Each gram of mushroom reduces chance of breast cancer by several percent, says meta-study
We've already written a couple of times about epidemiological studies which suggested that a diet containing large amounts of mushrooms protects against breast cancer. These studies don't deliver real proof. They are anything but perfect, and the meta-study in which Chinese researchers have analysed those studies also leaves a lot to be desired. Nevertheless, it does make the theory that mushrooms offer protection against breast cancer a little more likely.
The Chinese tracked down seven publications in the literature that lived up to their criteria. With the help of some statistical voodoo they turned them into 10 studies, and then they re-analysed the results.
Taken together, the results from the different studies suggested that every 1 gram increase in mushroom consumption per day reduced the chance of developing breast cancer by several percent.
The aggregated findings showed that a diet that contained relatively high amounts of mushrooms protected both pre and post menopausal women against breast cancer.
Although the quality of the studies was not wonderful, the Chinese do believe that they give an adequate reflection of the reality. In any case, the researchers found no evidence of studies with less positive results stuffed away in a drawer.
"In conclusion, the results from this meta-analysis suggested that greater edible mushroom consumption may be associated with a lower risk of breast cancer," wrote the researchers. "Our research provided a perspective that oral administration of mushrooms perhaps contribute to breast cancer primary prevention."
"Whereas available data are still sparse, the findings need to be updated and confirmed with well designed prospective studies in the future."
PLoS One. 2014 Apr 1;9(4):e93437.
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Cancer Prevention & Survival