Cancer is one of the leading causes of death all over the world, so it’s a good idea to “know the enemy” and be aware of the most common cancers, as well as what you can do to protect yourself from them.
- Skin cancer
You may be familiar with melanoma, which is a type of skin cancer, but there are actually more types of skin cancer which affect different layers of the skin and have different outcomes. However, all of them are associated with sun exposure, so be sure to limit the time you spend outside in direct sunlight. Also, make sure to familiarize yourself with sunscreen rules and recommendations, so you can choose the right sunscreen depending on your usage scenario and apply it correctly.
- Prostate cancer
Prostate cancer is one of the most frequently diagnosed cancers in men, and it is most likely to affect individuals who are older than 50. The prostate gland in men is situated next to the bladder and is an important part of the reproductive system. Regular physical exams can help you rest assured that your prostate is not demonstrating any possible cancer signs, such as lumps or overall enlargement.
- Breast cancer
This type of cancer is most common in women, although it is also known to occur in men. Breast cancer is relatively easy to discover and diagnose, so it is possible to keep it under control and even remove the cancerous growth before it spreads any further, but only if you do mammograms at regular intervals – the recommended frequency is once per year.
- Lung cancer
Lung cancer is a very dangerous form of cancer, as it affects the inner lining of the lungs and can spread out rather fast from there. Generally, lung cancer affects older people, and of course, it is also the disease that is associated with smoking. If you want to minimize your chances of suffering from lung cancer, give up smoking (or don’t ever pick it up), and do your best to stay fit – your lungs are kept in best shape when you actually move around and breathe in fresh air rather than just sit around in stuffy office rooms all day.
- Stomach cancer
What you eat defines your health and general well-being in numerous ways, and it could also increase your chances of suffering from stomach cancer. According to a study published in the Journal of Gastrointestinal Cancer in 2013, there is a direct correlation between stomach cancer rates and some general food-related trends in the society.
For instance, stomach cancer rates declined in the second half of the last century, when refrigerators became available to most people and there was no more need to preserve food with high amounts of salt or acids. The bad news is that a lot of modern lifestyle choices have a very negative impact on overall gut health, which accounts for steadily rising stomach cancer rates in the last decades.
Protect yourself from stomach cancer by eating healthy meals, avoiding foods that are very salty and/or irritate your stomach, exercising regularly, and maintaining a normal body weight. Also, some researchers have pointed out a link between smoking and stomach cancer, so this is another good reason to forget about cigarettes and give your body a break from tobacco fumes.
Leukemia is another fairly common type of cancer. It affects the blood cells and tissues formed around them, so it is often referred to as “blood cancer”. Blood cancer cells can spread around the body quite fast compared to most other cancers due to their direct connection to the blood flow. Leukemia affects patients of both genders and all ages, and it is also the most common cancer in children under the age of 21. There are no specific recommendations to help reduce leukemia risk, but leading an overall healthy lifestyle is definitely a good idea regardless of how other risk factors may affect you.