There is a large body of evidence that high quality diets protect from disease. Put another way, there is a substantial body of evidence that low quality diets are a causative factor in disease. In particular, low quality Western type diets, rich in refined carbohydrates, modified fats and deficient in vitamins, minerals and fibre, are a primary driver of Western lifestyle disease. Two Western lifestyle diseases that have been linked to consumption of the Western diet include cancer and cardiovascular disease. The prevalence of both these disease has increased since the adoption of the typical Western diet by Western civilisation, and there is good evidence to suggest the diets are not only causing disease, but are reducing the fertility and mental capacity of these populations. Cancer treatment has become a mainstream source of income for the healthcare industry and so there is no real incentive to prevent cancer by encouraging improvements in diet quality. Treatment of cancer is far more profitable.
A number of epidemiological studies have shown associations between diet quality and cancer. This is not proof of cause and effect, but is a useful piece of evidence. For example, in one study, researchers assessed the risk of melanoma in a group of Italian Women based on the quality of the diet consumed by the women. The researchers used 4 measured of diet quality including the the Healthy Eating Index 2010 (HEI-2010), the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) index, the Greek Mediterranean Index (GMI) and the Italian Mediterranean Index (IMI). The researchers found an inverse association between melanoma risk and high scores in all of the diets in young women less than 50 years of age. However in women over 50, only high scores in the HEI-2010 and DASH diet indices showed the same inverse association with melanoma. Therefore as has been shown in other studies, diet quality may modify the risk of Western disease including cancer risk.
Eat Well, Stay Healthy and Protect Yourself