IGF-1 is one of the body’s most important growth promoters during infancy and childhood, but later in life, elevated IGF-1 levels accelerate the aging process, promoting dementia and the growth and spread of cancer cells.
Reducing IGF-1 levels by dietary methods is now considered by some scientists to be an effective cancer-preventative measure. Animal protein, especially dairy, is the most important determinant of circulating IGF-1 levels, but excess intake of refined carbohydrates or concentrated soy protein also has an effect. Non-soy plant protein, on the other hand, does not raise circulating IGF-1.
By eating a phytochemical-rich diet and reducing those foods known to elevate IGF-1 levels in the body and participating in resistance training, a person can maximize longevity, maintain bone and muscle mass and brain function, and reduce their risk of certain cancers.