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Thread: High-Protein Diet Raises Cancer Risk As Much As Smoking

  1. #1
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    High-Protein Diet Raises Cancer Risk As Much As Smoking

    I highly doubt that the link is actual proteins, and not the trans-fat, cholesterol, saturated fats present in some animal proteins.

    http://www.livescience.com/43839-too...cers-grow.html

    The researchers looked at more than 6,000 people ages 50 and older, and followed them for 18 years. They found that people ages 50 to 65 who ate a diet rich in animal proteins during middle age were more than four times as likely to die of cancer during the study period than those who ate a low-protein diet, according to the study published today (March 4) in the journal Cell Metabolism.

    "Popular diets in many cases have high proteins and low sugars. They may make you lose some weight, but that's not a good diet to increase life span," said study researcher Valter Longo, professor of biology at the University of Southern California (USC) and director of the USC Longevity Institute.

    The risks of a high-protein diet are even comparable to smoking, the researchers said. People who smoke are four times more likely to die of cancer compared with nonsmokers, Longo said.

    "Of course we cannot be sure of the reasons, but we have a pretty good idea, based on this study and also previous studies, as to why this is happening," Longo said.

    The study also found that middle-age people who ate foods rich in animal proteins — including meat, milk and cheese — were 75 percent more likely to die of any cause than those who ate a low-protein diet within the study period.

    The researchers defined a "high-protein" diet as deriving at least 20 percent of daily calories from protein, a "moderate" protein diet as deriving 10 to 19 percent of calories from protein, and a "low-protein" diet as less than 10 percent of calories from protein.

    However, what's bad for people at one age may be healthy at another. In the study, people older than 65 were less likely to die of cancer or other causes if they consumed more protein.


    "So, not all people benefit from low protein. Older people actually seem to benefit from moderate intake of protein," Longo said. Having enough protein in the diet may be important for older people to maintain a healthy weight and protect against frailty, the researchers said.

    The link between high-protein intake and risk of cancer almost vanished when the researchers considered participants whose protein mainly came from plants, such as beans.

    This may be because proteins in plants have a different composition, and don't stimulate growth hormones as efficiently as meat proteins, Longo said.

    The study suggests that the Mediterranean diet, which is low in animal protein and high in carbohydrates, may be best for extending life span, Longo said.

    The researchers said they recommend eating about 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight every day in middle age. For example, a 130-pound person should eat about 45 to 50 grams of protein a day, with a preference for plant proteins, the researchers said.

    To investigate why there may be a link between protein consumption and cancer, the researchers looked at mice that were injected with mouse skin cancer cells. They showed that a high amount of protein in the mouse diet promoted the tumor's survival and growth by increasing the levels of a growth hormone, called IGF-1.


    The researchers also measured the levels of IGF-1 for 2,000 people, randomly selected among those in their study, and found that for every 10 nanograms per milliliter increase in IGF-1, those on a high-protein diet were 9 percent more likely to die of cancer than those on a low-protein diet.

    "When you have a lot of protein, these growth factors go up, and we've shown that they help normal cells become cancer-like cells, and then they help the cells grow," Longo said.
    Personally I'm highly skeptical, I doubt that lean proteins like Isolate Whey, Chicken breast, Fish, etc, will do anything but good to you. The fact that plant proteins did the opposite suggest that it is animal fats/other products the one that do the damage, if anything I doubt the extra amino acids that animal protein might carry relative to plants will make any difference. I looked through the studies and the researchers fail to be specific about what they mean by "meat" or "dairy", they is also no mention of chicken or fish, the average American doesn't eat Fish or Chicken Breast as meat, they eat cheeseburgers, hamburgers, steaks, etc. We evolved in a high protein, high fat diet until 10,000 years ago. Also the 0.8 grams thing only works for people who aren't active, how about the active middle age population, middle age athletes, bodybuilders, what are the effects of protein intake in such population. This study however is a good eye opener for those who like to mess around with IGF-1 supplements or HGH, specially in the bodybuilding community.

    Link to study: http://www.cell.com/cell-metabolism/...5041311400062X
    Last edited by jeanL; 03-05-2014 at 05:39 PM.

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    Correlation does not equal causation. This is epidemiology 101. I'm surprised these researchers fell into such a basic trap, rendering their conclusion possible at best and plain pseudoscience at worst.

    As you mentioned, a lot of people consume high saturated fat levels* in accompaniment with the high protein. The recommended minimum of protein for an adult male in the UK is 45g. Most people I know consume more than this, particularly if they're involved in weight training.

    Plenty of work is needed before this sensationalist phrasing receives any merit. Such as, proposing a mechanism of pathology (how do animal proteins specifically increase malignancy risk).

    * Saturated fat is a part of a sensible diet. It's the trans fats which serve no biological purpose and were AFAIK artificially created to extend the lives of certain products. They've been phased out of many/most Western food producers as a result.

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    Probably the result of high red meat consumption being associated with elevated cancer risk. Which I think has been shown to be a legitimate risk factor.

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    They really ought to do more work on kind of protein. x mg of steamed shrimp or salmon is not the same as x amount of Big Macs. Yes they are high in fat and cholesterol and sodium but there must be significant offsetting effects of their antioxidants/omega-3s. I can't imagine many people are getting cancer because they are having too much poached salmon and steamed shrimp with their broccoli.
     

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMXX View Post
    Correlation does not equal causation. This is epidemiology 101. I'm surprised these researchers fell into such a basic trap, rendering their conclusion possible at best and plain pseudoscience at worst.
    I've posted this before , but it's great example of Correlation does not equal causation.
    Vodka and ice will ruin your kidneys. Rum and ice will ruin your liver. Whiskey and ice will ruin your heart. Gin and ice will ruin your brain. Coke and ice will ruin your teeth. That damn ice is lethal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AJL View Post
    They really ought to do more work on kind of protein. x mg of steamed shrimp or salmon is not the same as x amount of Big Macs. Yes they are high in fat and cholesterol and sodium but there must be significant offsetting effects of their antioxidants/omega-3s. I can't imagine many people are getting cancer because they are having too much poached salmon and steamed shrimp with their broccoli.
    Well at least they did not say eating food causes cancer but limited it to just protein. We would all starve if food was removed from our diet.

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    I'm really not suprised. It's not amazing that something that is anabolic for myocytes (muscle cells) to also be anabolic for cancer cells.

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    Its all so contradictory and confusing it hard to find a common thread in these studies. I think the main point was growth hormones in most farmed meat and dairy. Organic sounds great but its too expensive most of the time.

    The best I can come up with is maybe a diet based on organic veg and fish with the carbs coming from things like lentals, pulses and just a modest amount of wholemeal versions of pasta, rice etc. Probably the only alcohol that gets some health praises is red wine. Not that I stick to that sort of diet myself (apart from the wine)!

    I think though that a few thing have been consistent in the medical reports on diet like avoiding stuff with lots of refined sugar, salt and certain types of animal fat. That has been pretty consistent for a long time now. Shame that is the stuff that is easy to crave. I never find myself craving lettuce :0(

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    Health lobby ...

    http://www.scotsman.com/news/health/...diets-1-536491
    "Low carbohydrate diets conflict with decades of solid scientific research that clearly encourages us to reduce saturated fat and boost fruit, vegetable and fibre intake," said Dr Barbara Moore, president of the group Shape Up America, which founded the coalition. "Restricting carbohydrates stresses vital organs and alters brain metabolism, while offering no advantages in terms of either fat loss or long-term weight control."
    http://www.ravnskov.nu/myth7.htm
    "People who are faced with the many distorted facts about diet, cholesterol and heart disease often ask me why so many scientists unquestioningly accept the diet-heart idea. Here is Professor Mann's comment: Fearing to lose their soft money funding, the academicians who should speak up and stop this wasteful anti science are strangely quiet. Their silence has delayed a solution for coronary heart disease by a generation."
    http://www.carbohydratescankill.com/...-uffe-ravnskov

    http://lowcarbbetterhealth.blogspot....ov-md-phd.html

    Why is saturated fat still seen as a menace to health today? What is the evidence for this idea?

    The truth is that there is none. The truth is that the warnings against saturated fat are based upon manipulated data.

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    http://www.ravnskov.nu/myth6.htm

    A few years ago Drs. Thomas Newman and Stephen Hulley published the results from a meticulous review of what we know about cancer and lipid-lowering drugs. They found that clofibrate, gemfibrozil and all the statins stimulate cancer growth in rodents (89).

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