Asian Diet and Breast Cancer
In America this year, about 185-thousand women will get breast cancer. But in Japan, far fewer women will. Researchers believe there’s something special about the Asian diet that protects women from breast cancer.
Meal time at Diane and Tim Jones’ house is much more than a chance to fill up on food. It’s a chance to save Diane’s life. Two years ago she found she had breast cancer.
Diane Jones, “They took out 14 lymph nodes, and four of them were malignant.”
After undergoing standard treatments, Diane is cancer-free. But to improve her chances of staying that way, she’s a volunteer in a unique study testing the cancer-fighting power of the Asian diet.
Diane Jones, “They gave me the fish oil capsules, the vitamin E and the soy powder and told me how to fix it.”
Because the typical Asian diet is very low in animal fat, but high in fish oil and soy protein, Diane cut her fat grams to just 25 a day and added fish, soy shakes and tofu to her diet.
Diane Jones, “I don’t eat butter at all and I don’t eat cheese either. But I don’t mind it anymore. It’s a good way of eating.”
To be sure she’s sticking to the diet, she records everything she eats in a food diary. Her doctor says Diane’s breast tissue has already absorbed beneficial acids from the fish she’s eating. These acids boost her immune system’s ability to kill cancer cells.
“By modifying the diet and making sure they are eating a low-fat diet, we can improve the disease-free survival and prevent the cancer from coming back.” Dr. Bagga says.
And that makes meal time a special time for the Jones.
Dr. Bagga says that the diet not only protects against breast cancer, it also promotes better cardiovascular health and weight loss. She says that all women can achieve positive results by following a similar diet at home.