Olive Oil and Breast Cancer

By Terriann

Did you know that on average, 1 in 8 women are affected by breast cancer sometime in their lifetime? In 2010, an estimated 207,090 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in women in the United States alone.

Can we prevent breast cancer by changing our eating habits and behaviors?  Recent studies show that one of the natural ways to combat breast cancer is consistently eating healthy including the use of extra virgin olive oil.

Scientists, including Dr. Eduard Escrich, from the University at Autonoma in Barcelona have recently conducted preliminary testing using rats that had carcinogen-stimulated breast cancer.  The rats were fed one of three diets – olive oil, high corn oil, or a restricted diet.  The researchers found that the tumors in the rats that were fed an olive oil diet grew much slower than the other two diets.

Based on their findings, they say that olive oil “thwarts the gene that drives the growth of breast cancer tumors, it switches off proteins that the cancer cells rely on in order to grow and multiply and it protects the DNA from damage that can lead to cancer.”  In fact, they have shown that molecules in this antioxidant monounsaturated fat actually fight tumors, slowing their growth, in some cases, even causing them to implode. Although preliminary tests have produced successful results in rats only, Dr. Eduard Escrich said, “Even though caution must be exercised when applying experimental data to human breast cancer, our findings emphasize the importance that certain dietetic habits may have on cancer promotion.”

The researchers, who plan to implement a comparable trial in human beings, have concluded that only uninterrupted daily intake of olive oil will provide these results. It is recommended that adding 10 teaspoons of high-quality, extra virgin olive oil daily would provide the most benefit. For thousands of years the Mediterranean diet, which recommends a lower intake of  red meat and dairy, focuses on ingesting more fruit, vegetables, nuts, whole grains and olive oil, is considered to include the best selection of foods to help prevent cancer and could even lead to weight loss.

Obesity is also a risk factor for cancer and excessive body mass is linked to a reappearance of cancer cells along with other persistent illnesses. A diet which includes the use of high quality extra virgin olive oil will lead to a decrease in triglyceride levels and higher HDL cholesterol levels providing more resistance against the return of breast cancer. Olive oil is a holistic way to prevent and battle breast tumors but it is also a healthy fat that should be incorporated into the diets of both females and males since it can help the body fight disease naturally without potentially harmful surgery or medication.

Fortunately, adding olive oil to a meal is basic and simple. Olive oil can be used as a substitute for butter to coat the pan when cooking or drizzled on food to augment the natural flavors. Taking a look at all of the health benefits to adding olive oil to your daily diet makes it not only a wise, but also an appetizing choice.

    5 Ways to include Olive Oil in your diet:

  • Substitue Extra Virgin Olive Oil instead of butter
  • Marinate chicken in olive oil
  • Lightly coat meat before grilling
  • Add lightly to dips like hummus
  • Use olive oil instead of vegetable oil for baking

I hope you enjoyed this article and as always STAY HEALTHY!