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 15, 2015 | 2 minute read

Study: Nutrient versus Food for Disease Prevention, Who Wins?

What do you think is better at preventing cancer and other chronic diseases: A) a potassium supplement or B) a banana?

If you think like a group of college students, a new study suggests you’ll answer A.

, Study: Nutrient versus Food for Disease Prevention, Who Wins?The study looked at which of two schools of thought was most common when it comes to the connection between diet and disease. On the one hand is the belief that nutrients like potassium are the most critical for preventing disease. Others take the stance that the whole foods that contain these nutrients are the key to better health.

In the study, about 110 participants read scenarios describing an active, generally healthy, young man named “Steve” who was living a typical American middle-class lifestyle. The description of his diet either emphasized “healthy” nutrients (potassium, omega-3s, vitamin C, calcium, and iron) or “healthy” whole foods (bananas, fish, oranges, milk, and spinach). Participants were then asked how likely they thought Steve was to experience different diet-related chronic diseases in his lifetime.

Overall, the college students estimated Steve was at lower risk of developing cancer, heart disease, stroke and diabetes when his diet was nutrient-focused rather than whole food-focused.

While this was not entirely unexpected, note the authors, it may have significant negative public health implications. If most people think like these students, they may be focusing on nutrients rather than making the best food choices for their health.

Research now suggests that it is the synergy of the different compounds in foods working together that offers the strongest protection against chronic disease. And the latest recommendations for the new Dietary Guidelines, along with AICR, suggest focusing on not just whole foods, but dietary patterns. Increasing fruits and vegetables, for example, increases your intake of a variety of beneficial nutrients. AICR also advises against relying on supplements when it comes to cancer prevention.

Food and supplement companies often promote the view that nutrients are supreme. This reductionist view misses out on the health benefits of foods beyond the isolated vitamins and minerals they contain.

Foods provide far more than a few nutrients, minerals, or healthful phytochemicals. A banana, for example contains fiber, magnesium, plenty of vitamins, carotenoids, and flavonoids in addition to potassium. Plus, they taste great!

Now is the time to spread the word that, when it comes to the epic battle of potassium supplement vs. banana, banana wins.

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