April 10, 2015 – Vegetarian Diet and Colorectal Cancer


Anchor lead: More evidence for the benefits of a vegetarian diet in reducing cancer is revealed, Elizabeth Tracey reports

People who consume a vegetarian diet reduce their risk of colorectal cancer quite a lot, especially if they also eat fish, a recent large study found.  William Nelson, director of the Kimmel Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins, comments.

Nelson: There was about a 22% reduction in the chance to develop colorectal cancer among all the vegetarian groups.  The one that stood out among all of them were the pescovegetarians, suggesting maybe there’s something additionally beneficial about consuming fish which there’s some evidence may be helpful in addition to a vegetarian lifestyle.   :21

Nelson says that even though this was an observational study rather than one where a specific intervention is employed, he’s in favor of the conclusion.

Nelson: There are many good things in vegetables.  It’s hard to find very many studies of the health hazards of vegetables, so I think vegetable consumption sounds like a good bet, and this certainly supports that notion.   :12

At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.