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Eating fruits, vegetables helps cut lung cancer risk: study



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WASHINGTON, Sept 28 (AFP) - A diet rich in fruits, vegetables and soy products reduces the risk of lung cancer, according to a new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

The cancer-fighting agents in foods such as spinach, carrots and broccoli as well as fruits are believed to be phytoestrogens, according to researchers at the Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas, Houston. They have a weak estrogen-like activity.

"Reduction in lung cancer risk tended to increase with increasing phytoestrogen intake," researchers said in a statement.

"The apparent benefits were evident in both never and current smokers, but less so in former smokers," the authors added.

A separate study in JAMA meanwhile found that heavy smokers -- defined as those who smoke more than 15 cigarettes per day -- can reduce their risk of lung cancer if they reduce their smoking by 50 percent.

"Reducing tobacco consumption from approximately 20 cigarettes per day to less than 10 was associated with a 27 percent reduction in lung cancer risk compared with unchanged heavy smoking," the authors, of Denmark's Copenhagen University Hospital, said in a statement.

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COPYRIGHT 2005 Agence France-Presse. All rights reserved.

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