The Cancer Project Holds Second Annual Symposium
For the second year in a row, The Cancer Project has gathered a group of top researchers from across the country to share the latest news in cancer research. Hundreds of oncologists, nurses, health professionals, dietitians, and Cancer Project Food for Life cooking instructors received breakthrough information about how foods can fight cancer.
The symposium, which was held July 28 in Bethesda, Md., featured presentations from Cancer Project president Neal Barnard, M.D., June Chan, Sc.D., T. Colin Campbell, Ph.D., Lawrence Kushi, Sc.D., and John McDougall, M.D.
Dr. Chan earned her bachelor's at Harvard College in applied mathematics, followed by a doctorate in science from the Harvard School of Public Health. She is currently associate professor of epidemiology and biostatistics and urology at the University of California, San Francisco. At the symposium, Dr. Chan described her research findings from a large San Francisco Bay area case-control study investigating the protective effects of fruits and vegetables on pancreatic cancer risk.
Dr. Campbell, Jacob Gould Schurman Professor Emeritus of Nutritional Biochemistry at Cornell University and the co-author of the groundbreaking book The China Study: Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long-Term Health, also focused on a particular type of cancer. His lecture delved into the role of diet, specifically the consumption of animal products, in breast cancer causation and management.
Dr. Kushi and Dr. McDougall both focused on the general role diet plays in cancer. Dr. Kushi received his doctorate from Harvard Medical School and is currently the associate director for etiology and prevention research, Division of Research, Kaiser Permanente. Dr. Kushi presented his talk “The Evolution of Epidemiologic Knowledge on Food, Nutrition and Cancer,” which explored the insights gained from epidemiologic studies and how they have helped inform recommendations on diet and health generally, and cancer specifically.
Dr. McDougall is a nationally recognized nutrition expert and is also a board-certified internist, author of 10 national best-selling books, host of the nationally syndicated television show McDougall M.D., and medical director of the 10-day, live-in McDougall Program in Santa Rosa, Calif. At the symposium, he spoke about how scientific evidence supports the use of a low-fat, plant-based diet and exercise to slow or stop the progress of common cancers.
Dr. Barnard gave two presentations to the symposium attendees. He first gave the group an update on The Cancer Project’s randomized clinical trials, educational initiatives, and public policy efforts to put nutrition in the forefront of public attention. Later in the day, Dr. Barnard discussed the controversy as to the best way to lose weight and explained why plant-based diets are highly effective for preventing excess weight gain, as well as for weight loss.
The symposium also served as a professional development event for the Cancer Project’s Food for Life cooking instructors. The Cancer Project held its annual instructor summit for its 65 instructors from around the country, giving them a chance to continue learning about the latest scientific research on cancer-fighting foods and improving their cooking techniques.