Studies show that cancers are curable but these must be detected early, diagnosed correctly and given the proper treatment promptly. The saying “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is definitely applicable to cancer.
Dr. Tranquilino Elicano, Jr., practicing oncologist from the Philippines , and past chairman of the Philippine Medical Association , Committee on Cancer Control, considers the following factors in preventing the disease :
Cigarette smoking is responsible for over 80 percent of lung cancers. Smoking has also been implicated in cancers of the mouth, pharynx, larynx, esophagus, pancreas and urinary bladder. Cancer of the oral cavity is high among people who smoke with the lighted end of the cigarette inside their mouth . The doctor recommended that people do not start smoking and those who are already smoking are warned to stop.
2. Chewing lime and betel nut
Elderly persons as well as certain tribes who chew lime and betel nut have a high incidence of cancer in the oral cavity. It has been determined that the intake of high dosage of Vitamin A and Beta carotine can prevent pre-cancerous conditions in the oral cavity from transforming into cancer.
Statistics show that certain foods may decrease or increase the risk of certain type of cancer. Dr. Elicano advised to follow the following:
a. Eat more high fiber foods such as fresh fruits, vegetables and cereals which may reduce the risks of colon cancer.
b. Regularly eat foods that are rich in Vitamin A and C such as fruits, green and yellow fresh vegetables. This diet may also help to decrease the risk of cancer of the mouth, lung , esophagus, and throat.
c. A diet with high fat content maybe a factor in the development of certain cancers. Obese individuals have an increased risk of developing cancers of the breast, colon, prostate, uterus, ovary and gall bladder.
d. Avoid frequently eating smoked, nitrate-cured and salt-cured foods since these may lead to an increased incidence of cancer of the esophagus and stomach.
4. Mature women who are given estrogen (hormone) to control menopausal symptoms face certain risks including an increased risk of cancer of the uterus. It is therefore advised that estrogen treatment should be given under careful physician control.
5. Occupational hazards for workers who are frequently exposed for prolonged periods to a number of industrial agents such as asbestos, vinyl chloride etc.
6. Daily over-exposure to the noonday sun has been considered to be a factor in the development of skin cancer.