A meme has been sweeping the Internet linking foods and cancer—most recently fingering carbs. Carbohydrates are sugars, starches, and fibers in fruits, grains, vegetables, and dairy, and they comprise a basic food group important in a healthy diet.
Processed foods tend to be carbohydrate intense: sweets, cookies, table sugar, honey, breads, jams, breakfast cereals, and that all-time favorite prior to a marathon, pastas. Animal products contain fewer carbohydrates.
Early in this century, research scientists began suspecting high carb intake as a risk factor for breast cancer. One study among Mexican women observed high calorie counts resulting in a suspected link to breast cancer and possible insulin resistance, not from fat but from sucrose and fructose (Isabelle Romieu, et al. “Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention,” August 2004).
Carbs and Cancer Link
In a study of four thousand Texas white people newly diagnosed with lung cancer, the risk of lung cancer increased 49 percent among those consuming the most white bread, bagels, russet potatoes, and rice (PubMed Health, March 2016). People with diabetes are urged by medical experts to use the glycemic index (GI) ranking system of carbs before ingesting. Authors conclude, “This study suggests that dietary GI and other lung cancer risk factors may jointly and independently influence lung cancer etiology.”
Furthermore, there are medical suspicions about breast, colorectal, endometrial, and pancreatic cancers being linked to high glucose and insulin measures. Physical exercise is important to mitigating chances of cancer from carbs; obese people having belly fat and a sedentary lifestyle need to regulate carb intake much more stringently and avoid processed foods.
The studies make a strong argument for people taking control over their own healthcare through greater knowledge, leading to better behaviors. Reduce carb intake, especially processed carbs; learn what’s good and bad for you, for instance, watermelon is high on the GI and ice cream low, which doesn’t mean eat a lot of the latter but portion accordingly. Greater ingestion of certain seasonings and spices, fruits and vegetables help lower (lung) cancer risk.
Food for Better Health
Children eat two of three meals a day outside of home during the school year. The Urban School Food Alliance and NGOs like it operate in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, Orlando, and Dallas. This nonprofit accesses $3 billion annually in purchasing healthy foods for five thousand school districts. Outsourcers can help schools, nursing homes, hospitals, ballparks, universities, and other major meal suppliers ensure wellness and nutrition for their patrons and learn how to work with NGOs, nutritionists, and chefs.
Mark Twain didn’t much care what he ate: fried oysters, coffee with cream, fried chicken, and gobs of American butter. He told people, “Eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside.” Einstein, on the other hand, redefined relativity when he said, “You have to exercise for a week to work off the thigh fat from a single