By Dr. Dinesh Singh, Oncology,
Cancer refers to the complex group of diseases that may result from several probable causes- some of which are common, while others may leave you in disbelief. This article explains the 5 different causes of cancer that you must be aware of-
- Prolonged sitting: Many people consider desk jobs as boring and monotonous. But what if we tell you that desk jobs can pose serious threat to your health, leading to even cancer! Substantial and enthralling recent research studies have revealed that sitting or staying inactive for prolonged period can trigger certain types of cancer- endometrial cancer, colon cancer and breast cancer. The reason for this could be surplus insulin production that stimulates abnormal growth of cells. Those in sedentary jobs face greater risk of such cancers as compared to those who are engaged in physical activities.
- Smoking and tobacco: Smoking has been considered the most common cause of cancer. Several research studies have established that cigarettes contain harmful chemicals such as Nicotine, Benzene, Carbon monoxide, Hydrogen cyanide. These chemicals adversely affect your lungs and damage the DNA cells inclusive of the genes which protect us against cancer. A study conducted by the American Lung Association states that almost 80% of lung cancers are caused due to smoking. People above the age of 50 years are most likely to get affected by this, as a result of long-term smoking.
- Long exposure to sun: Although the sun is a vital source of vitamin-D for healthy and strong bones, too much exposure to the sun may not be desirable. Excess UV rays can destroy the DNA or genetic material in the skin cells, leading to uncontrollable growth of the cells, and ultimately causes skin cancer.
- Obesity/ excess body weight: High calorie food like fat from animal sources and sugary beverages increase your body weight. Excess body weight can cause insulin levels to increase, which divides the cells more often. As a result the cells undergo changes and often result in colon cancer or rectal cancer.
- Alcohol consumption: Most people are aware of the fact that excess alcohol consumption has adverse effects on your health but how many of you know that it is directly linked to liver cancer? Let’s get to the facts. According to research studies, alcohol acts as an irritant in the throat or mouth. The cells which are destroyed by alcohol often try to restore themselves, and in this process lead to changes in the DNA. This triggers cancer in the liver, esophagus or throat.
Cancer can affect people at any age anytime. It is one of the most dreaded and unforeseen diseases that leave many people emotionally drained. However, with correct diagnosis, treatment and lifestyle changes, cancer can be prevented at an early stage.