The second leading cause of death worldwide, cancer affects millions of people in a variety of different ways. Unfortunately, according to a new report, cancer cases are on the rise, thanks to a variety of factors that may only get worse.
According to a report from the Global Burden of Disease Cancer Collaboration, cancer diagnoses have increased by 33 percent over the past ten years. This includes 17.5 million cancer cases in 2015, which resulted in 8.7 million deaths.
In its breakdown of cancer cases, the study identified breast cancer as the most common form of the disease in women. Breast cancer was also the leading cause of cancer death for women. On the other hand, while prostate cancer was the most typical form of the disease in men, the leading cause of male cancer deaths was lung, bronchus and tracheal cancer. The most common cancers in children included non-Hodgkin lymphoma, leukemia and cancers of the brain and nervous system.
Why the Increase?
While they can’t say for sure, experts believe population aging has played a big role in elevating cancer rates. At the same time, they also blame changes in age-specific cancer rates, and other research has drawn a link between environmental toxins and rising rates of childhood cancer.
What You Can Do
While genetic traits and environmental toxins play a big role in determining your cancer risk, lifestyle choices are just as important. Studies have shown you can reduce your risk of developing cancer by adopting the following healthy habits:
- Do not smoke
- Maintain a healthy body weight
- Stay active
- Limit alcohol
- Use sunscreen
You should also check your family history and learn how hormonal therapies and certain medications will affect your cancer risk. If you are at risk, visit your doctor for regular screenings and report any physical changes as soon as you notice them.