Restricted eating may help reduce risk of breast cancer

CUTTING back on calories may help prevent breast cancer. To achieve the best anti-cancer effect, researchers recommend a time-restricted diet in which women only eat at certain times of the day.

Studies, like the one from the University of Miami, link obesity to some types of cancer. In particular, obese, post-menopausal women are vulnerable to breast cancer.

To reduce the risk of cancer in the breast, health-care providers advise their female patients to enrol in weight-loss programmes. Usually, they recommend a diet that reduces calorie intake.

However, a newly-published study from the University of California (UC) suggests that people don’t need to stick to low-calorie foods to reduce weight and avoid cancer. Instead, they would benefit more if they timed their meals in a certain way, so that their body can burn more calories.

“Time-restricted eating may be more successful than calorie restriction in controlling the negative effects of obesity, due to the hunger and irritability that makes it more difficult to stick with long-term calorie restriction,” said UC San Diego researcher Dr. Manasi Das.

In a time-restricted diet, an individual may only eat within a specific period each day. Such a diet might deliver more positive effects on metabolism than calorie restriction.

The UC San Diego researchers tested the effectiveness of time-restricted eating on a mouse model. To replicate post-menopause conditions, they used female mice with no ovaries.

During the first phase of the experiment, the mice subsisted on a high-fat diet. The obesity-inducing feeding period lasted 10 weeks.

The researchers injected all the animals with breast-cancer cells for three weeks. They monitored tumour growth in each rodent, periodically.

They permitted some of the mice to have unlimited access to food, while the other animals only received food during the eight-hour-long period at night, when they were most active.

The researchers also observed a control group of mice that consumed a low-fat diet, and were also injected with cancer cells. They compared the results between these animals, and the obese mice.

The second phase of the experiment involved mice engineered to develop breast cancer. The researchers separated them into unrestricted diet and time-restricted diet groups, as well. All animals received a high-fat diet, and were also monitored for tumour growth.

Finally, the third phase examined the role of insulin resistance in the growth of cancer tumours. The researchers inserted an insulin pump in mice, and fed them low-fat foods. They compared this group with controls that received a saline solution, instead of insulin.

Meanwhile, they administered insulin-reducing diazoxide to mice fed a high-fat diet, and compared them with a control group that didn’t receive diazoxide.

The researchers found that obese mice on a time-restricted diet experienced less tumour growth than mice with unlimited access to food. The results also matched the outcomes for lean mice with unrestricted access to low-fat food.

The researchers reported that tumours grew faster in mice with increased insulin levels from the insulin pump implant. Meanwhile, tumours in animals treated with diazoxide grew slower than the tumours in the control animals.

“The results suggest the anti-tumour effect of time-restricted eating is, at least, partially due to lowering levels of insulin, suggesting this intervention may be effective in breast-cancer prevention and therapy,” concluded the researchers.

“Exploring the ability of time-restricted eating to prevent breast cancer could provide an inexpensive but effective strategy, to prevent cancer impacting a wide range of patients, and represents a groundbreaking advance in breast-cancer research.”


Short URL:

Posted by on Aug 23 2019. Filed under Health & Beauty. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed

Search Archive

Search by Date
Search by Category
Search with Google


Log in | Designed by SortedSites