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Cancer Will Kill 13.2 Million a Year by 2030

June 19, 2010 | 45,651 views
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cancer Cancer will kill more than 13.2 million people a year by 2030, almost double the number who died from the disease in 2008.  Only 7.6 million people died of cancer in 2008.

Around 56 percent of new cancer cases worldwide in 2008 were in developing countries and these regions also accounted for 63 percent of all cancer deaths.

According to Reuters:

"The projection for annual death rates of 13.2 million and annual diagnosis of 21.4 million were based on assumptions that underlying rates of cancer would remain the same over the next two decades".

The rate of men dying from melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer has doubled over the past three decades. In the late 1970s, fewer than 1.5 per 100,000 men died from melanoma; that figure has now risen to over 3.1 per 100,000.

The death rates for women have also risen, from 1.5 per 100,000 to 2.2 per 100,000.

According to BBC News:

"The figures suggest men are either not aware of skin cancer symptoms or are ignoring them and putting off going to see their [doctor]".

In addition, a new study joins the evidence showing just how profound of an effect pesticide use can have on human health. Researchers found that women with a history of farming had a greater risk of developing breast cancer.

The scientists were attempting to find groups with heightened cancer risks because of their jobs. They assumed the most common group would be male industrial workers, but to their surprise, they found it was women with breast cancer who had a history of farming.

According to Sustainable Food:

"Researchers believe chemicals and pesticides are to blame for the increased breast cancer rates in female farm workers. Some pesticides and farm chemicals are carcinogens, while others mimic estrogen. Chemicals that mimic estrogen are linked to cancer and other diseases, particularly if exposure occurred during childhood."

Meanwhile, cancer research keeps discovering the power of foods against cancer.

For example, breast cancer cells, even those of the most aggressive type, died after treatments with peach and plum extracts in laboratory tests. Normal cells were not harmed in the process. Two phenolic compounds are responsible for the cancer cell deaths.  Phenols are slightly acidic and may be associated with traits such as aroma, taste or color.

Eurekalert reports:

"According to the National Cancer Institute, there were 192,370 new cases of breast cancer in females and 1,910 cases in males in 2009. That year, 40,170 women and 440 men died from breast cancer. The World Health Organization reports that breast cancer accounts for 16 percent of the cancer deaths of women globally."

 

Dr. Mercola's Comments:

There's quite a bit of news about cancer lately. Cancer rates for various types of cancer are on the rise, and pesticide exposure is increasingly being identified as a significant risk factor.

The good news is, studies are also emerging showing the powerful potential of food and lifestyle to prevent and combat cancer.

Cancer Rates on the Rise

According to the United Nations' cancer research agency, cancer rates are predicted to double by 2030 if the current trend continues. More than half of all new cancer cases are now occurring in developing countries, and 63 percent of worldwide cancer deaths also occur in these poorer nations.

The agency launched a database to track the global incidence of cancer in 2008. Based on the collected data, the most commonly diagnosed cancers worldwide in 2008 were:

  1. Lung cancer
  2. Breast cancer
  3. Colorectal cancer

The deadliest cancers were lung cancer, which claimed 1.38 million lives worldwide that year, followed by stomach cancer and liver cancer, at 0.74 million and 0.69 million deaths respectively.

In addition, BBC News reports that the rate of men dying from melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, has also doubled over the past three decades.

In the late 1970s, the death rate from melanoma was less than 1.5 per 100,000 men. That figure has now risen to over 3.1 per 100,000. The death rates for women with melanoma have also risen, from 1.5 per 100,000 to 2.2 per 100,000.

According to BBC News:

"The figures suggest men are either not aware of skin cancer symptoms or are ignoring them and putting off going to see their [doctor]".

What Could Possibly Stop or Reverse This Troubling Trend?

If we begin with the rising incidence of skin cancer, a common presumption is that melanoma is caused by sun exposure. However, there's almost no evidence at all to support that stance. There is, however, plenty of evidence to the contrary.

Over the years, several studies have confirmed that appropriate sun exposure actually helps prevent skin cancer. In fact, melanoma occurrence has been found to decrease with greater sun exposure, while melanoma rates seem to rise with sunscreen use!

One such study discovered that melanoma patients that had higher levels of sun exposure were less likely to die than other melanoma patients, and patients who already had melanoma and got a lot of sun exposure were prone to a less aggressive tumor type.

In addition, melanoma strikes indoor workers more frequently than outdoor workers to begin with. It is also more common on regions of your body that are not exposed to the sun at all, so clearly the simplistic "sun equals cancer" theory is fundamentally flawed.

The missing piece of information that can explain this puzzle is the fact that melanoma rates are rising as sun exposure and vitamin D status is decreasing dramatically.

Although the sun does increase genetic damage in your skin, and can cause skin cancer, your body has a cleverly designed system to avert cancer growth. But when you avoid sun exposure entirely, you also circumvent your body's built-in system that helps prevent skin cancer naturally, because the key to unlock this mechanism is vitamin D.

As you probably know by now, vitamin D is formed in your skin from exposure to sunlight. The vitamin D then goes directly to the genes in your skin where it helps prevent the types of abnormalities that ultraviolet light causes.

Hence, when you avoid the sun entirely, or slather on sun block whenever you go out, your skin is not making any vitamin D, and you're left without this built-in cancer protection.

This is one of the primary reasons for the rise in melanoma!

Vitamin D – the Key to All Cancer Prevention?

Continuing on to address the rise in cancers of all kinds, you find that vitamin D is a MAJOR player here as well.

Researchers have discovered that at least 16 different types of cancer can be prevented by increasing vitamin D levels, including pancreatic, lung, breast, ovarian, prostate, and colon cancers. As you can see, these include the three most common cancers, as well as the most deadly.

Optimizing your vitamin D levels can cut your risk by as much as 60 percent, so just imagine the reduction in worldwide prevalence that could be accomplished if the importance of vitamin D became common knowledge!

As a reader of this newsletter, you are ahead of the game.

Just remember that to reap the benefits you need to make sure your vitamin D levels are within therapeutic range. For all the latest information on therapeutic vitamin D levels, and vital updates on testing and updated dosing recommendations, please review my article: Test Values and Treatment for Vitamin D Deficiency.

Pesticide Use is Taking Its Toll

In addition to science finally discovering the impact of vitamin D deficiency on cancer rates, researchers are also finding strong links between pesticide exposure and cancer.

A new study illustrates how profound of an effect pesticide exposure during childhood can be on future health. Researchers found that women who worked on farms when growing up had a greater risk of developing breast cancer.

According to Sustainable Food:

"Some pesticides and farm chemicals are carcinogens, while others mimic estrogen. Chemicals that mimic estrogen are linked to cancer and other diseases, particularly if exposure occurred during childhood."

The answer, of course, is to promote organic farming and eat as much organically-grown foods as you can.

As Sustainable Food says, "those kinds of chemicals shouldn't be near our cucumbers, much less near our children." Keep in mind that although farmers are physically exposed to the pesticides they use during the course of their work, you and your children are consuming these same pesticides with every bite of conventionally-grown food you eat.

Although the level of exposure may be less than a farm worker, the chronic exposure from eating pesticide-laden food day in and day out for years can cause tremendous harm.

Healing Foods Come to the Fore

The good news is, cancer research keeps discovering the power of foods against cancer.

According to a Texas A&M AgriLife press release, their researchers have found that breast cancer cells, even those of the most aggressive type, can be killed with extracts of peach and plum, while leaving normal cells unharmed.

Two phenolic compounds, which occur naturally in fruits, are believed to be responsible for the cancer cell deaths.

The press release reads:

"It was a differential effect which is what you're looking for because in current cancer treatment with chemotherapy, the substance kills all cells, so it is really tough on the body," said Dr. David Byrne, AgriLife Research plant breeder who studies stone fruit.

"Here, there is a five-fold difference in the toxic intensity. You can put it at a level where it will kill the cancer cells - the very aggressive ones - and not the normal ones."

Byrne and Dr. Luis Cisneros-Zevallos originally studied the antioxidants and phytonutrients in plums and found them to match or exceed the blueberry which had been considered superior to other fruits in those categories."

Again and again we see promising results such as these. A number of plants, fruits, herbs and spices have been identified as having potent anti-cancer properties that could offer effective prevention. Others show potential in the actual treatment of cancer.

Examples include:

  • Broccoli
  • Sweet wormwood plant (Artemisia annua L)
  • Black cohosh
  • Black raspberries
  • CLA from grass-fed beef and grass-fed dairy products
  • Huang qin

For even more examples, please review the related articles below, and for a comprehensive list of all my cancer prevention strategies, please see this previous article.

The signs are clear, there's plenty you can do to prevent cancer from happening to you, and it starts with living as purely as you can, and eating as healthy as possible.


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