Sugar may flavor your food, but it can also be dangerous especially for women.
A research by MD Anderson Cancer Center reveals that high consumption of sugar, mainly fructose, is linked to the enhancement of common signaling pathways found in breast cancer. These are the enzyme 12-lipoxygenase (12-LOX) and the fatty acid 12-HETE. This is based on the research they made on several mouse models.
In a 2000 report by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), sugar consumption in the country dramatically increased with Americans eating more than 150 pounds of caloric sweeteners. They also consumed more high-fructose corn syrups, a common ingredient in many food products on shelves today, by as much as 39% or 43 pounds since 1950.
In their experiment with the mice, the animals were grouped into four, all of which was given a specific diet such as starch control and high sugar. While those that ate only starch had more manageable tumors, at least 50% of the mice that consumed more sugar had a more defined tumor development.
Although there have already been previous studies that looked into the role of sugar in cancer growth, this is the first time that researchers linked it with breast cancer.
Despite the results, the researchers mentioned the study's limitation. For example, the study doesn't answer how these signaling pathways are activated in the first place. Thus, more investigation is necessary.
Nevertheless, they recommend following the dietary guidelines on sugar consumption. The World Health Organization (WHO) suggested that daily sugar intake should be no more than 10%. Further, to enjoy the benefits of the cutback, a 5% maximum daily sugar consumption is ideal.
Aside from breast cancer, the research also linked high sugar consumption with lung cancer metastasis. Previous unrelated researches have also blamed sugar to increased obesity, diabetes, and hypertension.
The study is now available in Cancer Research since Jan 1.