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The Cancer Research medical journal has found that a low carbohydrate, high protein diet slows tumor growth and prevents cancer from starting.
Scientists from the BC Cancer Research Center in Canada gave one group of mice a traditional western diet that is typically high in carbohydrates and low in protein and the other group of mice a diet that was low in carbs and high in protein. The protein was increased, rather than the fat, because of links with high fat diets to cancer and heart disease.
They found that animal tumors grew quicker on a western high carbohydrate diet. Additionally, those on the low carb, high protein diet had lower blood glucose, insulin and lactate levels.
The mice on the western diet developed cancer at a rate of nearly 50 percent, strikingly similar to the one in three humans who will develop cancer at some point in their lives, whereas no mice in the low carb group got cancer and all of them reached or exceeded their life span. Only one mouse on the western diet lived to its expected life span.
The researchers concluded, "Taken together, our findings offer a compelling preclinical illustration of the ability of a low CHO diet in not only restricting weight gain but also cancer development and progression."
Their comments about weight gain are important, because the western world is facing an obesity crisis. Obesity rates have increased in 28 states of America and more than two thirds of states have an adult obesity rate of over 25 percent. Back in 1991, there was no state that had an obesity rate above 20 percent. In addition, almost one third of children and teenagers are obese.
In the post-war era, food was typically much higher fat with people regularly eating things like lard and yet the average woman had a slim, hour-glass figure, probably because they ate more protein and so they weren’t always snacking.
So, what about the nutritional recommendations given to us that say we should all consume high carbohydrate, low fat and low protein diets? One would assume that such advice would be founded in solid scientific evidence. This is not the case.