In Other News - Bacon BAD, Frankincense Oil GOOD - April 23, 2009

One of my favorite food items in the world is bacon. And I haven't had any (except the fake kind made from turkey) for 10 months. According to this research, I should never have it again. A 2006 article from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition informs us that:

"Men and women with a high intake of bacon (≥5 servings/wk) had an elevated risk of bladder cancer compared with those who never ate bacon (multivariate RR = 1.59; 95% CI = 1.06, 2.37), although the overall association was not statistically significant (P for trend = 0.06). However, the association with bacon was stronger and became statistically significant after the removal of individuals who indicated having "greatly" changed their red meat (men) or bacon (women) intake during the 10 y before baseline (multivariate RR = 2.10; 95% CI = 1.24, 3.55; P for trend = 0.006). A positive association was also detected for intake of chicken without skin, but not for chicken with skin or for other meats, including processed meats, hot dogs, and hamburgers."
AJCN Citation HERE.

While the first sentence declares no statistical significance, that's only true at the standard 95% confidence level. The p-values cited confirm that the results ARE significant at the 90% confidence level, and very significant in the smaller sample (removing people with radical dietary changes). So no bacon for me! Oddly, hot dogs (also high in nitrates that theoretically metabolize into carcinogenic nitrosamines) were not correlated. I think I shall continue to avoid them as well, just in case...

For those of you who are unaware of this fact, Oklahoma is OK. Recent research from the University of Oklahoma Health Science Center department of urology demonstrated that frankincense oil might be a viable
alternative to BCG for Bladder Cancer. Their conclusion was that "frankincense oil appears to distinguish cancerous from normal bladder cells and suppress cancer cell viability. Microarray and bioinformatics analysis proposed multiple pathways that can be activated by frankincense oil to induce bladder cancer cell death. Frankincense oil might represent an alternative intravesical agent for bladder cancer treatment." You can read an abstract of the BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine article here. Looks like it's too soon to do anything with this other than clinical trials. Thanks to Robert G in New York for the heads-up on this one.

HK in Toronto has been having a very rough time with his BCG and TUR treatments. He got a lot of reassurance from his doctor recently. HK reports,
"Doctor informed me to try to be happy. I ask him when this ordeal will end. He said that this disease is chronic (Bladder superficial non-invasive cancer). So far I have not got Bladder cancer after surgery in November & July 08 TURBT. Another check-up is in May 5/09, after that in August with BCG with less amount. He is going to talk to me after Cysto in May. He said some days you can get pain, but take it easy and stay happy. Doctor also told me that 5 years of check-up is very important. ... He said please try to be happy." Apparently HK's doc is a firm believer that a good attitude is essential to recovery. For what it's worth, I concur!

And in still other news, it's probably time to be progressive and admit a female into our little Bladder Cancer Fraternity. Asya in NorCal was recently diagnosed, and has taken up blogging, even before her first TURBT - scheduled for today - Thursday, April 23. As a "bladder cancer veteran" of 14 months, it's interesting to watch Asya's mood swings parallel my own at the time - from "this will probably kill you" to "this is a minor inconvenience." To attest to the latter, Asya pre-scheduled a Dim Sum lunch celebration Saturday in anticipation of a successful outcome on today! I recall was contemplating a trip to DC the Sunday after my Thursday surgery, and I am glad I decided against it, eventually. For those that have not read the entire story, I ended up with a bladder perforation and a catheter for a whole week. Read all about it in this post. Here's hoping her outcome will be better than mine was! Check out Asya's blog for progress and lab results in the next few days.

2 comments:

Asya said...

Thanks for the welcome, Steve!

Here's hoping we're all long time members of the bladder cancer survivors club.

A Dived Ref said...

I'll second and drink to that Asya. Glad to hear that things went well for you. Go get your Dim Sum...