Stomach Cancer: Why You Should Eat White Vegetables and Fruit
According to a new large-scale study, consuming white vegetables and fruits would reduce the risk of stomach cancer by 33%, in particular because of their high vitamin C content.
This new study appeared in the European Journal of Cancer is the largest ever conducted studying the link between stomach cancer and diet.
Since the onset of stomach cancer does not cause symptoms, it is often discovered once the metastases have reached other organs, and treatments are then ineffective. This is why the vital prognosis of stomach cancer is still poor: only 15% of the people affected are still alive 5 years after diagnosis.
A very large global study
For this study, the researchers compiled 76 observational studies, including 37 in Europe, 11 in the United States and 21 in Japan. In total, no fewer than 6 million people were followed for an average of 11 years, making this study the largest study looking for the link between stomach cancer and diet.
The researchers found that consuming white fruits and vegetables could reduce the risk of stomach cancer by up to 33%! Regardless of the other well – known risk factors of salt consumption (processed meals, sausages, preserves), alcohol (especially beer and liqueurs) and smoking.
In comparison, the authors report that an increase in salt consumption of 5 g/day increases the risk of stomach cancer by 12%. For alcohol, an increase of 10 g per day (the equivalent of a small glass of wine) increases the risk by 5%. Salt stimulates the growth of Helicobacter pylori, a bacterium (also responsible for stomach ulcers) that secretes a carcinogenic molecule. While alcoholic beverages and tobacco smoke directly contain carcinogens (ethanol, tars, cadmium, pyrene, etc.).
How does diet protect against stomach cancer?
According to researchers, white vegetables and fruits are protective, but not the total intake of vegetables. In other words, protection would be specific to white fruits and vegetables such as white cabbage, cauliflower, radish (black on the outside and white on the inside), onions, garlic, endives, or Still the asparagus. An effect probably due to their interesting content of vitamin C, which has been suspected several times to protect against this cancer.
For example, 200 g of white cabbage contain about 72 mg of vitamin C, the equivalent of a large glass of pressed orange juice. While 100 g of leek contain 17 mg, and fruits in general around 20 mg / 100 g. As a reminder, the recommended daily intake of vitamin C is 80 mg but it would be, according to many researchers, greatly underestimated in man, because our ancestors of the Paleolithic consumed about 3000 mg/day!
White vegetables also contain sulfur compounds that can explain some of the benefits of these vegetables from cancers. These compounds are heat sensitive. It is better to cook white vegetables at low temperature preferably or with short cooking, or even better to consume raw.