Doctors noted that a diet high in phosphates significantly increased lung tumors in mice. They found phosphate-rich diets affected a gene known to be involved in lung cancer and suppressed another gene that can help slow cancer's development.
Doctors say phosphates are critical to human nutrition and can be used in compounds that enrich calcium and iron content and prevent food from drying out. However, they also said that some people may get too much.
The study is in the American Journal Of Respiratory And Critical Care Medicine.