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5Organics shown to lower cancer risk
26 October 2018, 06:12 | Rodolfo Wallace
Specifically, the study of the diets of almost 70,000 French adults shows those who primarily eat organic foods were more likley to ward off non-Hodgkin lymphoma and postmenopausal breast cancer compared with those who rarely or never eat organic food. They ate more fruit, vegetables, nuts and legumes, and less processed meat, other meat, poultry and milk - the kinds of dietary patterns the Cancer Council recommends to reduce the risk of disease.
Researchers pin point specifically pesticides that may have carcinogenic properties, like glyphosate, malathion and diazinon.
The research also found that the increase in risk is greater for women, with taller women 12% more likely to contract cancer and taller men 9% more likely to do so.
"In general, we know that healthier diets are better for you from cancer risk", said Dr. Shepard. Some of the specific cancers avoided are non-Hodgkin lymphoma and postmenopausal breast cancer write the researchers.
Each participant was given an organic food score - from 0-32 - based on their responses.
Lead author Dr Julia Baudry of the Centre of Research in Epidemiology and Statistics Sorbonne Paris said: "Our results indicate that higher organic food consumption is associated with a reduction in the risk of overall cancer".
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Most notably, those who ate more organic foods had better quality diets overall.
"If future studies provide more solid evidence supporting the consumption of organic foods for cancer prevention, measures to lower costs and ensure equitable access to organic products will be crucial". Specifically, they are 73 percent less likely to develop non-Hodgkin lymphoma and 21 percent less likely to be diagnosed with post-menopause breast cancer. The second most common was prostate cancer (180 cases), followed by skin cancer (135 cases), colorectal cancer (99 cases), non-Hodgkin lymphoma (47 cases), and other lymphomas (15 cases).
Investigators also carried out a sensitivity analysis by including the main determinants of pesticide exposure - namely vegetable products - in the organic food score. This revealed that the people who ate organic food most often had higher incomes, more education and higher-status jobs. They did collect information on why people were not consuming organic food, but they didn't try to separate whether the effects are the same if you're not eating organic foods because you don't care or because you can not afford it.
When they considered each type of cancer separately, they found that only three had a statistically significant association with organic food consumption. According to official data, more than 75% of the participants were females in their mid-forties.
She explained among the environmental risk factors for cancer there was growing evidence of a link between exposure to pesticides notably in farm workers and cancer development.
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