Foods with High Glycemic Index Increase Lung Cancer Risk

Monday, March 07, 2016

Mind Your Breakfast

Scientists from the University of Texas have reported that the consumption of foods with high glycemic index (GI) such as white bread, bagels, corn flakes and puffed rice may correspond to an increased risk of developing lung cancer.

The study shows that an increased consumption of red meat, saturated fats and dairy products can increase the lung cancer risk whereas diet consisting of fruits and vegetables can decrease the risk. GI is a measure of the quality of dietary carbohydrates defined by how quickly blood sugar levels are raised after a meal. Stephanie Melkonian from the University of Texas said, "Diets high in glycemic index result in higher levels of blood glucose and insulin, which promote perturbations in the insulin–like growth factors (IGFs)".

Earlier studies have shown associations between the GI and the glycemic load (GL), a measure of carbohydrate quantity and the risk of numerous other cancers. To determine the risk between GI, GL and lung cancer, researchers surveyed 1,905 patients who were recently diagnosed with lung cancer and 2,413 healthy individuals. These participants were asked for their past dietary habits and health histories. Thereafter, participants were divided in five equal groups based on their GI and GL values. It was observed that patients with high GI had about 49% increased risk of lung cancer. Moreover, non–smokers with high GI were more than twice likely to develop lung cancer when compared to people with the lowest GI. Among smokers, the risk was elevated by 31%. The study was published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology.

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