New Research Links Cancer To These Inflammatory Foods

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New Research Links Cancer To These Inflammatory Foods

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Ever feel like health news is too overwhelming, fast-paced, or hard to decipher? Us too. Here, we filter through the latest in integrative health, wellness trends, and nutrition advice, reporting on the most exciting and meaningful breakthroughs. We’ll tell you exactly what you need to know—and how it might help you become a healthier and happier human.

At mbg, we talk a LOT about inflammation. (In fact, we have an entire class about it). It’s no exaggeration to say that chronic underlying inflammation, inflammatory disorders, and autoimmune disease are some of the biggest health challenges we’re facing today. Scientists and researchers are even finding that heart disease, the leading cause of death in the United States is more about inflammation than fat. And now, a new study published in JAMA Oncology linked inflammation-causing properties in certain foods to an increased risk of colorectal cancer.

For this study, researchers from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health followed more than 100,000 health care professions for over 26 years. Those who ate the most inflammatory foods—like red and processed meats, sugary beverages, and refined grains—had a 32 percent greater risk of getting colorectal cancer than the participants who ate the lowest amounts of the same foods. Those numbers are really significant, especially considering the participants were followed for over two decades.

The lead author, Fred Tabung, told Vox that while there are several ways to trigger chronic inflammation, “diet is one of those factors that can constantly stimulate the body toward a more chronic inflammatory state.” In other words, when it comes to fighting inflammation, preventing cancer, and fighting other illnesses—like arthritis, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes—that have been linked to inflammation, diet is paramount.

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