Friday, October 29, 2010

Would Eating Tofu Reduce My Risk of Pancreatic Cancer?

In my last post, I explained some recent research that has found that curcumin in turmeric and isoflavones in soy products are protective against the processes the promote pancreatic cancer. There is good laboratory evidence that soy isoflavones stop the activation of genes that make pancreatic cancer invasive, that spread tumors throughout the body, and that grow a new blood supply for tumors. So would eating tofu stop the disease?

Actually, tofu is not the best source of soy isoflavones. Boiled soybeans, better known as edamame, contain about twice as much. Edamame contain about 27 mg of isoflavones per 50 g (1-1/2 oz) serving, and tofu about 14 mg per similar sized serving. Soy flour contains less than 0.1 mg of the needed plant chemicals, and soy sauce and soy oil, none at all. But more is not better.

The simple fact is, the human body can only absorb the isoflavone content of about 1-1/2 oz of edamame or 3 oz of tofu per day. More is not necessarily harmful, although I personally don't like the idea of eating some kind of soy burger or soy dog that's manufactured with the help of hexane solvents to get the mash to a meat-like color.

The more natural the soy, the better it is for you. You don't have to eat a lot. Whether tofu and other soy products help people who already have pancreatic cancer is an open question--eat them as one of many possible protein sources if you like the taste and you can keep them down.

You may also be interested in:

"Zapping" Pancreatic Cancer with Radiofrequency Ablation
Curcumin and Soy Isoflavones Against Pancreatic Cancer
Belly Fat, Testosterone, and Pancreatic Cancer
Sleep and Pancreatic Cancer
Probiotics and Pancreatic Cancer
Stopping Pancreatic Inflammation to Stop Pancreatic Cancer
Could Curcumin Cure Pancreatic Cancer?
Chinese Herbal Medicine for Pancreatic Cancer

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