Cancer is the worst epidemic of all, with an estimated 18.1 million new cancer cases globally. Usually, cancer is referred to as though it’s one thing. However, while unrestrained growth is the common denominator, cancer can develop in different ways, due to a variety of factors. Some we inherit, and others we are exposed to throughout our lives. However, preventable causes of cancer (known as modifiable risk factors) make up 42-45 % of the causes of cancer in general. To save more lives from cancer, therefore, it will be necessary to equip yourself and loved ones with the knowledge of habits to drop and things you can do differently to avoid falling prey.
- Smoking: This is still by far the biggest cause of cancer and cancer deaths. Cigarette smoking was associated with far more cancer cases and deaths than any other single risk factor, accounting for nearly 20 % of all cancer cases and 30 % of all cancer deaths.
- Intake of Alcohol: Drinking too much alcohol causes 5.6 of cancer causes and 4 % of deaths. It can cause liver cancer and is linked with breast cancer and some forms of head and neck cancer.
- Obesity and overweight – 7.8 % of cases and 6.5 % of deaths. Research shows that excess body fat increases your risk for several cancers, including colorectal, post -menopausal breast, uterine, esophageal, kidney and pancreatic cancers.
- Low fruit and vegetable intake – 1.9 % of cases and 2.7 % of deaths. Diet was especially important for colon cancer. Red and processed meat consumption accounted for 5.4 % and 8.2 % of colorectal cancers, respectively while Low dietary fibre accounted for 10.3 % of colorectal cancer cases, and low dietary calcium accounted for 4.9 % of cases.
- Excessive exposure to Sun: This results in exposure to ultraviolet radiation, causing 4.7 % of cases and 1.5 % of deaths. (ALSO READ: Benefits of Melanin-Rich Skin)