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Eating red meat may increase risk of breast cancer in women

One News Page Staff
Wednesday, 11 June 2014

Eating red meat may increase risk of breast cancer in womenby

Women who predominantly eat red meat face a 22 percent increase in risk of breast cancer, an extensive study suggests

BOSTON, MA -- Eating a lot of red meat and processed meat in early adult life may increase the risk of developing breast cancer by as much as 22 percent, a recent U.S. study has found. The findings were obtained by tracking the health of as many as 89,000 women aged 24 to 43, over a period of 20 years.

Lead researcher of the study, Maryam Farvid from the Department of Nutrition of the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, advised: "Cutting down [on] processed meat, limiting intake of red meat, and substituting a combination of poultry, fish, legumes and nuts as protein sources for red meat during early life seems beneficial for the prevention of breast cancer."

"Reduction of red meat intake in the diet not only decreases the risk of breast cancer but also decreases the risk of other chronic diseases, such as coronary heart disease, stroke, diabetes and other kind of cancers, as well," Farvid added.

The study did not determine the reason for the correlation between a diet rich in red meat and later development of breast cancer. Health experts believe that the saturated fat found in red meat boosts cholesterol levels and this in turn causes the body to produce more of the hormone estrogen which is associated with breast cancer.

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