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Top 10 Carcinogenic Foods
In 2010 cancer will overtake heart disease as the number cause of death: WHO study
Nicolas van der Leek (Nick)     Print Article 
Published 2008-12-11 17:46 (KST)   
The WHO recently announced that cancer will overtake heart disease as the number killer of human beings. Scientists believe that around 80 percent of cancer is determined by our lifestyle choices.

Genetics play a role, certainly, but why bother about something we can't do anything about until gene therapy becomes de rigeur. Meanwhile there is a spectrum of behaviours that we can do something about.

It is an interesting question. What is the critical factor for the increase in the cancer death rate. How has the average diet around the world deteriorated to bring about this higher cancer rate?

First, let us examine the top carcinogenic foods:
1. Any charred food - from burnt popcorn - to burnt toast, is highly carcinogenic.
2. Meat in general (in terms of the fats associated) is carcinogenic, especially overcooked meat.
3. Sugar is carcinogenic - whether white or brown. Instead of sugar, substitute honey
4. Stomach cancer is associated with high salt intake, with spicy foods and smoked food
5. Sodas are carcinogenic for a variety of reasons beyond their high sugar content and harmful additives. Sodas have also been proved to leach the minerals - principally calcium - that are temporarily gained through other healthier foods
6. Trans fats found in fries and snack chips are carcinogenic
7. Artificial sweeteners, particularly aspartame, are carcingogenic
8. Excessive alcohol intake is toxic
9. Foods cooked at high temperatures usually contain acrylamide. According to the FDA:
Acrylamide is produced industrially for use in products such as plastics, grouts, water treatment products, and cosmetics. Acrylamide is also found in cigarette smoke.Acrylamide caused cancer in animals in studies where animals were exposed to acrylamide at very high doses. Acrylamide causes nerve damage in people exposed to very high levels at work.
10. Farm-raised fish and fish products contain high amounts of PCB's.
If one considers the list above, it is not hard to reach the following conclusion. Since most fast food comprises combinations of sugars, salts, preservatives and trans fats, it is reasonable to assume that the increased cancer rate is due to the spread of fast food franchises to countries such as India and China.

While both foods and cigarettes have an impact on heart disease, it is logical to assume the leaching impact of fast foods (especially the sugar containing drinks) would have such a negative impact to strip the body of its ordinary resources and its natural immunity.

It is thus not unreasonable to assume that smoking on its own may have a much less significant impact on a person's health. However, when a smoker's diet contains large amounts of carcinogens (as found in fast food) the likelihood of cancer overtakes the likelihood of heart disease.

An example would be an active person who drinks a litre of Coke each day, and otherwise lives on hamburgers and fries. Even a healthy lifestyle would not negate the leaching impact of this particular diet.

It has also been demonstrated that while vegans are healthy and can absorb sufficient quantities of protein, once sodas are added to this diet, minerals and vitamins are easily leached away to critical levels, leading to anemia.

It is a paradox of the high protein western diet that the leaching impact of sodas to some extent drain the body of the excess protein intake.

While it is in the interests of the human body to lower our intake of meats, sugars and junk food, it is also in the interests of the planet. Hamburgers are related to high energy crops (maize is fed to chickens and cattle) and deforestation (forests are cut down for farm cattle or maize or both).

Human beings are making themselves sick, and ruining their environment. We are at a precipice. Can a smoker who is addicted convince him or herself to give up their suicidal habits? Can we change our eating habits now that we know they're killing us and our world? Every bite, every sip, is a choice.

Please join me in making the habit of feeding ourselves something more natural - our diets ought to nourish and enhance our lives.

©2008 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Nicolas van der Leek

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