Healthier diet, exercise could prevent 80,OOO cancer cases in Britain

Published: Tuesday, April 6, 2010, 16:06 [IST]
 

London, April 06 (ANI): Excessive drinking and obesity are leading to tens of thousands of cases of cancer in the UK, according to a leading charity.

The World Cancer Research Fund claims some of the most common cancers could be avoided with healthier diet and exercise.

Prof Martin Wiseman, from World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF), said an estimated around 80,000 cases of cancer could be prevented in Britain.

"Because we read so much about America's problems with obesity and junk food, people may find it surprising that the proportion of cancer cases related to diet, physical activity and weight is just as bad here in the UK," the Telegraph quoted Prof Wiseman as saying.

He added: "It is true that a higher proportion of cancer cases in the US are linked to body fat, but not by much. In the US, we estimate that for the seven types of cancer that are weight related, just under 20 per cent could be prevented through people being a healthy weight. In the UK, this figure is about 17 per cent.

"But one reason the overall situation in the UK is as bad is the amount of alcohol we drink and this means we need to do more to raise awareness that alcohol increases cancer risk. To take breast cancer as an example, an estimated 20 per cent of cases in the UK can be attributed to alcohol. That is double the estimate for the US."

According to the expert, the forms of cancer that could be prevented include pharynx, larynx and oesophagus in the throat, lung, stomach, pancreas, gallbladder, liver, bowel, breast, cancer of the lining of the womb, prostate and kidney.

Wiseman added: "It is important to emphasise that estimating the proportion of cancer cases that are preventable is difficult and this means that these figures should be treated with caution. But even so, they do give an idea of how high the stakes are and highlight the importance of getting across the message about the potential impact that lifestyle changes can have."

Almost 300,000 people are diagnosed with cancer in Britain every year. (ANI)

Write a Comment