Phosphates are found in many foods, from soda to processed meats; and as we’ve taken in more processed foods over the last few decades, we’ve taken in more phosphates. Although essential, researchers have found that excessive intake of phosphates may result in an unexpected side effect: skin cancer.
Emory University scientists exposed mice to carcinogens while feeding them either a high- or low-phosphate diet. Those who were fed more phosphates had a 50% higher occurrence of skin papillomas, precancerous tumors, than those who were fed fewer.
The researchers believe that a higher level of phosphates in one’s diet could tip the scales towards the chemical reactions that promote unabated skin cancer cell division.
Most Americans take in as much of if not more than the equivalent dietary percentage of phosphates consumed by the more afflicted mice. Although the recommended daily allowance of phosphates for adults is 700 mg, many people are consuming more than double that amount.
Such a discovery makes skin cancer’s prevalence over other cancers seem like much more than a coincidence.
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