Frequent Vigorous Workouts Cut Cancer Risk

A new study of 2,560 men, ages 42 to 61, claims daily high-intensity physical activity appears to reduce cancer risk in men. The results, published British Journal of Sports Medicine, were based on data collected over one year from men with no history of cancer.

During an average follow-up of 16 years, 181 of the men died from cancer. Those who engaged in moderate- to high-intensity exercise for at least 30 minutes a day were 50 percent less likely to develop cancer compared with the other men.

The researchers found that an increase of 1.2 metabolic units (oxygen consumption) was related to a decreased risk of cancer death, especially in lung and gastrointestinal cancers, after they took into account factors such as age, smoking, alcohol consumption, body mass index, and fiber/fat intake.

"The intensity of leisure-time physical activity should be at least moderate so that beneficial effect of physical activity for reducing overall cancer mortality can be achieved," the study authors wrote in a news release.

Listen, it’s hard to make a case against exercising. If you try, you’ll end up looking pretty dopey. Dr. Fuhrman considers regular exercise one of the secrets to living a long time.

Via HealthDay News.

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Vegetarians Have Less Risk of Blood Cancer than Meat Eaters

Good news veg-heads! A new study in the British Journal of Cancer, involving more than 61,000 people—meat eaters and vegetarians—revealed vegetarians and vegans had lower risk of certain types of blood cancer, such as leukemia, multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

Vegetarians are 12 percent less likely to develop cancer than meat eaters and the advantage is particularly marked when it comes to cancers of the blood, British researchers said on Wednesday.

Past research has shown that eating lots of red or processed meat is linked to a higher rate of stomach cancer and the new study, involving more than 60,000 people, did confirm a lower risk of both stomach and bladder cancer.

But the most striking and surprising difference was in cancers of the blood -- such as leukemia, multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma -- where the risk of disease was 45 percent lower in vegetarians than in meat eaters.

Via Reuters.

 

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Plant Nutrient, Phytosterols May Halt Cancer Development

Plants are loaded with healthful nutrients and now a new study claims phytosterols—a long known for their heart-protecting effects—also help prevent cancer.

The ingredients may work via the traditional route of reducing cholesterol, particularly in the membrane of cancer cells, and by activating an enzyme called caspase which is known to play an essential role in programmed cell death (apoptosis).

“This combined evidence strongly supports an anticarcinogenic action of phytosterols and hence advocates their dietary inclusion as an important strategy in prevention and treatment of cancer,” wrote the reviewers from the Department of Animal Science and the Richardson Centre for Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals, at the University of Manitoba.

The reviews findings are published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Phytosterols, cholesterol-like molecules derived from plants, are increasingly well known to consumers due to their scientifically proven ability to reduce cholesterol levels. As consumer awareness has increased, the number of products containing plant sterols or plant stanols and their esters has increased.

Via Nutra Ingredients.

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Losing Weight May Protect Against Cancer

Unless it’s a big bag of money, no one likes carrying around extra weight. Even cute little love handles can be bad.

And having too much abdominal fat has been linked to stroke and heart failure, but losing weight can work wonders.

A new study in the journal The Lancet Oncology claims women who underwent weight-loss surgery had a lower risk of cancer. Great news?

Losing weight is a fantastic idea, but weight-loss surgery is a bad idea. Dr. Fuhrman lists depression, malnutrition, gastritis and vitamin B12 deficiency, as potential side-effects of bariatric surgery.

Instead, try fruits and vegetables. Plant foods are low in calories and high in fiber, which means you can eat until you're stuffed, protect yourself against cancer and still lose weight!

Via Journal Watch.

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When It Comes To Heart Risk, Healthy Living Pays Off!

According to a new study published in Journal of the American Medical Association, eating right and exercising is still the best way to protect your health, and your heart.

I know. It’s hardly a revelation, but earlier this year a report said nowadays more Americans have multiple chronic illnesses—including heart disease—than ever before.

Clearly, a lot of us aren’t getting the message. We’ve got too many cheeseburgers and hotdogs on the brain!

The research found individuals that lost weight, exercised, avoided smoking and drinking, and ate plenty of fruits and vegetables have a lower lifetime risk of heart failure and high blood pressure.

So next time you see someone coming out of a Burger King, slap the bag out of their hand, and run! It’s good exercise.

In related news, low-calorie, plant-based diets also help lower heart risks.

Via HealthDay News.

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Higher Omega-3 Levels Linked to Lower Bodyweight

Omega-3 fatty acids, the good fats recently found to improve heart health and help prevent prostate cancer, are now being associated with lower bodyweight.

Published in the British Journal of Nutrition, scientists observed that overweight or obese people had blood levels of omega-3s roughly 1% lower than healthy people.

For the study, 124 people of varying bodyweights—21 were classified as healthy weight, 40 overweight and 63 obese—had blood samples taken, with results showing an inverse relationship between omega-3 levels and participants’ waist size and hip circumference.

Obese people had omega-3 levels of 4.53%, but healthy people had levels of 5.25%.

Sure, it’s only a small difference, but healthy bodyweight is just one perk of omega-3s. Other reports have shown omega-3 fatty acids offer protection from stroke, depression linked to pregnancy and help lower young children’s risk of type-1diabetes.

Good sources of omega-3 include flaxseed, walnuts and micro algae-derived supplements.

Via Food Navigator.

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Just a Little Booze Puts Men at Risk

A night at the pub might land you a night in the emergency room. No surprise really. Reports have shown drinking alcohol increases the risk of bowel cancer and aggressive prostate cancer.

And now, a new findings in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health claim even as little as four pints of beer each week can raise a man's chances of needing hospital treatment.

For the study, researchers studied 5,772 Scottish men, ages 35 to 64, and discovered those participants who drank the equivalent of four pints of beer, eight shots of liquor or eight small glasses of wine, were more likely to be admitted to the hospital.

Experts observed the risk grew as the amount of alcohol consumed increased and heavy drinkers stayed longer in hospitals than people who abstained.

Reminds be of that episode of Scrubs when J.D., Turk and their college buddy are hung over from the night before and hook themselves up to IVs to sober up. Too funny!

Now, boozing might be a good time, but it’s iffy. Other studies have even associated alcohol consumption with erectile dysfunction and brain shrinkage. Eek!

Via the BBC.

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Vegetable Chemical May Stop You from Going Crazy

First off, let me say something. I eat a ton of fruits and vegetables, but I am still nuts! So I don’t know about this study. I have my doubts, my very crazy doubts.

Presented at the British Pharmacological Society’s Summer Meeting, researchers claim flavonoids—powerful antioxidants in fruits and vegetables—may offer health benefits for Alzheimer’s patients.

Experts suggest consuming flavonoids reduce brain pathology, i.e. disease, and improve thinking. One particular flavonoid, called epicatechin, is believed to protect brain cells.

More research needs to be conducted, but scientists say so far findings support the idea that a diet high in flavonoid-rich foods could impact the development and progression of dementia.

The nutrients in fruits and vegetables have a wide array of benefits, including preventing Alzheimer’s. Vitamin D is another good one. Vitamin D, i.e. the sunshine vitamin, has also been shown to lower the risk of dementia.

In related news, flavonoids have been linked to reduced risk of ovarian cancer and flavonoids found in soybeans improve blood flow and protect against cardiovascular disease.

Via ScienceDaily.

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CT Scans Could Raise Cancer Risk...

Last year, host of NBC’s Meet the Press, Tim Russert, shockingly collapsed and died from a heart attack, after apparently just passing a cardiovascular stress test.

It raised questions about typical heart tests. And now, new findings in the Archives of Internal Medicine claim commonly prescribed CT scans could increase the risk of radiation-induced cancer.

CT scans use radiation to generate a three-dimensional image of the inside of an object and are often used to detect things like brain tumors, stroke, aneurysm and the extent of trauma-related injuries.

In the study, scientists claim if men, ages 25 to 75, and women, ages 55 to 75, received CT scans every five years there would be an additional 42 cases of cancer for every 100,000 men and 62 more cases of cancer per 100,000 women.

The researchers say even though the increased risk is small, doctors should be careful to limit their patients’ exposure to radiation.

And in 2007, some experts came down hard on conventional stress-testing and angiograms.

Via The Wall Street Journal Health Blog.

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Heavy Boozing May Lead to Bad Prostate Cancer

The days of the film noir private dick taking a slick drag off a cigarette and sipping a shot of stiff whiskey are long gone. He died from lung cancer and cirrhosis of the liver.

Now, booze might look cool up on the big screen, but it doesn’t do your health any favors. In the past, reports have linked alcohol to cardiovascular disease and erectile dysfunction. Eek!

Go on and add prostate cancer to the list. A new study in the journal Cancer found heavy drinkers—men who drank 1.7 ounces of pure alcohol each day, the equivalent of four shots of hard liquor, four or five times a week—had a higher risk of aggressive prostate cancer.

That’s a lot of drinking! The typical beer has 4% to 6% alcohol by volume, wine 12.5% to 14.5% and around 40% for vodka.

The study aimed to test alcohol’s effect on finasteride—found in popular prostate cancer medications—showing that alcohol reduces the drugs benefits. Clearly, drugs aren’t the be-all-end-all of for prostate cancer. That’s why the researchers recommend men limit their intake of alcohol.

In related news, experts determined eating less meat and more vegetables helps prevent prostate cancer.

Via HealthDay News.

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Cutting Alcohol, Meat and Smoking Lowers Colon Cancer Risk

Geez, I know people who do all three—in one sitting! If you know someone like this too, show them this.

New research in the International Journal of Cancer suggests lifestyle changes—such as eating less red meat, not smoking, avoiding alcohol and exercising—may lower your risk of colon cancer.

Scientists analyzed 100 studies on colon cancer risk, finding that high intake of red and processed meats, smoking, obesity and diabetes were associated with a 20% increased in the risk.

As for alcohol, people averaging one drink or more each day had a 60% higher risk of cancer. However, people who exercised regularly were 20% less likely to develop colorectal cancer.

Makes sense! Especially since last week a report came out saying vegetarians—i.e. people who don’t eat meat—have less cancer than meat eaters.

And previous findings reveal smoking and drinking heighten risk of bowel cancer, but eating fruits and vegetables, protect against cancer. Sweet!

Via Reuters.

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Citrus Nutrient May Help Stop Obesity

In college, the only citrus I got was the lime in my beer bottle, but now I know better. Citrus fruits are loaded with health-promoting nutrients, like vitamin C.

Kiwi fruit, watermelon, strawberries, mangos and raspberries are all packed with vitamin C. And in May, vitamin C was found to stave off age-related vision loss.

Now, new findings in the journal Diabetes claims another fruit nutrient, naringenin—a flavonoid in citrus fruits—halts the development of metabolic syndrome, which leads to diabetes, heart disease and obesity.

For the study, scientists fed mice a high-fat diet—to simulate a western diet—in order to induce symptoms of metabolic syndrome and discovered mice fed a fatty diet plus naringenin had “corrected” levels of triglycerides and cholesterol.

Naringenin also protected against insulin resistance. Experts say naringenin reprogrammed the liver to burn up excess fat, instead of storing it. However, more research is needed to determined naringenin’s exact effect on heart disease.

In related news, pomegranates were found to reduce inflammation associated with cardiovascular disease.

Via EurekAlert!

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Soy Might Help Men Not Forget Things

I’m a guy. I forget things, little things, like birthdays, where I left my car keys, or to put on underwear. Luckily, some soy might fix that.

According to a new study, published in the British Journal of Nutrition, isoflavones in soy could help improve men’s mental function and memory.

Researchers recruited 34 healthy men and participants were given a daily dose of 116 milligrams of soy isoflavones. Then men were tested on memory, mental function and visual-spatial processing.

Data showed guys getting the soy isoflavones committed 23% fewer errors and needed 17% less time to complete tasks. So ladies, if your man is a big dummy. Go get him some soymilk.

Soy is a super food! Previous reports have found it lowers risk of breast cancer, improves heart health and helps build strong bones, but don’t go soy crazy. Dr. Fuhrman says no diet should be based on just one food, not even soy.

Via Nutra Ingredients.

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Veggie Protein Lowers Blood Pressure

New findings in the journal Circulation reveal glutamic acid—a protein found in vegetables—reduces average systolic blood pressure by 1.5 to 3 points and diastolic pressure by 1 to 1.6 points.

The drop may seem teeny tiny, but overall it may lower death rates from stroke by 6% and heart disease related deaths by 4%.

Vegetable protein is 23% glutamic acid, while meat protein is only 18% glutamic acid.

However, researchers insist improving blood pressure does not come down to one single nutrient and urge people eat their vegetables, avoid fatty foods and not drink a lot of alcohol.

Now, you probably know this by now, but cutting salt is a major way to lower blood pressure. In March, a study discovered salt decreases an important blood pressure-lowering enzyme, which signals blood vessels to relax. Eek!

Via HealthDay News.

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Scientists Find the Link Between Obesity and Diabetes

Published in the journal Cell Metabolism, researchers have determined fat cells in obese people release a protein, called pigment epithelium-derived factor or PEDF, and when let into the blood stream PEDF causes muscles and the liver to become desensitized to insulin. In response, the pancreas produces more and more insulin to counteract the problem, but eventually the pancreas craps out, leading to the development of type-2 diabetes; ScienceDaily reports.

Diabetes and obesity are major problems in the United States. In January, a report revealed 24 million Americans now have diabetes. But don’t despair! You don’t have to be another statistic. A diet based on fruits and vegetables offers amazing protection against type-2 diabetes and keeps you thin.

In related news, obesity was found to increase the risk of endometrial cancer—adding nearly 22 times more risk—and obesity has also been linked to poor ovary health and impaired fertility.

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United States Swine Flu Cases Reach 1 Million

Swine flu rattles on! U.S. health officials now believe the virus has infected an estimated 1 million Americans. In June, it was reported the infamous flu already nailed all 50 states. According to the CDC, the United States has roughly half of the world’s swine cases, with 3,065 hospitalizations and 127 deaths—and the number of hospitalizations is growing; DiscoveryNews reports.

I could cover swine flu everyday—I’ve tried my best to spare you—but it’s still important to keep you updated. Like how vaccines currently used to against swine flu, such as Tamiful, are useless and that Dr. Fuhrman recommends healthy diet and good hygiene to prevent the flu.

And here’s another important tidbit. Researchers have determined non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs—called NSAIDs—used to treat the flu may cause multi-organ failure. Eek!

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Vegetarians Have Less Cancer Risk than Meat-Eaters -- UPDATE --

New findings in the British Journal of Cancer reveal of the 60,000 Britons studied those who were vegetarian—half of them—had a lower risk of developing cancer, compared to meat-eaters. The research followed participants for 12.2 years, with 3,350 incidences of cancer. The number of meat-ears who developed cancer was 2,204 and 829 among vegetarians—only 317 fish-eaters got cancer. Overall, vegetarians were 12% less likely to get cancer; Medical News Today reports.

But vegetarian and vegan diets most often aren’t ideal. Dr. Fuhrman points out many vegans and vegetarians are often deficient in things like omega-3’s, found in fish. Dr. Fuhrman’s DHA Purity can help. It’s derived from microalgae and supplies plenty of brain-building omega–3 fatty acids.

In related news, animal fat was shown to raise the risk of developing pancreatic cancer, while leafy green vegetables—such as kale and cabbage—help fight and protect against cancer.

UPDATE: Dr. Fuhrman had some additional thoughts: 

A vegan diet can be ideal if well designed as can be a diet with a small amount of animal products, such as one or two servings a week. A nutritarian diet is designed to reverse disease and promote longer life, and features:

  • Adequate depth and variety of nutrient-rich natural foods
  • Limited animal products, but adequate ALA/EPA/DHA
  • Adequate whole food plant fats and proteins from seeds, nuts and beans
  • High intake of green and cruciferous vegetables
  • Careful attention to supplements or lab tests to assure no deficiencies are present with genetic variation of absorption and variable needs
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Fruit and Veggie Antioxidants Improve Exercise Endurance

New findings in the International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism reveal quercetin—a nutrient in red apples, berries and broccoli—boosts oxygen uptake and exercise endurance. Study participants followed their regular routines and diet for 7 days and then did the same thing for another 7 days, but this time they consumed 500 milligrams of quercetin. While on quercetin people had nearly 4% more oxygen uptake and took longer to become fatigued during exercise. However, participants got quercetin from Tang, which stinks; Reuters reports.

But still, quercetin is great mojo! According to Dr. Fuhrman, blueberries are packed with quercetin and other healthful flavanoids. He recommends eating blueberries everyday. That’s why you’ll find quercetin in Dr. Fuhrman’s Pixie-Vites, along with other nutrients found in watermelon, cantaloupe, papaya, broccoli, cauliflower, beets and many other amazing fruits and vegetables.

And don’t forget, last year researchers found antioxidants and nutrients in carrots, spinach, kale and collard greens help health improve eye health and stave off age-related vision loss.

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