Cancer is NOT caused by genes; research shows no genetic basis for cancer

Cancer is NOT caused by genes; research shows no genetic basis for cancer

In the 1950s through the 1970s, textbooks that dealt with cancer's origins included little or no discussion of nutrition. Research hoped to find a single, identifiable, disease-causing substance or organism (as had been found with tuberculosis), and some magic bullet that could overcome it. But cancer is not like tuberculosis or other infections, which arrive out of the blue and can be driven out simply by taking antibiotics. Cancer begins slowly, taking a long time to develop from a single cell into a noticeable mass. Its course is influenced by an immense number of complex, interactive events in our every day lives. Since the 1970s, scientists have began to take renewed interest in the role of diet in causing cancer and in changing its course once it has begun. Look at population groups with high and low rates of cancer, it became clear that cancer risk is not passed from person to person, like a cold for flu. Rather, the likelihood of developing cancer is closely linked to cultural tradition, especially our eating habits. Although heredity can be a factor, this is just one small part of the picture. After all, as we saw earlier, genes don't always changes as people migrate from one part of the world to another, or from rural areas to cities.

Yet cancer rates do change, often dramatically, in direct relationship with changing food intakes. Here are examples: --As Chinese people moved from Shanghai to the United States, switching from a diet that was primarily grain-and vegetable-based to a meat-and dairy-centered diet, prostate cancer rates increased up to fifteen times. --Those who moved from Shanghai to Hong Kong and Singapore adopted dietary patterns that were midway between the plant-based and meat-based patterns. Again, rates of prostate cancer rose. --When women moved from Japan to Hawaii and increased their intake of animal products, incidence of breast cancer tripled within on generation and continued to rise with the next generation, which had been raised from childhood on high-fat animal foods. --In men and women who emigrated from Japan to Hawaii, cancers of the colon and rectum increased almost four times within one generation. These migration and emigration studies provide compelling evidence that cancer is determined to a great extent by environmental factors, especially diet, rather than by genetics alone. Other studies, following large groups of people over many years, along with detailed comparisons of the diets of cancer patients and healthy individuals, established
that diet is among the most important factors in cancer.

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