Reseaarch study finds a large increase in Cancer rates below the age of 50

CAVEAT…no theological aim with this O.P… it nothing more than i stumbled across an interesting news story I read on tonight…considering the advances made in medicine, its a worrying statistic.

The article does make the observation that increases in population and screening contribute to the number, however, lifestyle is also stated as being a problem.

What i was quite interested in reading is that eating red meat is considered a contributing factor, however, diary is not. I wondered why?

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Maybe the article was just that. An article with a handful of statements that just did not cover everything. I feel like it would be if I read that article, and my take away was” I wonder why a diet high in mushrooms don’t contribute to lesser diseases of affluence. Plenty of studies show that diets high in milk, cheese and eggs is also not good for you. I imagine you’ll be hard pressed to find a clinical dietician that says…. You need more milk and cheese in your diet. Try to eat milk and cheese with every meal. T. Colin Campbell had done a lot of research on this.

Ultimately, it’s not a single food issue. It’s a lifestyle issue. You can eat red meat in healthier portions every week and be ok. If you are a vegan who eats Wally healthy and work out everyday and get the right amount of sleep, don’t have a stressful life because you have a job you love , a happy marriage and financial security you could also smoke a cigarette everyday and have a shot every week and you’ll still probably be fine.

As it mentions this seems to be the main reasons why cancers are developing.

People now days in developed and developing countries eat an excess of calories and those calories are coming from high calorie low nutrient foods. People nowadays are less physically active. It’s like this joke…… how fast can the average person run 2 miles? It’s not some number… it’s they can’t. The average person can’t run 2 miles straight. More people will sit down and eat a 2,000 calorie meal while binging 4 hours of a show in one sitting than those that will have a 500 calorie meal and just watch a single episode.

One big issue is the push of myths.

One myth is that eating healthier is more expensive than eating junk food. A hear tons of people say “ well it’s cheaper to eat fast food than it is to eat a home cooked meal “ and that’s just a lie. Typical breakfast combo is about $8. So a mom with two kids is around $24. For $24 you can have a cup of oatmeal, an apple and a banana for almost everyone all week for breakfast. A whopper meal with a whopper, small fry and drink is about $8 as well. Again that’s $24 a person. $24 for three with low quality food with high calories. Tons of families are 2 adults with 2 kids. That’s roughly $8x4 a meal. $24 a meal x 3 meals a day is $72 or $504 a week. You can eat home cooked meals for far less a week. You can eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables. Go buy $500 of typical fruits and vegetables, and can beans a week for 4 people and at the end of the week, you’ll have 1/2 the food stil sitting uneaten.


Interesting study. While a lot of confounding factors, probably some truth to it. I think chemicals in the environment have something to do with it. With red meat, perhaps it is in the way it is cooked as browning and charring seem to produce carcinogens.


I agree that chemicals in our environment and diet contribute to the change. Also the quality of food is probably involved, as certain type of diets are associated with better or worse health.
An interesting speculation I read was the contribution of increased medication, especially too frequent use of antibiotics. I don’t know if antibiotics play any role but it might be possible either directly or indirectly through a changed microbe community.

One additional culprit may be that a growing proportion of people live in cities and towns and the air quality is often poor in these environments. Increased smoke of forest fires affect air quality also in the countryside, which may even the odds between rural and city inhabitants.

All cancer types did not become more common, which may give hints of the key factors involved.


I think it is because cancer causing substances accumulate in the meat over a much longer period of time.

Oh yeah… that makes sense too.

One thing I think that is also worth mentioning is that we have healthy people of all races, classes and locations in the world. There are healthy poor black people in the Bronx, Detroit, Chicago and in Mobile (south Alabama) from farms in the country to lofts I’m a big city. There are Asians in China, Japan, Mexico and America who are healthy and who are unhealthy. There are white people in trailer parks and in mansions from the conservative Bible Belt of America to very liberal Davie Village in Canada who are healthy and unhealthy. Different places have more or less concentrations of one or the other. ( should note fitness is not the same as health ). You can be very athletic , in great shape, and have a unhealthy diet that causes a heart attack at 55 like what we see often with football players and wrestlers and you can have someone who is overweight, can’t run very far but who is happy and lives into their 80s.

But in general, they do seem to go hand in hand. Normally when someone’s plate is predominantly fruits and vegetables and their foods are low in fats and not overly processed and filled with sugars, and they have an active lifestyle which can include short walks with their dogs and photography where they snap pics of birds and caterpillars, they will usually be ok.

I live in south Alabama. I work in a plant with over 100 employees. Though just 10-12 work in my section. Everyone in the section is above average when it comes to physical activity due to the type of work. We lift a minimum of 50lbs hundreds of times a day. Sometimes individually we even lift 200+ pounds to place it on rolling tables that get pushed back and forth dozens of times a day. But I have noticed only about 3-4 eat well. When I was in construction and landscaping it was the same.

Most would show up with a monster energy drink and a fast food biscuit. At break they would have chips and another energy drink. At lunch it was gas station food that was overpriced and soda. They would eat one home cooked meal a day and that was dinner and often they bragged about big burgers and so on. They would spend like $25 a day just in gas stations.

But like the lunch I made today is not super healthy, but it’s far more healthy than what I see most eating.
It’s two oranges, a banana, a carrot , about 8 pitted dates. I do actually have a bag of chips. But I ate half the bag yesterday and I’ll eat the other half today. It’s a typical small bag of chips. I also have. V8 energy drink instead of coffee or another type of energy drink and a mushroom sandwich. It’s nothing special but it’s also because I work 12 hours and this food is split up between 2 breaks and a lunch. I don’t like feeling full. It makes me sluggish. It’s hard to be motivated to work hard in high heat when your stomach is stuffed. But I. n eat a banana and a few dates and be good to be on for a few more hours. Then have an orange and a carrot and be good again for a few hours.


Where is the citation for the study? I don’t read med articles any more until I have had a chance to look at the abstract of the original article to see if it exists at all, and if so, if the reporting is remotely accurate.


yes absolutely agree with this…i have read exactly that myself. Also, i recall my wife and her mum went to a series of lectures years ago with a professor from Sth Africa. He had done quite a lot of research on milk and was certain it was anything but good for us and also claimed it was counter productive for bone density issues from lack of calcium to increase dairy in one’s diet.

its a news article on the Aljazera website (see link to the news story in the O.P).

agree Phil…i have always wondered to what extent the following are contributing factors to cancer in society:

  1. automotive exhaust fumes from cars and trucks etc
  2. electrical wiring surrounding us in our houses and in cars
  3. high voltage power lines in suburban streets
  4. chemicals that we regularly use around the home

Yep. I got that.
That’s irrelevant, though, without me being able to examine the research they say the article is about. News, “news”, blogs, Sheila R’s-favorite-online-misinformation-spewing-“doctor”-who-confirms-all-her-biases-by-misrepresenting-articles-he-didn’t-even-read, etc. can say whatever they want about an article. Sometimes they do. Before I bother to read the article, I want to make sure the reporting accurately reflects what is in the research, how it was done, and what the results are.

But that isn’t close to being enough. I am a librarian, not a scientist or doctor. So I have to use the tools I have, starting with information literacy tools.

Looking at the study itself, I want to know when it was published who published it and what this publisher’s reputation is. Who the authors are and their affiliations. Where they did the study and the institutional affiliations.

Then I look at how big the sample was and how it was selected, and the nuts and bolts kind of things that go into the research. Where was it done? A real medical research facility? An unlicenced home “clinic?” Etc, etc.

I want to know what response the study has received in its field, and if it’s super recent, then I have to consider that perhaps no one has had a chance to respond or test the test,

Finally, if it’s important to me, I might ask a friend who is a doctor.

So, when someone takes 15 seconds to glance at a newspaper article and “share” it with me and inclues “What fo you think of this?” my internal reply is “This is going to be a lot of work. I wish you had done your own homework.”

Al Jazeera didn’t even give the name or author of the study and I took 3 minutes yesterday on the journal’s website and didn’t find anything that looked right. When reporting is that shoddy, all my misinformation-feelers go wild.


I think its this one on the BMJ Oncology Journal website…Shifting tides: the rising tide of early-onset cancers demands attention | BMJ Oncology

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This is the paper I’ve seen people reference (probably the impetus for the editorial @adamjedgar referenced): Here is the age-adjusted incidence plot from the paper for early-onset cancer:

While there has been an increase, it’s not exactly a tidal wave.


Thanks @adamjedgar and @glipsnort. I’m not even to the article itself yet. I don’t know BMJ Oncology from Adam (of Genesis, not the BLForum Adam). So, i spent a good deal of time reading around their website about their peer review process, etc. and looking for references to the journal itself as a journal.

Do you see what I mean? Following up on stuff is hard work for a lay-person. Particularly, when we are looking at technical articles out of our area of training.

During lockdowns in particular, I got a lot of crap blog referrals about the dangers of masks for example, and the “great “ berrington declaration. One particular blog post almost drove me over the edge. A person from church had sent it. It said everything she wanted to hear and referenced a real science article. It took at least a half hour to figure out what the article was and then another to find it. Once I found it and read the abstract, I saw that the research article was entirely misrepresented by the “christian” blogger. I was livid.

The “great” berrington thing that looked all official, ready for the Great Seal of Michigan, no doubt, provided links to maybe 20 popular level news websites. Good Lord! I knew I would not live long enough to deal with hunting down all those references to get to the originals. I was pretty sure, from the claims of the declaration that finding the sources would be a waste of my time anyway. Experience proved me right.

So, my beef here isn’t even related to Adam’s article, but to the process that people use to examine things like it that circulate in the info-sharo-sphere, that is: the lack of employment of basic information literacy skills.


Good points. I would be equally as lost looking at a library science article. Research is hard work, and evaluating research is as well. At least if you are in the field, you have an idea as to the reliability of the mainstream journals, and their peer review process. There are so many obscure journals that accept pretty much everything, that you cannot trust something is true just because it is published.


Depending on the branch, I would as well. Tech services, and the whole realm of electronic resources, access, database permissions and authentication systems are areas I have no experience in, except to ask my coworkers for help. I could be an entry level cataloging assistant after one cataloging class and 20 years of original and copy cataloging in the old church library.

It’s more important to know what you don’t know.


So appropriate:

Brandolini’s law states it takes ten times the effort to debunk rubbish as it takes to produce it.

Don’t ask me for a citation. :grin:

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My doctor has said it isn’t red meat, it’s an excess of red meat. It’s also that a lot of people scorch the meat when they’re cooking it, which results in a bunch of interesting and unfriendly compounds.


i agree totally with this Kendel…there are sooo many references from academic articles that have very different conclusions…its hard to know which one is correct.From a Christian perspective, i really struggle with the biblical statement that “knowledge shall increase”, “mankind will do evil continually”, “there will be wars and rumours of wars”…it all seems gloom and doom towards the end of time when we read the Bible…and yet modern medicine appears to be doing great work improving our way of life. The question is, are we really making things better or just masking over the gloom and doom prophesied in the Bible?

For example, my wife is about to go through chemo therapy. Obviously the idea is that this will do the “mopping up” of cancer and pre-cancerous cells throughout her body. 24 hours after each chemo infusion, she has to take immune-building tablets…the side effect of these “immune boosters” is severe bone pain and the oncologist tells us all patients experience this pain after taking them. Then there are the side effects of the Chemo itself…constipation, then diarrhea, then constipation…a vicious repeating cycle… mouth ulcers, loss of taste, tingling in fingers that if not treated as a matter of urgency can lead to permanent nerve damage…the list goes on .

Let me just add, I am a pro medical science person…Whilst i do recognize that traditional medicines and herbal remedies have their place, Im not really into naturopathy much. (i hope this doesnt offend anyone)

Actually, now that i think of it, one thing i do struggle with is the idea that God would create things in our environment that are deadly to humans (such as some rather nasty viruses and bacteria). I know that as a YEC i could simply make the claim, God didnt create them, Satan caused them to appear on the scene as a result of sin…but even this is a bit iffy theologically. I suppose im leaning towards the idea that both of the above are true…they are created but Satan has either directly or indirectly influenced them and what should be a safe natural process of “evolutionary development” is being corrupted by sin

I dont want to detract from the O.P…but i just need to explain myself given what i said in the above paragraph… i am YEC so my “evolutionary” is a bit different to Biologos version - i kinda believe that God has placed mechanisms into all life on earth so that life in all its forms is be able to change to cope with the corruption of sin and its affects on the environment.

im wondering…(not a loaded question btw) Is the Biologos view on the origins of diseases like cancer (can i call it a disease?) similar to that of mine…ie its a result of the corruption of sin? I dont think i have ever asked a TEist for their religious+scientific explanation of things like cancer.


Dr. Maoshing Ni’s observations in his book, “Secrets of Longevity. Hundreds of Ways to live to be 100” about the diets of centenarians and their emphasis on plant-based foods, particularly legumes, grains, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds, align with much of the current research on healthy dietary patterns. There is indeed a lot to learn from this perspective, and it reflects several important principles of nutrition that can contribute to longevity and overall well-being. Numerous studies have highlighted the health benefits of a plant-based diet. Plant-based diets tend to be rich in fibre, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which can support good health and reduce the risk of chronic diseases.

The foods listed by Dr Ni are nutrient-dense, meaning they provide a high concentration of essential nutrients compared to their calorie content. This is important for meeting nutritional needs without overeating. While not all centenarians are strict vegetarians, the observation that many ate little to no meat aligns with recommendations to reduce red and processed meat consumption, which has been associated with a higher risk of certain diseases, including heart disease and certain types of cancer. While meat consumption is less common in centenarians’ diets, it’s essential to note that balance and individual preferences play a role. Some individuals may thrive on vegetarian or vegan diets, while others may include small amounts of animal products.

A diet based on a variety of plant foods ensures a broad spectrum of nutrients and phytochemicals, which can have protective effects on health. Centenarians’ diets appear to be centred around whole, minimally processed foods. This approach minimizes the intake of added sugars, unhealthy fats, and artificial additives, which can be detrimental to health. However, it’s important to recognize that the diet of centenarians represents one aspect of their overall lifestyle, and other factors like regular physical activity, social connections, and stress management are important.

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