Breast Cancer Nutrition Quiz

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Breast Cancer Nutrition Quiz

Transcript Of Breast Cancer Nutrition Quiz

Breast Cancer Nutrition Quiz
The Answers and Explanations
Lisa Schwartz, MD

Here are the answers to your quiz!

I know you might be surprised by some of these, but they are backed up by clinical research. I hope you had fun taking the quiz and learned something at the same time.

Please let me know if you have any questions about lifestyle changes that breast cancer survivors can make to reduce the risk of recurrence. You can contact me at [email protected]

Now read on to find out what you can do to reduce the risk of a breast cancer recurrence and live your best life!

Lisa Schwartz, MD

©2019 MES Media, LLC. All rights reserved.


1. It’s ok for women with estrogen positive breast cancer to consume soy. TRUE

Soy can actually be good for breast cancer survivors.

While the research information on soy has been conflicting at times, the current informed thinking is that eating whole soy foods does not increase your risk of breast cancer or a breast

There are reasons why this has not been so clear in the past though.
The interest in soy started with the studies that showed that Asian countries had a lower incidence of breast cancer than Western countries. Women in Asian countries consume more soy than their counterparts in Western countries so some concluded that soy consumption should be the reason for that difference in breast cancer incidence.

cancer recurrence.


Soy can actually be good for breast cancer

survivors. (cont)

Another concern from the past has been that soy

Now it should be obvious that soy consumption is

contains phytoestrogens (plant estrogens). These

not the only lifestyle difference in women in

can act as weak estrogens in the body. Women

Asian countries and those in Western countries.

with “hormone fed” breast cancers (those that

Asian diets are typically much healthier in

express receptors for estrogen and progesterone

general, Asians tend to be less overweight

known as ER or PR positive) were cautioned that

(especially when compared to Americans), and

eating soy may make their tumors grow. In fact,

they are typically more physically active. All of

the opposite is probably true. The reason for this

those things contribute to a lower incidence of

is that there are several different types of

breast cancer no matter what country you live in.

estrogen receptors in the body, some protect you

So the lower incidence of breast cancer among

from breast cancer and others promote breast

Asian women cannot necessarily be attributed to

cancer growth. It turns out that the weak

soy and is not a reason by itself to recommend

estrogens in soy foods may stimulate the

soy consumption for breast cancer prevention.

estrogen receptors that protect you from breast


Soy can actually be good for breast cancer

survivors. (cont)
Finally, studies on soy food consumption done in women without breast cancer and in breast cancer survivors show that there is no increased

A serving is one cup of soy milk, half a cup of edamame, a half cup (about 4 oz) of tofu, or one ounce of soy nuts.

risk of developing breast cancer or of having a

Highly processed soy foods found in things like

breast cancer recurrence with one to two

tofurky and some veggie burgers or veggie

servings of soy food a day.

substitutes for other foods are not good for you

Soy food is important here. Soy supplements and powders provide a much higher concentration of phytoestrogens and their safety has not been determined. Soy foods include soy milk, tofu, tempeh, soy nuts, and edamame and are a healthy

and should be avoided. Avoid foods made from “concentrated soy protein” or “soy protein isolates”. Soybean oil, soy sauce, and foods made with soy lecithin do not contain any phytoestrogens.

source of plant proteins.



2. Sugar feeds cancer. FALSE (sort of)

Sugar and cancer is a little more


Sugar is the fuel for all the cells of your body. All

Well, technically, sugar does feed cancer, but only

the food you eat (proteins, fats, and carbohydrates) can be broken down to sugars to feed your cells. In general though, your body uses

because sugar feeds all the

carbohydrates to meet its immediate energy needs. If there is not enough carbohydrate

cells in your body. The real myth is that eating sugar makes a cancer grow, and

consumed, then protein and fat can be converted to a sugar the cells can use.
Eating a balanced diet containing carbohydrates, proteins, and fats allows your body to use these

that is NOT true. Here’s how

macronutrients most efficiently without robbing proteins and fats to make sugar. No matter what

it works.

you eat your body tries to find balance to meet its needs. 9

Sugar and cancer is a little more

The “sugar feeds cancer” myth likely comes from the fact that cancer cells divide much more rapidly than normal cells and therefore consume relatively more sugar in order to feed that dividing process. Cancer cells are also not as efficient at using sugar and need more for basic functions. Again, the sugar is not promoting this process. The fact that cancer cells grow in an uncontrolled fashion promotes this process.

Here’s the scoop. Carbohydrates can be categorized according to how quickly they release sugar into the bloodstream. A spoonful of table sugar gets absorbed into the bloodstream very quickly and rapidly raises blood sugar levels. As a consequence, your body releases a big batch of insulin to bring the blood sugar down to a normal level. Insulin takes the sugar out of the bloodstream and puts it into the cells for them to use.

But, not all sugar is good for you whether you have cancer or not.

The sugar from an apple gets absorbed into the bloodstream more slowly because of its fiber content.

SugarBreast CancerBodyCellsCancer