Someone who is thinking my thoughts — that medicine is not giving clear enough messages on what we can do to prevent cancer through good nutrition and a healthy environment.

Frances L Arnold's Blog

Most of us know someone who is a cancer survivor or is currently fighting this ravaging disease. I’ve taken a strong interest in cancer prevention and survival largely because I’m shocked over and over at how confused many healthcare providers and consumers appear when it comes to cancer and nutrition. I’ve met several people who tell me that their doctors believe there isn’t a connection between nutrition and cancer. Yet some nutrition professionals and researchers argue that the cancer-nutrition connection is almost 100%! When I talk with patients or families, they are often confused about what the connection is, and often consume foods that I think no cancer patient should consume (and these foods are provided by the hospital!). What further confuses patients is that the education around the connection is inconsistent, or even influenced by profit. For example, formulary companies have helped set industry standards to promote weight maintenan

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4 thoughts on “

  1. I don’t think that an individual can control everything about their health, but there’s so many proven benefits to a good diet that there’s no reason not to try to eat healthy.

  2. Kiersten, it seems to me that researchers can’t confirm the precise link between any disease situation and a particular food. In other words, a direct pathological response to a given nutrition regime is elusive.

    On the other hand, a good diet can only be a benefit whether there is disease or not.

    1. I hear you, Don. But there are some studies that indicate that you are at higher risk for many forms of cancer if your diet is high in red meat, for example. I suggest looking at the wikipedia page for pancreatic cancer for a sense of what the issues are that might relate to diet. I suspect over the next several years it will become more obvious…I also recommend the movie “Forks Over Knives” as the veteran doctors in this film make a compelling case for why cancer rates are so much higher in cultures that eat large quantities of meat and dairy.

  3. Hi Kiersten & Co.,

    Thank you for reblogging and for taking interest! Don is keen in that it is difficult to predict specifically just how each individual will respond to a nutritional (or even medical) intervention. Genetics and environment offer up countless variables that make much the study and application of nutritional therapy a bit of a wild card. Nutrigenomics is an emerging field that is helping to pin down some of the genetic components that result in an array of anomolies. Kiersten, you are correct in that there are a lot of conclusions that can be drawn for the general population related to health outcomes and general lifestyle. As you mentioned, much of it does seem to be in a more plant-based diet. I’m interested to see what Gretchen reveals in her interview – I think we will all learn a lot!

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