New research shows that curcumin found in the Indian spice turmeric may help reduce some women’s risk of breast cancer if they utilized hormone replacement therapy (HRT.)
Many women choose HRT to offset the physical and emotional affects of menopause despite the fact that this treatment carries side effects including an increased risk of breast cancer.
Scientists at the University of Missouri found that in animals curcumin reduced the occurrence and likelihood that progestin -accelerated tumors would develop. Curcumin prevented VEGF from developing and this molecule helps direct blood to a growing tumor.
Researcher Salman Hyder of the College of Veterinary Medicine and Dalton Cardiovascular Research Center explained that the findings may promote the consumption of turmeric or even just curcumin as a cancer preventative.
"The results of our study show that women could potentially take curcumin to protect themselves from developing progestin-accelerated tumors," he said.
With more research, he says, curcumin may even be recommended to women who took HRT for a long period of time.
Studies conducted at the German Cancer Research Center last year revealed that women who took HRT for five or more years had a significantly increased risk of developing breast cancer.