World Cancer Day: Is there anything we can do to prevent cancer?

Added 04/02/2014

Stethoscope on a book

On World Cancer Day 2014 we’re talking about what we can all do to reduce our risk of developing the disease.

World Cancer Day is organised by UICC (The Union for International Cancer Control) and their aim is not only to raise awareness around the world but to debunk some of the myths surrounding cancer. One myth which we feel is particularly important to tackle is “There is nothing I can do about cancer” as this is simply not true.

Amanda McLean, general manager for the World Cancer Research Fund, said: "It’s very alarming to see that such a large number of people don’t know that there’s a lot they can do to significantly reduce their risk of getting cancer”.

"In the UK, about a third of the most common cancers could be prevented through being a healthy weight, eating a healthy diet and being regularly physically active.

"Many people still seem to mistakenly accept their chances of getting cancer as a throw of the dice, but by making lifestyle changes today, we can help prevent cancer tomorrow."

The World Health Organisation’s World Cancer Report 2014 states that the major causes of preventable cancer include:Smoking, infections, alcohol, obesity and inactivity, radiation, both from the sun and medical scans, air pollution and other environmental factors

It advises eating more fruit, vegetables and whole grains as well as cutting down on alcohol and red meat.

Every year around 325,000 people in the UK alone are diagnosed with cancer, with more than 1 in 3 people developing some form of cancer throughout their lifetimes.

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