Enjoy Whole Grains to Protect Your Body Against Breast Cancer
Breast cancer can affect both men and women alike. While there are risk factors such as your genetics which are out of your control there are lifestyle choices like your diet which influences your risk.
One food alone cannot protect your body as it is the combined effects of your entire diet which influence your risk. The Mediterranean Diet which includes wholegrains has been linked to reduction in your risk of breast cancer by 40%. Specifically, the estrogen-receptor-negative breast cancer which make up one third of all breast cancers.
Whole grains is one food group which can protect your body from breast cancer. A 2016 study reported when pre-menopausal women ate 1.5 servings of whole grains a day, they were less likely to develop breast cancer compared to those who rarely included whole grains. Another study reported that premenopausal women who included whole grains more than 7 times a week were less likely to develop breast cancer compared to those consuming less than this amount.
Fibre may play a major role in reducing your risk of breast cancer as adolescents who consumed high amounts of fibre in their diets into early adulthood had a reduced risk of breast cancer. Whole grains have bioactive phytochemicals which protect your body from cancer. These phytochemicals target the signalling pathways in breast cancer. This helps to prevent growth of cancer cells and keeps your immune system working optimally.
Whole grains help to maintain optimal insulin sensitivity, reduce your risk of diabetes, and promote a healthy weight. These three factors alone decrease your risk of breast cancer.
Take home message: Whole grains provide your body with a powerhouse of health benefits. While it is important to consider your whole diet to reduce your risk of cancer wholegrains are one food group which should be included in your diet for optimal health.
- Xie M, Liu J, Tsao R, Wang Z, Sun B, Wang J. Whole Grain Consumption for the Prevention and Treatment of Breast Cancer. Nutrients. 2019 Aug 1;11(8):1769. doi: 10.3390/nu11081769. PMID: 31374888; PMCID: PMC6723813.
- Farvid MS, Cho E, Eliassen AH, Chen WY, Willett WC. Lifetime grain consumption and breast cancer risk. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2016 Sep;159(2):335-45. doi: 10.1007/s10549-016-3910-0. Epub 2016 Aug 10. PMID: 27510186; PMCID: PMC5014619.