Red meat and sugar consumption have been linked to the development of colorectal cancer at a younger age, according to a recent study conducted by researchers. The study highlights the increasing incidence of colorectal cancer among young individuals and predicts that it may become a leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the US for people aged 20 to 49 by 2030.
The underlying Cause Remains Unclear
Although the study sheds light on the dietary and environmental factors that could contribute to cancer, the exact underlying cause remains unknown. Dr. Suneel Kamath, a senior author of the study from Cleveland Clinic, acknowledged the limited understanding of the cause, stating, “As far as the cause is concerned, we really know very little about that so far.”
The study involved comparing two groups of individuals: one consisting of young people diagnosed with colorectal cancer and the other comprising individuals who developed the disease at a more typical age. The researchers discovered that those younger than 50 years with colorectal cancer had lower levels of citrate, a substance produced during the body’s conversion of food into energy.
Furthermore, the study revealed differences in the breakdown of proteins and carbohydrates among the groups, suggesting a potential association between the consumption of red meat and sugar and the onset of colorectal cancer at a younger age.
Dr. Kamath emphasized the importance of dietary modifications, recommending an increase in the intake of leafy green vegetables, while limiting , processed foods, and red meat and sugar. He suggested obtaining protein from lean meats, poultry, beans, and lentils.Common symptoms of colorectal cancer include rectal bleeding or blood in the stool, cramping or abdominal pain, weakness, fatigue, and weight loss.
In addition to that, Dr. Kamath also expressed concern over the misconception that young individuals are immune to cancer, stating, “Unfortunately, there’s a narrative out there in both the medical community and the general public that you can be too young to have cancer, and I want people to know that, unfortunately, that isn’t the case.”
The researchers hope that this study will pave the way for further research to gain a deeper understanding of the causes of colorectal cancer and ultimately lead to the development of improved therapies for young adults diagnosed with the disease.