In the studies “Lifestyles, Hormones, and the Risk of Cancer” and “Evolutionary foundations for cancer biology,” I found the discussion of the positive correlation between energy intake and cancer development to be interesting mainly because I always assumed the opposite. Before reading the both papers, I thought that by having a higher energy intake (so long as the food is moderately healthy), more resources/ energy could be allocated to the immune system and lower the overall risk of cancer. However both the papers stated that the positive correlation between energy intake and cancer development was due to increased levels of certain hormones rather than anything related to the immune system. The paper “Evolutionary foundations for cancer biology” specifically explained that greater caloric intake allows more energy to be allotted to reproductive pathways. It makes sense in the sources they cited, as the perpetrators for cancer development were testosterone in males and progesterone in females- both of which are sex hormones.
A quotation from the study “Evolutionary foundations for cancer biology” which I thought was interesting was the fact that “natural selection does not shape organisms directly for health or longevity. An allele hat increases net reproductive success will tend to increase in frequency irrespective of its effect on health.” In simpler words, it states that natural selection is driven by reproductive success even if aspects of that success are detrimental to one’s health. So long as an organism is able to create offspring to continue into the next generation, it is deemed as being “good enough” regardless of its’ quality of life. This ties into the aforementioned paragraph as even though higher levels of sex hormones might be harmful later in someone’s life, it helps in increasing the possibility for reproduction.