Consuming more ultra-processed foods would likely increase the risk of cancer, study says [Video]

  • Eating more ultra-processed foods have a greater risk of developing cancer.
  • Ultra-processed foods are altered food from its original state, thus have more added salt, sugar, and calorie.
  • Researchers found that an increased 10% in the proportion of ultra-processed foods in the diet had a risk of more than 10% in developing breast cancer and other types of cancer.

A study published in the BMJ indicates that consuming a lot of ultra-processed foods have an increased risk of cancer. Ultra-processed foods contain more sodium, sugar, and calorie.

These foods include canned fruits and vegetables with added salt, sugar, cheeses, meats preserved by added salt, white bread, flavored potato chips, and candy, soda, fried chicken, sweetened breakfast cereals, canned soups, energy drink, and flavored granola bars, among others.

The study

The researchers analyzed and evaluated the 24-hour dietary records of almost 105,000 adults involved in the Nutrient-Sante cohort. This is a general population group of people in France.

The record includes the food list of the participants that they consume. The foods were categorized based on how they were processed utilizing the system known as NOVA.

They discovered that a 10% increase in the proportion of ultra-processed foods in the diet had a  higher risk than 10% for most cancer including breast cancer.

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The study says, “Ultra-processed fats and sauces, sugary products and drinks were associated with an increased risk of overall cancer. ” It further suggests that ultra-processed sugary products were associated with an increased risk of breast cancer.

They also found that the individuals who live and consume more ultra-processed food would likely be overweight or obese. These people would also have likely a higher risk of developing diabetes, heart and circulation problems.

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Meanwhile, consuming more processed meat such as hotdogs is also linked to a higher risk of colorectal cancer. The researchers also reported that those who consumed much ultra-processed food smoke and did not do exercise compared to others.

Mathilde Touvier, the co-author of the study said, “It was quite surprising, the strength of the results. They were strongly associated, and we did much sensitive analysis and adjusted findings for many co-factors, and still, the results here were quite concerning.”

The recommendation

Marii McCullough, strategic director of nutritional epidemiology at the American Cancer Society said, “The overriding message of this study was really to look at an overall diet pattern rather than a specific ingredient, and it supports a lot of what we already know. “

She further indicated that people who consumed more ultra-processed foods might be consuming fewer healthy foods that might prevent cancer.

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Meanwhile, nutritionists advise having a diet that is rich in whole grains, as well as, eat more whole fruits and vegetables, and other nutritional foods.

Source: CNN


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