According to the Science magazine, cholesterol can trigger the growth of cancer cells in the breast.
An explanation has been found why obesity is one of the major risk factors for breast cancer: obese people usually suffer from high cholesterol.
A team of scientists from the Medical Center at Duke University in the U.S. showed that a byproduct of cholesterol, 27-hydroxycholesterol or 27HC, imitates estrogen and has the same effect as the excess of the female hormone – it triggers the growth of cancer cells. The experiment on mice shows that the high fat content increases the 27HC level in blood and leads to the formation of a tumor whose size is 30% larger than in the rodents fed with normal balanced food. Exactly the same result was obtained during an experiment on human tissues.
The scientific discovery suggests that the intake of statins will not only lower cholesterol, but can also prevent the development of cancer. The authors of the study call for keeping to a diet and maintaining an active lifestyle in order to keep normal cholesterol without medications.