“[I]f you look at the studies, virtually every single thing that has an influence [causes] almost a 50 percent reduction in cancer risk… and if you combine them, like I said, you’ll get these synergistic results where they’ll multiply up as far as their effect is concerned.
I’d say the most important thing is what you do or do not put in your mouth… because you can have huge influences by the foods you consume– the spices, the herbs, and so forth. And, the things that you avoid, that’s going to give you the biggest results.” – Dr. Christine Horner in an interview with Dr. Joseph Mercola
More and more, and this can’t come soon enough, health professionals are beginning to see the wisdom in pinpointing the causes and prevention of illness in our society, particularly cancer. Telling people all they can do is screen for cancer is a lot like closing the barn door after the horse got out. What good is screening when you’re seeing what’s already there–cancer.
Yes, early detection is crucial in treating cancer, but ideally we don’t want to treat it, we want to prevent it. And if you think you just get cancer and have no control over it, consider this. People who live in Asia, for instance, have very low rates of breast and prostate cancers. But when they move here, within a generation, their risk will match Americans’. Cancer is in many cases a lifestyle disease. Breast cancer which currently occurs in about 1 out of 8 women, 30 years ago was 1 out of 10 women. Concurrent with the post war growth of the chemical industry, the economy changing from agrarian to industrial and most recently to a service economy, where many people sit at their jobs all day, eat poorly, sleep worse and have a lot of stress.
But in order for foods, supplements and other lifestyle changes to be protective of your health, first you have to stop doing the things which promote ill health and/or cancer growth. Yes I know you don’t want to hear this. But, you can’t have it both ways. You either want to stay healthy or you want to keep eating whatever the food industry thinks will make them the most money while keeping you in the poor house and sick, while you defend this as “free choice.” There’s nothing free or empowering (or particularly tasty) about the food choices most of us make on a daily basis. The baddest of the bunch are the following:
- Soft drinks (including diet) and processed foods;
- Factory farmed meats, poultry and fish (see my post on happy chickens;
- Foods high in sugar, whether fructose or grains (high glycemic foods);
- Animal fats from factory farmed meats, trans fats and partially hydrogenated fats.
If you’re young and/or have children, the two things I would really try to start curbing would be sugary drinks (including fruit juices–drink water or selzer–you’ll (they’ll) get used to it), and starting to read food labels with an eye specifically towards the carbohydrate and sugars listings. The higher the numbers, the worse the food. And low-fat versions of foods usually add more sugar to make up for the loss of the fat. Bad carbs and sugar are not your friends.
If all you do is reduce the amount of carbs and sugar in your and your children’s diet, you will have made a very good start towards a healthier lifestyle, which would include controlling your weight, and not spiking your blood sugar which leads to a host of illnesses, not just diabetes, but control of blood pressure, cholesterol and metabolic syndrome (or pre-diabetes).
More about fats in another post.