The National Cancer Institute estimates 700,000 new cancer diagnoses in 2023. The causes are usually multifactorial, the disease can be linked to both genetic characteristics and lifestyle habits.
Oncologists have been repeating for several decades that tumors are a series of different diseases that have in common the fact that they develop a malignant tumor. At least 200 different types of cancer have been described so far.
“Although the causes vary and each patient has a specific medical history, research has already linked certain lifestyle habits as higher risk factors for developing cancer,” comments oncologist Janyara Teixeira, of Oncologia D´Ór.
The main risk factors mapped include a sedentary lifestyle, smoking, poor quality nutrition, obesity, the use of alcoholic beverages and inadequate exposure to the sun.
The environmental context, such as exposure to pesticides and insecticides, is also associated with the development of some types of cancers.
With the help of specialists Janyara Teixeira and Anderson Silvestrini, of Oncologia D´Ór, the metropolis put together a list of the best tips to avoid cancer. To look!
1. Don’t smoke
Oncologist Anderson Silvestrini explains that 30% of deaths caused by cancer are related to smoking. Therefore, one of the most important tips is to quit smoking.
Doctors warn that, in addition to lung cancer, cigarette smoking is also linked to malignancies in the esophagus, head and neck regions, and bladder.
2. Eat a healthy diet
Doctors emphasize the importance of maintaining a balanced diet to avoid cancer. Janyara Teixeira reminds of the importance of eating fruits and vegetables and avoiding the consumption of processed meats, such as ham, sausage, sausage, bacon, salami, mortadella and smoked turkey breast.
3. Maintain proper weight
Obesity can increase the chances of developing cancers. “It is important to keep your weight within the recommended range of body mass index (BMI). The limit considered healthy for adults is a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 kg/m²,” explains Janyara.
Silvestrini underlines that physical activities help in weight regulation and keep the body functioning efficiently, therefore they are also allies in the prevention of tumours.
4. Use sunscreen
Skin cancer is the most common type in Brazil. “Using sunscreen and avoiding sun exposure during peak hours reduces the risk of melanoma and nonmelanoma cancer,” says Silvestrini.
In addition to sunscreen, it is also recommended that you wear a hat, long-sleeved shirt, and stay under tents when exposed to direct sunlight.
5. Take monitoring exams
In a scenario where the incidence of cancer is increasing due to an aging population, screening is another important point.
According to doctors, it works as a kind of secondary prevention, allowing cancers to be detected at an early stage, which allows for more treatment options.
- A gynecological pap smear can find inflammation in the cervix, which can be treated before cancer develops;
- Mammography, if performed after the age of 40 every one to two years, reduces the chance of dying from breast cancer by about 20%.
- Colonoscopy, when performed periodically, reduces the chance of dying from bowel cancer by 20 to 30%.
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