Tumor cells manifest under oxidative stress, causing high rates of division and higher risks of genetic mutation, which is actually what "cancer" of a body tissue is. These cells, being
driven by oxidative stress, are therefore affected by minerals and vitamins known as reactive oxygen species. Iron is considered a reactive oxygen species, as it reacts with hydrogen peroxide to create reactive hydroxyl groups. Highly reactive groups of compounds are known as "free radicals," which are associated with high cancer risks. In a study conducted by the Department of Cancer Prevention and Control, patients with higher iron intake had an increased risk of clinically aggressive prostate cancer; and it is theorized that this is because of the high levels of free radicals created with an increased amount of iron in the body and thus the creation of increased oxidative stress and, thus, higher genetic mutation (Ji-Yeob Choi, Marian L. Neuhouser1, Matt J. Barnett1, Chi-Chen Hong, Alan R. Kristal1, Mark D. Thornquist1, Irena B. King1, Gary E. Goodman1 and Christine B. Ambrosone, 2008).