The World Health Organization (WHO)’s Chronic Disease Prevention and Management Report warns of a “lifestyle disease” epidemic, which according to lead author Shanthi Mendis, causes a much greater public health threat than any other epidemic known to man. Cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, lung disease and a range of cancers killed a full 38 million people around the globe in 2012 – 16 million of them under the age of 70.
“When people fall sick and die in the prime of their lives, productivity suffers and the cost of treating the diseases can be devastating” the UN health agency reports.
The report estimates that if nothing is done to improve the situation, premature deaths will take seven trillion dollars out of the global economy over the next decade.
This report emphasizes the fact that in order to have a healthy economy, a country must have healthy people.
One of the ways you can reduce your risk of cancer is by choosing a healthy lifestyle.
By following a healthy diet, maintaining a healthy body weight and getting the recommended amount of exercise you can reduce your risk of a cancer diagnosis. These choices also lower your risk of other chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular and lung diseases and obesity.
Not using tobacco products including cigarettes, cigars, or e-cigarettes containing nicotine will reduce your risk of lung cancer. Smoking has also been identified as the cause of other cancers including oral cancers, cancer of the esophagus, and breast cancer. Second hand smoke and smoke from the clothing of people who smoke puts you at the same risk as those who smoke.
By limiting the amount of alcohol you drink you can reduce your risk of breast, liver, pharynx and oral cavity cancer.
Healthy lifestyle choices can reduce your risk of a cancer diagnosis by as much as 50%.
Are you at risk?
To determine whether you are at risk of a cancer diagnosis the Canadian Cancer Society has developed an interactive cancer prevention tool called “It’s My Life” which is designed assess your risk based on your responses to the questions asked. http://itsmylife.cancer.ca/index-en.html#!page=22
The Canadian Cancer Society www.cancer.ca/
World Health Organization www.who.int/en/ Chronic Disease Prevention and Management Report January 19th 2015