Processed Carbs Links to Cancer

Taylor Willson

Article Summary

This article was published by Nour Makarem on April 5th, 2016 and from the Federation

of American Societies for Experimental Biology.

Researchers have developed a new study to link processed carbs and other foods to

different types of cancers. The processed carbs that have been shown to link to the

cancer are the sugary beverages and other energy-dense carbohydrate containing foods

such as burgers, hot dogs, pizza and other meats. This study started in 1991 by tracking

over 3,100 participants and what they consumed in their diets. It showed people who

include most of the processed carbs in their diets were at an 88% higher risk of

developing cancer, especially prostate cancer for males. On the other hand, if

someone’s diet consists of carbs such as legumes, fruits and vegetables, and whole

grains, their risk of developing cancer was 67% lower, especially breast cancer for

females. Makarem studied the glycemic index of the participants in this new study to see how the links were related to tests of those of cancer patients. These findings are in line with other findings that have already been published. Cancer cells tend to feed off of sugar and high carbs which is why the link between processed carbs and cancer has increased over the years.

Article Critique

Overall, this article seems like a reliable source to me. Nour Makarem is a Ph. D student at New York University and she studies food and its impacts on cancer. The information provided for this article was from the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. This is an organization that uses history from 1912 to today and holds different educational meetings and develops different publications to help with science research information studies. It represents over 30 different scientific societies and 125,000 researchers all over the world. It has directors and committees that give up their time to help other organizations with their scientific research.

The information given in this article not only well-written, but provides a lot of statistic and scientific information. This has been ongoing research since 1970 and they started the study by tracking the participants starting in 1991. Makarem has been working with the glycemic index on the participants based on what they eat in regards to high or low carb diets. The conclusions of this article are that the types of carbohydrates in one’s diet matters more than the amount that they consume daily. Makarem’s findings are similar to other findings of previous studies which for me, shows that this study is just as reliable as other studies that are out there based on carbs and links to cancer.

The only part where I could see it being unreliable is because it only focuses on one subject group, being that the study involved 99% of Caucasians. In order for this study to become more reliable, she would need to focus on different cultures and individuals and do the same study on them as she did with the Caucasians. Different bodies and ethnicity could have different effects regarding what they eat and their own risk and link to different types of cancers.


Association Management | Society Management Services | Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology. (n.d.). Retrieved April 07, 2016, from

Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB). (2016, April 5). Cancer link offers another reason to avoid highly processed carbs. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 7, 2016 from