Lifestyle changes would help people avoid cancer

London: Want to stave off cancer? Just a few simple lifestyle changes would do, a research has claimed.

In fact, the research, published in the `British Journal of Cancer`, found smoking is the biggest lifestyle contributor to one`s risk of developing cancer. Apart from lung cancer, it
has also been linked to causing bladder, kidney, pancreatic and cervical cancer.

One in 25 cancers is linked to a person`s job, such as being exposed to chemicals or asbestos, while one in 33 is linked to infections, such as the human papillomavirus (HPV), which causes most cases of cervical cancer.

However, the study showed that overall, 34 percent of cancers in 2010 (106,845) in Britain were linked to smoking, diet, drinking alcohol and excess weight.

In men, 6.1 per cent (9,600) of cancer cases were linked to a lack of fruit and vegetables, 4.9 per cent (7,800) to occupation, 4.6 per cent (7,300) to alcohol, 4.1 per cent (6,500) to overweight and obesity and 3.5 per cent (5,500) to excessive sun exposure and sunbeds.

In women, 6.9 per cent (10,800) were linked to overweight and obesity, 3.7 per cent (5,800) to infections such as HPV, 3.6 per cent (5,600) to excessive sun exposure and sunbeds, 3.4 per cent (5,300) to lack of fruit and vegetables and 3.3 per cent (5,100) to alcohol, the `Daily Express` reported.

The full list of 14 risk factors are -- tobacco, lack of fruit and vegetables, being overweight or obese, alcohol, excessive sun exposure and sunbeds, occupation, infections, radiation, lack of physical exercise, lack of breast feeding, hormones, red meat, lack of fibre and too much salt.

Drinking alcohol is linked to a range of cancers, including breast cancer, liver cancer and cancer of the oesophagus. Nine per cent of lung cancers were also linked to a lack of fruit consumption, the study showed.

Professor Max Parkin, a Cancer Research UK epidemiologist based at University of London, and study author, said: "Many people believe cancer is down to fate or `in the genes` and that it is the luck of the draw whether they get it.

"Looking at all the evidence, it`s clear that around 40 per cent of all cancers are caused by things we mostly have the power to change."


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