Does sugar really feed cancer cells?
With all the information on the internet, especially with regard to sugar, you have made the decision to eliminate all foods responsible for the development of cancer or its progression, starting with sugar. But does sugar really feed cancer cells? Read the following before throwing the baby out with the bathwater at the same time!
As the number one enemy of cancer according to some sites, sugar would be accused of feeding your cancer cells. Regularly, new studies alert you. So would restrictive sugar-free diets be the answer?
First of all, it might be important to understand where the myth (yes, it's a myth) that sugar (or glucose) fuels cancer comes from. If the logic is that cancer cells need a lot of sugar to progress, eliminating it from your diet should help stop the growth of cancer, and could even prevent it from developing in the first place. Unfortunately, it is not that simple.
You see, all healthy cells also need sugar to function well. And there is no way (at the moment) to specifically deprive cancer cells of sugar without also harming healthy cells. You cannot tell your body to let healthy cells have the sugar they need and make sure they don't supply it to cancer cells.
Even when carbohydrates or sugar are not available because of your diet, your body will make it from other sources, such as protein or fat, to ensure the proper functioning of your body and brain. So removing sugar from your diet is not only difficult, it is almost impossible.
What the research says
According to the World Cancer Research Fund, the idea that sugar or artificial sweeteners are responsible for the development or growth of cancer is an oversimplification of complicated biology, and not scientifically proven with study results solid and controlled.
Same story with the Canadian Cancer Society, Cancer Research UK, Mayo Clinic and Oncology Nutrition: Eating sugary foods does not make cancer cells grow faster. Likewise, depriving them of sugar does not make them grow slower. And there is also no strong evidence that eating a very low carbohydrate diet reduces your risk of cancer, helps you as a "natural treatment", or increases your chances of survival if you have received a diagnosis of prostate cancer. People consume thousands of food components daily, which is why it is difficult to establish precisely how diet is associated with cancer.
In contrast, a diet high in foods containing sugar usually makes you fat, and scientific research indicates that being overweight and obese increases the risk of cancer. Obesity can cause hormonal fluctuations, which can also increase the risk of cancer. As healthy weight varies from person to person, to find out what yours is, ask your doctor for advice.
What you must remember
Blaming sugar as lethal gas or cancer enemy #1 is unrealistic. Preventing cancer begins with your lifestyle, such as leading a physically active lifestyle, adopting good eating and drinking habits, not smoking and maintaining a healthy weight. Easier said than done you might say? Hence our favorite expression One bite at a time!
Take the time to visit each of our pages on this website, as well as our YouTube channel, in order to get familiar with the disease with our expert lectures, our section on available resources, the support that is offered to you.
Do you have any questions or concerns? Above all, do not hesitate. Contact us at 1 855 899-2873 to discuss with a nurse specializing in uro-oncology. It's simple and free, like all our services.
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Sources et references
World Cancer Research Fund-Do sugar or artificial sweeteners increase my risk of cancer?
Société canadienne du cancer-Sucre et cancer
Cancer Research UK-Sugar and cancer – what you need to know
Oncology Nutrition-Does sugar feed cancer?
Mayo Clinic-Popular myths about the causes of cancer
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