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Health Benefits of Avoiding Refined Grains and Sugar if you are a Cancer Patient

Health Benefits of Avoiding Refined Grains and Sugar if you are a Cancer Patient

Do you know how cancer cells work? They keep multiplying themselves and keep increasing. They need energy which they derive from your blood glucose. Well, yes, you've heard it right. Sugar is connected to the risk of getting cancer and its increased nature.

Everyone is partial to a sweet treat, but Sugar and sweets are meant for celebration. They can be used occasionally but not often. With increased amounts of sugar intake, the blood sugar levels in your body increase, triggering weight gain, inflammation, glucose imbalance, and an increased risk of cancer.

Simple sugars somehow reduce the action of white blood cells to engulf bacteria, thereby altering the balance of the gut microorganisms by supporting the growth of harmful bacteria.

Also Read: Health Benefits of Quinoa in Cancer

Divided school of thought


Adipokines are inflammatory proteins released by fat cells that damage DNA and increase the possibility of tumours. Obesity increases the risk or can be called a direct cause of at least 13 types of cancer, Breast and Colon Cancer symptoms. Consumption of refined grains develops introductory stages of obesity, especially quite early in the life of young people. Experts at the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute confirm these findings.


A cancer researcher, Lewis Cantley, PhD, director of the Meyer Cancer Center at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York, says that cancer is addicted to Sugar and insulin. It's true, but that is not the whole story. High insulin levels are a leading cause of cancer, and high insulin levels result from high sugar intake. However, proper sugar level is vital for our body as it is critical in fueling the body cells.

Is Sugar the ultimate villain?

Sugar has been helpful for people undergoing chemotherapy or radiotherapy to manage their cravings and give them temporary relief. Also for people, Depression, which is very common in cancer patients. So it is essential to understand the exact relationship between cancer and Sugar.

The link between cancer and Sugar is meaningful, as there are known associations between a diet high in carbohydrates and sugars and the development of prostate, colorectal, ovarian, and pancreatic cancers.

What to eat?

Refined grain products such as white bread, pasta, cakes and cookies; sweetened drinks; organic honey; fruit drinks; white potatoes; and white rice should not be consumed regularly. These foods have high glycemic levels, which may alter your balanced weight and body mass index.

Bottom line: Sugar will blend into a balanced diet when consumed in small quantities. So if you have a sweet tooth, it's better to fix the sweets with naturally sweet fruits than processed food. This way, you can fulfil the cravings and get more antioxidants your body needs to reduce the risk of cancer.

Physical activity enhances the ability of the cells to use glucose. This helps maintain a lower, more normal range of blood sugar levels. It helps to clear excess blood sugar that would otherwise cause further insulin production.

Also Read: Benefits of Exercise For Prostate Cancer

Best Cancer Treatment and further research

Sugar sugar-sweetened foods and beverages have been widely scrutinized for their role in promoting cancer growth and spread.

In the Nutrition editorial, Dr Undurti N. Das highlighted that fructose, a part of table sugar or sucrose, affects cell metabolism and enhances the production of cancer-promoting proteins.

Cancer cells use glucose for their metabolism at around 10 to 15 times more than the rate of normal cells, which then continues to call for more glucose, and insulin continues to provide. This process activates the growth hormone, which enhances cell growth so that high glycemic-load foods can also favour cancer cells to enhance their growth.

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  1. Donaldson MS. Nutrition and cancer: a review of the evidence for an anti-cancer diet. Nutr J. 2004 Oct 20;3:19. doi: 10.1186/1475-2891-3-19. PMID: 15496224; PMCID: PMC526387.

  2. Gaesser GA. Whole Grains, Refined Grains, and Cancer Risk: A Systematic Review of Meta-Analyses of Observational Studies. Nutrients. 2020 Dec 7;12(12):3756. doi: 10.3390/nu12123756. PMID: 33297391; PMCID: PMC7762239.

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