Anti-stress hormone linked to breast cancer risk

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Representational image.

London: Women with low levels of an anti-stress hormone have an increased risk of getting breast cancer, says a new study.

The study focused on a hormone which circulates freely in the blood, enkephalin, with pain- and anxiety-reducing properties. Enkephalin also reinforces the immune system by directly affecting immune cells. Credits: https://www.google.co.in/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CAYQjB1qFQoTCPiMsv7f3MYCFcUrpgodVqIA4Q&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.choctawnation.com%2Fnews-room%2Fpress-room%2Fmedia-releases%2Fchoctaw-bike-team-encourages-breast-cancer-awareness%2F&ei=CB6mVfjoO8XXmAXWxIKIDg&bvm=bv.97653015,d.eXY&psig=AFQjCNEi8zFFmDRriJ0iC8kBpejk9sc6Iw&ust=1437035987055497

“Among women with the lowest levels of the hormone, the risk of breast cancer was more than three times that of the women with the highest levels of the hormone. This is one of the strongest correlations between cancer risk and a freely circulating biomarker ever described,” said Olle Melander, professor at Lund University, Sweden.

The study that appeared in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, was based on blood samples taken from over 1,900 women. The average age of the women studied was 57. The women were followed up with regard to breast cancer for an average period of 15 years.

The researchers said geographical location and age, in spite of the adjustments in the study, may be significant. After further studies, the results will facilitate prevention and early detection of breast cancer.

For those with an increased risk of breast cancer, potential preventive treatments could take the form of lifestyle interventions to reduce stress and new drugs.

“Our immediate plan is to investigate how to affect the level of enkephalin in healthy individuals. We will do this primarily in a study with a smaller number of women. We are also interested in the hormone’s role in other cancers,” said co-author Mattias Belting and professor at Lund University, Sweden.

( IANS)

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Here’s How a Fiber-Rich Diet Reduces Breast Cancer Risk

Eat fiber-rich food daily to cut breast cancer risk

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breast cancer
Having fiber-rich food like wholegrain breakfast cereals including fruits, vegetables and whole grains can reduce breast cancer risk. Pixabay

Having fiber-rich food like wholegrain breakfast cereals including fruits, vegetables and whole grains can reduce breast cancer risk, says a new health study.

Soluble fiber was associated with lower risks of cancer, and higher total fiber intake was associated with a lower risk in both premenopausal and postmenopausal women.

Soluble fibre include pectins and beta glucans (found for example in foods like fruit and oats) and insoluble fibre including cellulose (found for example in wholegrains and nuts).

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What is important to remember is that fibre-rich foods typically contain both types of fibre.

“Our study contributes to the evidence that lifestyle factors, such as modifiable dietary practices, may affect breast cancer risk,” said Maryam Farvid from the Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

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Soluble fiber was associated with lower risks of breast cancer, and higher total fiber intake was associated with a lower risk in both premenopausal and postmenopausal women. Pixabay

Consuming a diet high in fiber was linked with a reduced incidence of breast cancer in an analysis of all relevant prospective studies, said the study published online in peer-reviewed journal CANCER.

Since previous studies have generated inconsistent results regarding the potential relationship between fiber intake and breast cancer, Farvid and her colleagues searched for all relevant prospective studies published through July 2019.

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When the investigators pooled data from the 20 observational studies they identified, individuals with the highest consumption of fiber had an eight percent lower risk of breast cancer.

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“Our findings provide research evidence supporting the American Cancer Society dietary guidelines, emphasising the importance of a diet rich in fiber, including fruits, vegetables, and whole grains,” said Farvid.

Fibre-rich foods include wholegrain bread and oats, barley and rye; fruit such as bananas, apple. berries, pears, melon and oranges; vegetables such as broccoli, carrots and sweetcorn, Peas, beans and pulses, nuts and seeds and potatoes with skin. (IANS)

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Natural Yogurt Consumption May Lower Breast Cancer Risk: Study

The researchers suggest that lactose-fermenting bacteria in the breast is protective because each year of breast-feeding reduces the risk of breast cancer by 4.3 per cent

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Scientists from Lancaster University said their idea -- as yet unproven -- is supported by the available evidence, which is that bacterial induced inflammation is linked to cancer. Pixabay

Eating natural yogurt daily may lesson breast cancer risk owing to lactose fermenting bacteria which reduces inflammation triggered by harmful bacteria, say researchers.

Yoghurt contains beneficial lactose-fermenting bacteria commonly found in milk, similar to the bacteria — or microflora 00 found in the breasts of mothers who have breastfed.

Scientists from Lancaster University said their idea — as yet unproven — is supported by the available evidence, which is that bacterial induced inflammation is linked to cancer.

“There is a simple, inexpensive potential preventive remedy; which is for women to consume natural yoghurt on a daily basis,” the authors wrote in a paper appeared in the journal Medical Hypotheses.

“We now know that breast milk is not sterile and that lactation alters the microflora of the breast,” said Dr Rachael Rigby from Lancaster University’s Faculty of Health and Medicine.

“Lactose fermenting bacteria are commonly found in milk and are likely to occupy the breast ducts of women during lactation and for an unknown period after lactation,” Rigby added.

The researchers suggest that lactose-fermenting bacteria in the breast is protective because each year of breast-feeding reduces the risk of breast cancer by 4.3 per cent.

Several studies have shown that the consumption of yoghurt is associated with a reduction in the risk of breast cancer, which the researchers suggest may be due to the displacement of harmful bacteria by beneficial bacteria.

There are approximately 10 billion bacterial cells in the human body and while most are harmless, some bacteria create toxins that trigger inflammation in the body.

Chronic inflammation destroys the harmful germs but it also damages the body.

Yogurt, Fruit, Vanilla, Strawberries, Food, Healthy
Eating natural yogurt daily may lesson breast cancer risk owing to lactose fermenting bacteria which reduces inflammation triggered by harmful bacteria, say researchers. Pixabay

One of the most common inflammatory conditions is gum disease or periodontitis which has already been linked to oral, oesophageal, colonic, pancreatic, prostatic and breast cancer.

“The stem cells which divide to replenish the lining of the breast ducts are influenced by the microflora, and certain components of the microflora have been shown in other organs, such as the colon and stomach, to increase the risk of cancer development,” said the researchers.

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“Therefore a similar scenario is likely to be occurring in the breast, whereby resident microflora impact on stem cell division and influence cancer risk,” they added. (IANS)

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Here’s How Dairy Milk Consumption Can Lead to Breast Cancer

Dairy milk intake may up breast cancer risk

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Moderate amounts of dairy milk consumption can increase women's risk of breast cancer -- up to 80 per cent depending on the amount consumed. Pixabay

Researchers have found that even relatively moderate amounts of dairy milk consumption can increase women’s risk of breast cancer — up to 80 per cent depending on the amount consumed.

“Fairly strong evidence that either dairy milk or some other factor closely related to drinking dairy milk is a cause of breast cancer in women,” said study first author Gary E. Fraser from Loma Linda University in the US. “Consuming as little as 1/4 to 1/3 cup of dairy milk per day was associated with an increased risk of breast cancer of 30 per cent,” Fraser said.

By drinking up to one cup per day, the associated risk went up to 50 per cent, and for those drinking two to three cups per day, the risk increased further to 70 per cent to 80 per cent, the researchers said. For the findings, published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, dietary intakes of nearly 53,000 North American women were evaluated for the study, all of whom were initially free of cancer and were followed for nearly eight years.

Dietary intakes were estimated from food frequency questionnaires (FFQ), also repeated 24 hour recalls, and a baseline questionnaire had questions about demographics, family history of breast cancer, physical activity, alcohol consumption, hormonal and other medication use, breast cancer screening, and reproductive and gynecological history.

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Consuming as little as 1/4 to 1/3 cup of dairy milk per day was associated with an increased risk of breast cancer of 30 per cent. Pixabay

By the end of the study period, there were 1,057 new breast cancer cases during follow-up. No clear associations were found between soy products and breast cancer, independent of dairy. But, when compared to low or no milk consumption, higher intakes of dairy calories and dairy milk were associated with greater risk of breast cancer, independent of soy intake, the study said.

The researchers noted that the results had minimal variation when comparing intake of full fat versus reduced or nonfat milks; there were no important associations noted with cheese and yogurt.

“However,” he said, “dairy foods, especially milk, were associated with increased risk, and the data predicted a marked reduction in risk associated with substituting soymilk for dairy milk.”

According to the researchers, possible reasons for these associations between breast cancer and dairy milk may be the sex hormone content of dairy milk, as the cows are of course lactating, and often about 75 per cent of the dairy herd is pregnant. Breast cancer in women is a hormone-responsive cancer.

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Further, intake of dairy and other animal proteins in some reports is also associated with higher blood levels of a hormone, insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), which is thought to promote certain cancers. “Dairy does have some positive nutritional qualities, but these need to be balanced against other possible, less helpful effects,” Fraser concluded. (IANS)