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Can Low Carb Diets Reduce Risk of Breast Cancer?

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Dr. Kim Mulvihill reporting Low carb diets have helped millions of women shed pounds.

Now scientists wonder whether the popular eating plan can help them reduce their risk of cancer.

Like many of us, Cathy Tatum has been on several diets over the years to maintain a healthy weight. But now she's dieting for a different reason

Cathy Tatum Volunteer Participant: “I've always been interested in participating in research studies because I think its a real important way for us to learn new treatments and new ways to prevent diseases, especially.”

Cathy has volunteered to help researchers answer an important question: Research suggest a high carb diet may increase the risk of breast cancer.

So can a low carb diet help lower a woman's risk?

Electra Paskett, Ph.D., Cancer Specialist: “We want to see if changing the woman's diet to lower the fat, Plus exercise will reduce the insulin growth factor.”

Some studies show carbs give cancer cells more energy and may contribute to the activity of insulin growth factor - a hormone that stimulates the growth of cancerous cells.

On this diet, researchers won't just focus on how much the women weigh, but on how her body is responding internally.

Electra Paskett, Ph.D., Cancer Specialist: “We should be seeing some good things in her body as far as these biomarkers that we're looking at so then we'll tell her how she's doing and if she's doing well, does that make her stay adherent. “

Researchers say too many women are dependent on the scale to tell them if their diet is a success or not.

They hope to find if there are other benefits to dieting besides looking thin..that will make more women committed to fitness.

Researchers are also testing out a low fat diet.

Women who take part in the study will be on a tailor made diet designed to help them lose two pounds a week.

The trial is expected to last for eighteen months

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