dietary methods for retarding breast cancer

Doug Skrecky (
Fri, 30 Oct 1998 20:41:53 -0800 (PST)

I recieved an inquiry about treating breast cancer. I thought others might be interested in my reply, which I reproduce below:

If you want to possibly buy a little time with dietary treatments I can recommend the consumption of large quantities of tomato and possibly carrot products. Giving lycopene (the red pigment in tomatoes) to mice that tend to develop breast cancer slows down the development of this disease by about 2 months. (Anticancer Research 15: 1173-1178 1995) While tomatoes are associated with reductions in cancer risk with a variety of cancers, the data linking to breast cancer is less solid, possibly because few people are willing to consume the large quanities of tomato products needed to achieve an effect in this tissue. Human epidemiological data does support an anti-breast cancer effect of high consumption of carrots - about a 20% reduction in risk. (Epidemiology 9: 338-341 1998)
Again I emphasize that only consumption of large quantities of tomato and carrot products can be expected to exert any significant effect on late stage malignant breast cancer - say 2 liters of tomato juice and carrot juice per day. Boiling the tomato juice with a little olive oil in it would greatly increase the absorption of lycopene, so this is what I recommend. The bottom line is that amounts of these foods which can be expected to significantly affect matters will result in a change in skin coloration. This is harmless.
As a additional adjunctive intervention a vitamin E supplement might be tried. This does not affect cancer itself, and it greatly increased the effectiveness of lycopene as an anti-cancer agent in a recent test. (Biochem Biophys Res Commun 250(3): 582-585 Sept 29,1998) This is so new that the local university library does not yet have in this issue of the journal. I spotted this on medline.
Good luck.