In both men and women, lung cancer is the leading cause of death, worldwide. Just about everyone knows that smoking and tobacco are the biggest risk factor for lung cancer. However, there are other risk factors apart from smoking, according to experts like Pulmonologist in Lahore, that predispose to cancer. Read on to know how to reduce risk factors for lung cancer:
90 percent of lung cancers are attributed to smoking cigarettes and tobacco. Earlier in the start of the twentieth century, there was a low prevalence of lung cancer. This cancer peaked with the advent of cigarettes and as the habit of smoking picked up in both men and women. The problem is, smoking not only damages the health of the smoker, but also those smoking in second hand smoke.
The risk of lung cancer increases 25 times due to smoking in men and 25.7 times in women. Once you quit smoking, and no cancer has developed in the lungs, the tissue starts repairing itself, and the risk of cancer drops. According to research, the risk of cancer lowers by 30 to 50 percent in people who stop smoking.
If you have trouble quitting, talk to your healthcare provider about ways to make it easier. They will recommend nicotine agonists that will make the transition smooth. You will feel your overall health getting better as well once you stop smoking.
No second hand smoke
This is the smoke that you inhale from other people’s cigarettes and cigars. Even with secondhand smoke, a lot of harmful chemicals and carcinogens are reaching the bloodstream with their full potential to cause cancer. Data from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that more than 7,300 deaths occur annually, in non-smokers from lung cancer. Therefore, if anyone smokes in your home, try working with them to quit and avoid exposure to this secondhand smoke.
Avoid exposure to hazardous substances
Certain industrial chemicals like asbestos, soot, silica, diesel exhaust, arsenic, nickel and cadmium are notorious for increasing the risk of cancer. Exposure to these chemicals, particularly at the workplace must be avoided. If you work in these industries, be sure to wear your protective gear before working.
Know your family history
In comparison to people without any immediate family history of lung cancer, those with the positive family history are twice as likely to develop cancer. This is because of the similar genetic makeup and environmental factors that contribute to disease formation. To decrease your risk of cancer, be sure to avoid the risk factors of lung cancer and inform your healthcare provider. They may recommend annual screening tests for you.
Diet plays a crucial role in cancer prevention. A diet rich in antioxidants, lean protein, whole grains and fruits would play a protective role against lung cancer. Research suggests specific foods like cruciferous vegetables, green tea and turmeric help to prevent lung cancer.
On the other hand, eating junk food with high glycemic index increases the chances of lung cancer and lowers immunity.
The exact relationship between exercise and lowered lung cancer risk is not completely understood, but figures suggest a reduced risk of 20 to 30 percent with increased physical activity.
Think about screening
If your family history is very strong, or your exposure to risk factors of lung cancer is strong, talk to a specialist like Pulmonologist in Islamabad about screening. Screening is only recommended for people with high risk factors and includes investigations like chest x-rays and high-resolution CT scans of the lungs. Screening ensures early diagnosis of lung cancer so timely therapy can be initiated.