Food Better Than Supplements for Cancer Prevention: Texas Expert


Nutritional supplements are popular among Americans but people need to educate themselves and use concern when using these products to try to decrease their risk of cancer, says a University of Texas expert.
"Researchers are still hesitant about whether or not minerals, herbs and other plants taken in pill, capsule, tablet or liquid form in fact prevent cancer," Sally Scroggs, health education manager at the Cancer Prevention Center at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Medical Center, said in a news discharge from the center.
Vitamins E and C, for example, were found not to prevent cancer in the large-scale Women's Health Study and the Physicians' Health revision II. Result from other studies suggest that some supplements may actually increase cancer risk by disturbing the balance of nutrients in the body.
"If you eat lots of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and beans, you must get the nutrients, including fiber, vitamins and minerals, your body needs to lower your chances of getting diseases like cancer," Scroggs said. "Taking a pill can't restore a healthy diet."
She recommended eating plenty of foods loaded with cancer-fighting nutrients such as beta-carotene, selenium, lycopene, resveratrol and vitamins A, C and E.
This includes women who are pregnant or breast-feeding; people at risk for vitamin D deficiency or osteoporosis; and people at risk for B-12 deficiency, including those aged 50 and older and vegans who devour no animal products.
Scroggs finished that if you're considering taking supplements, consult with a doctor or registered dietician first.

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