When you include the American Institute for Cancer Research in your estate plans, you make a major difference in the fight against cancer.

Corporate Champions who partner with the American Institute for Cancer Research stand at the forefront of the fight against cancer

The Continuous Update Project (CUP) is an ongoing program that analyzes global research on how diet, nutrition and physical activity affect cancer risk and survival.

A major milestone in cancer research, the Third Expert Report analyzes and synthesizes the evidence gathered in CUP reports and serves as a vital resource for anyone interested in preventing cancer.

Whether you are a healthcare provider, a researcher, or just someone who wants to learn more about cancer prevention, we’re here to help.

AICR has pushed research to new heights, and has helped thousands of communities better understand the intersection of lifestyle, nutrition, and cancer.

Read real-life accounts of how AICR is changing lives through cancer prevention and survivorship.

We bring a detailed policy framework to our advocacy efforts, and provide lawmakers with the scientific evidence they need to achieve our objectives.

AICR champions research that increases understanding of the relationship between nutrition, lifestyle, and cancer.

AICR’s resources can help you navigate questions about nutrition and lifestyle, and empower you to advocate for your health.

AICR is committed to putting what we know about cancer prevention into action. To help you live healthier, we’ve taken the latest research and made 10 Cancer Prevention Recommendations.

June 14, 2011 | 3 minute read

An Apple a Day? Pesticides in the News

, An Apple a Day? Pesticides in the NewsYou may have seen headlines yesterday about fruits, vegetables and pesticide residues — headlines which have prompted serious questions in many people’s minds about the issue. Questions like:

1. Is there legitimate cause for concern here?

2. Should you avoid fresh produce out of concern for your and your family’s health?

The answers, respectively, are:

1. Yes, and

2. Emphatically no.

Some background: The consumer advocacy organization Environmental Working Group (EWG) released its annual Shoppers Guide to Pesticides in Produce. The Guide ranks pesticide contamination for many fruits and vegetables based on EWG’s analysis of tens of thousands of tests conducted by the USDA and the FDA.

The EWG’s Guide lists 12 produce items that contained the highest concentration of pesticide residues (“The Dirty Dozen” includes potatoes, spinach, peaches, strawberries, celery and — coming in at number one — apples).  EWG also ranked produce items that tested lowest in pesticides (“The Clean Fifteen” includes sweet potatoes, watermelon, mangoes, asparagus, pineapples, corn and — the cleanest of the bunch — onions).

What’s the Bottom Line?

EWG isn’t advocating avoiding produce. Their take-home message — which didn’t make it into much of the more sensationalist press coverage, alas — is very clear:

“Eat your fruits and vegetables! The health benefits of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables outweigh the risks of pesticide exposure. Use EWG’s Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides to reduce your exposures as much as possible, but eating conventionally-grown produce is far better than not eating fruits and vegetables at all.”

On this, AICR and EWG agree.  Our expert report on cancer prevention, and its updates, make clear that everyone’s priority should be on getting more vegetables and fruits into the diet — get them fresh, canned or frozen, get them organic or conventional, but get them.

If you can afford organic, and are concerned about pesticide residues — or opt for organic for other reasons such as issues of land and water use — do so. If you can’t, know that the cancer protection you’re getting from eating a variety of vegetables and fruits outweighs the potential risks associated with pesticides.

This is a notoriously difficult area to study. There is evidence linking high doses of pesticides to cancer in the laboratory, and to cancer in farm workers and others who are professionally exposed to high levels of pesticides over many years. But we still lack evidence from human studies that pesticides cause cancer at the levels they exist in US diets – a country where pesticide use is regulated.

Watch this space – we’ll know more as methods of studying this hot topic improve. In the meantime, get your vegetables and fruits however you choose to, rinse them thoroughly … and don’t shun that Red Delicious.

 

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