The Guardian: Spread of breast cancer linked to compound in asparagus and other foods
Rating: 4.5 Stars
- The headline accurately matches what the research revealed.
- This was a well written and balanced media article covering the research study.
- More than one outside source was interviewed.
- Several limitations to the study were discussed, including the fact that reducing asparagine is not a cure: “While suppressing levels of asparagine reduced the spread of breast cancer around the body, it did nothing to prevent breast tumors forming in the first place”.
Baltimore Sun: Asparagus will not give you cancer, scientists plead after massive misunderstanding
Rating: 4.0 Stars
- This is one of the few media articles that addressed the sensationalized media coverage that exaggerated the link between asparagus and breast cancer.
- The article is easy to read and includes an outside source. However, the study authors are not interviewed.
- The author includes very little discussion on the research study design, findings or limitations.
- This article explains why all the hype was misleading and why it would be virtually impossible to omit asparagine from one’s diet.
Business Insider: A new study linking asparagus to cancer is freaking people out — here’s how concerned you should be
Rating: 4.0 Stars
- While this article was in response to the hype about asparagus being linked to breast cancer, it clearly helps a reader understand the results of the study.
- The article clearly discusses how this preliminary research may be useful in the future.
NY Daily News: Compound found in asparagus linked to spread of breast cancer
Rating: 3.0 Stars
- The headline is misleading in that asparagine is found in virtually all foods one eats.
- It was clearly discussed that these findings can possibly be used in the future to help patients with their treatment decisions.
- The article was easy to read, however there was little discussion on the study design, findings or limitations.
International Business Times: Bunk this veggie: This green is responsible for spreading cancer cells to other organs
Rating: 1.0 Star
- The headline is very misleading in that it implies that only asparagus contains asparagine when virtually all food do.
- The article misstates the results of the study. Certain foods with a lot of asparagine do not increase risk of breast cancer. Quite the contrary, the researchers saw no impact on breast cancer development but on breast cancer metastasis.
- The article incorrectly states, “A fruit-and-vegetable-rich diet with asparagine lowering drugs can provide a better treatment and prevent the disease from metastasizing or spreading…” is not supported by the research. No studies have been done to show that this combination would have any effect on breast cancer metastasis.
- The article quotes Delyth Morgan from Breast Cancer Now as stating that dietary advice to patients to avoid food containing asparagine or drugs that ‘break down’ this nutrient, “ could be added to the standard of care”. There is no evidence to support this nor are there drugs that ‘break down asparagine.’ Quite the contrary, the experimental techniques and drug used in this research limited the production of asparagine-they did not ‘break it down’.