It is 100 percent impossible to protect yourself from cancer. However, there are several ways to reduce the likelihood of getting sick with certain types of cancer. These are the main rules how to do it.
1. Do not smoke
Nicotine in itself is not a carcinogenic substance (this role is played by 70 other components of tobacco smoke), so you can quit smoking with nicotine patch, inhaler or gum, as well as drugs varenyklin and bupropion. Smoking increases the risk of lung cancer by a factor of 10-20, it helps develop leukemia, cancer of the mouth and nasal cavity, pancreas, liver, stomach, cervical, kidney, colon and bladder. Even if you smoke for a very long time, it is better to quit – the risk of cancer, even if not dramatically, will decrease.
Chewing tobacco increases your risk of developing oral and pancreatic cancer.
2. Do not sunbathe
Ultraviolet radiation leads to genetic mutations and affects the immune system, suppressing its ability to resist new cancer cells. Therefore, in some countries, solarium is prohibited at all, somewhere it can not be visited by minors. Solarium increases by 75 percent the risk of melanoma development in people who use it until they are 35 years old. Both UVA radiation and UVB radiation are dangerous. The risk of melanoma development, the most aggressive skin cancer, is increased by severe burns, the development of other skin cancers is facilitated by regular exposure to UVA.
A number of researchers and doctors call for tanning to be considered a direct cause of skin cancer. You shouldn’t stay in the sun for long in summer (especially from 10 to 15 hours), you should wear hats, sunglasses, use sunscreen, wear clothes that cover the skin as much as possible, choose bright or dark colors: they reflect more UV radiation.
These recommendations should not be disregarded by everyone, but especially people with light skin, many moles and cases of skin cancer in the family – they are in the high-risk group.
3. Keep to the norm when drinking alcohol or not drinking at all
Although alcohol in moderate doses reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, it does contribute to the development of cancer. This is particularly true for colorectal, breast, esophagus, liver, and oral cancer. Excessive consumption of alcohol also increases the risks. The norm is 30 ml of ethyl alcohol per day for men, 15 ml for women and those over 65 years.
4. Maintain a healthy weight
People with obesity are more likely to develop breast cancer (in the postmenopause), prostate, lung, colon, pancreas, endometrium, esophagus and kidneys. Bariatric surgery (surgery to reduce the stomach, after which a person loses weight dramatically) reduces cancer mortality by 60 percent.
A recently published study by Cancer Research UK, a British cancer research center, has shown a link between obesity and cancer risk in women. Obese women are 40 percent more likely to develop certain forms of cancer.