Cancer's sweet tooth: the Janus effect of glucose metabolism in tumorigenesis - Lancet. 2006;367:618-21.
By Leyla Muedin, RD
It has been long known in the scientific community that cancers feed on glucose. The fact that cancer has a sweet tooth firmly points a finger at excess carbohydrate intake. This causes the biochemical changes which set the stage for the development of premalignant tumors. Glycolysis, which is the metabolism of glucose, in this context contributes to carcinogenesis. This information supports the fact that obesity and excess consumption of carbohydrates predispose people to cancer by contributing to the biochemical selection of preneoplastic lesions (very early tumors) and that carbohydrate restriction and exercise may reduce the burden of early, and ultimately advanced, disease. Making these lifestyle changes would also alleviate the burden on the healthcare system with its inflated costs of arduous cancer treatments.
With cancer having a sweet tooth, reduction of dietary carbohydrate intake to shift the metabolism from glycolysis (glucose-burning) to lipolysis/ketosis (fat-burning) is sound medical nutritional therapy for cancer prevention and treatment. This recent Lancet article provides further theoretical support for the benefits of the Salad and Salmon Diet.