Can Carbs Cause Lung Cancer?

by Melissa Diane Smith, author of Going Against the Grain

CarbsEven if you don’t smoke cigarettes, take notice: If you’re having a hard time giving up bread, pasta, and other refined grain products, you’re putting yourself at increased risk of developing lung cancer, according to a recent study published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

Scientists from the University of University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center found that people consuming a diet rich in high-glycemic foods (in other words, refined, processed, blood-sugar-spiking carbs) are at a 49 percent higher risk of developing lung cancer. Even more shocking: Non-smokers whose diets were highest on the glycemic index were more than twice as likely to develop lung cancer than those whose diets were at the low end of the scale.

The study is the largest ever to show the relationship between glycemic index and the disease. Foods with a high glycemic index can cause a spike in blood pressure and insulin, which cause a chain reaction in the body, leading to an increased risk of lung cancer.

Although lung cancer has commonly been associated with smokers, the results of this study suggest that maintaining a healthy, low-glycemic, against-the-grain diet plays a critical role in lowering your risk of cancer. Just one more reason to go against the grain with your diet by substituting grain and sugar products with non-starchy vegetables.

Eliminating sweet beverages, avoiding tobacco and excessive alcohol, and regular exercise, also will help to lower your risk.

To learn more about the link between high-glycemic carbs and lung cancer, see this segment on the Dr. Oz show.

Copyright 2016 Melissa Diane Smith

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