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Aspirin study points to the long-term impact of inflammation on cancer

Inflammation and its role in our long term health

Multiple studies of compounds that reduce inflammation seems to show very broad impacts on our health. These studies have documented reductions in cardiovascular disease and cancer - two of the largest causes of premature death and significant negative impacts on quality of life.

The latest of these studies was recently published in the Gastroenterology Journal of the American Gastroenterology Association. This broad population-based study compared the cancer risk of over 600,000 people who have taken aspirin for at least 6 months (note the average aspirin user had taken it for 7.7 years) with non-aspirin users. This 10-year study showed that after correcting for a wide range of factors, the occurrence of digestive-system cancers showed significant reductions.

  • 47% reduction in liver and esophageal cancer
  • 38% reduction in gastric cancer
  • 34% reduction in pancreatic cancer
  • 24% reduction in colorectal cancer

The study was released in 2016 by the Harvard Medical School Women's Health Study and published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. The randomized double-blind study followed 33,000 women, and the "Alternate-Day, Low-Dose Aspirin and Cancer Risk: Long-Term Observational Follow-up of a Randomized Trial" also showed that long-term use of aspirin showed a risk reduction of colorectal cancer of 20% in healthy women.

The risk reductions occur over a long time use of aspirin. 

Similar studies appear to point to the impact of down modulation of inflammation. The long-term reduction in inflammation may be resulting in the reduction of the development of a wide range of cancers and other diseases.

This is perhaps the biggest takeaway from this building body of large-scale clinical and observational studies - long-term inflammation appears to be at the center of many diseases. The modulation of inflammation, a naturally occurring and critical body function, is a key part of maintaining strong active lives.

Aspirin, first extracted from the bark of Willow trees, is one of many naturally occurring compounds that can impact inflammatory responses in our bodies.  Other studies of diets rich in foods high in other naturally occurring healthful compounds have also shown high impacts to health and wellness. This includes diets that include daily intake of:

- a diverse collection of green leafy vegetables

- fruits and spices such as Apples, Grapes, Turmeric, Ginger, Green Tea

"The findings demonstrate that the long-term use of aspirin can reduce the risk of developing many major cancers," reported lead study author Kelvin Tsoi.

A word of warning. Refined compounds and high-dose supplements are not without risks. Aspirin has also been linked to intestinal bleeds. As always, consult your medical professional and understand the risks and benefits.


 None of the statements on this website should be construed as dispensing medical advice nor making claims regarding the cure of diseases. You must listen to your body and use common sense to avoid injury.

You should consult a licensed healthcare professional before starting any supplement, dietary, or exercise program, especially if you are pregnant or have any pre-existing injuries or medical conditions.


Ross Harding
Ross Harding


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