How do whole grains affect the risk of colon cancer?
A balanced diet is important for human health. Proper nutrition can make a big difference, especially when it comes to the risk of developing various types of cancer. Researchers have now found that regular consumption of whole grains can lower the risk of colon cancer.
In their current study, scientists from the internationally recognized Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health found that eating whole grains leads to a reduced risk of developing colon cancer. The results of the study were published by the American Institute for Cancer Research.
Physical activity can protect against cancer
Diet and physical activity affect the risk of various cancers. Regular consumption of hot dogs, bacon and other processed meat increases the risk of developing colon cancer. There has also been strong evidence in previous studies that physical activity can protect against colorectal cancer.
Changing your diet can lower your risk of developing colon cancer
Colon cancer is one of the most common cancers. The results of the current study show that many people could reduce their risk by changing their diet. Diet and lifestyle play an important role in the development of colorectal cancer, explains author Dr. Edward L. Giovannucci from Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health.
Experts analyzed the data from more than 29 million people
The new study evaluated the results of global scientific research into how diet, weight and physical activity can affect the risk of colon cancer. The report analyzed a total of 99 studies using data from over 29 million people, including over a quarter million people diagnosed with colorectal cancer.
These factors can increase the risk of colon cancer:
Various factors influence the risk of developing colon cancer. These include, for example:
- Eat high amounts of red meat, such as beef or pork
- Overweight or obesity
- daily consumption of two or more alcoholic beverages (30 grams of alcohol), such as wine or beer
90 grams of whole grain daily, reduce the risk of colon cancer by 17 percent
The current study concludes that consuming approximately three servings (90 grams) of whole grains a day reduces the risk of developing colon cancer by 17 percent. The previous reports indicate that foods that are rich in fibers can also lower the risk of colon cancer, the researchers report.
Physical activity protects against colon cancer
Physical activity also affects the risk of colon cancer. When people are more physically active, they have a lower risk of developing colon cancer compared to less physically active people, the scientists explain. According to the researchers, this reduced risk applied to colon cancer, but not to rectal cancer.
Many cases of colon cancer can be prevented by a lifestyle change
In the U.S. alone, an estimated 371 cases of colorectal cancer are diagnosed each day. The American Institute for Cancer Research assumes that 47 percent of colon cancer cases in the United States per year could be prevented by healthy lifestyle changes.
Fish, oranges, strawberries and spinach protect against colon cancer
The study found other links between diet and colorectal cancer risk. For example, there has been little evidence so far that the risk of colon cancer increases with a low intake of non-starchy fruits and vegetables. If people ingest less than 100 grams a day, the risk increases, the experts say. There were also other foods that could lower the risk of colon cancer. According to the researchers, these include fish and foods high in vitamin C, such as oranges, strawberries and spinach. When it comes to cancer, there are no guarantees, but some lifestyle choices can lower your risk of colorectal and other cancers, the experts explain. (as)