President's Cancer Panel a Scientific Travesty

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The President's Cancer Panel's recent report linking cancer to environmental chemicals is a scientific travesty based on a number of false premises, ACSH's Dr. Elizabeth Whelan argues in an article for NRO's Critical Condition blog.

Among other things, the panel assumes that the goal in cancer prevention should be to eliminate all exposures to toxins and carcinogens but that's impossible, Dr. Whelan says. "Safe, natural foods come replete with toxins (such as the traces of naturally occurring arsenic in every potato) and 'carcinogens,' defined as chemicals that cause cancer at high dose in laboratory animals (like the safrole in black pepper or the eatechol in a cup of coffee)."

"The President s Cancer Panel is an assault on the science of cancer epidemiology," she writes. "Its findings such as avoiding environmental cancer-causing agents by taking off your shoes and leaving the 'carcinogens' you picked up on the way home at the doorstep are ludicrous and, by distracting Americans from the proven cancer risk factors, are more likely to increase than decrease our nation s cancer burden."

Read the full article on National Review Online.