Red Meat & Dairy Products & Calcium
It is over 30 years since studies on Seventh Day Adventists, half of whom are vegetarians, showed an association between colo-rectal cancer and meat consumption. Since then many large scale studies have pin pointed red meat as the culprit with white meat being given the all clear.
More recently the chemical mechanisms involved in damaging DNA in the walls of the gut have been worked out (Damage to DNA is an initiator of cancer). This has been done on human volunteers who spend a couple of weeks in a metabolic suite while being fed different diets. Their faeces are then examined in detail both chemically and genetically.
Research literature associates 80% of colorectal cancers with diet. Interestingly, this months American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reports the findings of a large-scale study on Swedish men and colo-rectal cancer. The study shows that both dairy products and high calcium intake protect against colo-rectal cancer. There was even some debate as to whether 1.1 g Calcium per day was enough to give protection or whether more than 1.4 gm of Calcium was necessary.