Foods rich in omega fatty acids like walnut, chia seeds and salmon can likely help boost a person's chances of surviving bowel cancer. It was found that a higher proportion of omega-3 metabolizing enzyme is associated with containing tumor, leading to a better chance of survival for the patient.
The Indian Express noted that Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fats that could have opposing effects on a person's health. Researchers from the University of Aberdeen in the U.K. specifically looked into the enzymes responsible for breaking down such acids and correlated it with their relationship with a patient's likelihood in surviving bowel cancer.
According to the study, when omega-3 fatty acids break down after eating, they release cancer-fighting molecules that attack cancer cells directly. Graeme Murray, a professor at the University of Aberdeen, said that the less a tumor has spread in the body, the better the outcome there is for the patient.
However, the opposite is true for omega-6 metabolizing enzymes. Professor Murray shared that, "A higher proportion of omega-6 metabolizing enzyme compared to omega-3 could lead to a worse outcome for the patient." Researchers noted that the proportion of the enzymes are responsible for the metabolism of both acids in tumors found in the bowel cancer patients.
It has also been noted by the Hindustan Times that patients who continue eating salmon and walnuts were found to have more contained tumors. However, those who ate more omega-6 rich foods are likely to die sooner. Professor Murray also admitted that prior to the study, his team was unaware about the relationship that existed between the enzymes and the survival of patients suffering from bowel cancer.
Bowel cancer, which is also called colon cancer or rectal cancer in some areas, is the fourth most common form of cancer, killing thousands of patients every year. Most people affected by the disease are in their 60s or older and are advised to seek for medical help if they experienced having bloody stools, noticed a change in bowel habit or if they feel a persistent tummy pain.