Patrick Swayze’s picture has been plastered over tabloid covers for the last several months giving a chronology of what dying from cancer looks like. He has finally ended the long and painful ordeal joining a list of several other famous individuals who have died from cancer this year Farrah Fawcett and Edward Kennedy.
With the death of a famous person from a cancer disease we think of it as perhaps a rare condition effecting only a few which is the furthest from the truth as you can get.
Who gets cancer?
According to current US medical statistics and the American Cancer Society cancer is the second leading cause of death in the US. 500,000 people die each year or put in another way 1,500 per day. 11.7 million people (1 in every 26) have a diagnosis of cancer and it is predicted that number will increase to 18.2 million (1 in every 19) by 2020.
What causes cancer?
The three categories of cancer are;
1. Lifestyle; includes diet, smoking, drinking alcohol, sun exposure and lack of exercise.
2. Internal; are from genetics and infections.
3. External; can come from the workplace, air pollution, water pollution, chemicals, pesticides herbicides.
Of all these conditions the big three according to the American Cancer Society is poor diet, lack of exercise and unhealthy lifestyle account for 65 percent of cancer deaths.
What is the best way to prevent cancer?
Cancer occurs when a normal cell doesn’t die as it is suppose to and begins to replicate out of control. It is widely understood that the DNA in the cell is damaged causing the internal messages to get mixed up creating the uncontrolled damage. All the cells of our body are totally replaced and new every two to seven years. Prevention comes in controlling the DNA damage to a cell which is created almost totally by the production of free radicals in the normal process of a cell. The free radicals create what scientists call Oxidative Stress when the cell gets overloaded by the normal oxidative process each cell of the body goes through as it processes nutrients we take in as food, water and air.
Reducing the free radicals has spawned a whole industry in anti-oxidant food, supplements and health care products. In previous articles written on this subject and referenced at the end of this article provide some of the latest information on super anti-oxidant therapy and research.
According to Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention Cancer is less prevalent in active people, as exercise decreases depression and increases oxygen to the tissues. The CEBP lists nine elements to prevent cancer and indicate if a person follows at least 6 of the 9 recommendations a person can reduce the risk of developing cancer by 35 per cent and 43 per cent less likely to die from cancer. The nine elements are;
1. Have a maximum Body Mass Index (BMI) of 25, limit adult weight gain to 11 lbs.
2. Eat five or more servings of fruit and vegetables daily.
3. Eat seven or more portions of complex carbohydrates daily.
4. Decrease processed foods and refined sugars.
5. Limit alcoholic drinks; 1-women, 2-men daily.
6. Limit red meat to no more than 3 oz daily.
7. Decrease fatty foods, particularly animal fats.
8. Limit intake of salted foods and use in cooking.
9. Eliminate tobacco use of any kind.