Research links simple carbs to increased incidence of multiple cancer types

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

simple-carbs(NaturalHealth365)  The intricate interplay between dietary choices and health outcomes has long captivated researchers.  In the realm of cancer, the potential impact of glycemic index (GI), glycemic load (GL), and daily carbohydrate intake on cancer risk has garnered substantial attention.  However, their implications in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), the most common primary liver malignancy, remained contentious – until now.  A recent study has unveiled a connection between an elevated risk of this disease and a high glycemic load diet, particularly among individuals with viral hepatitis.

Building upon prior research that correlated excess consumption of red meat, saturated fats, and dairy with an increased likelihood of lung cancer, researchers embarked on a different investigation.  Their mission?  To unravel the intricate ties between glycemic index (GI) and lung cancer risk, especially among nonsmokers.

Carb quality holds key to lung cancer risk among non-smokers

The team at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center made a striking discovery.  Those who consumed the highest quantities of high-glycemic foods – encompassing white bread, bagels, white rice, and a range of processed items – faced a significant 49 percent surge in lung cancer risk.  This heightened risk was further accentuated among study participants who had never smoked, highlighting the nuanced interplay between dietary choices and lung health.

These groundbreaking findings, published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, a journal by the American Association for Cancer Research, illuminate the urgent need for a deeper understanding of dietary influences on lung cancer.  Furthermore, according to the World Cancer Fund International, lung cancer ranks as the second most prevalent cancer globally.  Notably, it holds the unfortunate distinction of being the most frequent cancer among men and the second most common among women.  The year 2020 witnessed a staggering surge of over 2.2 million newly diagnosed cases of lung cancer.

Carbs on trial: A culinary connection to cancer risk

The impact of carbohydrate-rich diets, particularly those laden with easily digestible carbs often found in processed foods, has been repeatedly highlighted in cancer research.  For instance, a study focusing on women unveiled a 57 percent higher likelihood of breast cancer development among those consuming diets abundant in high-GI foods.  These results harmonize with multiple studies that underscore the worrisome association between increased consumption of processed and high-GI carbohydrates and a surge in cancer risk.

The concept of glycemic index (GI), a prevalent metric in evaluating the quality of dietary carbohydrates, takes center stage.  It gauges the rate at which a food elevates blood sugar levels after consumption.  While prior research explored various facets influencing cancer risk, encompassing not only GI but also glycemic load (GL), a measure of carbohydrate quantity, these novel findings underscore the pivotal role of carb quality in shaping lung cancer susceptibility among non-smokers.

SHOCKING PROBIOTICS UPDATE: Discover the True Value of Probiotics and How to Dramatically Improve Your Physical, Mental and Emotional Wellbeing with ONE Easy Lifestyle Habit.

How does higher blood glucose increase your risk of lung cancer?

Researchers surveyed 1,905 MD Anderson patients who were newly diagnosed with lung cancer, along with 2,413 healthy individuals who agreed to be in the study.  Participants were asked to self-report past dietary habits and health histories.  Using published food GI values, subjects were divided into five equal groups based on their GI and GL values.

Elevated levels of blood glucose and insulin raised what’s called insulin-like growth factors, which are linked to an increased lung cancer risk, according to scientists.

Among nonsmokers, those in the higher groups were more than twice as likely to develop lung cancer compared to those in the lower group.  On the other hand, GL was found to have no impact on lung cancer risk among the Texas study subjects, though it has previously been linked to an increased risk of other types of cancer.

Elevated insulin levels have been shown to represent a potential breast cancer threat because insulin is thought to stimulate breast cancer cells to grow and reproduce.  High carbohydrate intake has also been linked to a dangerous growth factor known as insulin-like growth factor 1 or IGF-1, believed to be a factor in a number of cancers, including breast and prostate.

Front organizations continue to call foul over evidence of dietary links to cancer

While the results of this latest study should come as no surprise to scientists studying the impact of diet on cancer risk, these findings received a cold reception from some corners.  The front group – The American Council on Science and Health (ACSH) – immediately took to blogging in an effort to discredit the study.

While it bills itself as an independent research and advocacy organization devoted to debunking “junk science,” in reality, ACSH’s list of donors and backers includes some of the most prominent names among pharmaceutical, tobacco, chemical, cosmetic, food, soda, agriculture, and energy corporations.  Failing to acknowledge the growing mountain of evidence linking dietary choices to all types of illnesses, including cancer, seems to fly in the face of the group’s stated purpose to advocate on behalf of consumers.

Increase complex carbs to reduce risk of cancer and other chronic diseases

The message to be taken from the latest research results is straightforward: Avoid simple carbs and other foods with a high glycemic index to reduce your risk of cancer.  In addition to cancer, high-glycemic foods have been linked to heart disease, memory loss, acne, depression, and aggression, among other unwelcome conditions.

When selecting foods, keep in mind that the GI of a food is often different when eaten alone than it is when combined with other foods.  In fact, when eating a high-GI food, you can actually combine it with other low-GI foods to balance out the impact on blood glucose levels.

While it is good to be aware of a food’s GI, know that some nutritious foods have a higher GI than those with little nutritional value.  For example, oatmeal has a higher GI than chocolate.

When planning your diet, be sure to include a variety of healthy, nutritious foods.  Keep a food’s GI in mind, but don’t feel as though it is the only measure of a food’s advantages.  Even the American Diabetes Association admits factors that can affect the GI of food include storage time, ripeness, cooking method, processing, and – in some cases – the variety of the food.  Be cautious about your use of the GI index and use other nutritional information to determine if a food should be incorporated into your diet.

Low GI foods are typically considered those having a GI of 55 or less, such as most fruits, non-starchy vegetables, and carrots, among others.  Foods with high GIs of 70 or more include white bread and bagels, white rice, melons, pineapple, macaroni and cheese from a mix, and instant oatmeal.

Editor’s Note: Find out how to stop cancer naturally, own the Stop Cancer Docu-Class created by NaturalHealth365 Programs – featuring many of the brightest minds in holistic cancer care.

Sources for this article include:

Notify of

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments