Brightly Colored Are Best
Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables can reduce a woman’s risk for breast cancer, especially ER-negative cancers which are more aggressive and tend to have a poorer prognosis. Researchers publishing in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute have found that women whose blood carried higher levels of carotenoids, such as alpha- and beta-carotene, lutein+zeaxanthin, and lycopene have a significantly lower risk of developing breast cancer. Carotenoids are yellow, orange and red pigments found in plants so the nutrients are found in fruits and vegetables such as carrots, winter squash, sweet potatoes, and tomatoes. Dark leafy greens such as spinach and kale are also rich in carotenoids. A woman may be able to increase carotenoid absorption by adding small amounts of fat to the diet.
Triple-Negative Cancer Increase
Compared with women who'd given birth just once, women who'd given birth three or more times were 1.5 times more likely to be diagnosed with the uncommon, but very aggressive triple-negative breast cancer, find researchers who were surprised by their study results. The study also revealed that women who'd never given birth had a 40 percent reduced chance of developing triple-negative breast cancer. The study, published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, was based on reproductive history information provided by more than 150,000 postmenopausal women in the Women's Health Initiative study. Three hundred of those women developed triple-negative breast cancer, reports MSNBC.
Cholesterol Also a Factor
Scientists have yet to find a single diet that is best for protection against breast cancer, but two components of a Western diet have been linked to the development of mammary tumors and make them grow faster and more aggressive. A study from the Kimmel Cancer Center has found that a diet high in fat (21 percent) and cholesterol predisposes mice to breast cancer tumors. They also found that feeding the mice high fat chow caused larger tumors that grew quickly and metastasized to other parts of the body, particularly the lung. Lead researcher Philippe G. Frank PhD notes that the incidence of breast cancer is five times higher in Western countries than in other developed countries, strongly suggesting an environmental influence.
Build Bone, Reduce Cancer
Three recent studies indicate that postmenopausal women who take oral bisphosphonates for osteoporosis have a reduced risk for breast cancer. Two of the studies were published online in the June 21 issue of Journal of Clinical Oncology and the third was published in the British Journal of Cancer. All three studies indicate that bisphosphonate use reduces the relative risk for breast cancer by approximately 30 percent. The drug also appears to inhibit growth of preclinical tumors and those that develop cancer are more likely to have a less aggressive form. The most common bisphosphonate used in the studies was alendronate, marketed under the brand name Fosamax. Because the studies are retrospective, it is premature to recommend the use of bisphosphonates to prevent breast cancer.
Skip the Filter
Women who drink boiled coffee versus filtered coffee four times a day may have a lower risk of developing breast cancer, according to a new study published in the journal Cancer Causes and Control. According to Lena Nilsson and colleagues at Umea University, Scandinavian boiled coffee, which is similar to French press or Turkish/Greek coffee, contains up to 80 times as much coffee-specific fatty acids that have been shown in animal studies to inhibit the growth of cancer. Among women who drank filtered coffee, there was an increased risk of early breast cancer (under 49 years old) but a lowered risk for late breast cancer (over 55 years old). Unfortunately, boiled coffee drinkers did appear to have an increased risk of pancreatic and lung cancer in men.
Micardis Linked with Cancer Risk
New research reveals that popular blood pressure medications could cause a slight increase in cancer risk, reports MSNBC. However, doctors warn patients not to stop taking their blood pressure pills as the benefits most likely outweigh the risks. Researchers found a link between angiotensin-receptor blockers (ARBs) and cancer. ARBs are taken around the world for high blood pressure, as well as diabetic kidney disease and heart problems. People taking ARBs had a 1 percent higher chance of getting cancer than people not taking the drugs. The cancers developed by people taking ARBs included breast and prostate cancer, as well as a spike in lung cancer. Around 85 percent of the people who developed cancer were taking telmisartan, which is sold as Micardis.