I have recently read the cancer prevention measures recommended by the charity, The World Cancer Research Fund and found them disturbing. “Research” charities are often shop windows for pharmaceutical companies. Make no mistake, when you donate to them you are giving to Big Pharma – and they are already exceptionally wealthy. We all want to see the back of cancer, but we need to be researching causes, more than cures. But then no one makes a profit if cancer is prevented. And therein lies the rub… It always comes back to money.
Below are the Cancer Research recommendations and also how I feel about them. I don’t know everything and don’t profess to, but my research into evolution and diet (which no one pays me for!) has formed my beliefs about staying healthy.
“Be a healthy weight”
What’s a healthy weight? Governments decide and their recommendations for health are way out of date. Being “overweight” is usually a symptom of another problem – not a disease in itself. Consider – it’s perfectly possible to be a “healthy weight” and eat junk food. It is also possible to be following a great diet, work out and be “overweight”.
Obesity is a problem, but if we follow the rest of the Cancer Research guidelines, this particular problem won’t go away.
I agree. We leave our homes in the morning, get into our cars, sit at a desk all day and then in front of the television all evening! This message is getting through but there is still room for improvement. Going to the gym or running is not necessary – and for many just not possible. It’s activity that’s important – walk to work or just go for a walk, wash the car yourself instead of taking it to the car wash, tend your garden, play sports etc.
Incidentally there is good evidence that lots of exercise (although it may help initially), is not the long-term solution to obesity.
“Enjoy more grains, fruit, veg and beans”
Grains are fed to cattle and other animals to make them fat. Geese are fed corn (grain) to give them fatty livers (we would call it fatty liver disease) for foie gras. In a nutshell, unnatural diets have consequences – grains fatten us as they are reduced to glucose and this increases our blood insulin levels. Insulin facilitates the storage of excess glucose as fat. Excess sugar and insulin in the blood stream will encourage cancer as they are pro-inflammatory.
Veg – yes! All are good but go easy on the starchy ones if you are trying to lose weight.
Fruit – berries and cherries are the best and have useful anti-cancer antioxidants. Fructose (fruit sugar) is metabolised differently to glucose and overdoing fruit can also lead to fatty liver disease.
Beans – very hard on the digestion and can prevent the absorption of some minerals. They also contain substances that can interfere with protein digestion.
“Avoid high calorie foods”
Please stop looking at the calorie content of natural foods. The most nutritious foods often are high in calories, but we need them. Organic (preferably raw) dairy foods, lard, dripping, olive and coconut oils and fatty meat should be included in our diets. Not only do they contain essential anti-cancer nutrients, but they give us satiety. In other words, they help to stop us from overeating!
Cancer Research are right that processed foods should be avoided. One very good reason (which they don’t mention) is that these foods often contain seed oils (vegetable oil). Seed oil and margarine are highly pro-inflammatory and contribute to cancers.
“Limit consumption of red and processed meat”
Conventionally reared meat and charcuterie made from them, may contain antibiotic residues. Bacon, ham, salami etc may also contain sugars and preservatives. It is best to limit these. However, pasture reared meat (with its fat) and charcuterie may be eaten more often as they will not contain these chemicals.
“Limit consumption of sweetened drinks”
I agree with this but would suggest avoiding artificially sweetened drinks altogether. Drink water and teas.
“For cancer prevention don’t drink alcohol”
Grapes and grains are two of the most heavily sprayed crops. I am not suggesting you can drink a bottle of organic wine a night! However, you will be taking in fewer chemicals if you opt for organic. My view is that sensible drinking will not harm you.
“Don’t rely on supplements”
I agree. Supplements are often chemical copies of those found in nature. There are a few good ones, but unless you know exactly what you are doing, it is easy to take too much/take the wrong combination/take the wrong form of a vitamin etc. If you eat the right food, you will not have the expense of supplements! You will also be taking the right form and combination because that’s what nature does. Use the money to buy better quality food.
“Breastfeed your baby”
Yes, yes, yes! Best for you and your baby.
There is so much more to say so part 2 coming soon.