What is cancer?
Cancer is an imbalance between cell growth and cell death, resulting in the accumulation of large numbers of cells.When cells pile up, its called a tumor, they can pile up like a fist or a tangerine, which can be taken out, and that's benign.Most of whats seen in breast and prostate tumors are benign tumors.The other kind looks like your open hand, although historically this is more dangerous, malignant cancer was compared to the spread-out crab-shaped stars in the constellation cancer.
Here are some best ways to minimize your cancer risk.The information here is specifically geared towards men-although, of course, much of it applies to women too.
Simply by heeding that straightforward bit of advice, you can avoid 35% of all cancers.
2.Shun The Sun:
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer, accounting for half of new cancer diagnoses in Western countries.People with fair skin, hair, and eyes are most susceptible.Don't want to get skin cancer?The you need to stay out of the sun, especially when it is strongest, between 10.00 am and 3.00 pm.If you must be in the sun at any time of the day, protect yourself with wide-brimmed hats, large sunglasses, and sunblock with an SPF of at least 15.Report any new, unusual, or changing moles or other marks on your skin to your doctor.
3.Live An Anti-Cancer Lifestyle:
No one who's been conscious the past two decades should be surprised to hear about the strong link between smoking, sun and cancer.There is a direct relationship between obesity and cancer as well as exercise and lack of cancer, there's also no question that diets rich in fruits and vegetables are very effective at preventing cancer.You really just have to adopt a cancer-prevention lifestyle, you have to exercise, eat right, and watch your weight.You have to stay out of the sun and you can't smoke.Even simple things like drinking 8 glasses of water a day, are very important.
4.Talk To Your Doctor If You Know You're At High Risk:
Your father had colon cancer, and so did an uncle and a cousin?You'll want to share a family pedigree like that with your physician, who will want to make sure you get earlier, more aggressive screenings than other men your age.A rule of thumb: Begin those screenings 10 years before the age your closest relative was diagnosed.Dad got the bad news at age 50?Start those screenings by age 40.
6.Supplements And Vitamins Might Help:
According to doctors, people who take vitamins C and E are a bit more protected than people who dont.Vitamin C especially has a very short lifespan, and unless you eat a lot of fruits and vegetables you probably aren't getting enough of it.For vitamin E, you can't really overdose on the stuff, and its a very good antioxidant.Taking selenium appears to reduce one's risk of developing prostate cancer.
7.If Prevention Fails, Catch It Early:
The next best thing to cancer prevention is early detection.If cancer is detected early when its still localised in the organ(where it originates) and when it hasnt had a chance to spread to other parts of the body, conventional therapy, surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, can cure patients 90% or more of the time.
Different Tests For Different Types Of Cancers:
There are only a few cancers for which official screening guidelines exist, although developing such guidelines is a top priority for researchers and cancer agencies.Her are some latest information on which screening tests are out there and what kind of progress is being made on developing tests for specific cancers:
Common tests include the fecal occult blood test, which tests your stool for invisible amounts of blood;sigmoidoscopy, where the lower colon is visualized using a scope; and colonoscopy, where the whole colon is visualized.Many doctors recommend that guys over age 50 and sooner if they're at high risk, get a fecal occult blood test annually and a sigmoidoscopy every 5 years.
Common tests include rectal exams- the "finger tests" where the physician feels your prostate; and PSA tests, wher the level of a substance produced by the prostate is measured in your blood.
Currently, no studies have firmly supported the use of imaging technology
-like X-rays or CAT scans for the detection of lung cancer.However, some research groups are actively studying the effectiveness and safety of such techniques, such as using low-radiation, high resolution CAT scans to screen the lungs of smokers for early development of lung cancer.
The common causes of oral cancer:tobacco and alcohol.However they have a very good cure rate when they're caught early and very poor when they're allowed to advance.Your dentist should be screening for this-assuming you're scheduling regular appointments.
Although this type of cancer is rare it usually hits men aged between 15-35.Testicular cancer is highly curable if caught at an early stage, and men can greatly increase thier chances of an early diagnosis by performing a monthly self-exam-that is, by feeling manually for lumps in the testicles.
Of particular concern to gay and bisexual men, anal cancer is similar to cervical cancer in that it, too, is caused by a sexually transmitted virus-the human papillomavirus.
This is a rare cancer that some studies suggest is less common in circumcised than uncircumcised men.However, the issue may be more about hygiene or sexual promiscuity than the presence of extra skin.So, When doing you're testicle self-examination, go ahead and peel back your foreskin and look for anything weird going on-growths, discoloration, anything that looks unusual- and report any suspicious findings to your primary care doctor.
With all these tests available, how do you know which ones are right for you?That depends on your age and risk factors.Most cancers, with the exception of brain tumors, testicular cancer, and some leukemias, usually strike after age 50, so screening strategies should be stepped up as you age.Having a known genetic predisposition for a certain cancer-or many relatives with a specific cancer-places you at higher risk of developing that disease, so you need to screen for it more often.