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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Fighting cancer with food?

Yesterday in my blog "The cook, the artist- how to love with food", I mentioned the growing awareness of certain foods which contain phytonutrients which are known to reduce cancers.
I said then that there is only anecdotal evidence about the cancer-fighting properties of these foods.

However since then I came across this video presentation at http://www.ted.com/talks/william_li.html  where Dr William Li, the head of the Angiogenesis Foundation, reveals his research into this topic. Consider it another piece of research into possible supplementary and non-medical treatment for cancer.
It's a 20 minute video.Dr Li talks about their research into angiogenesis which is the process by which cancerous tumors are fed by blood vessels, causing cancers to metastasize.
He refers to results of their treatment of animals with anti-angiogenesis drugs developed by his Foundation, which were found to reduce certain cancers by cutting off the blood supply to the cancerous cells.

He also postulates that the reason why anti-cancer drugs may not be completely working to kill cancerous cells, is that the treatment often comes too late into the game, when the growth is too advanced.
He asks "How can we prevent the tumors from growing in the first place?"
The answer says Dr Li might lie in eating certain foods which have been found to prevent the growth of cancerous cells. Here is the link to the slide which lists those foods that have been found to be anti-angiogenic.

He refers to a Harvard study which followed 79,000 men over 20 years. It was found that men who consumed 2-3 servings of cooked tomatoes a week, experienced up to a 50% reduction in the risk of developing prostate cancer.
While end stage cancer is difficult and expensive to treat Dr Li says, we can all benefit from a diet based on local , sustainable and anti-angiogenic crops.

For me, this is another piece of information to add to my quest into the causes and prevention of cancer.
It's worthwhile to check out the video and see for yourself.

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