Sunwarrior Ireland

Is Your Favourite Protein Powder Causing Cancer—or preventing it?

by Dr. Vaughn Tyson

Protein is something everyone likes to talk about. Plant-based eaters, especially those who consume high raw and vegan diets, often find themselves on the defensive end of these conversations. This is unfortunate, but the tables are slowly turning. It is now common knowledge that cholesterol, found in all animal products, greatly increases the risk of heart disease, often leading to a heart attack or stroke. Eggs and red meat are notorious for being high in cholesterol, so some avoid beef and eggs and look to chicken or fish as protein sources. While lower in cholesterol than fatty cuts of red meat or egg yolks, poultry and seafood still contain substantial amounts of cholesterol. People are best served to avoid cholesterol altogether by eating a plant-based diet.

Most everyone is familiar with Dr. T. Colin Campbell’s landmark work, detailed in his book, The China Study. Campbell’s research dealt with casein, which is the primary protein component in cow’s milk and cheese. In his study, rats were fed casein above their protein needs, which caused tumours in the rats. The protein needs of a rat are similar to those of a human, per capita.1 In Campbell’s experiment; the rats were fed up to 20% of their diet as protein. According to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2003–2004, protein intake for Americans ranged from 13.4% of total calories in children aged 4–8 years to 16% of total calories in men aged 51–70 years.2 Additionally, the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) recommends consumption of 0.4–0.8 grams of protein per pound of body weight for exercise levels ranging from sporadically active to very active.3 Basing caloric needs on the Mayo Clinic’s online calculator, the high end of this protein range is about 18% of total calories. Moderate exercisers need only about 11% protein. Considering these numbers, it’s easy to see the relevance of Campbell’s work regarding protein consumption.

Traditional bodybuilding and sports diets, especially that targeting muscle growth, typically far exceed the NSCA’s protein recommendation, often doubling it. One can simply search the internet for “macronutrient ratios” and they’ll find that countless people are eating 30% or more of their calories as protein. Whey protein is a popular product to supplement the diets of those aiming to reach this protein surplus. Whey is the by-product of the manufacture of cheese or casein. All animal-based proteins, including powders made from milk or egg whites, should be avoided because of the disease-causing elements they contain.

The trend in sales of protein products indicates people are learning the truth about animal proteins. According to 2008 research from Global Industry Analysts, annual sales of protein ingredients are expected to top $18 billion by the end of 2010. While animal protein ingredients account for 69% of the market, the plant protein ingredients market was the faster growing segment, with a projected growth rate of about 8% through 2013.4 There are several plant-based protein powders on the market—rice, hemp and
soy are all popular options. None of these protein sources have cholesterol or casein, but there’s something very special about a particular variety of rice protein. Sun Warrior sprouted whole grain brown rice protein has cancer-fighting properties without the hormone activity of soy. Sun Warrior’s unique bio-fermentation / sprouting process offers the first complete hypoallergenic protein to hit the market. This raw, vegan protein offers a complete amino acid profile.

While casein can encourage the growth of cancer, certain components in rice protein can help prevent cancer. Sadly, these beneficial elements in rice are greatly reduced, or removed altogether, by the time it gets to the plate. Rice bran is the brown coating between the rice kernel and its protective hull. Brown rice maintains a thin layer of rice bran around the seed, but in the case of white rice, this nutrient dense layer is polished off. This is why white rice is a nutritionally dead, high sugar food.  Inositol hexaphosphate acid (IP-6) is a potent antioxidant found in rice bran. In addition to its cancer-fighting properties, many experts also believe IP-6 can prevent and treat heart disease, kidney stones and liver disease. The process isn’t fully understood, but IP-6 suppresses the production and activity of cancer-causing free radicals. It also reduces the abnormal rate of cell division that defines cancer and tumour growth, allowing cells to normalize and return to regular, controlled growth. Additionally, IP-6 enhances the body’s potential to kill existing tumour cells by stimulating the activity of the immune system’s natural killer cells, called lymphocytes.5

Arabinoxylan compound is produced by altering the outer shell of rice bran using enzymes from Hyphomycetes mycelia mushroom extract. This compound is a major component in a popular alternative cancer treatment called MGN-3 (known as BioBran® in Japan). More clinical trials are needed, but arabinoxylan has shown promise in improving immune reactions in cancer and diabetes patients. Also, pre-clinical experiments suggest that MGN-3 may also be of potential value in treating AIDS patients.6

Rice bran looks to have a very promising future not only as an alternative cancer treatment, but as a treatment for a host of other diseases and conditions. Whole grain brown rice also makes a fantastic protein supplement. There is a great protein product on the market today called Sun Warrior. Naturally rich in vitamins and minerals, Sun Warrior rice protein provides a complete amino acid profile. Their old world process combines the sprouted endosperm with the bran from raw, sprouted whole grain brown rice to offer a protein with a 98% correlation to mother’s milk and a 98.2% digestion efficiency. Sun Warrior is raw, vegan and GMO-free. Visit today to learn more about their line of products. Sun Warrior is available in the Hippocrates store.

1 T. Colin Campbell, PhD (2008) Healthy Diet and Lifestyle/Casein Consumption. Retrieved April 3, 2010 from

2 Victor L. Fulgoni, III (2007) Current protein intake in America: analysis of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2003–2004. Retrieved April 3, 2010 from

3 Debra Wein, MS, RD, LDN (2008) Protein Proportioned Properly…Finally!. Retrieved April 3, 2010 from

4 Chris Jones (2008) Health drives increased protein sales, report. Retrieved April 3, 2010 from

5 Angela Pirisi (1999) IP-6: this potent antioxidant can help your body fend off cancer and heart disease. Retrieved April 3, 2010 from

6 No author cited (2010) Reference/Herb/Arabinoxylan. Retrieved April 3, 2010 from