The American Cancer Society reports that one in eight women will contract breast cancer. Unfortunately, breast cancer may be present for as long as four years before it can be detected by mammography or self-examination. Further, many women are under the misconception that if they do not have a family history of breast cancer, they need not be concerned. The truth is the majority of women today who are diagnosed with breast cancer show no family predisposition. The above facts call for every woman to implement a proactive approach to prevent the disease.
We suggest that every woman take at least one tablespoon of lignan-rich flaxseed oil daily to reduce her risk of breast cancer and minimize the potential for it to spread, should it occur.
Lignan-rich flaxseed oil is unique. Unlike regular flaxseed oil, the lignan-rich flax particulate from flaxseeds is retained in the oil, delivering powerful cancer fighting lignan precursors. There may not be a single nutritional supplement or pharmacological drug today that can offer the same level of protection against cancer and other diseases as delivered with the combination of flaxseed oil and lignan precursors.
Making the Case for Flaxseed Lignans
Beginning in the 1980’s consumers were advised by the Surgeon General and the National Academy of Sciences that diets low in saturated fat and high in fiber could be beneficial to their health. This advice was driven by new health statistics that showed that five of the ten leading causes of death in the United States including coronary heart disease, some types of cancer, stroke, certain types of diabetes and atherosclerosis were related to dietary imbalances.
This new information convinced the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to undertake a $20.5 million program to learn more about natural plant chemicals (phytochemicals) in certain food groups that may prevent cancer.
One of the first and most promising foods to be studied was flaxseed. It had been previously discovered that flaxseed contained phytochemicals known as lignans within the cell matrix of its seed. Much of the interest surrounding plant lignans is based on the suspected association between them and the low incidence of breast and colon cancers of those consuming a plant and grain based vegetarian diet. In other words, people who are shown to have high levels of lignans present in their blood, urine and feces have the lowest rates of several malignant diseases.
FACT: Flaxseed, in particular, contains 100 to 800 times more plant lignans than its closest competitors, wheat bran, rye, buckwheat, millet, soy beans and oats.
Once consumed, lignans found in flaxseed are converted to mammalian lignans. These mammalian lignans bind with estrogen receptors, where studies suggest they may induce the production of a special sex hormone binding compound. This compound, known as sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG), regulates estrogen levels by removing excess estrogen from the body. Lignans are thought to be estrogen modulators, helping to balance estrogen activity within the body. These and other positive findings were presented by both the Food and Drug Administration and the NCI as well as several research institutions at the recent annual convention on Experimental Biology held in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Make no mistake. Flax oil is a fat. But it is a good fat. For example, the much-touted Mediterranean diet, traditionally consumed in Greece and regions of Italy, emphasizes whole grains, fruits, vegetables, seafood, and olive and walnut oil with limited meat and dairy. It is not a particularly low-fat diet, however. In fact, the average daily intake of overall fat for Greek women is forty percent of total calories, a figure roughly equivalent to the American diet. Yet, Greek women have much lower breast cancer rates than their American counterparts. Together with a higher intake of vegetables, whole grains and fruits, a high intake of neutral or beneficial fats found in olive and walnut oil appears to be protective, observes researcher Emanuela Taioli.
Meanwhile, Israel has one of the highest intakes of polyunsaturated and saturated fats in the world. The consumption of omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are found in safflower, corn and other highly processed commercial cooking oils, is about eight percent higher than in the United States and 10 to 12 percent higher than in most European countries. Not surprisingly, there is an extremely high prevalence of cardiovascular diseases, hypertension, non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus and obesity among Israeli Jews. There is also an increased cancer incidence and mortality rate, especially in women, compared with western countries. Studies suggest that high omega-6 fatty acid consumption might be the cause.
Pioneering Cancer Research
“Use of flax as a cancer prophylactic is an area that I think has a lot of promise,” notes Lilian U. Thompson, Ph. D. of the University of Toronto, one of a handful of researchers investigating the relationship between flax and cancer inhibition.
Thompson is one of the worlds leading authorities on flax’s human health benefits, especially in the area of its use as part of cancer prevention and treatment. In one of her early studies, Thompson learned flaxseed lignans had been shown to be protective at the early promotional stage when cancers have not quite formed. She then wanted to determine whether supplementation with flaxseed, beginning 13 weeks after carcinogen administration, would reduce the size of already established mammary tumors present at the start of treatment, as well as appearance of new tumors. After seven weeks of treatment, established tumor volume was over 50 percent smaller in all treatment groups while there was no change in the placebo group. This study demonstrated that reduction in tumor size was due in part to the lignans derived from flaxseed.
In a 1999 report in Carcinogenesis, Thompson and a co-investigator presented intriguing experimental evidence that suggests starting our daughters out on lignan-rich flaxseed oil early on in their lives (including consumption by the mother during pregnancy)can reduce their lifetime breast cancer risk. Flax lignans appear to do so by affecting the highly proliferative terminal end bud structures in the developing mammary gland. Stimulating the terminal ends to develop into alveolar buds and lobules has been suggested to be protective against mammary cancer. In this experimental study, early consumption of flax also delayed onset of puberty.
The Lignan Connection
In a case-control study from the Queen Elizabeth II Medical Center, Perth, Western Australia, women with newly-diagnosed, early breast cancer were interviewed by means of questionnaires, and a 72 hour urine collection and blood sample were taken. The urine samples were assayed for various plant constituents including lignans. It was determined that there is a substantial reduction in breast-cancer risk among women with a high intake of phyto-oestrogens, particularly the isoflavonic phyto-oestrogen equol and the lignan enterolactone.
Similarly, in a study published in the British Journal of Cancer researchers state there is convincing evidence that low levels of various fatty acids in adipose breast tissue and the emergence of aggressive metastases are intimately related. 121 women patients with an initially localized breast cancer were studied. Their adipose breast tissue was obtained at the time of initial surgery and it’s fatty acid content analyzed. A low level of alpha-linolenic acid (found predominantly in flax) was strongly associated with the presence of vascular invasion, indicating the cancer was likely to spread. After an average 31 months of follow-up, 21 patients developed metastases. Large tumor size, high cell-division rates, presence of vascular invasion and low levels of alpha-linolenic acid were single factors significantly associated with an increased risk of metastasis. (note: alpha-linolenic acid can be considered as a marker for lignan intake.)
The Antiestrogen Effect
A woman’s cumulative exposure to estrogen, including the length of her estrous cycle, plays an important role in her lifetime breast cancer risk; the more estrogen to which her tissues are exposed, the greater her risk. Because flax lignans are weakly estrogenic, it has been thought that they might displace on the receptors of breast cells more toxic forms of estrogen that are likely to increase women’s risk of cancer. Thompson participated in another study to determine whether flax’s lignans might have a beneficial antiestrogenic effect, much like the drug Tamoxifen but without its risks.
The antiestrogenic effects of flaxseed were compared with Tamoxifen by monitoring estrous cycles. Four-week supplementation of a high-fat diet with flaxseed produced a dose-related cessation or lengthening of the cycle in about two-thirds of animals. With Tamoxifen, 83 percent of the animals had irregular cycles. Thus, both compounds were antiestrogenic; however, flax performed its activities without Tamoxifen’s gross tissue toxicity (including uterine cancer risks).
To appreciate the dual protective effect of lignans and flaxseed oil, it is imperative that consumers recognize and purchase the right products. Look for flaxseed oil products that are labeled as high-lignan. Flaxseed oil should be gently expeller pressed without filtration or refinement.
Resource: LIGNAN FLAX OIL
by: Dr. Veronique Desaulniers
(NaturalNews) Women that are on the Breast Cancer journey must be clear about certain dietary restrictions. There is the obvious list of "Foods to Avoid", such as sugar, processed foods, and hormone injected meats. However, there seems to be a lot of confusion about what types of oils are beneficial for Breast Cancer suppression and which ones should be avoided.
Let's start with the term HNE, which stands for the fatty acid derived toxin "4-hydroxy-trans-2 nonenal". It is a byproduct that is produced when polyunsaturated oils are heated at very high temperatures. The oils that are high in linoleic acid are often used in restaurants and in homes for frying or high heat cooking include:
Canola Oil, Soybean Oil, Sunflower Oil and Corn Oil.
For years, these oils were touted as "healthy" plant oils, but research that dates back to the 1990's indicates the pathological effect these oils have on the body.
Aside from the lipid peroxidation and the toxic effect that HNE has on the cell wall, the issue also lies with the imbalance in the increased consumption of these plant based oils.
A study conducted in 2002 at the Center for Genetics in Washington, DC, found that "Excessive amounts of omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) and a very high omega-6/omega-3 ratio, as is found in today's Western diets, promote the pathogenesis of many diseases, including cardiovascular disease, cancer, and inflammatory and autoimmune diseases."
The healthiest oils for Breast Cancer suppression are Omega 6's and the proper source of Omega 3's. The World Health Organization recommends a healthy ratio of Omega 6 and Omega 3 to be between 5:1 to 10:1. The Journal of the National Cancer Institute published a research paper about the effects of the improper ratio on Breast Cancer. They found that diets that were high in Omega 6 actually stimulated the growth and spread of Breast Cancer cells.
Conversely, they found that diets high in Omega 3, like fish oils, exerted a suppressive effect on Breast Cancer cells.
Healthy sources for Omega 3 oils would be flax seed, chia or hemp oils. The Budwig Protocol, which incorporates ground flax seed and flax seed oil in its healing regime, has had remarkable success for over 50 years in reversing and healing multiple types of cancer.
There have been numerous studies on the effects of the lignans in flax seed and the tumor suppression effect they have on Breast Cancer cells. For women that are choosing to take estrogen suppressing drugs like Tamoxifen, incorporating flax seed oil in their diets improves the inhibitory effect of Tamoxifen.
The best source of Omega 6 is purified and distilled wild caught fish oil. DHA and EPA in the fish oils have shown promising effects on stimulating Breast Cancer cell death resulting in tumor regression.
The choice of dietary oils cannot be over looked, if your ultimate goal is prevention and suppression of Breast Cancer. Be proactive with prevention by making informed dietary decisions based on research and scientific evidence.
Product info click here
Sources for this article include:
About the author:
Dr. Veronique Desaulniers, better known as Dr. V, has maintained successful practices in the Wellness Industry since 1979.
Specializing in Bio-Energetics, Meridian Stress Analysis, Homeopathy, Thermography and Chiropractic, Dr. V brings a unique approach to Health and Wellness.
After personally overcoming Breast Cancer without the use of chemo, radiation or surgery, Dr. V currently helps to empower women about healing and preventing Breast Cancer, naturally.
For more information about Dr. V's personal Cancer Coaching visit http://www.BreastCancerConqueror.com
By Elaine Magee, MPH, RD on July 20, 2011
Is flaxseed the new wonder food? Preliminary studies show that it may help fight heart disease, diabetes and breast cancer.
Some call it one of the most powerful plant foods on the planet. There’s some evidence it may help reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke, and diabetes. That’s quite a tall order for a tiny seed that’s been around for centuries.
Flaxseed was cultivated in Babylon as early as 3000 BC. In the 8th century, King Charlemagne believed so strongly in the health benefits of flaxseed that he passed laws requiring his subjects to consume it. Now, thirteen centuries later, some experts say we have preliminary research to back up what Charlemagne suspected.
Flaxseed is found in all kinds of today's foods from crackers to frozen waffles to oatmeal. The Flax Council estimates close to 300 new flax-based products were launched in the U.S. and Canada in 2010 alone. Not only has consumer demand for flaxseed grown, agricultural use has also increased. Flaxseed is what's used to feed all those chickens that are laying eggs with higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids.
Although flaxseed contains all sorts of healthy components, it owes its primary healthy reputation to three of them:
Omega-3 essential fatty acids, "good" fats that have been shown to have heart-healthy effects. Each tablespoon of ground flaxseed contains about 1.8 grams of plant omega-3s.
Lignans, which have both plant estrogen and antioxidant qualities. Flaxseed contains 75 to 800 times more lignans than other plant foods.
Fiber. Flaxseed contains both the soluble and insoluble types.
The Health Benefits of Flax
Although Lilian Thompson, PhD, an internationally known flaxseed researcher from the University of Toronto, says she wouldn’t call any of the health benefits of flax "conclusively established," research indicates that flax may reduce risks of certain cancers as well as cardiovascular disease and lung disease.
Recent studies have suggested that flaxseed may have a protective effect against breast cancer, prostate cancer, and colon cancer. At least two of the components in flaxseed seem to contribute, says Kelley C. Fitzpatrick, director of health and nutrition with the Flax Council of Canada.
In animal studies, the plant omega-3 fatty acid found in flaxseed, called ALA, inhibited tumor incidence and growth.
The lignans in flaxseed may provide some protection against cancers that are sensitive to hormones without interfering with the breast cancer drug tamoxifen. Thompson says some studies have suggested that exposure to lignans during adolescence helps reduce the risk of breast cancer and may also increase the survival of breast cancer patients.
Lignans may help protect against cancer by blocking enzymes that are involved in hormone metabolism and interfering with the growth and spread of tumor cells.
Some of the other components in flaxseed also have antioxidant properties, which may contribute to protection against cancer and heart disease.
Research suggests that plant omega-3s help the cardiovascular system through several different mechanisms, including anti-inflammatory action and normalizing the heartbeat. Fitzpatrick says new research also suggests significant blood pressure-lowering effects of flaxseed. Those effects may be due to both the omega-3 fatty acids as well as the amino acid groups found in flaxseed.
Several studies have suggested that diets rich in flaxseed omega-3s help prevent hardening of the arteries and keep plaque from being deposited in the arteries partly by keeping white blood cells from sticking to the blood vessels’ inner linings.
"Lignans in flaxseed have been shown to reduce atherosclerotic plaque buildup by up to 75%," Fitzpatrick says.
Because plant omega-3s may also play a role in maintaining the heart’s natural rhythm, they may be useful in treating arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat) and heart failure. More research is needed on this.
Eating flaxseed daily may also help your cholesterol levels. The level of LDL or "bad"cholesterol in the bloodstream has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease,obesity, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome. A study of menopausal women showed a decrease in LDL level after the women ate 4 tablespoons of ground flaxseed each day for a year. Fitzpatrick says the cholesterol-lowering effects of flaxseed are the result of the combined benefits of the omega-3 ALA, fiber, and lignans.
Preliminary research also suggests that daily intake of the lignans in flaxseed may modestly improve blood sugar (as measured by hemoglobin A1c blood tests in adults with type 2 diabetes).
Two components in flaxseed, ALA and lignans, may reduce the inflammation that accompanies certain illnesses (such as Parkinson's disease and asthma) by helping block the release of certain pro-inflammatory agents, Fitzpatrick says.
ALA has been shown to decrease inflammatory reactions in humans. And studies in animals have found that lignans can decrease levels of several pro-inflammatory agents.
Reducing inflammation associated with plaque buildup in the arteries may be another way flaxseed helps prevent heart attack and strokes.
One study of menopausal women, published in 2007, reported that 2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed mixed into cereal, juice, or yogurt twice a day cut their hot flashes in half. The intensity of their hot flashes also dropped by 57%. The women noticed a difference after taking the daily flaxseed for just one week and achieved the maximum benefit within two weeks.
But another study reported no significant reduction in hot flashes between postmenopausal women and breast cancer patients eating a bar containing 410 milligrams of phytoestrogens from ground flaxseed and women eating a placebo bar.
The results, says Thompson, are consistent with other studies that have shown no siginifcant difference in the effect on hot flashes between flaxseed and placebo
Flaxseed Isn't a Magic Bullet
It's tempting to think of flaxseed as a super food because of its many potential health benefits. But keep in mind there is no magic food or nutrient that guarantees improved health.
What matters is consistently making great dietary choices as part of an overall healthy lifestyle.
Who Shouldn’t Use Flaxseed?
Until more is known, Thompson says, pregnant women and possibly breastfeedingmothers should not supplement their diets with ground flaxseed.
"Our own animal studies showed that flaxseed exposure during these stages may be protective against breast cancer in the offspring. But a study of another investigator showed the opposite effect," Thompson says.
Tips for Using Flaxseed
Many experts believe it's better to consume flaxseed than flax oil (which contains just part of the seed) so you get all the components. But stay tuned as researchers continue to investigate.
Thompson says, "Ground flaxseed, in general, is a great first choice, but there may be specific situations where flax oil or the lignans (taken in amounts naturally found in flaxseed) might be as good."
How much flaxseed do you need? The optimum dose to obtain health benefits is not yet known. But 1 to 2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed a day is currently the suggested dose, according to the Flax Council of Canada.
Here are more tips for using, buying, and storing flaxseed:
Buy it ground or grind it yourself. Flaxseed, when eaten whole, is more likely to pass through the intestinal tract undigested, which means your body doesn't get all the healthful components. If you want to grind flaxseed yourself, those little electric coffee grinders seem to work best.
Milled = ground = flax meal. Don’t be confused by the different product names for ground flaxseed. Milled or ground flaxseed is the same thing as flax meal.
Buy either brown or golden flaxseed. Golden flaxseed is easier on the eyes, but brown flaxseed is easier to find in most supermarkets. There is very little difference nutritionally between the two, so the choice is up to you.
Find it in stores or on the Internet. Many supermarket chains now carry ground flaxseed (or flax meal). It’s usually in the flour or "grain" aisle or the whole-grain cereal section and is often sold in 1-pound bags. You can also find it in health food stores or order it on various web sites.
Check the product label. When buying products containing flaxseed, check the label to make sure ground flaxseed, not whole flaxseed, was added. Flaxseed is a featured ingredient in cereals, pasta, whole grain breads and crackers, energy bars, meatless meal products, and snack foods.
Add flaxseed to a food you habitually eat. Every time you have a certain food, like oatmeal, smoothies, soup, or yogurt, stir in a couple tablespoons of ground flaxseed. Soon it will be a habit and you won’t have to think about it, you’ll just do it.
Hide flaxseed in dark, moist dishes. The dishes that hide flaxseed the best are dark sauces or meat mixtures. No one tends to notice flaxseed when it's stirred into enchilada casserole, chicken parmesan, chili, beef stew, meatloaf, or meatballs. For a 4-serving casserole, you can usually get away with adding 2 to 4 tablespoons of ground flaxseed. For a dish serving 6 to 8, use 4 to 8 tablespoons.
Use it in baking. Substitute ground flaxseed for part of the flour in recipes for quick breads, muffins, rolls, bread, bagels, pancakes, and waffles. Try replacing 1/4 to 1/2 cup of the flour with ground flaxseed if the recipe calls for 2 or more cups of flour.
Keep it in the freezer. The best place to store ground flaxseed is the freezer. Freeze pre-ground flaxseed in the bag you bought it in or in a plastic sealable bag if you ground it yourself. The freezer will keep the ground flax from oxidizing and losing its nutritional potency.
Whole flaxseed keeps longer. The outside shell in whole flaxseed appears to keep the fatty acids inside well protected. It’s a good idea to keep your whole flaxseed in a dark, cool place until you grind it. But as long as it is dry and of good quality, whole flaxseed can be stored at room temperature for up to a year.
Ready to try flaxseed? Here’s a recipe to get you started from The Flax Cookbook: Recipes and Strategies for Getting The Most from The Most Powerful Plant on the Planet.
Fruity Flaxseed Muffins
These moist and high-flavor flax muffins are not only good for you, but they taste great too.
1/2 cup crushed pineapple with juice, canned
1/2 cup finely chopped apples (with peel)
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 large egg, higher omega-3 if available, beaten lightly
2 egg whites (or 1/4 cup egg substitute)
1 cup fat free sour cream
1/4 cup dark molasses
1/2 cup raisins, currants (or any other dried fruit, chopped)
1 1/4 cup unbleached white flour
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup ground flaxseed
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line muffin pan with paper or foil liners. Coat inside of liners with a quick squirt of canola cooking spray.
In large mixing bowl, beat together the pineapple with juice, apples, canola oil, egg, egg whites or egg substitute, sour cream, and molasses until mixture is light and fluffy. Stir in raisins or dried fruit.
In medium bowl, whisk together flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and flaxseed.
Add flaxseed mixture to sour cream mixture, beating on low speed just until combined (batter will be a little lumpy). Spoon batter by 1/4 cupful into prepared muffin pan.
Bake in center of preheated oven for about 20 minutes or until muffins are golden brown and springy to the touch.
Yield: 12 muffins
Nutritional Analysis: Per muffin: 194 calories, 5 g protein, 31 g carbohydrate, 5.5 g fat, .8 g saturated fat, 2.1 g monounsaturated fat, 2.6 g polyunsaturated fat, 20 mgcholesterol, 4.5 g fiber, 224 mg sodium, 1.7 g omega-3 fatty acids. Calories from fat: 28%.
Recipe reprinted with permission.
Elaine Magee, MPH, RD, is the author of numerous books on nutrition and health. Her opinions and conclusions are her own.
Read more HERE
(NaturalNews) The standard American diet (SAD) is high in omega-6 from usually processed hydrogenated oils like soy, cotton, and canola oils. These oils are used in a multitude of processed and packaged foods, even those sold in health food stores and restaurants of all stripes.
Poor quality hydrogenated trans fatty oils cause health problems, and they are heavy with omega-6 fatty acids. Without being balanced by omega-3, omega-6 causes tissue inflammation.
Tissue inflammation is considered the source of virtually all disease. A ratio of 3:1 or less with omega-6 to omega-3 is recommended.
There are many sources of omega-6 fatty acids. Some recommend cutting back on even cold pressed olive oils (good oils) to lower omega-6 inflammations, but increasing omega-3 consumption also supports the brain and nervous system. Increasing omega-3 sources seems better.
A little about seafood sources of omega-3
Many health experts promote fish oils or fish foods such as salmon, tuna, and sardines, but ocean and freshwater pollution have become rampant over the past couple of decades.
Mercury is in many ocean waters and PCBs in fresh waterways make their way into ocean waters. Fish farms have proven to be sources of inbred contamination and lower nutrition, similar to the meats from animal factory farming.
More recently, seafood sources have become contaminated with BP oil and toxic oil dispersant agents in the Gulf of Mexico. Add Fukushima radioactive matter dumped into the Pacific Ocean to complete the seafood quandary.
Both the Gulf and Pacific situations have been down played by health officials, governments and the mainstream media.
Choosing seafood resembles playing Russian roulette, unless you’re willing to do extensive research and pay a higher price for premium seafood harvested from sources that are proven to be uncontaminated.
Though some still consider animal sources of omega-3 superior to plant sources, organically produced plant sources are effective, inexpensive, and safer sources of omega-3.
Flax seed oil and flax seeds
German scientist Johanna Budwig is known in alternative cancer therapy circles as the creator of the Budwig diet for curing cancer, which has proven to be among the most effective approaches for curing cancer (http://www.naturalnews.com/027452_cancer_fat_diet.html).
The bedrock of her diet is flax and cottage cheese or quark. Not as well known as her cancer therapy is her research on fats and fatty acids in the 1950s. Then she discovered and categorized the various aspects of fats and fatty acids known today (http://www.naturalnews.com/027539_cancer_diet_cure.html).
Budwig’s oil of choice was pure cold pressed organic flax seed oil. Some of her snack recipes include ground flax seeds. Cold pressed flax seed oil is pricey and turns rancid easily. While very appropriate for the Budwig cancer diet, it’s limited in its application.
Flax seeds, purchased in health food store bulk sections, are very inexpensive. They store easily for long periods until ground. They have to be ground for consumption. A coffee grinder works, and they should be consumed shortly after grinding, within an hour or so.
The ground seeds can be eaten by the spoonful or added to cereals and smoothies. It’s recommended to have at least two tablespoons per day. But more is better, especially since Fukushima.
Flax seeds also protect against radiation as well as give us all the omega-3 fatty acids we want to balance out that omega-6 imbalance.
Sources for this article include
Flax seeds for radiation http://www.naturalnews.com/033657_flax_seeds_health_benefits.html
About the author:
Paul Fassa is dedicated to warning others about the current corruption of food and medicine and guiding others toward a direction for better health with no restrictions on health freedom. You can visit his blog at http://healthmaven.blogspot.com