Higher fiber cuts breast cancer risk

Higher fiber cuts breast cancer risk

What you ate as a teen determines your risk for disease


Teens and young adults can decrease Breast Cancer with diet 

An important study (MB Farvid, Pediatrics 2016; page 1226)  compared the diets of over 40,000 nurses to see whether what they ate as teenagers and young adults made a difference in whether or not they developed breast cancer after menopause. 

What they found was striking. Women who ate the most fruit, vegetables and fiber had 20-25% fewer invasive breast cancers (those are the bad kind) than the women who ate the least fiber. 

The teens and young adults in the top group ate an average of about 24-28 grams of fiber daily compared to 12 -14 grams per day in the diets  who had the least. The fiber content wasn't just important for those in the top or bottom, but for all the women. For every 10 grams of fiber eaten daily there was a 13% decrease in breast cancer risk. And this had nothing to do with their weight, BMI or whether they were on birth control pills. 

This could be because of protective antioxidants and polyphenols found in fruits and vegetables or because fiber binds to estrogen and hormones  in the intestine and prevents them from being absorbed, as the authors suggest. 

fiber and breast cancer

Bottom Line

Another important reason to make sure girls have lots of fiber in their diets.