All these years we have been told that antioxidants such as those in colorful berries prevent cancer. Wrong. In fact, they may actually cause cancer. James Watson, co-discoverer of the double helix structure of DNA, now writes: "The time has come to seriously ask whether antioxidant use much more likely causes than prevents cancer."
So all those foods and drinks with antioxidants, while probably healthy and part of a balanced diet, are not really doing anything to prevent or fight cancer or any other disease, and could actually be causing cancer???
(Reuters) - A day after an exhaustive national report on cancer found the United States is making only slow progress against the disease, one of the country's most iconic - and iconoclastic - scientists weighed in on "the war against cancer." And he does not like what he sees.
James Watson, co-discoverer of the double helix structure of DNA, lit into targets large and small. On government officials who oversee cancer research, he wrote in a paper published on Tuesday in the journal Open Biology, "We now have no general of influence, much less power ... leading our country's War on Cancer."
On the $100 million U.S. project to determine the DNA changes that drive nine forms of cancer: It is "not likely to produce the truly breakthrough drugs that we now so desperately need," Watson argued. On the idea that antioxidants such as those in colorful berries fight cancer: "The time has come to seriously ask whether antioxidant use much more likely causes than prevents cancer." [snip]
Research backs him up. A number of studies have shown that taking antioxidants such as vitamin E do not reduce the risk of cancer but can actually increase it, and can even shorten life. But drugs that block antioxidants - "anti-antioxidants" - might make even existing cancer drugs more effective.