Shouhei Koyama writes:
Breast cancer is the most common cancer
among women worldwide. And I heard that when women move from a country
with a low incidence of breast cancer, such as Japan, to a country with
a high incidence, such as Canada, their breast cancer risk goes up. So
I think Mrs. Masuda, who has returned to this country after living in Canada
for nearly 20 years, has a higher risk of breast cancer than general Japanese.
But she can reduce the risk by changing her dietary life. The incidence
of breast cancer is decreased in cultures eating a low fat, high fiber
diet. So I will advise her about two things.
The first thing that she can do is not to eat beef, pork and sweets too much, because these foods provide calories, but little else nutritionally, and they contain fat which has been linked to an increased risk of developing breast cancer. In addition, she should not use sweet coconut oil and margarine so often. The reason is that they include trans fatty acids. Trans fatty acids do not occur naturally in food. They are formed when vegetable oils are partly hydrogenated to form margarine and other solid vegetable cooking fats. A study of nearly 700 postmenopausal European women found that those whose bodies contained the highest levels of trans fatty acids were 40 percent more likely than those with the lowest levels to develop breast cancer. So if she doesn't want to develop breast cancer, she should reduce the use of sweet coconut oil and margarine. I heard that people can reduce their intake and body burden of trans fatty acids by changing their diets. So I think she can also reduce her intake and body burden of trans fatty acids.
The second thing that she can do is to try to eat as many vegetables as possible. Because vegetables provide vitamins, they are excellent sources of fiber, and are naturally low in fat. In addition, research shows that in a vegetarian type diet the incidence of cancer in general is markedly decreased. If she never wants to eat vegetables, then I recommend her to eat fruits. Because fruits are also rich sources of vitamins, they are low in fat and calories. When she eats vegetables, she had better choose dark leafy greens, deep-yellow or orange vegetables, and starchy vegetables. The reason for eating these vegetables is they contain nutrients more and more. And when she eat fruits, she should select fresh fruits and fruit juices, and frozen, canned, or dried fruits (since she is overweight, she'd better avoid fruit processed with heavy syrups and sugar-sweetened juices).
The most important advice I would give Mrs. Masuda is the following. She had better change her mind. That is, she should try to eat vegetables even if she doesn't like them, and try not to eat desserts even though she does like them. She eats A because she likes A, she doesn't have B because she dislikes B, which is not only increasing the risk of breast cancer but also damages her health. In addition, she should not stay home all day long, and she should exercise outdoors to keep her health. Not to develop breast cancer and to keep in good shape, she should control her mind on her own.
| Click the BACK button to return to the student index.|