A study published last year in Annals of Oncology found that dietary cholesterol (found only in animal-based foods, like meat and dairy products) was associated with an increased risk of cancer.
Researchers at the Centre for Chronic Disease Prevention and Control, Public Health Agency of Canada mailed questionnaires to thousands of men and women with various types of cancers and controls without cancer, asking about their eating habits two years prior to the study to evaluate the amount of cholesterol they consumed.
The researchers found that cholesterol intake was associated with elevated risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, as well as breast cancer (specifically postmenopausal women), and cancers of the stomach, colon, rectum, pancreas, lung, breast cancer , testis, kidney, bladder. People who had the highest intake of cholesterol were 40 to 70 percent more likely to develop these cancers as compared to people with the lowest consumption of cholesterol.
The authors write, “Our findings add to the evidence that high cholesterol intake is linked to increased risk of various cancers. A diet low in cholesterol may play a role in the prevention of several cancers.”