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Ultraprocessed foods and cancer

March 1, 2023 at 10:00 p.m.

You could say that in her heyday, Ultra Violet, a member of Andy Warhol's Factory known for her purple hair was ultraprocessed -- full of added ingredients that were quite unhealthy. Rather like ultraprocessed foods.

Those nutritionally stripped edibles come packed with processed grains, added sugars and syrups, unhealthy fats and toxic, added chemicals and are big contributors to the epidemic of obesity and Type 2 diabetes. And now, thanks to a database of more than 200,000 folks' eating habits, we know they also are significantly associated with cancer.

Researchers tracked dietary and health info on participants in the U.K. Biobank, age 40 to 69, for around a decade. They found that higher consumption of ultraprocessed foods is associated with an increased risk of developing cancer overall, and that for every 10% increase in ultraprocessed food consumption, there was an associated 19% increase in diagnosis of ovarian cancer. Plus, the risk of dying from breast cancer went up 16%.

So, one more time, let me say how important it is to ditch red and processed meats, foods with added sugars or syrups, processed grains and unhealthy fats. If a packaged food lists more than five ingredients, think seriously about kicking it out of your shopping cart. Build your ultrahealthy, plant-based diet around seven to nine -- or more -- servings of fruits and veggies daily and proteins like salmon, legumes and 100% whole grains. For a complete guide to ultra-life-extending smart moves, check out "The Great Age Reboot."

Health pioneer Michael Roizen, M.D., is chief wellness officer emeritus at the Cleveland Clinic and author of four No. 1 New York Times bestsellers. His next book is "The Great Age Reboot: Cracking the Longevity Code for a Younger Tomorrow." Do you have a topic Dr. Mike should cover in a future column? If so, please email [email protected]

King Features Syndicate

Print Headline: Ultraprocessed foods and cancer


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