Most people are aware that many cancers consume extra glucose (sugar in the blood) in order to grow. That’s why PET scans use radioactive glucose as a tracer to detect cancer.
However, not all cancers can be detected using a PET scan and radioactive glucose. This means not all cancers suck up sugar faster than normal cells. Reducing the available supply of sugar would probably not affect such cancer cells.
Now we have more evidence that reducing available sugar does not halt growth of all cancers. Squamous cancer cells in a recent study continued to grow even when deprived of glucose. They simply altered their metabolism to derive energy from the amino acid glutamine. Also, feeding these cancer cells extra glucose did not accelerate their growth.
While we still have much to learn about cancer metabolism, this is yet more evidence that reducing sugar intake won’t cure all cancers.
Thank you for this information. I haven’t been following the sugar/cancer connection in awhile. Has there been evidence to suggest that reducing sugar intake will keep sone cancers from growing?
I’m not aware of any clinical evidence in humans that has shown reducing sugar intake will keep cancer from growing. However, the impact of sugar on cancer remains a subject of great debate among cancer patients, and diets have been developed based on the concept of eliminating sugar consumption.