Cancer does not occur more often because of genetic make-up. Genes in DNA control how the cell functions. Cancerbegins when one or more genes in a cell mutate or change and multiply too much. We inherit genes from both our parents. Inheriting certain faulty gene from our parents means that we have an increased risk of developing particular type of cancer. Genetics specialists estimate that only 3% of cases are linked to an inherited gene fault.

4 in 10 cases of cancercan be prevented by healthy lifestyle

Quitting smoking!Tobacco contains nicotine, which gets smokers hooked.It also contains chemicals calledTSNAs, which are carcinogenic. Chemicals in cigarette smoke enter our blood system, cause DNA damage and affect our entire body.

Healthy eatingis a good prevention. Red meat (beef, pork and lamb), processed meat (salami, sausages, ham and bacon) and salts can increase the risk of getting cancer. On the other hand, fruits, vegetables and plenty of fiber can prevent the disease.

Fruits and vegetables are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals and have variety of nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium and carotenoids.

Pay attention to your body weight.Obesity forces the body to produce hormones and growth factors that affect how your cells work. Obesity increases the risks of bowel, womb, pancreatic, kidney and prostate cancer.

Strong sun and UV lightare unhealthy.

Enjoy the sun safely and protect your skin from sunburn by using sunscreen and clothing, or spending your time in the shade.

Physical activity prevents cancer. Physical activity affects our hormone levels, helps food move through our bowels and helps us manage our weight. Combined with a balanced diet, physical activity is a great way of reducing risks of developing the disease.

Screening may reduce cancer mortality

Screening means checking your body to detect cancer before symptoms appear. This may involve blood, urine or other tests. Screening tests may find cancer early, when the treatment will be most effective. Sometimes,by the time symptoms appear, the cancer might have spread. Unfortunately, screening is available only for those that are of high risk of developing cancer due to family history or inheritance of faulty gene. At the moment there is no general population screening. According to Professor Usha Menon, of UCL, justifying population screening will depend upon several factors and health economic analysis.

Image from Flickr and released under CC BY 2.0 license

Don't miss our page on Facebook!