Breast Cancer Benefits from Antioxidants

The concurrent use of antioxidants in the form of food supplements and cancer whilst undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy has been subject to a variety of conflicting opinions. At present it would be fair to say that most oncologists take the conservative line that antioxidants reduce the effectiveness of chemotherapy and should therefore be avoided.

This inevitably causes confusion and contradictions when the literature is less equivocal and suggest quite the opposite at times.

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Sun or Supplements – The Vit D Controversy

Vitamin D is increasingly understood to be an essential component of many aspects of human health and although technically not a “vitamin,” vitamin D is in a class by itself. Its metabolic product, calcitriol, is actually a secosteroid (A compound derived from a steroid in which there has been a ring cleavage) hormone that binds to over 2000 gene receptors (about 10% of the human genome) in the human body. There are 3 recognised ways for adults to ensure adequate levels of vitamin D:

These are:

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Multi Vitamins May Help Prevent Breast Cancer

There is an area of discovery related to food supplement ingestion and cancer prevention that has been attracting a lot of interest. Namely; does taking food supplement (of mostly indeterminate quality) provide women with a benefit or risk in terms of breast cancer. A recent post reviewed a study of Swedish women,[1] where the indications were of increased risk, compared to other studies that were either indicative of reduced risk, or benign.

This latest study suggests women who take multivitamin tablets along with calcium supplements seem to have a reduced risk of developing breast cancer. Interestingly the Swedish study also indicated that calcium was a mineral of benefit for reducing risk.

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Multivitamins & Breast Cancer – Is It Too Little Rather Than Too Much?

Multivitamins have recently been flagged in a March 2010 American Journal of Clinical Nutrition article to raise the risk of developing breast cancer amongst a group of Swedish Women.[1] Naturally this paper sounds both alarming and contradictory and merits deeper investigation. Particularly as it is directly opposed by a paper out just 3 month previously in the Public Health Nutrition Journal when a group of nearly 3,000 women with breast cancer were compared to a similar number of controls in relation to the potential risk for breast cancer and multivitamins.[2] This study concluded:

The current study found no association between multivitamin supplement use and breast cancer risk in women.

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DHA & Vit D in Pregnancy, A Key Role for Both

The Safe Foundation for a Healthy Pregnancy

APA logoThe omega-3 DHA is an “essential” fatty acid that the body cannot produce and must be consumed through diet or supplementation. The baby must acquire its DHA from its mother, and she must obtain it by increasing the omega-3s in her daily diet or from daily supplementation.[1] International recommendations suggest that pregnant and nursing women consume 300-600mg of DHA every day to ensure that mothers remain healthy during and after pregnancy, and that their babies have every opportunity for healthy development.[2]

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Resveratrol Acts as Potential HRT Alternative

525013Treatment based on resveratrol could be a safer alternative to hormone replacement therapy (HRT) in postmenopausal women and could help prevent breast cancer, according to a new study.

The findings of the study published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry indicate that resveratrol is the most likely candidate of the phytoestrogens to offer safer HRT and chemoprevention of breast cancer due to its oestrogenic activity and high antitumour activity.

Phytoestrogens are natural plant substances found in food that exert weak oestrogen-like activity toward mammals, such as daidzein, genistein and glycitein found in soybeans and soy products, coumestrol in mung bean and alfalfa sprouts and resveratrol in grape skins and red wine.

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Lifestyle Choices Impact Positively on Second Breast Cancer Risk

2009coverBreast cancer survivors might be able to reduce their risk for contralateral breast cancer by making lifestyle modifications. A new study published online September 8 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology has found that obesity, alcohol use, and smoking all significantly increase the risk for second primary invasive contralateral breast cancer among breast cancer survivors.

Researchers from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, Washington, found that obese women had a 50% increased risk for contralateral breast cancer, and those who consumed 7 or more alcoholic drinks per week had a 90% increased risk. Survivors who currently smoked had a 120% increased risk of developing a second breast cancer.

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Cancer Statistics, 2009. Breast Cancer rates down due to reduced risk of HRT?

Each year, the American Cancer Society estimates the number of new cancer cases and deaths expected in the United States in the current year and compiles the most recent data on cancer incidence, mortality, and survival based on incidence data from the National Cancer Institute, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries and mortality data from the National Centre for Health Statistics. Incidence and death rates are standardized by age to the 2000 United States standard million population.

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What Are the Preferred Methods of Detecting Breast Cancer – A Review

The most devastating loss of life from breast cancer impacts women between the ages of 30 and 50. For women between the ages of 40 and 44, breast cancer is the leading cause of death, according to the American Cancer Society. Yet the November 10, 2003 issue of the AMA journal, American Medical News, reports little evidence documenting that mammography saves lives from breast cancer for premenopausal women, which are many of the women who fall into these age ranges. Read more

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