A new study of adolescent diet and subsequent risk of precursor lesions for breast cancer shows that women who had higher intake of fiber earlier in life have lower cancer risk. Data from the Nurses’ Health Study show that women in the highest quintile of adolescent fiber intake had a 25% lower risk of proliferative benign breast disease. This significant reduction in risk was seen regardless of the source of fiber.
One possible mechanism supported by results from a randomized controlled clinical trial on diet and sex hormones among adolescent girls, showed lower estrogen levels at the year 5 follow-up in the intervention group who had a low fat and high fiber diet than the usual care group. Together these findings support the hypothesis that dietary intake of fiber and nuts during adolescence influences subsequent risk of breast disease and may suggest a viable means for breast cancer prevention.
See: Su, Tamimi, et al. Cancer Causes and Control. March 14. 2010.