Eating common carbs ‘increases your risk of breast cancer by 20%’

EATING common carbohydrates can increase your risk of breast cancer by 20 per cent, experts have warned.Breast cancer is the most common type of the..


EATING common carbohydrates can increase your risk of breast cancer by 20 per cent, experts have warned.

Breast cancer is the most common type of the illness in the UK, with most women who are diagnosed being over the age of 50.

Experts have warned that popular carbohydrates could increase breast cancer risk by 20 per cent

Both women and men can get breast cancer, but it’s more common in females.

The NHS says your risk increases with age, if you have a family history, you’re tall, overweight or obese, drink alcohol or have previously found a lump.

But new research has now revealed that certain foods could also raise your risk of breast cancer by around 20 per cent.

It’s foods such as refined grains – which include white rice, flour and bread.

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Products such as cereals, crackers, desserts and pastries are all made with refined grains.

Potatoes were also found to be problematic, as well as fruit juices, sugar-sweetened beverages and desserts.

Medics in France said that women who ate an ‘unhealthy’ plant-based diet were more at risk.

For the study, the researchers focused on the difference between healthy plant-based foods, such as whole grains, fruit, vegetables, nuts and legumes – compared to ‘unhealthy’ carbs.

Based on over 65,000 postmenopausal women who were tracked for more than two decades, medics found those who ate the healthier options had a 14 per cent lower risk of breast cancer.

Those who consumed an ‘unhealthy’ plant-based diet had a 20 per cent higher risk of the illness, with the findings being consistent across all breast cancer subtypes.

Sanam Shah, a doctoral candidate in the Center for Research in Epidemiology and Population Health at Paris-Saclay University said: “These findings highlight that increasing the consumption of healthy plant foods and decreasing the consumption of less healthy plant foods and animal foods might help prevent all types of breast cancer.”

The women studied had to fill out dietary questionnaires for an average of 21 years.

Over the course of the study, 3,968 women were diagnosed with breast cancer.

The medics said that comparing disease rates among women with different diets revealed significant differences in cancer risk among those with healthy and unhealthy eating plans.

However, they point out that a plant-based diet does not equate to a vegan or vegetarian diet, but rather describes a general emphasis on plant-based foods over animal-based foods.

The findings suggest that cutting out on some carbohydrates could be helpful when it comes to the prevention of cancer.

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But Shah said research is needed to assess the connections between diet and cancer risk in diverse populations, in particular to determine causality.

The full findings of the study will be presented at Nutrition 2022 Live Online.