Lower Risk Of Pancreatic Cancer With Antioxidants

Although pancreatic cancer survival has increased from decade to decade, the disease is still deemed deadly.

Survival Rates

The American Cancer Society reports, for all degrees of pancreatic carcinoma, the one-year relevant percentage is 20%, and the five-year percentage is 6%.

Persons with diets high in vitamins C and E and the mineral selenium have a lower risk of pancreatic cancer. Participants in recent research conducted by Norfolk arm of the European Prospective Investigation of Cancer in England were 67 percent less apt to develop pancreatic cancer in a ten-year timeframe when compared to persons who had the lowest intake of the vitamins and mineral.

The decreased risk is thought to be explainable by vitamins C & E, as well as selenium, are antioxidants. Antioxidants have been proven to fight free oxygen radicals which alter DNA. Antioxidants help protect cells from damaging free radicals. The studies findings show an association between foods containing the antioxidants and pancreatic cancer risk.  What is still unknown is how antioxidants prevent pancreatic cancer.

Smoking and diabetes, established risk factors for pancreatic cancer, trigger oxidative stress and free radical production. The study also found a link between the compounds and pancreatic cancer suggested to researchers that intake of the vitamins and mineral may prevent one-in-twelve instances of pancreatic cancer.

Besides smoking and diabetes, another risk factor is obesity.

Researchers found that persons consuming more selenium were 50-percent less likely to develop pancreatic cancer contrasted to those who consumed the least amounts of selenium-rich food. Individuals whose consumption of the vitamins and mineral was in the top 75-percent were two-thirds less likely to develop cancer.

Vitamin C can be found in:

  • Citrus
  • Red berries
  • Bell peppers — both red and green

Vitamin E can be found in:

  • Vegetable oils
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Egg yolks

Selenium is found in soil, and selenium-loaded foods include:

  • Cereals
  • Fish
  • Meats

Interestingly, some studies have shown that high amounts of vitamin E and selenium might boost the risk of other cancers such as prostate cancer. While it is still too soon to many specific recommendations for lowering the risk for pancreatic cancer, two general guidelines should be considered:

  1. Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet, and
  2. Talk to your physician about supplementing your diet with vitamins and minerals