Does Cheese Cause Breast Cancer

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How Do These Studies Work

Dairy cheese and breast cancer mortality risk – Neal Barnard

Before we continue, it is important to understand the limitations of the studies examining the link between diet and disease.

Most of them are so-called observational studies. These types of studies use statistics to estimate the relationship between dietary intake and the risk of getting a disease.

Observational studies can not prove that a food caused a disease, only that those who consumed the food were more or less likely to get the disease.

There are many limitations to these studies and their assumptions have occasionally been proven false in controlled trials, which are higher quality studies.

Yet, despite their weaknesses, well-designed observational studies are an integral part of nutrition science. They provide important clues, especially when coupled with plausible biological explanations.

Bottom Line:

Virtually all human studies on the connection between milk and cancer are observational in nature. They can not prove that dairy products cause a disease, only that consuming dairy is associated with it.

Sunflower And Pumpkin Seeds

These seeds contain high amounts of plant estrogen-like compounds.

A study of nearly 3,000 breast cancer patients and 5,000 women without the disease suggested that higher consumption of these seeds, as well as soybeans, reduced the risk of breast cancer after menopause. The study was published in the journal Nutrition and Cancer in 2012.

Prostate Cancer Risk And Dairy

Research has not proven whether dairy or calcium has a direct effect on prostate cancer risk. There are some studies that have found an increased risk in people who have large amounts of dairy. But theres not enough good evidence for this.

Its hard to measure how much dairy people eat over a long period of time. And there could be other factors that are different in people who eat and drink a lot of dairy. It is unclear whether its dairy increasing the risk of prostate cancer in current studies.

We need better designed studies to find out more about the potential link.

And remember, eating or drinking some dairy has health benefits. And the NHS Eatwell guide recommends having it as part of a healthy, balanced diet. Try to pick dairy or dairy alternative products that are low in fat and sugar.

Read more about recommended daily dairy portions below.

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Should I Eat Dairy Foods

The current evidence that dairy products can protect against cancer or increase the risk of cancer is not conclusive. Cancer Council supports that the proven health benefits of dairy foods outweigh the unproven harms.

Dairy foods should be eaten as part of a varied and nutritious diet. Cancer Council supports the Australian Dietary Guidelines, which encourage adults to eat at least two and a half serves of dairy foods each day and to choose reduced fat varieties of dairy foods where possible.

Analysis About The Effect Of High

Breast Cancer News: Does Dairy Cause Breast Cancer?

In total, 12 studies investigated the relationship between high-fat dairy products and BC. Six studies compared the risk rates between premenopausal and postmenopausal populations. Among 424,176 participants, 19,208 were newly diagnosed with BC. After meta-analysis, no statistically significant difference was observed in the effect of high-fat dairy products on all populations . However, there was a harm trend, indicating that high-fat dairy product consumption tends to increase BC risk in female populations, with moderate heterogeneity . Apart from that, the analysis also revealed that high-fat dairy products did not affect premenopausal and postmenopausal populations . The heterogeneity between different studies was all 0%. Table comprises the detailed data.

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Basic Facts On Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is the most common cancer among Canadian women .1 There is no single cause of breast cancer however, there are many risk factors including the following, among others:1,2

  • Personal history of breast cancer
  • Family history of breast and other cancers
  • Breast cancer gene mutations
  • Hormone replacement therapy
  • Obesity

Doctors Against Dairy: Cheese Linked To Breast Cancer Risk

Petition signed by 12,000 American doctors calls on FDA to require warning labels on cheeses

In one of the more startling developments in food science, 12,000 doctors in the United States are petitioning for warning labels on cheese. Dairy cheese contains reproductive hormones that may increase breast cancer mortality risk, they warned.

What, is cheddar the new cigarette? No. Casein and estrogen are not nicotine and nobodys about to blotch Brie with a label saying Eating this kills.

It is not suggested that eating cheese causes breast cancer. It isnt even categorically proven that eating cheese really is associated with higher breast cancer rates, or that eating cheese causes higher mortality rates among women who already developed breast cancer. There are a lot of studies but the methodology is hardly uniform or even necessarily reliable, and there are innumerable parameters, including some that may be overriding. Like smoking, or living in nuclear waste. Those are parameters that tend to outweigh other parameters.

But the associations found so far are compelling enough for the doctors to choose to speak up.

A womans risk of developing breast cancer is 12.8 percent, or one in eight, in the United States. For men, its 0.13 percent, or just over one in a hundred.

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Foods From Animal Sources

Animal foods is a term used to describe all foods of animal origin. These foods may be derived from the animal flesh itself or foods that are produced by animals

Animal foods are generally a good source of protein, but the fat content varies according to the specific species from which they are derived. Dairy products are a good source of calcium. Consumption of foods such as red meat and fish generally increases with economic development, whereas consumption of dairy products is variable, particularly in Asia where many populations are lactose intolerant.

Animal foods such as meat and fish may be processed before consumption by smoking, curing, salting or by adding preservatives. Meat and fish are also often cooked using very high temperatures during frying, grilling or barbecuing . These methods of processing and preparation may affect the chemical composition as well as the nutritional value of animal foods.

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Analysis About The Effects Of Non

Doctors: Cheese may increase breast cancer risk

Thirteen studies explored the effect of non-fermented dairy products on BC risk in female populations, six of which included detailed data on different menopausal conditions. A total of 17,145 participants were newly diagnosed with BC during the study period. The analysis showed that non-fermented dairy products did not affect all populations , including premenopausal and postmenopausal population with low heterogeneity. Table includes the detailed data.

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What Other Research Has Found

I think its a very interesting study in a unique population, said , ScD, senior scientific director of epidemiology research at the American Cancer Society.

The women in this study are unique in that they consume a lot of soy and much lower amounts of milk than the general population, she told Healthline.

Most studies in non-vegetarian cohorts have not shown drinking milk increases breast cancer risk, she noted. It has been inconsistent. Some have shown that drinking milk lowers breast cancer risk, some have shown no association, and a couple have shown positive associations.

She pointed to the Continuous Update Project by the World Cancer Research Fund and the American Institute for Cancer Research, which does continual analysis of research literature.

When you look at the totality of the evidence, were not seeing an increased risk of breast cancer with greater milk consumption, she said.

Susan McCann, PhD, RD, is a professor of oncology in the Department of Cancer Prevention at the Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center in Buffalo, New York.

Her team of researchers investigated links between the types and quantity of dairy products consumed and the risk of breast cancer.

Their findings were published in Current Developments in Nutrition in 2017.

Contrary to the results of the IJE paper, we found a weak, not statistically significant, 15 percent reduction in breast cancer risk with total dairy intake, she told Healthline.

Saturated Fat And Estrogenic Hormones In Cheese Are Linked To Breast Cancer Risks

Breast cancer is the second most common cause of death for American woman, with more than 240,000 new cases and more than 40,000 deaths annually, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Cheese is implicated in the problem because a lot of commercial dairy milk comes from cows treated with hormones, which can end up in the milk. The cheese-making process can concentrate some of these hormones like IGF-1, which research has linked to an increased risk of breast cancer.

The saturated fat in most cheese is also believed to play a role, since studies have found that specifically high-fat dairy raises the risk of breast cancer mortality.

“Instead of cheese manufacturers slapping a pink ribbon on products as they have done during previous Breast Cancer Awareness Months, they should be adding warning labels,” Dr. Neal Barnard, the president of PCRM and author of “The Cheese Trap” and “Your Body in Balance,” said in a press release. “We want women to be aware that dairy cheese could put them at risk of dying from breast cancer.”

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What Is A Serve Of Dairy

One serve of dairy equals:

  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup evaporated unsweetened milk
  • 200g yoghurt

Practical and healthy ways to consume dairy foods include:

  • a milkshake made with skim milk and fresh banana or berries
  • low fat vanilla yoghurt with some passionfruit or natural muesli
  • a low fat yoghurt dip with vegetable sticks as a snack
  • a fruit salad topped with some low fat natural yoghurt
  • bake potatoes in the oven and stuff them with vegetables and grated low-fat tasty cheese
  • low fat cream cheese as a spread on sandwiches instead of butter
  • low fat natural yoghurt with chopped mint or coriander as an accompaniment to lamb or Indian flavoured dishes
  • shaved parmesan cheese over the top of pasta dishes and risottos
  • a bean dip made by mashing baked beans and adding some chilli and grated low fat tasty cheese before heating to serve.

How Much Dairy Should I Eat Or Drink

Drinking milk probably does not cause breast cancer

Milk and dairy are good sources of calcium and protein. The NHS Eatwell Guide recommends having some dairy or dairy alternatives as part of a healthy, balanced diet.

The amount of fat , salt and sugar in dairy products can vary. Where possible choose low-sugar and reduced-fat products as they are healthier dairy options.

Examples include:

  • 1% fat milk
  • Reduced-fat cheese
  • Lower-fat spreads
  • Plain, low-fat yoghurt

Not everyone can eat dairy and some people choose not to. Dairy alternatives are also good sources of calcium. For example, unsweetened, calcium-fortified soya versions of milk, cheese and yoghurt.

The British Dietetic Association recommends you aim for 3 portions of dairy foods a day.

Examples of adult portions of dairy include:

  • A glass of 1% fat milk
  • A 150g pot of plain, low-fat yogurt
  • A matchbox-size piece of cheese

Remember, when it comes to cancer risk, your overall diet is much more important than individual foods.

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Dairy Products And Breast Cancer Risk: What To Know

  • New research from Loma Linda University School of Public Health concludes daily consumption of dairy milk can increase breast cancer risk.
  • The researchers said they didnt find any increased risk for cheese or yogurt.
  • Other experts point out that previous studies have arrived at different conclusions.
  • The experts say moderation is key when it comes to consuming dairy products.

Do dairy products, particularly milk, increase the risk of breast cancer?

It might depend on the research youre reading.

A new study suggests that drinking dairy milk daily, even in small amounts, can increase your risk of getting breast cancer as much as 80 percent.

The findings from a team of researchers at Loma Linda University School of Public Health in Southern California were recently published in the International Journal of Epidemiology.

We found that at relatively low doses of dairy milk, less than a cup a day, there was a steep rise in the risk of breast cancer said Gary E. Fraser, MBChB, PhD, a professor in the School of Public Health and Medicine at Loma Linda University and the studys lead author.

At a cup a day, we were seeing more than a 50 percent increase in risk, Fraser told Healthline. At 2 to 3 cups per day, the risk increased 70 percent to 80 percent.

The researchers analyzed nearly 8 years of data from 52,795 women in North America.

Their median age was 57 and about a third of them were black women.

The women answered questionnaires about their food intake.

Breast Cancer Risk And Dairy

There is no good, consistent evidence that milk and dairy products can cause breast cancer.

Some studies have found that dairy might increase the risk of breast cancer. Whilst others have found it may decrease breast cancer risk. We need more high-quality studies to understand whether there is a link.

The best thing you can do is to eat a healthy, balanced diet.

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Does Dairy Cause Or Prevent Cancer An Objective Look

Cancer risk is strongly affected by diet.

Many studies have examined the relationship between dairy consumption and cancer.

Some studies indicate that dairy may protect against cancer, while others suggest that dairy may increase cancer risk.

The most commonly consumed dairy products include milk, cheese, yogurt, cream and butter.

This article reviews the evidence linking dairy products with cancer, looking at both sides of the argument.

Study: Do Ice Cream And Cheese Up Risk For Breast Cancer Mortality

Medical group calls for warning labels on cheese tied to breast cancer
Alice RD

Dairy foods like ice cream, regular cheese and whole milk are high in fat and saturated fat, linked to an increased risk for heart disease. There is little evidence that total dietary fat affects cancer risk, but it is less clear whether specific high fat foods or types of fats affect cancer risk.

Now, a new study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute suggests that, for breast cancer survivors, consuming high fat dairy foods may be related to an increased risk of breast cancer mortality.

The researchers followed 1893 women diagnosed with early-stage invasive breast cancer who were enrolled in the Life After Cancer Epidemiology study. The participants completed food frequency questionnaires, including how much dairy they consumed, when they entered the study and in 6 year follow-up surveys. In this study median follow-up was 11.8 years.

In the study, women who consumed the most high-fat dairy foods had a 49 per cent increased risk of dying from breast cancer compared to those who consumed the least amount of high-fat dairy . The researchers adjusted for many factors including smoking, BMI, physical activity, age, cancer stage, and meat, fiber and alcohol consumption.

Low-fat dairy and overall dairy intake did not link to breast cancer recurrence or breast cancer survival.

If you dont include dairy in your diet, good substitutes include calcium and vitamin D fortified plant-based milks and related products, like soy milk or almond milk.

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Fda Urged To Put Cancer Warnings On Cheese

The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine is urging the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to place breast cancer warnings on cheese.

PCRM says it combines the clout and expertise of more than 12,000 physicians with the dedicated actions of more than 175,00 members.

The organization is pushing for cheese products to have warning labels similar to those on cigarette packets. It has sent a petition on the subject to the FDA, signed by its president Neal Barnard, MD.

PCRM gives an example of a warning in the petition. It suggests, dairy cheese contains reproductive hormones that may increase breast cancer mortality risk.

Breast cancer is among the most common causes of death in women, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. PCRM submitted its petition on October 3, at the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Instead of cheese manufacturers like Kraft slapping a pink ribbon on products like Philadelphia Cream Cheese and Macaroni & Cheese, as they have done during previous Breast Cancer Awareness Months, they should be adding warning labels, said Barnard in a statement. We want women to be aware that dairy cheese could put them at risk of dying from breast cancer.

Studies have linked cheese consumption with a higher risk of breast cancer.

What You Can Do

Ensure you are getting a healthy amount of vitamin D. Some can be obtained from your diet , but most is made by your body during exposure to sunlight. If you can not get sufficient vitamin D levels through sunshine and diet, vitamin D supplements are recommended to help restore vitamin D levels to a healthy level.

If you have any concerns ask your doctor to check your levels.

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What Does This Mean For Me

Avoiding dairy milk is unlikely to protect you from breast cancer. In this study, the link between drinking dairy milk and increased breast cancer risk was quite small. About 1 to 2 women in 100 who drank no milk at all got breast cancer compared to 3 to 4 in 100 women who drank a daily glass or two of milk.

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This article is relevant for:

Women who consume dairy or soy

This article is also relevant for:

Healthy people with average cancer risk

Women under 45

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