Cancer is the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the body. The disease can affect almost any part of the body, including the lungs, breast, colon, prostate, skin, pancreas and blood. Cancer is not a single disease but rather a large group of over 100 diseases. This makes it difficult to detect since there are many different ways it can present itself in a person’s body. About one third of cancers occur naturally (such as from aging), one third from external factors such as smoking or cancer-causing chemicals (carcinogens), and the remaining third is caused by genetic mutations that can be inherited from parents or occur during your lifetime due to lifestyle factors like sun exposure or diet.
When it comes to cancer, smoking is the first thing that most people think of, but there are plenty of other things that increase cancer risks factors. What’s more, many of these things don’t relate directly to cancer. However, they are still bad for you and can cause cancer in the long run.
Cancer is bad news. It’s not a topic you want to dwell on, but it pays to be aware of cancer risk factors and even prevention strategies so you know what to do in the long run. Cancer is complicated and varies from person to person. The way cancer develops varies as well based on a variety of different factors, some of which you can control and some that aren’t fully under your control. Knowing these risk factors and prevention strategies can put you in a stronger position when dealing with cancer if it should appear.
Although it is not possible to know exactly why one person develops cancer and another doesn’t, scientists have been studying the risk factors for cancer to find links between lifestyle, environment, demographics and genetics. In this article, we explore common cancer risk factors such as exposure to chemicals or other substances, as well as certain behaviors.
What increases cancer chances?
Cancer is one of the most feared illnesses in existence. It’s what keeps some people awake at night, and others from eating their favorite foods. It’s not easy to understand what makes cancer “tick”, but it’s much easier to understand what doesn’t give you cancer. You don’t have to read through a bunch of medical jargon or spend hours poring over statistical data. If you really want to decrease your chances of developing cancer, a little healthy common sense goes a long way
All cancers have a strong genetic component, but most cancers are not strictly inherited, as only 10 percent of all cancers are directly inherited. In addition to these genetic factors, there are several non-inherited risk factors that are now known to also contribute substantially to cancer risk. The most important ones, accounting for 75 percent of cancer deaths in the United States and other developed countries, are tobacco and alcohol abuse; diet and physical activity (see below); and infectious agents.
The below mentioned Factors shows the risk of developing cancer by a number of sources . The higher the Risk Factor, the more likely it is for you to develop cancer.
Aging increases cancer chances ?
One of the biggest fears people have is that they are going to get cancer when they get older. While aging can be looked at as a chance to decrease your overall health risk, this is not always the case. While aging may make you more likely to develop cancer. Our risk of developing cancer is higher as we age, with the greatest risks after age 40. The National Cancer Institute (NCI) has identified certain factors (e.g., diet, physical activity, and personal health history) that can influence our chances for developing certain types of cancers.
Tobacco increases cancer chances ?
It’s no secret that smoking cigarettes causes cancer. The relationship between tobacco use and cancer has been known for decades. However, new research shows that the effects of tobacco on cancer risks might be greater than previously realized.
Smoking increases your risk of both lung cancer and cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus, stomach, kidney, bladder and pancreas. Unfortunately, tobacco is one of the main causes of death in many countries.
Sun Exposure increases cancer chances
Many of us enjoy spending time in the sun. Some people can’t think of summer without heading to the beach, while others like taking long walks on sunny days through the woods. However, we often forget that too much exposure to the sun is bad for our health. Not only does it increase your risk of getting skin cancer (the most common form of cancer in the world,) but it is also a major cause of premature aging.
There is a well-known and proven link between sun exposure and cancer. The link comes from a chemical called melanin which helps to protect the human body from exposure to ultraviolet radiation, especially UVA radiation. The more melanin present in your skin, the greater its capacity to protect against harmful UV rays.
Radiation Exposure increases cancer chances
When it comes to cancer, you may think that the biggest risk is sunlight, or perhaps smoking. The truth is, very few of us give radiation exposure a second thought.
You may not be aware that radiation exposure could increase your chances of developing cancer. Most people associate radiation exposure with workers in nuclear facilities, but the truth is that everyone has been exposed to a certain amount of it. As alarming as this may sound, there are many things we can do to reduce our risks. We have been talking about radiation exposure since man entered space and even before that. The dangers are now more prominent because of the increased use of gadgets such as mobile phones, mobile towers, Wi-Fi, etc.
Chemicals increases cancer chances
Chemicals can lead to an increased risk of cancer. The carcinogenic chemicals everyone needs to know about are listed below.
More and more chemicals are being added to our daily lives which is becoming a great health risk for many people.Do you know that the potential of your cancer increases a lot if you come in contact with certain harsh and harmful chemicals? Well, if you aren’t aware of this and don’t take precautionary steps, then definitely, it could prove to be fatal for you.
Chemicals in clothing, cosmetics, furniture, toys, and other products contain toxic materials that can lead to all kinds of diseases such as cancer. There are consumers, researchers, and companies who have an interest in making sure chemicals are safe before they are used in personal care and household products.
A new World Health Organisation (WHO) report has revealed that the risk of cancer is heightened by exposure to chemicals commonly found in everyday products such as shampoo, cleaning materials, and non-stick frying pans.
Viruses and Bacteria, increases cancer chances
Viruses and bacteria are smaller than cells and survive by invading healthy cells and then using the inner-workings of those cells to replicate. Viruses and bacteria, as well as certain parasites, have been linked to an increased risk of cancer.
In certain cases, viruses, bacteria, and parasites may increase your risk of cancer. Infectious agents can cause cancer by disrupting normal cell growth and proliferation signals through viruses, by weakening the immune system, making other infections more likely via bacteria or opportunistic infections from viruses, or increasing chronic inflammation that can lead to cancer in viral and parasitic infections.
Certain infectious agents, including viruses (most notably, human papillomaviruses [HPV]), bacteria, and parasites can cause cancer or increase the risk that cancer will form. Infectious agents are not typically considered as causes of cancer because they cannot trigger cancer on their own. Rather, infections are usually thought of as opportunistic, or catalytic (i.e., they initiate chemical reactions that give rise to mutations).
The complex issues surrounding cancer are challenging to understand and even more difficult to address. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk of developing cancer such as eating a healthy diet, maintaining a healthy weight, avoiding excessive sun exposure and limiting alcohol consumption. Adopting these steps can optimize your health overall, giving your body the best chance possible to ward off any cancer-inducing mutations.
Hopefully, now you have a better understanding of common cancer risk factors and the methods you can take to help lower your own risk. Remember that it is far more effective to prevent cancer than to treat it. Take the time to research and understand what your specific cancer risk factors are and what methods are available to reduce those risks. With a little workout, you can reduce your cancer risk by over half!