Study Finds Mushrooms May Help Protect Against Breast Cancer

Posted on March 17, 2009

Fresh Mushrooms USDAThe Telegraph reports that a study found that women who eat a daily portion of fresh mushrooms (at least a third of an ounce) were 64% less likely to develop breast cancer. The study also found that women who combined the mushroom intake with green tea cut their risk by 90%.
Researchers say the latest findings, published in the International Journal of Cancer, do not prove eating mushrooms will stop cancer and more studies are needed to confirm the results.

But laboratory tests on animals do show the fungi have anti-tumour properties and can stimulate the immune system's defences.

Some evidence suggests mushrooms act in a similar way to breast cancer drugs called aromatose inhibitors, which blocks the body's production of the hormone oestrogen, which can encourage the development of cancer.
The study was conducted by the University of Western Australia in Perth on over 2,000 women living in China. The article also says that scientists in California have started a trial to see if taking mushroom extract twice a day for a month can help breast cancer survivors remain cancer free.

Photo: Stephen Ausmus, USDA

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