Thursday, December 4, 2014

On the Cancer Front

An interesting tidbit of research news landed on my desktop this morning.  We have known for a while that red wine has a capability to prevent cancer, even though alcohol itself causes cancer.  The study I saw this morning explains this incongruity in more detail.  Researchers looked at the biochemical effects of alcohol metabolism alongside the effect of one of red wine's better known polyphenols called resveratrol.

The finding was that cancer is caused by how the human body digests alcohol.  One of the chemical byproducts of this digestive process creates cellular DNA damage, which over time and exposure will cause cancer.  On the other side of the ledger, red wine specifically, (No, Jack Daniels does not do it!) has resveratrol.  Resveratrol comes along and kills cells with abnormal DNA.(1)  So here is one take away: if one must drink, drink red wine as it has a corrective to the alcohol hit.  

How else do we convert this research finding into something pragmatically useful?  All researchers always end their reports with the typical caveat that "We have to do a lot more research before you use this information."  I don't happen to agree with that.  So here are two pieces of advice from this information.  1.  Do not drink any alcohol to excess.  By excess I mean any more than one or two drinks/beers at a time, and don't drink alcohol every day.  2. Add Resveratrol to your supplement regimen. Resveratrol (without the alcohol) has been available now for a few years from health food stores (or you can click on Newsletter and Blog Mentions at my online dispensary.) 

NatureWords for Health,
Dr. Mark

(1)  University of Colorado Denver. "How red wine prevents cancer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 December 2014. . 

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