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Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

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January 19, 2011

High Fat Diet Linked to Breast Cancer?

By Guest
164 Comments

One of the great things about our growing community is how people like Denise Minger have emerged from near obscurity to become recognized leaders in certain areas. When it comes to parsing the scientific studies, very few people have the combination of skills, understanding of the scientific method and probability, AND the willingness to dig deep into the minutiae to get to the essence of a study. Denise is one of those rare people. If you haven’t read Denise’s take-down of the China Study, you owe it to yourself to do so.

Lucky for us, Denise has taken the time to dig into the latest research on diet and breast cancer in today’s guest post. (Thank you!) Without further ado, Denise…

If you’ve been scanning the health news lately (or live within earshot of some gloating low-fat adherents), you might’ve noticed a flurry of recent headlines linking fat and cholesterol to breast cancer. In case you haven’t, this should get you up to speed:

Catch the drift?

These doomful blurbs sprang from a mouse study published earlier this month in the American Journal of Pathology, showing that mice fed a higher-fat, cholesterol-enriched diet developed bigger and more aggressive tumors than mice eating their normal “chow” diet. According to the researchers, this suggests that “cholesterol accelerates and enhances tumor formation.” And if the news stories are to be trusted, that means we should curb the fat and toss back some statins with our Healthy Whole Grain dinners.

Even if you’re not a woman, chances are good that you’ve encountered one before, and maybe even spent some time inside one’s womb. And considering about one out of every seven women will face breast cancer in her lifetime, dietary links with this disease tend to be a hot topic for health-minded folks of either gender. So what’s going on with this study? Can it tell us anything important, or is it another one for the lame-research slush pile?

Of Mice and Women

If you don’t want to trudge through the full text of the study linked above, here’s the rundown. The researchers took two groups of mice: one wild, ordinary-mouse-on-the-street strain and one special strain that’s predisposed to developing mammary tumors. For both the wild and the tumor-prone mice groups, half got a standard chow diet and half got a Western diet. These are the only food details offered in the paper:

Female mice hemizygous for the PyMT transgene were given either a Western diet (57BD; LabDiet, Richmond, IN) containing 20.2% fat, 16.8% protein, and 48.0% carbohydrate, or a chow diet (5010; LabDiet) containing 4.5% fat, 23.0% protein, and 50.1% carbohydrate, at age 4 weeks and thereafter ad libitum. Although fat content of the diet was increased, carbohydrate content was not altered. Moreover, energy values of the 2 diets were similar (4.43 kcal/g and 4.14 kcal/g for Western and chow diets, respectively).

Fair enough. From this description, you’d think the main difference between the diets was fat content: 4.5 percent in one and 20.2 percent in the other (with slightly lower protein and carbohydrate levels to compensate). But whenever we hear a diet described only in terms of macronutrient ratios with no assurance that the food variables are controlled, it’s usually a bad sign (and an inevitable slush pile omen). Fortunately, Google exists. Even though the paper’s lips are zipped about the actual ingredients of the diets, the spec sheets for both the chow diet 5010 and “Western diet” 57BD are posted online, so we can figure out exactly what these mice were eating.

Food vs. “Food”

It turns out the chow-diet mice—the ones who got fewer tumors—were feasting on a mix of:

  • Ground corn
  • Dehulled soybean meal
  • Wheat middlings
  • Fish meal
  • Ground wheat
  • Wheat germ
  • Brewers dried yeast
  • Ground oats
  • Dehydrated alfalfa meal
  • Porcine animal fat
  • Ground soybean hulls
  • Soybean oil
  • Dried beet pulp
  • And a bunch of added vitamins and minerals.

Not exactly a five-star cuisine, but most of these ingredients aren’t alien substances to mice. It’s passable fare.

But what about the high fat diet that promoted so much tumor growth? Was it the same as above, just slathered in a few pats of butter? Alas, the “Western diet” mice weren’t even eating food. Along with a small amount of added cholesterol, their diet consisted of:

  • Sucrose (31%)
  • Milk fat (21%)
  • Casein (19 %)
  • Maltodextrin (10%)
  • Powdered Cellulose (5%)
  • Dextrin (5%)
  • And the typical vitamin and mineral array.

Bon appétit.

It’s a marvel the Western diet got labeled “high fat and cholesterol” when it’s only 21 percent fat and nearly a third pure table sugar. It’s also a marvel that the researchers pegged the tumor-enhancing effects of the Western diet on its cholesterol content rather than on any of the other differences it had with the chow diet (for example: everything). In fact, the protein source alone might play a role in spurring the big, speedy tumors found in the Western diet rats, since so much of their diet was casein. Dare I reference my old pal T. Colin Campbell, whose research showed isolated casein tends to boost tumor growth in rodents when it exceeds 5 percent of their diet? I dare. There may be something uniquely cancer-promoting about isolated complete proteins (like casein) in a purified diet, probably due to the fact that they promote growth in general but lack the matrix of protective substances found in whole foods.

But the most interesting thing here is that hefty dose of sucrose in the Western mouse diet. Even back in the 80s, researchers were noting an association between sugar consumption and breast cancer, speculating that:

A possible connecting link between sugar consumption and breast cancer is insulin. This is an absolute requirement for the proliferation of normal mammary tissue and experimental mammary tumours may regress in its absence. Insulin secretion occurs in response to blood glucose level and could be excessive if the regulatory mechanism is overtaxed by large sugar intake.

There’s a growing body of research addressing the insulin-breast cancer link, and unlike with fat, the findings are more consistent. High insulin is associated with a greater risk of death from breast cancer, may lead to a greater risk of breast cancer in postmenopausal women, and may be a risk factor for breast cancer independent of estrogen. Although insulin responses to sugar vary between mouse strains, there’s some evidence that mice fed sucrose as their primary carbohydrate (opposed to other foods like cornstarch) have higher levels of insulin and insulin-like growth factor 1. Both insulin and IGF-1 can potentially stimulate the growth of breast cancer cells and hike up testosterone levels (which also has some compelling links with breast cancer). And one study examining the effects of different sources of protein, fat, and carbohydrate on mammary tumors in mice showed that the sucrose-eating mice had 100 percent tumor incidence by the end of the study.

Since the researchers were mostly concerned with fat and cholesterol in this study, they didn’t examine potential pathways between tumor growth and insulin, or consider whether the high sugar and casein content of the Western diet had anything to do with cancer promotion. I’ve got a hunch there are some untapped clues there, but from this study, we’ll never know for sure.

The Cholesterol Connection

Although most of the media outlets pounced on the “high fat” part of this study, the researchers themselves were more intrigued by the effects of cholesterol. Interestingly, the mice exhibited lower cholesterol as their tumors grew—suggesting that the tumors seemed to guzzle cholesterol and use it for cell proliferation, causing a drop in serum levels. (This jibes with a trend we’ve seen in humans, where certain cancer patients have significantly lower cholesterol than the rest of the population.) The researchers speculate that lowering blood cholesterol could help limit tumor growth in humans, and they conclude: “Drugs that target cholesterol metabolism could be used in addition to drugs that may facilitate the elimination of breast cancer cells.” (Did you hear that? Could it be the joyous clinking of the statin companies’ wine glasses?)

Even if tumors (breast or otherwise) do hoard cholesterol, there’s no way to tell from this study whether cholesterol actually promotes their growth, and if deliberately lowering your levels would do a darn thing for cancer prevention. In fact, the researchers note that “it is not unreasonable to assume that liver function may be affected in this disease” and that “plasma lipoprotein levels could be influenced by reduced hepatic lipoprotein secretion”—in which case the breast tumors might not be reducing cholesterol by using it for their own growth, but the body is simply producing less of it.

So What Do We Take Away From It All?

This study might’ve uncovered an interesting role of cholesterol in tumor growth, but it’s hard to tell what the significance would be even if that’s the case. Given the total lack of a control diet and the sketchy assembly of ingredients in the Western cuisine, we can’t glean much of anything about the role of fat or cholesterol in human breast cancer. The only things saving this study from that slush pile are the three nuggets of wisdom it confers: Don’t be born a tumor-prone mouse, don’t eat a foodless diet based on table sugar and casein, and read the full text of studies before letting news headlines make you nervous.

For More Insightful Research Analysis Visit Denise’s Blog, Raw Food SOS

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164 Comments on "High Fat Diet Linked to Breast Cancer?"

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bruce
bruce
5 years 8 months ago

Excellent analysis here. I just love what media can do to blow things out of proportion. I will not be surprised if someone tells me in the future that all the eggs we eat in my family will give my wife breast cancer!

Aram Hovsepian
5 years 8 months ago

I agree. News like this create paranoia and a stress response. Followed by inflammation and eventually disease process kicks in. Lets listen to our bodies pre installed intelligence and follow or hearts rather then indoctrinated research. Enjoy your pastured eggs, they will be healthy as long as a chickens healthy too 🙂

David
5 years 8 months ago

Wow, excellent work dissecting this. This encourages me to maintain my thorough skepticism of research articles. It is exhausting to apply this level of scrutiny, but ultimately it is necessary. If only we could explain that to a lot of these scientists…

Kris
Kris
5 years 8 months ago

Love reading breakdowns of studies like these from a statistical perspective. It’s information that is often very hard to find! Thanks Denise!

One thing I wonder – what is the remaining mystery percentage of macronutrient in each of the diet? Those given percentages don’t add up to 100 in either case, not even close. The “chow” diet totals 85%, and the “western” totals 77.6%.

Brian Kozmo
5 years 8 months ago

Probably the vitamin/mineral mixture…

vanessa
vanessa
5 years 8 months ago

there is no calorie in vitamins or minerals and therefore they do not enter in the macronutrient %. The explanation is a big mistake in this article. Protein, Carb and Lipids must add up to 100%. the only other factor is alcohol but I doubt the diets included alcohols.

Tim
Tim
5 years 8 months ago

The absence of fish meal in diet 2 may also be a significant difference, since omega-3 fatty acids have anti-tumor properties.

Slowcooker
Slowcooker
5 years 8 months ago

Brilliant.

Matt
Matt
5 years 8 months ago

Mark,

I’m living with a couple of scientist students from University of Maryland, and to be perfectly honest, they are terrible. They overlook information that they deem “unneccesary”, they poo-poo anything unconventional, and ultimately they are looking more and more to be backing Conventional Wisdom on faith rather than through science. It is horribly frustrating to deal with this utter blindness.

Thank you for your continued effort clearing through the muck of modern society.

Avishek
5 years 8 months ago

Nice! I am an undergrad there, I hope I don’t meet them! But it’s important to be able to change the way people think about these things for the better.

Paleohund
5 years 8 months ago

Funny. I learned how to critically think at UMD. I guess it boils down to who your mentors are and how open your mind is.

JoelG
JoelG
5 years 8 months ago

Denise Minger rocks! What a great writer and analyst!

Matt Lentzner
5 years 8 months ago

Denise Minger, you effing rule.

You should really do this full time, you’re so good at it. I don’t know how you would make a living at it, but the talent is definitely there.

Dollface
5 years 8 months ago

That is awesome, I always get so frustrated when I see those headlines, great she can break it down and straighten it out!

DaiaRavi
5 years 8 months ago

Kudos to Niesy yet again –

and jeeeze – a study up against a 1/3 SUGAR diet ??- do you get the idea that these studies are absolutely set up to create the sensations that drive the CW to its anti-meat/fat/cholesterol frenzy?

i do – and i posted this yesterday but the thread got so long i would like to bring it up again – the is from a PEER REVIEW MEDICAL JOURNAL: “Why Most Published Research Findings Are False”
http://www.plosmedicine.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pmed.0020124

jill
jill
5 years 8 months ago

That is some sloppy research protocol…

Kelda
5 years 8 months ago

Now would you like to have a go at the Statin study that’s made all the news today here in the UK!

I had to turn the radio off after about 30 seconds as I yelled ‘change what you eat’!

Avishek
5 years 8 months ago

Wow science is so awesome .. . great analysis, if I hadn’t read the full text I wouldn’t have known that their diet was actually sucrose and 21% fat

Pamela
Pamela
5 years 8 months ago

Cosigning on all.

Cate
Cate
5 years 8 months ago

I am so thankful for Denise and people like her. We can’t get this info anywhere else, and it’s desperately needed. It angers me that these so-called scientists get any attention at all, since they are a blot on the reputation of any real scientist.

Sonia
5 years 8 months ago

Love how they called sucralose and casein a “western diet.” I was expecting the mice to be eating Big Macs and fries. 🙂 Great job Denise!

Louise D.
Louise D.
5 years 8 months ago

They might be better off with Big Macs and fries. Worth a study, at least by these standards.

Walter Bushell
Walter Bushell
3 years 3 months ago

Might be better off with ground up cereal boxes. Let’s see how mice do on Chocolate Coated Sugar Bombs. Don’t they carry the American Heart Association Seal of Approval?

Cj
Cj
5 years 8 months ago

Got news for you…take a look at what folks are putting into their shopping carts next time you go to the grocery store…most of the “food”, which I prefer to call food-stuffs because it is really not food, is carb-laden, which breaks down to “sugar”. If it does not fly, swim, walk on four legs, or grow from the earth, it is not food.

KnuckleDragger
KnuckleDragger
5 years 8 months ago

Yes! As soon as my wife and I opened our eyes to what is “food,” we see people at restaurants and the grocery store and look at what they are buying or eating and always follow up with “Yup, no mystery there,” or a scarcastic “I don’t know WHY I can’t lose weight”

Becky
Becky
5 years 8 months ago

You’re not kidding. When you look at the cart, you begin to understand why so many people are suffering from weight, health and social issues.

mark king
mark king
5 years 8 months ago

There have been many studies like this before, same set up, different date, and every time they have been refuted due to the fact that a mouse, or certain types of mice have not evolved to devour these types of diets, even if the diet was pure in fats, many mice evolved eating grains and because of that, flourish on low fat,grain diets. We humans evolved differently. Secondly the diets that contain fat’s always contain more sugar, etc, Anti fat people, give it a rest, you can’t win this one!

Walter Bushell
Walter Bushell
3 years 3 months ago

The anti fat people have *money* behind them, so yes they can and are winning.

imogen
imogen
5 years 8 months ago
So, that was a beautiful first read of the day. Thanks! On a similar note, my foray into resarching my health began in 1998, when I found out I had two breast tumours. I had been eating extremely low fat, so high carbs in whatever form, and even though I still ate lots of veggies and (very lean) meat, it wasn’t enough to keep my body from disease. At that time, I was also breathing in a lot of xylene, acetone, and chemicals from rubber cement because I was in art college, spending about 60 hrs per week in that… Read more »
Sara
Sara
5 years 8 months ago

Animal fats do kill! The animals! So we can eat them, nom nom.

imogen
imogen
5 years 8 months ago

lmao!

imogen
imogen
5 years 8 months ago

kill *people who eat them*

lol

JERUSHA B.
JERUSHA B.
5 years 8 months ago

Wow! Thank you for sharing! That was a great confirmation for me. You did a great thing for yourself and I think that your testimony would help many people.

Just wondering… did you eliminate high carb fruits? Were you eating mostly low carb whole foods?

Thanks so much and I hope to hear back from you! :0)

imogen
imogen
5 years 8 months ago
Yes, I incidentally did low carb because I genuinely don’t enjoy much sweet fruit. My choice fruits have always ben tart berries, so that’s what I ate the most of, and I add in a tart navel orange, snack on lemon slices, and also avocado and olives. I didn’t know about “low carb” then; I just tried to eat as cleanly as I knew how, and to avoid things that caused me to feel ill, like grapes, apples, bananas, and other sweet fruit. Grains made me sleepy, so they were an easy-to-spot problem. I started eating bone-in, skin-on meats, too,… Read more »
JERUSHA B.
JERUSHA B.
5 years 8 months ago

Thank you so very much for your reply!!! It was wonderful to get more information and I am sure that your post will help many others as well!!!!!!!!

Thanks again and may you always have great health!!!!

Harobe
Harobe
4 years 8 months ago
Almost a year later, I just wanted to say thank you, Imogen, for sharing your story too. As a 31 year old woman fighting breast cancer while pregnant, it is encouraging to read success stories from others who healed themselves through dietary and lifestyle changes. It has been 3 months since my diagnosis and a lot of alternative cancer-fighting protocols say to avoid meat. I still eat 2 eggs a day (from our own chickens) for baby’s sake, but I’m really missing my grass-fed, hormone-free beef! This article and your comments give me hope that I can eat red meat… Read more »
Scooter
5 years 8 months ago

It seems to me to be a classic case of declaring a conclusion then doing everything you can to prove it.

Great article here.

skunk1980
skunk1980
5 years 8 months ago

Even if the mice ate a diet higher in fat composed of real food and this resulted in higher cancer rates — well so what? This shouldnt be generalized to humans. Why? Because mice are herbivores and eat foods very different from a natural human diet.

Aaron Curl
5 years 8 months ago

No, mice and rats are omnivores. They are used in studies because their digestive systems have similarities to humans.

part-time girevik
part-time girevik
5 years 8 months ago

My wife, doesn’t miss a beat.

Wife: As far as I know, only one thing has ever been proven to be linked to breast cancer.
Me: What’s that?
Wife: Having breasts.

Caitlin
Caitlin
5 years 8 months ago

Bah ha ha ha!

Yes, I just wanted to write a post laughing.

Your wife is one smart cookie… Erm, beef jerky. Smart beef jerky. It really doesn’t have the same ring though, doesn’t it? Do you think Mark can accept cookies for their literary value?

Kim
Kim
5 years 8 months ago

Though not nearly of Denise’s caliber, I, too have discovered some inconsistencies in reviewing other health studies….always blaming fat for some negative condition.

When you dig into the guts of it, turns out that there are numerous other factors that could be responsible, but are never accounted for. So how can people believe all these studies?

JERUSHA B.
JERUSHA B.
5 years 8 months ago

Couldn’t it just be that people with high cholesterol are just not as prone to cancer?

Enaid
Enaid
5 years 8 months ago

What about the maltodextrin and dextrin listed in the “western” diet in the study? I thought those are corn-based sugars, so it appears the diet may have been close to 40% sugar!!!

Nicky Spur
5 years 8 months ago

The main problem with these experiments is that we only hear .01% of the actual science behind the experiment and those experimenting seem to think that the body is a closed system, un-impacted by other important factors… Bummer so many people will be reacting in a scared manner to studies like this — and most likely taking the wrong steps…

Eric
Eric
5 years 8 months ago

I would have stopped at the diets. I apparently knew more about control groups in high school than these people do. The only interesting result would have been if they were the same. The fact that the two groups had different results doesn’t prove anything. What a waste of research money.

Dawn
Dawn
5 years 8 months ago
The biggest crime in nutrition research today is the case-control studies in which only one variable ought to be changed (for example, fat content), but actually 10 or 12 or 20 variables are actually changed (like the two entirely different chow recipes here). Researchers then stick their results in a fancy statistical package and churn out some barely significant numbers, all in the belief that they’ve tested one variable (not even realizing how many confounders they let into the mix!). Who is approving these studies in the first place? I am not a conspiracy theorist, but I do have to… Read more »
Tim
Tim
5 years 8 months ago
A major problem is that in nutrition science you can’t change just one variable when you’re dealing with macronutrients. For instance, suppose you are studying the effect of saturated fat on cancer. You have two groups of mice, and feed one ten times more saturated fat than the other group. However, for the “control” group, do do you feed them a diet with fewer fat calories than the fat group, or a diet with the same number of calories contained in ten times more unsaturated fat? Whichever you choose, the “control” group will have more than one variable different from… Read more »
imogen
imogen
5 years 8 months ago

This is true, but they would have come closer to relevant results if they’d at least fed both groups actual food.

In a nutritional study, the fact that from an evolutionary understanding and solid evidence of this, bodies metabolise specifically *food* for nutrients seems a rather significant consideration that isn’t demonstrated by this study.

I’d *expect* to end up with cancer on the diet given those mice- either group! The difference is most likely one of endurance (how *long* it would take to succumb to cancer) than of macronutrient make-up.

Bushrat
Bushrat
5 years 8 months ago

Unfortunately the level of statistical education required to gain a science degree is dismally basic so that any monkey can become a scientist and start spreading their ignorance backed up by a bunch of pretty numbers.

slacker
slacker
5 years 8 months ago

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Denise!

How do we stem the tide of all this junk science given legitimacy by the agro-pharma-media-industrial complex? Whoever approved that study design needs to be banned from anything called science and the outlets who published it at face value need to be publicly shamed.

Aaron Blaisdell
5 years 8 months ago
Thank you Denise for once again leveling your laser beam focus on tearing apart another poorly designed nutrition study. I’ve looked into it and it turns out that just about the whole enterprise of animal research linking diet to disease (mostly rodent or lagomorph research) compare “standard” lab diets that look an aweful lot like the SAD to high-fat diets that actually usually have just as much if not more sugar then the conventional one AND the higher proportion of fat comes from industrial oils (e.g., crisco or other oils containing high amounts of oxidized linoleic acid). For shame! The… Read more »
Tim
Tim
5 years 8 months ago

Have you read this paper?

““Control” laboratory rodents are metabolically morbid: Why it matters” PNAS April 6, 2010 vol. 107 no. 14 6127-6133

Aaron Blaisdell
5 years 8 months ago

Thanks. Good find!

Daniel
Daniel
5 years 8 months ago
Just submit your proposal as “an investigation into health advantages of an industrial oil supplemented diet vs one high in saturated fats,” then act all surprised when you publish findings. If you’re allowed to. Seriously, as an undergrad bio major at UC Irvine, I had the privilege of attending, by invitation, a grad seminar course on scientific study design. We were taught that science = replicable experiments, what a confounding variable is, etc. Then we read current & classic research papers and evaluated them by these principles. Best class ever! -but class size was only about a dozen people, and… Read more »
Aaron Blaisdell
5 years 8 months ago

Haha, that just might work. I teach this kind of scientific scrutiny in my undergraduate seminar on animal cognition. The students really enjoy finding alternative accounts for any empirical result. I coax them through the processes of setting up better designs that attempt to rule out the alternative accounts we think up. It’s a fun game, and useful! You’re right that this is severely lacking in medical school (to the best of my knowledge).

DeyC3
DeyC3
5 years 8 months ago

That’s because Psychology is a science and Medicine is not.

John Howard
John Howard
5 years 8 months ago

People look at the P.O. or the D.M.V. or government schools, and understand why they are nightmares of inefficiency. But then they act surprised when government science turns out to be sloppy mess rigged by lobbyists and bureaucrats to funnel money, not make discoveries.

We are doomed by our faith in authority. Yet again.

tess
tess
5 years 8 months ago

PO for post office? it’s no longer government-run.

Jacob
Jacob
5 years 8 months ago
Great information. Speaking from very recent experience men need to worry about breast cancer just as much as women, although it is much, much rarer. I am a 36 y/o male who was diagnosed with breast cancer back in November and underwent a modified radical mastectomy. Not sure weather I am going to have chemo yet or not. Mine appears to be estrogen driven and I may just have to do hormone therapy. It is a life changer. I had 17 lymph nodes removed and now have to take precautions to try and avoid getting lymphedema. A little less of… Read more »
Jacob
Jacob
5 years 8 months ago

>

Peter Defty
5 years 8 months ago

Nark & Denise:

Fabulous job of outting this study! After reading this I am amazed this got through peer review! Well, with the anti-fat bias out there perhaps not so amazed but it shows just how people, both men and women, lose all reason & logic when it comes to certain aspects of female anatomy….LOL.

John Howard
John Howard
5 years 8 months ago

Peer Review is merely an appeal to authority, no more proof of quality than a celebrity endorsement.

Peer Review is P.R., nothing more.

Jared
5 years 8 months ago

Good to point out….peer review is only as useful as the “peers” doing the reviewing. Since most published studies in JAMA et. al. are done by CW thinkers (I use that term looslely…like the way my pre-primal pants fit), it stands to reason that their “peers” share their views, so as long as the study doesn’t rock the SS Status Quo, these studies are published in journals that include this tripe.

It’s like being convicted by a jury of your “peers,” also known as “a group of people who weren’t important/smart enough to get out of jury duty.”

Ughhh

Brian Kozmo
5 years 8 months ago
Look at the first paragraph from emaxhealth: “Researchers at the Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson determined how the American diet that high in fat and cholesterol makes cancer tumors grow and spread faster, in a mouse study.” The stuff being espoused here borders, if not is, a flagrant CRIME. Imagine the people coming across this stuff and then further deciding to eat lower fat and thus get health problems? I hope she sent her writing to the lead researcher, Philippe G. Frank, and the entire team at Thomas Jefferson University, as well as to the American Journal of Pathology, EMaxhealth,… Read more »
rik
rik
5 years 8 months ago

the Medical Industrial complex using the media for their purposes….thank you for the post.

Daniela Huppe
Daniela Huppe
5 years 8 months ago
Some of the missing percentages account for fibre, moisture, vitamins and minerals. The diets are not even close in caloric content. The actual “Physiological Fuel value” is only 3.42 kcal/g of the regular mouse-chow. Though I would really like to know how they ‘inactivate’ some of the calorie content in that food… Interesting that this lovely composition of a “western diet” was also available as an irradiated pellet. Any mention in the (cancer) study if that was the food of choice perhaps? It was made with fats preserved with Ethoxyquin, which is a known carcinogen that also reduces the blood… Read more »
Robin
5 years 8 months ago
Kudos to Denise for her excellent analysis of this study and Mark for this wonderful platform where truth can be told. It’s so hard to get to the bottom of what hits “the news” about diet these days. It’s nice to know I have a place to come where people take time to read the fine print and decipher what really happens in those studies. The fish meal in one mouse pellet vs. none in another was a major stand-out when I read the ingredients in the study. Not controlling for such basic variables makes it surprising this kind of… Read more »
Mary Anne
Mary Anne
5 years 8 months ago

There are lies, damn lies, and statistics (sic). Mark Twain.

Anybody besides me think it’s weird that the Susan Koman Fndn holds bake sales?????

Aram Hovsepian
5 years 8 months ago

Most of those foundations are just a money making machines. If anyone is looking for cure for cancer the first thing they need to do is start eating a healthy organic diet, sleep, drink water, stop stressing and enjoy life. That will cure pretty much everybody from almost everything.

Joe
Joe
5 years 8 months ago

Yes!

Tim
Tim
5 years 8 months ago

No. You can’t cure cancer by changing your diet. Advice like that has the potential to cause real harm, perhaps even kill people.

imogen
imogen
5 years 8 months ago

Hm. I did. And so have many others. 🙂

Larry Jensen
Larry Jensen
5 years 8 months ago
WRONG!!! I had biopsy confirmed prostate cancer in June of 2002. My PSA was 5.2 in July. By Jan 2003 it was back down to 2.5 and has stayed below 3.7 ever since. I have had NO treatment from any doctor, just routine PSA tests. I started a low carbohydrate, high fat, adequate protein diet in February 2002. When I got the biopsy results I started using supplements that I found researching on the internet. I used PUBMED and university sources. Though it would take a lot of time, I can DOCUMENT what I have done since I live alone… Read more »
JERUSHA B.
JERUSHA B.
5 years 8 months ago
Sorry, but a diet change is really the most prominent thing that can give the body what it needs to heal… Put gasoline in a diesel’s fuel tank and it immediately stops running… The human body will still run on foods that don’t produce health but unfortunately not for long… Some people have weaker immune systems than others and those are usually the ones who die from diseases… especially from chemo and radiation! I tried to get my father to change his diet when he had lung cancer and he wouldn’t listen and he had radiation and chemo and three… Read more »
Matthew
5 years 8 months ago

Nice article Denise! It’s rather unfortunate that so many studies are so poorly designed.

I’m kind of curious about the cancer causing properties of casein protein isolate. While the science is still controversial there is evidence that certain specific variants casein protein (specifically BCM7) are highly inflammatory in the body. I wrote up a short summary of what I was able to find out back in January: http://www.geekbeast.com/2011/01/04/the-case-with-casein/

I’m kind of curious as to what other people think about this, especially considering that I’ve added a whole bunch of whole milk back into my diet.

Clarissa
Clarissa
5 years 8 months ago

Thank you for providing your analysis for this study, Denise. As a woman who is scared silly by the “1 in 7 women will get breast cancer” statistic, I’m relieved not to have to give up my primal diet and go back to a low-fat diet to try to avoid breast cancer.

kem
kem
5 years 8 months ago

You ought not be “scared silly” by the one in seven statistic until you sort out where you fit in the demographics.

Clarissa
Clarissa
5 years 8 months ago

Are you trying to inject rational thought into an irrational fear?

Lori
5 years 8 months ago

A good book on false positive medical tests is Calculated Risks by Gerd Gigerenzer. He uses breast cancer specifically as an example. Many of the positive tests are false positives, and some of the tumors are so slow-growing that one might even consider leaving them alone.

Clarissa
Clarissa
5 years 8 months ago

Thank you for the book recommendation. I’ve got it in order.

jason j
jason j
5 years 8 months ago

Hey do you guys eat Greens + on Paleo. Its got wheat grass? Wheat grass no go?

kem
kem
5 years 8 months ago

Denise, I await your first book. Your writing is truly engaging… not what one would expect from a critical analysis of a mouse study.

Mice in my woolshed tend to primarily food on barely or wheat through the tiny holes they make in the bottom of the sack. That is, until they encounter the cat…

Dave Parker
Dave Parker
5 years 8 months ago

I would like to point out also that yes high fat is bad when it is coming from these highly processed oils plus carbs and factory farm meats and dairy. These high fat diets should contain natural occuring oils, grassfed meats, and raw dairy or at least as close to it as you can find. I sometimes wonder if everyone understands this point.

Rose Adams
Rose Adams
5 years 8 months ago

My 15 year old read the article and said,”they’re missing half of their experiement because they didn’t have proper control by changing the ingredients…and they seem to be calling sugar, hi-fat. Every H.S. student knows this from Middle School science class.”

Pat
Pat
5 years 8 months ago

My vague understanding is that cancer is the unnaturally rapid growth of mutated cells. Isn’t cholesterol necessary in cell construction? Could the cholesterol be being sucked up to grow these cancerous cells?

Tim
Tim
5 years 8 months ago

A rapidly growing cell will need more cholesterol, but in comparison to the grams of this nutrient that your body makes every day, the amount in your diet is not very significant. Your body makes about 70% of the cholesterol you need, with only 30% coming from your diet.

Therefore it is unlikely that you could have any effect on the growth rate of a cancer cell by changing your diet.

Primal Toad
5 years 8 months ago

Another fantastic “take down” of a study that essential proves NOTHING.

Simply brilliant.

Carol
Carol
5 years 8 months ago

Denise Minger, you may be my new hero. I only just heard of you for the first time a few days ago. Read your articles on the China Study. Amazing work, greatly appreciated. Please continue shedding light on studies like this one that become summarized headlines fed to the general public. I have a feeling you’ve found your calling, or it found you. You seem to have the ability to expose the truth (humorously, at that) in the studies that others want to twist to their agenda. Thanks.

art
art
5 years 8 months ago

Great post, too bad we can’t get this reported as widely and publicaly as the psuedo scientists did

Rat Study Author
Rat Study Author
5 years 8 months ago

Don’t listen to this Denise person!

Fat and cholesterol makes you get cancer!!

Go get on statins ASAP!! It’s your only chance!

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