Copper deficiency implicated in colon cancer

March 20, 2001 in Cancer Prevention, Vitamins, Minerals, Supplements

Copper deficiency implicated in colon cancer

If recent animal are confirmed in humans eating oysters, chocolate, liver, seeds or nuts as part of a balanced diet may help reduce your risk of colon cancer. These foods are high in copper, a trace mineral that’s present in inadequate amounts in many people's diets, according to scientists with the US Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service in Grand Forks, North Dakota. A growing body of evidence suggests that a low-copper diet may significantly increase the risk of colon cancer.

Researchers found that rats raised on only 20 percent of their copper requirement were significantly more prone to develop colon cancer precursors than were animals that received adequate amounts of copper, after both groups were given a cancer-causing chemical.

The research may add copper to the list of substances, including selenium, calcium and fiber, which are now considered important for a healthy colon. Although it is not possible to make conclusions about human beings based on animal studies, the genetically altered mice make a very good model for testing the effects of changes in diet on colon cancer. The mouse mutation is similar to an inherited disorder, familial adenomatous polyposis, where family members spontaneously develop intestinal tumors.

All research on this web site is the property of Leslie Beck Nutrition Consulting Inc. and is protected by copyright. Keep in mind that research on these matters continues daily and is subject to change. The information presented is not intended as a substitute for medical treatment. It is intended to provide ongoing support of your healthy lifestyle practices.