Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women. Its mortality rates have been greatly reduced by advances in diagnostic measures, surgery, and chemotherapy. But diet can play a role in preventing breast cancer altogether. Higher estrogen levels in the blood are a risk factor promoting the development of breast cancer. Women eating a high fiber diet tend to have lower blood estrogen levels, and therefore have a lower risk.
An article published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reviewed the available data on diet and breast cancer. A total of 16,848 cases of breast cancer occurred among the 712,195 participants in the 10 prospective studies on dietary fiber intake and breast cancer. A high-fiber diet reduced the risk of breast cancer by 11%. A dose-response was found, showing that for every 10 extra grams per day of dietary fiber, the risk dropped by another 7%.
Eating high fiber foods will definitely reduce your risk of developing breast cancer. Ellen White, a 19th century health reformer, must have recognized the benefits of a high fiber diet when she advised: “We need to keep more strictly to a simple diet of fruits, nuts, grains, and vegetables.” (Counsels on Diet and Foods, 329)
Elvin Adams, MD, MPH
Source: PositiveChoices.com. Used with permission