Vegetarian Diet and Colorectal Cancers
Colorectal cancer remains the second leading cause of cancer mortality in the United States.
Researchers conducted a study that was published in JAMA to see the correlation between vegetarian dietary patterns and colorectal patterns. 77,659 participants were chosen from all across North America and were split into groups according to their specific diet. They were categorized into 4 vegetarian dietary patterns (vegan, lacto-ovo vegetarian, pescovegetarian, and semivegetarian) and a nonvegetarian dietary pattern.
The researchers followed up with the participants after a little more than seven years and found 380 cases of colon cancer, as well as 110 cases of rectal cancer. The study found that vegetarian dietary patterns, especially pescovegatarians, were associated with a lower incidence of colorectal cancer.
Vegetarian dietary patterns might be expected to be associated with a lower risk of colorectal cancer given their lack of or reduced meat (including red and processed meat) content. Vegetarian diets may also be higher in fiber-containing foods. Such diets have also consistently been associated with lower body mass index (BMI), and evidence convincingly links increased adiposity to increased colorectal cancer risk.
For more information, read the full study.