Eating fruits and veggies might decrease women’s risk of bladder cancer, according to a new study.
The research, published in The Journal of Nutrition, shows an association for women between high intake of yellow-orange vegetables and decreased risk of bladder cancer, as well as high intake of vitmains A, C and E and decreaesd risk of bladder cancer.
“Our study supports the fruit and vegetable recommendation for cancer prevention,” study researcher Song-Yi Park, Ph.D., of the University of Hawaii Cancer Center, said in a statement. “However, further investigation is needed to understand and explain why the reduced cancer risk with higher consumption of fruits and vegetables was confined to only women.”
The study included data from 185,885 older adults who were part of the Multiethnic Cohort Study, which started in 1993. Over a 12.5-year period, 581 people developed invasive bladder cancer (of which 429 were men and 152 were women).
Researchers took into account known bladder cancer risk factors, such as age, and still found an association between produce consumption and bladder cancer risk. Specifically, the women in the study who consumed the most yellow-orange vegetables in the study had at 52 percent lower risk of developing bladder cancer over the study period, compared with people who consumed the fewest yellow-orange vegetables.
And bladder cancer risk was lowest for people who generally consumed the most vitamins A, C and E, as well as the most alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, beta-cryptoxanthin and folate, the researchers said.
However, there were no associations between fruit, vegetable or nutrient intake and bladder cancer for men.
Aside from bladder cancer, carotenoids– micronutrients that are found in colorful produce — have been linked with decreased breast cancer risk in previous research.