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THE VERDICT: EAT MORE FRUITS AND VEGGIES, LESS FAT
Two new studies released this month addressed the possible links between
diet and lymphoma risk. The results
show that we need to emphasize fruits and vegetables and limit processed meats,
fats, cheese, and desserts.
In a large study conducted in Canada of over 1600 people with
non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and over 5,000 people with no lymphoma, researchers
attempted to determine whether the risks of some types of NHL were affected
differently by diet than others. Results
did not show a significant difference between NHL types with regard to diet/risk
factors. Overall, though, they
found an increased risk of NHL for people who ate more processed meats, cheese,
eggs, and desserts, and for those who consume high levels of fats.
In this particular study, vegetables and/or fruits did not appear to
reduce lymphoma risk.
In an American study of 450 lymphoma patients and 400 people without
lymphoma, researchers found that individuals who consumed three or more servings
of vegetables per day (not including potatoes) had a 40% lower risk of
developing lymphoma compared to people who ate less than one serving per day.
They found that green, leafy vegetables and those from the broccoli and
cabbage family reduced risk the most, though other types of vegetables and
fruits also reduced risk. They
also found that higher intakes of selenium and zinc were associated with lower
risk of NHL.
Other studies of diet and lymphoma risk have shown
varying results, though an increased risk for high processed meats/fats/dairy
products and a reduced risk for higher intake of vegetables/fruits have appeared
in several studies. Differences
in methods, especially in evaluating relative amounts of specific foods and food
components in the diet, may account for these differing results. More study is needed in this area.
L.E.; Cerhan, J.; Lim, U.; Davis, S.; Cozen, W.; Schenk, M.; Hartge, P.; and
Ward, M.. Association of vegetables, fruits, and antioxidant vitamins
with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma: a population-based case-control study.
Presented at American Association for Cancer Reearch Third Annual
International Conference on Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Research, October,
2004. Fred Hutchinson Cancer
Research Center, Karmanos Cancer Institute, Mayo Clinic, National Cancer
Institute, University of Southern California, Los Angeles.
M.P.; Bassani, D.G.; Klar, N.S.; Sloan, M.; Kreiger, N.; and the Canadian Cancer
Registries Epidemiology Research Group. Dietary
factors and risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma by histologic subtype: a case-control
analysis. Cancer Epidemiology,
Biomarkers & Prevention 13(10): 1665-1676, October, 2004.
Cancer Care Ontario; Federal University of Pelotas (Brazil); University