Published: Fri, May 19, 2017
Health | By Jay Jacobs

Eating nuts may cut risk of colon cancer recurrence by half

Eating nuts may cut risk of colon cancer recurrence by half

"This difference [in benefit] may be due to the different biochemical composition between peanuts and tree nuts", Fadelu said. Dr Fadelu and colleagues used this information to calculate the patients' weekly intake of nuts, and whether this was associated with the risk of colon cancer recurrence and survival.

Eating over 50 grammes of tree nuts such as almonds, walnuts and cashews every week can more than halve the risk of death from colon cancer, a new study has found. Researchers at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute in the USA studied 826 patients with stage 3 colon cancer, who consumed two ounces or more of nuts per week.

The findings are scheduled to be presented at the upcoming 2017 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) annual meeting in Chicago from June 2-6. In that study, research showed people who ate nuts every day were 11 percent less likely to die from cancer than people who consumed no nuts. Those who ate at least two ounces of nuts a week had a 42 percent lower chance of cancer recurrence and a 57 percent lower risk of dying from the disease. This finding helped bolster the results found in another study that found colon cancer survivors with healthy lifestyles had a 42 percent lower risk of death.

For the trial, patients were required to complete a dietary questionnaire.

"Nut consumption is one of the lifestyle factors that may potentially change the risk of colon cancer coming back, although these are not replacements for standard therapies", said Temidayo Fadelu, MD, a Dana-Farber postdoctoral fellow.

Tree nuts contain high amounts of healthy fatty acids, fiber and flavonoids.

Researchers were particularly interested in nut consumption because it has been linked to lower incidence of obesity, Type-2 diabetes, and reduction in insulin resistance. Colon cancer, for example, is the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in women and the second leading cause in men in the United States. Researchers surveyed nearly 1,000 patients about their lifestyles, scoring them against recommendations in the American Cancer Society's Nutrition and Physical Activity Guidelines for Cancer Survivors. The study revealed that during the course of the seven-year follow-up period, 332 cases of cancer reoccurrence existed and 299 patients succumbed to death.

The numbers improved even more if patients also moderated their alcohol consumption, researchers found. Dr. Hayes has been suggested that eating nuts and a healthy diet are generally factors which perhaps deserve more attention from clinicians and patients when treating colorectal cancer. This group had both a lower risk of cancer recurrence and higher overall survival.

"That's a very unsafe interpretation, and that's not what we're trying to get across", said Hayes, who is clinical director of breast oncology at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center. "Chemotherapy clearly saves lives".

Like this: