There are over 100 different types of cancer. Every year more than a quarter of a million American women lose their life due to cancer (CDC.gov). Cancer is a disease that is becoming more and more prevalent throughout the world and we are still trying to figure out the most successful way to medically treat it. As for any disease, the best way to survive cancer is to prevent it. Women we are predisposed to more types of cancer than men. Some of these cancers consist of uterine cancer, cervical cancer, breast cancer, skin cancer, and lung cancer (American Cancer Association.org). Cancer usually targets those who are older but it can still occur in younger women.
Predisposing Factors for Cancer
- Genetics: Does cancer run in your family? You may be at risk for developing cancer if it is hereditary. This is most common with genetic breast cancer occurring in younger women.
- Smoking/Alcohol: If you currently or have in the past consumed large amounts of alcohol or smoked, you can increase your risk of developing cancers such as throat, stomach, and lung cancer.
- Chemical: Frequent exposure to chemicals such as hair dyes, asbestos, and formaldehyde can lead to cancer.
- Infectious agents: Some infectious agents such as HIV, HPV, and helicobacter pylori can increase the risk of developing certain types of cancer.
- Radiation: Living or working in environments that are high in radiation can increase the process and development of cancer cells in the human body.
- Lifestyle: Having a poor diet high in fats and living a relatively sedentary lifestyle can increase your chances of developing cancer.
Tips for Preventing Cancer
- Don't smoke and avoid second hand smoke.
- Get screening tests for breast, cervical, and colorectal cancer.
- Protect your skin from the sun and avoid tanning beds.
- Be aware of moles and spots on your skin.
- Stay active and keep a healthy weight.
- Get the HPV vaccine.
- Eat a diet high in fruits and vegetables.
- Limit fat intake in your foods.
- Limit alcohol or do not consume alcohol.
- Know yourself, your family history, and personal risks of cancer.