more to discuss re this thread. I hope you won't mind me adding something.

The main reason we have tried to support things with academic research is because of criticisms we've had in the past about using anything other than reputable academic sources.

The other point is that some of us opt to do this to find out if there is any substance to claims made about food substances, sometimes quite dubious ones such as apricot kernals etc. We can only do this by looking at academic studies.
People have unfortunately been shot down in flames and belittled many times on the forums when they have brought up such things on other threads. We've always tried to keep this thread open to anything and approachable but with the balance of looking at how these things have been researched, whether they might be dangerous etc. Ultimately each of us has to make a personal decision about what we put in our mouths.

I'm not entirely sure how this thread lacks balance. We've discussed so many things: different oils, omega 3, flaxseed, vegetables, fruits, fibre, rice as well as the more contentious subjects.

Elinda x

Lemongrove
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Finty the point I made was for consideration, rather than to prove anything - so I saw no reason to provide a source.
I think you're a very wise woman, and most of what you post is very interesting, but with respect I think this idea that we all have to provide sources, and only quote academic studies is wrong (this is a breast cancer forum, where we support and give snippets of information, not University).
The concern that some people have about this particular thread (including myself at times), is the lack of balance - not the lack of academic rigour. It's great to read about different approaches to preventing and treating cancer, but it's important to have all the information, not just information from one perspective.

elinda45
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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I think that lobular cancer is the type that is associated more frequently with HRT. I therefore wonder if HRT may account for this in part?

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I don't have the info to hand but I recall that in Japan they are presenting with more lobular and TN cancers than before.

I have spent a lot of time in the developing world and as such always question the veracity of statistics from countries like India and China.
They don't even really know how large their populations are let alone what percentage have cancer!

A statistic I would like to see is the incidence of female cancers in China since the implementation of the one child policy in 1978.
I wouldn't be at all surprised to see a correlation with increase in BC cases as those young women from the 70s now become menopausal.
But does anyone honestly expect to have legitimate, accurate, unfiddled statistics from China?

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Lemongrove - it would depend what statistics you are looking at - which cancers for instance - do you have a source? Most cancer statistics are age adjusted, so you can make valid comparisons between populations with different age profiles. As far as I am know all multi-country cancer tables and graphs do this, so age is not an issue when comparing between countries - but if we have a statistitian among us it would be nice to know more. But I don't doubt that age is a factor - I am sure there are hundreds of factors of which diet is also undoubtedly one.

oldandlumpy
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

i tend not to comment too much, cos i read things, think they make sense and then forget where i read them.This is not a cancer point but it shows how you cannot look at statistics in isolation. it was either japan or china where they said people were not dying of heart disease, but that was when they had high incidence of TB of all things which was killing them earlier. Once they got the TB vaccination program(ie got westernised) people lived longer and had more chance to develop heart problems.

As to a healthy diet I dont think we can get a one size fits all formula. We are a mixture of our genetic backgound. some people digestion and biochemistry gets on well with fats, some cannot tollerate dairy, etc. and so what makes one person feel good and function well does not necesserily suit everyone.

i try to present my body with unprocessed, unsweetened, simple foods and let my eyes rule my appetite. Seems to work for me. --except for alcohol, my one weakness. I know its my pleasure centre rather than my nutritional instincts kicking in there

Lemongrove
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Cornishgirl, please, please don't stop posting. Your posts are very interesting and it's helpful to have more than one perspective when looking at all these ideas, because if only those with pro alternative views post, it could become disjointed and degenerate into cranks corner.
I apologise if I seemed to demeane the links you provided. I hope you didn't think I was demeaning you (I definitely did not mean to hurt, offend, or make you feel bullied). I'm definitely not saying that you should only post academic links (this is a forum - we're not writing dissertations), it's just that Campbell has a lot of credibility being a Professor, and the critics you referred to just don't have the same weight.

Anyway - moving on to the topic of BC rates in Japan doubling in the last 40 years. Could it be that women are living longer there now, rather than the western diet being to blame? After all cancer is primarily a disease of an ageing population isn't it?

oldandlumpy
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

i am not taking kelp to stop cancer, but to help with cramps and I am worried about perhaps my thyroid problems not being helped with me not eating much seafood and so not getting iodine. I remembered a link to BC research and so I was trying to get the discussion on to a different topic.

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Linda I am sorry you are upset. But staring a thread called "veganism" would have been silly - although I have no recollection of the suggestion - we discuss any diet research here. I myself have been a vegan for approximately two weeks and this thread started a very long time ago, so it wasn't something I would even advocate for myself then, let alone anyone else. I have never once recommended anyone else become one, we just discuss what the research shows and people will make their own minds up. Plenty of people here eat meat and dairy - nobody criticises personal choices. I have also never once criticised your spelling or made personal remarks of the type you suggest - I did criticise your links, as you have done so many times with mine. You frequently characterise the research we discuss here as nonsense, twaddle, rubbish, stupid etc and did so earlier in this discussion, so I responded in kind.

Anyone can post whatever they like here - the only reason we try to keep it only to research is so as not to upset you. And as you started the wacky thread to criticise health websites run by unqualified people, I assumed we had better not link to any here for fear of offending you further - so you are not really being very consistent.

The idea of posting research is to analyse it. There are many faults with EPIC that have been pointed out, which is of course an entirely reasonable thing to do.

I do think your attitude is unreasonable and I await BCC's response with interest.

Edited to add: This thread is closely monitored so I'm fairly confident if BCC thought any of the information we discuss here is inappropriate they would have said so.

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Linda - please don't get upset.
It is very unpleasant if you are feeling bullied. But all you can ever do is put the other side of the argument and then agree to differ and not take any of it personally.

You cannot convert people if they are quite evangelical about something. And I think the diet issue has some very strict adherents. Which is fine - if that's what gets them through the night.

I am personally staggered at the garbage people will shove down their throats in the form of supplements etc without a thought for contraindication with proven drugs.
But each to their own - it is their body and their responsibility to not be stupid.

The only time for intervention is when someone is actively urging others to do something dangerous.
I remember a couple of years back on here a woman advocating that herbal remedies were more efficacious that Tamoxifen. That kind of cr*p needs stamping on.
But I haven't seen any evidence of that kind of thing lately.
But you are right. Dubious claims - however tarted up they are by a veneer of respectability - should always be challenged.

As my Grandma used to say - a little knowledge is a very dangerous thing. And access to a Google button doth not a cancer expert make.

cornishgirl
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Thank you BCC,
I dont intend to post on this thread further as i have taken your suggestion and have made a formal complaint in writing,my 2nd,because after 2yrs of constant BULLYING on ALL the Diet/Red Meat/Alcohol threads i have had enough and do not intend to take this continual abuse any longer.

Finty is correct in that I suggested this thread be set up in the complementry section because of the same continual naatinees on other diet threads ,however finty isnt telling you that i suggested a diet thread called " VEGANISUM" and Breast Cancer ( the suggestion is in print for all to see)NOT research into diet persumabily because she would have known it would attract little interest, let me make it clear i would NEVER suggest a thread about research into diet and BC because i believe ALL posters have a right to be able to post their views on this subject to stop the debate becoming unbalanced and Biast which is what this thread has become, there are NO studies on here apart from the ones that i have posted that are not biast and cherry picked to support individual viewpoint and that is why it is so venomously objected to when others post an opposing view or research.

I have been accused of not being able to spell,i have been told to go back to school and learn some grammer,i have been told my views and links are silly,i have been told what i post is nonsense,i have been told to STAY on the wacky thread and keep of here,i have been ganged up on and ridiculed ,i have been made to feel uneducated,i could go on and on and on.
I post a balance to help ladies come to their own conclusions, how many times have i seen on this thread "dubious" pills and potions encouraged< when there are warnings from cancer organisations NOT to take them? how many times have i seen new uses ask"Is Dairy Bad for people with BC? How many times on this thread i have seen ladies comment of feeling deprived because they now feel they can no longer eat dairy? how many times have i seen the question "why do we have to find these things out for ourself because we are not told about this from our med teams? only to be told Drs have no knowledge about diet and breast cancer, its brainwashing and in my opinion indoctrination.

Well maybe the Bloggers links i put up are not from an academic background ,does that mean that people who dont have a string of letters behind their name not
find valid failings? do you think all academic people are infalable? or sometimes omit other crucial
findings available NO of course not.

It seems when i post studies such as EPIC it is pulled apart and torn to shreads but when some on here post studies that others can find fault with it is sacrilidge.
I have no intension of bothering with this thread again, i will continue to follow it and IF i see any dubious treatments encouraged (just like i would on any other thread)or misrepresenting of evidence ,reccomeding dosages to others ect to do the same i will pass on my concerns to BCC.


God help anyone who dares to post an oposing view on here.
Goodbye to you all.

Linda

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I don't think I was implying that seaweed would in itself be something that reduced risk. I don't think anyone is that clear on the IGF-1 argument.

So there is one expert saying one thing and another saying something else. What's new.

I've not been to Japan so I couldn't say how their diet has changed. I do know that of the Asian friends I've had, one of whom was a very slim bordering on thin Japanese woman, they all put on quite a bit of weight when they came to the UK and that was without going mad on fatty foods or anything like that. The Japanese friend was really worried she wouldn't get a job back home because of it (to Western ideals she was now slim as opposed to super slim). She's now home in Japan and super slim again. That's all anecdotal though and we'll all have different stories I'm sure. Elinda x

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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

From the Indy article you quoted -

Valerie Beral, head of the Cancer Research UK epidemiology unit at Oxford University, said that to blame Westernisation was to miss the central cause – changes in child-bearing.
"We don't need to seek subtle explanations when we know the main one. China has gone from the six-child family to the one-child family in a couple of generations. Most women in the past had six or seven children – it was fairly standard across the world. Each child was breast fed for two to two-and-a-half years, which meant they stopped ovulating and didn't conceive. The hormonal changes that occur around child-bearing and during breast-feeding are protective for life."

-------

So is it munching seaweed? No I don't think so. And I certainly don't notice my Japanese friends suddenly gorging on Ginsters pies either - they are eating what their families have always eaten. But they are taller and fatter than their mothers and grandmothers. And most have become mothers in their 30s and only had 1 or 2 kids. And they drink booze.
Remember that in China the one child policy in enforced by law.

Nothing affects the breast more than puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, breastfeeding and menopause.

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Yes, I've read that but that doesn't rule out diet entirely though does it? Prof Peggy Porter suggests that going to a more Westernised diet could be one of the reasons for this rise (with others such as sedentary life style, not having children so young etc). I haven't got time now to find an academic reference but this is an article on this in the Independent where she's quoted:

http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/health-news/global-rise-in-breast-cancer...

As I understand, the incidence in countries like Japan although rising is still significantly lower than in the West.

All in all though it's a very worrying trend across the world. Elinda x

Guest user
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Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Eating seaweed or not - breast cancer rates in Japan have doubled in the past 40 years and BC mortality has doubled in the past 20 years.
http://jjco.oxfordjournals.org/content/29/3/137

Just saying.

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Thanks OAL, looks like they've taken trouble with their sourcing. I might give it a go. Elinda x

oldandlumpy
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

i get green bay kelp. harvested from the pacific, the bumpf says its ok.

http://www.ocado.com/webshop/product/Green-Bay-Harvest-Organic-Fine-Kelp-Flakes/44204011?from=search...

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Here's another i think by the same group of people looking at seaweed and oestrogen and phytooestrogen metabolism - a bit technical but I think i get the gist of it:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19321575

Finty, I'm not sure I understood your last sentence, do you mean that the Asian would have low IGF-1 anyway regardless of the seaweed intake? In what you've read does the Asian diet only contain small amount of soya protein too?

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Interesting - thank you. Although I'm not sure that the results are a paradox as suggested, since I doubt Asian women typically take soy supplements, just small amounts of dietary soy, so their IGF1 levels wouldn't be expected to be high. I think soy supplements are just the west's attempt to mimic the success of the Asian diet - unsuccessfully. As it seems dietary protein is what raises IGF 1, the small amounts in the diets under study would be expected to lead to low IGF levels.

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Hi Oal and others

Good idea to move on and change subject.

I've been reading about seaweed and the mediating effect it has on IGF-1 (growth factor) when taken with soy supplements. We know that at present soy supplements aren't recommended but it seems that they have done some trials on them and found that IGF-1 levels were raised as a result. The researchers used something called Alaria esculenta (seaweed supplements)which had the effect of reducing this increase.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21711174

What I have read separately to this is to be careful about the sourcing of your seaweed in the capsules or otherwise, as it can come from high pollution areas. I've found it quite hard to find out the actual source when I've looked and I don't actually take any. Elinda x

oldandlumpy
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

i use powdered kelp instead of salt. ---when i remember

finty
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

I had read that about iodine - I even tried some kelp supplements but they made me gag!

oldandlumpy
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

ok, lets change the subject--- i have no links to provide, reputable or not, but perhaps this subject has been covered before. I have a thyroid problem, and i get cramps. Suddenly remembered that i had stopped using kelp instead of salt and ordered another pot to try and boost my iodine intake. Whilst i was thinking about it i seemed to remember that there was some suggestion that the reason Japanese ladies had less breast cancer was because of all the iodine they ate from seaweed. Does that ring a bell with anyone??

i wanted to get my cramps under controll again before i start tamoxefan. They have been quite bad lately so i was looking at what had changed-- I still have my tonic water (did you know that Fevertree tonic has genuine quinine bark in it rather than just a chemical) but i had stopped the kelp for about a month.

elinda45
Member

Re: For those interested in research on diet and cancer

Finty, I think it is a BCC rule that we don't post names of academics and others on the website. That is why some of us have used the asterisks.

Moderators could you clarify that please.

Thanks, Elinda