Thursday, December 2, 2010
The China Study: An incredible journey of discovery as researchers see a direct link between cancer and diet...
This book is a MUST READ for anyone who is fighting cancer, or wants to do everything they can to prevent cancer and other chronic health issues.
Probably what is most fascinating about the book is that you feel as though you are making the discoveries along with the scientists. They don't just come out with what their lab results are and tell you what it means... it all begins with their own process of discovery. Their discovery becomes our discovery.
In the beginning, the researchers are asked to investigate high rates of liver cancer in the Philippines. Expecting it to be a problem among the poor children, the researchers were prepared to recommend a hearty American protein-rich diet to solve their nutrition needs. When they arrived, they found that the "Children who ate the highest-protein diets were the ones most likely to get liver cancer! They were the children from the wealthiest families."
Their journey of discovery continued in the lab, as the researchers literally were watching cancer tumors in mice grow as protein consumption grew (over 20% of their diet... compared with 30% which is the typical American diet). When the protein levels dropped below 5% the tumors literally stopped in their tracks. They were able to turn on and turn off the cancer growth like a light switch.
But the most amazing part of the book - a study that can never be repeated because the world is so developed that groups simply aren't isolated anymore - is The China Study.
In the 1970s, the premier of China, Chou EnLai, was dying of cancer. He initiated a nationwide survey collecting information about this disease that has confused doctors and researchers the world over. At the time, China still had many regions where families did not move, the children ate what their parents ate, who ate what generations before them ate. They were able to link cancer rates to the types of diets in the different regions. What they found was the areas that consumed high amounts of animal protein had the highest rates of cancer. The regions that used protein sparingly (a dish with mostly vegetables and small bits of meat) had the lowest rates of cancer.
The study goes further into analysis of different countries and their cancer rates....
This is an incredibly dense book, but amazing for a cancer survivor to read - especially if you don't want the cancer to return. It is amazing to think of the foods we eat having a direct impact on the growth of cancer cells. Just as we want to eat foods that fight cancer: raw vegetables and fruits, we want to reduce foods that may promote cancer.
This is information you won't get on the American Cancer Society website (it's a government agency and the beef lobbyists wouldn't allow it), which just reiterates our responsibility to fight our own cancer - and follow all the studies available to us worldwide.
You don't have to completely change your diet, just modify it. Reduce the foods that promote cancer. Increase the foods that fight it. Simple changes can have a significant impact on your survival!!