Health Care

Soy may improve survival rates in some breast cancer patients

Soy may improve survival rates in some breast cancer patients”

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women in the United Kingdom with over 53,000 new cases each year.

Women were then divided into five groups based on the inflammatory scores for their high school diets.

A team of researchers, writing in the journal Cancer, looked at the diets of more than 6,000 women with breast cancer. After nine years, those women who consumed high amounts of isoflavones had a risk lower by 21 percent of dying than those who consumed lower amounts or no amounts at all.

In the current study, Zhang and her colleagues, including Esther John, Ph.D., senior cancer epidemiologist at the Cancer Prevention Institute of California, analyzed data on 6,235 American and Canadian breast cancer patients from the Breast Cancer Family Registry, a National Cancer Institute-funded program that has collected clinical and questionnaire data on enrolled participants and their families since 1995.

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"Our results suggest that a habitual diet that promotes chronic inflammation when consumed during adolescence or early adulthood may indeed increase the risk of breast cancer in younger women before menopause", Michels said in a statement. In addition, the study asked women to recall the diets they ate in high school, and some people may not have remembered their diets very well, which could affect the results, the researchers said. More than 11,000 women die out of the disease in the country every year.

This drop in the mortality risk was noticed only in women who had hormone receptor-negative cancer and women who had not been taking anti-estrogen therapy such as tamoxifen.

The effect worked for women with oestrogen-receptor negative breast cancer, which doesn't respond to hormonal drugs.

A Mediterranean diet can help reduce the risk of one of the worst types of breast cancer by 40 per cent, an extensive study has suggested. No associations were found for women with hormone-receptor-positive tumors and for women who received endocrine therapy. It is also characterised by a low intake of red meat and processed foods.

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The traditional Mediterranean diet includes a moderate consumption of alcohol - however this was excluded from the study due to its known links to breast cancer.

Study leader Prof Piet van den Brandt said ER-negative breast cancer is harder to treat and more likely to prove fatal. They discovered that soy is not only good for breast cancer survivors, but it can act as protection against the disease.

"Our findings suggest that survival may be better in patients with a higher consumption of isoflavones", she said.

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