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Can Eating Sugar Promote Cancer’s Growth?

With nearly 1.7 million Americans anticipated to face a diagnosis of cancer this year alone, the need for active prevention is very clear. Many factors, including diet, weight and tobacco use can contribute to the development of this disease. Common sugar, however, hasn’t been proven to be one of the direct links. That said, there are a number of reasons why limiting consumption is a very wise idea for those concerned about developing cancer of just about any kind.

Sugar is a valuable fuel for the body. In fact, it is the necessary food for every cell in the human body. Unfortunately, for some, that also includes cancer cells. Sugar, or glucose, is derived from the foods people eat. Even healthy fruits, vegetables and whole grains are transformed by the body to tap into their glucose supply. The human body even makes its own sugar from protein.

While sugar does fuel cancer cells, it feeds healthy, vital cells, too. That means cutting out glucose entirely might “starve” cancer, but it could also starve necessary cells in the process. Research has not found a direct link between sugar consumption and cancer. Before folks rush out to add four lumps to their coffee instead of one, however, sugar does play an indirect role in the development of cancer. It does so in regard to its connection to obesity. When the body is overfed calories, the energy gleaned is stored as fat. For some, the stored energy supply is so great, they become obese. This condition has been linked to a long list of cancers, including colorectal and breast.

Sugar isn’t necessarily the great evil it’s been made out to be. The bottom line, however, is that overconsumption can lead to obesity. This, in turn, can greatly increase risk for a variety of health concerns, cancer among them. To find out more about eating a healthy diet, preventing or battling obesity and personal cancer risks, speak with a healthcare provider.

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