I think that there is a very big difference between a given stimulus CAUSING cancer vs helping it be more aggressive once it is there....
At base, most biologists have agreed that cancer is caused by a breakdown of the normal function of what are called "tumor-suppressor genes". In short, there are genes in our bodies that are intended to start apoptosis, or programmed cell death, once cell proliferation gets out of hand. What makes something dangerous is not whether this occurs, as it does all the time, but when the body does not stop this early on.
That is why for cancer research, there are 2 big parts:
1) Factors causing the genetic TSG's from stopping proliferation.
2) Factors causing growth and metastasis once this occurs.
Most things you see on "research" only focus on one, just like this....
I am assuming from what I ve read thus far that cancer cells are not able to reproduce as effectively on ketones as healthy body cells. The Sean Flanagan article, though informative, does not address this. It still could be hypothesised that the more frequent and excessive the supply of sugar, the more likely it is that cancer cells will grow - since cancer is 'uncontrolled cell growth'.
Far, far better to be afraid of sugar than to be afraid of saturated fat.
That is my wild, flagrant layman's speculation. The fact is that if people become afraid of refined sugar as a cause of cancer then they are likely to be healthier anyway - even if their fears are later proven to be unfounded. There are already a myriad ways in which sugar (refined sugar at least) is bad for you.
Lazarus - point well made - important distinction. Whether sugar is the cause or merely exacerbate cancer is part of the question.
Owen, the link I gave brushed on some of the other pathways. It isn't just about fuel to the cell, it is about how ketosis changes the immune system, etc. At the end of the day we could be wildly dissimilar to mice and have no where near the longevity change with cancer that they have, the studies aren't there, but if the studies that are there, everything points to humans having a similar biological response.
Cactus, the key points form your link are:
In a low-carbohydrate diet, the increased availability
of fatty acids and ketone bodies may inhibit aggressive
Studies have reported reduced tumor growth in animals
whose dietary carbohydrate has been replaced with fat.
Doesn't say which type of fat, but its the first time I've seen that suggested.
Cancer is very general term, too general in fact to have a deeply meaningful discussion at that broad a level. I'm not a scientist nor an oncologist, though I have friends and clients who are.
How many different organs, bones or types of blood cancer can possible manifest in any of us, is complex to assess and understand, as a whole. If it's from external sources, like high intensity, short term exposure or long term radiation exposure (Chernobyl, Hiroshima etc) or even gasses like radon or other chemicals in one's water, air or food. For most modern people, it's many modern lifestyle &/or environmental factors all colliding & cascading together. Cancer existed in primitive times as well, even Paleo, though in much lesser numbers than in our overfed, undernourished, sedentary (more)toxic modern world.
Generally, in some poorer countries like India or parts of Africa, where calories, protein & fats are in deficits, cancer exists but more from external environmental pollutants, whereas in developed countries, it's dietary excesses that overload the natural defenses leading to astronomical cancer increases. Of course, everyone who gets cancer is unique. Some people are cured solely by modern drug cocktails & chemo therapies, others change their diets, others take herbs or rearrange their lives in order to de-stress their minds & emotions as well. The ways to get well, or try to get well from cancers, are numerous.
We all have cancer cells, either being short-circuited daily by healthy immune responses, or given the green light by impaired immune systems. Sugar, like many other co-factors, "can" feed the green light process. A healthy immune system can handle moderate or even higher than moderate amounts of sugar if other co-factors are not in play to overwhelm healthy immune response.
Personally, I recall years ago, when I was vegan and into carb- & sugar-binging, my teeth would hurt & my bowels would loudly protest and I would then do an about face & reject processed sugars, even fruits sometimes. My gf at the time worried aloud about me becoming diabetic if I kept it up. I was lean, active and young, & no thoughts of cancer were in my mind. Nor was diabetes, (ah, youth!)
Many people on the planet live long, active, healthy lives on tropical fruits and tubers if they remain active over their lifetime, as their ancestors have done for generations. When excess processed sugars & carbs are added in, combined w/ less activity, cancer troubles follow. I've known several Indians, skinny (and smokers) but not very active, who've died from various cancers in India.
While I think we can all agree, that processed sugars taken in excess long term are a major mistake in today's polluted, sedentary stressed-out global context , to demonize sugar alone is a reductionist's fallacy.
Sorry for rambling & or repeating myself.
IFing at least one day a week, then going on some longer seasonal fast, works for me, from what I've read & experienced for myself. Hell, none of us are getting out of here alive. I just want to lead an active life & leave behind a good looking corpse...
Hi Betorq, thanks for the interesting post, some good points. For the purposes of this discussion. I am the dumbass who bounds into the room and asks the obvious question. In this context I think the question is now a valid one to ask, given the light of research now being shed.
Whilst not seeking to demonise anything, I am nonetheless seeing something that to me is inescapable - that refined sugar is a toxin in more than small quanitities and is far worse for us than our current society / CW would admit. And in this context, I am therefore drawn to a question which may or may not be answerable yet, but one which I am unable to help asking: Out of all of the illnesses that fall under the broad definiton of 'cancer' (hitherto explained as uncontrolled cellular division), in pure numbers alone, what percentage of those illnesses would have been prevented by the absence of refined sugar from the diet?
My supposition is that, far from being reductionist, we may be looking at a [I]majority[/I] causal factor here.
The reason that I refer only to 'refined sugar' is of course the way in which it overloads the body and effectively becomes a toxin, in a way that does not happen with the consumption of sugar in natural forms.
Trampling on areas I have no right or qualifications to go into
Biting off more than I can chew
^Nah, when you get down to demonizing refined sugar and flour then there aren't many that are going to disagree with you. Its just that damn if the whole lot of "cancer" isn't a very complicated area to understand.
In what way does white sugar overload your body and "become a toxin"? Curious to hear your reasoning and evidence behind this.
[QUOTE=Derpamix;1299362]In what way does white sugar overload your body and "become a toxin"? Curious to hear your reasoning and evidence behind this.[/QUOTE]
(Frantic googling session ensues)
Well, the main reason I have come to this conclusion is under the influence of the book 'Pure, White and Deadly' by John Yudkin who outlines the cumulative effect of sugar on the body, if consumed in regular quantities - metabolic syndrome essentially, due to the body's inability to measure it as it goes into us - we can just keep eating it without any satiety, whereas bound up in fruit we quickly get satiated and stop eating. It isn't so much the glucose itself but the fact that in refined form we cannot always regulate it's consumption by the normal ways - namely the digestive neurons. That means that the pancreas is left to deal with a dangerous overload of something that the other regulatory functions (satiety) would usually prevent. In the natural world sugar usually comes attached to something else, if consumed in processed form it just floods into the bloodstream via the gut wall, unchecked.
Refined sugar's interaction with other body systems, such as the pancreas (in the case of type 2 diabetes) - if that isn't a toxin (however gradual the onset) then what is?
I know that hypoglycemia doesn't apply to everyone but is a very common condition that is almost always cured by avoiding processed sugars because the sugar has such a destabilizing effect on a number of hormone functions - leading to mood disorders. I have many of the characteristics of a hypoglycemic (at least I did before going PB) - to me refined sugar is definitely a toxin. I believe there are many many hypoglycemic people who think they are clinically depressed, and may be on SSRI's when they just need to stop eating sugar.
Anthropological studies have shown that consuming a lot of bread, and later more refined sugars, had a disastrous effect on dental health - whereas in paleolithic specimens the teeth are usually remarkably well preserved.