There are 4.5 million deaths from cancers each year that could have been prevented


There are 4.5 million deaths from cancers each year that could have been prevented
Written by aquitodovale

from Silvia Turin

Smoking, alcohol and excessive weight are the main causes. But unhealthy lifestyles increase over time: more than 20% in nine years from 2010 to 2019. Western Europe is one of the “worst” areas

Everyone now knows that the so-called healthy “Lifestyle” (healthy or unhealthy) it matters a lot, but perhaps it is an “adage” so repeated that it does not strike (and affect) enough. An international study, which involved over a thousand researchers, wanted to quantify, with respect to tumors, how many deaths could have really been avoided with healthy lifestyles.

Impressive numbers

Using the Global Burden of Diseasea study that provides the most comprehensive global health estimates (looking at global, national and regional trends for mortality and morbidity due to key diseases, injuries and risk factors), researchers calculated that smoking, alcohol, excessive weight and other known risk factors were responsible for nearly half of the deaths from cancer in the world in 2019: 4.45 million. The research has just been published in The Lancet.

The risk factors and the tumors they cause

In particular avoidable deaths were 44.4% of total cancer deaths and, no less impressive, 105 million years of healthy life lost due to avoidable behaviors (the parameter is the DALY, disability-adjusted life year, which measures the number of years lost due to illness, disability or premature death). The research considered the impact of 34 behavioral, metabolic, environmental and occupational risk factors on the number of cancer deaths in 2019.
The risk factors with the greatest impact were precisely smoking, alcohol and the high body mass index, in order of importance, but there are also factors such as environmental pollution and unsafe sex among the main ones. Of the deaths affected by risk factors, more than a third are due to lung cancer heavily impacted by smoking, followed by cancer of the colon and rectal cancer, esophageal cancer and stomach cancer in males, and cervical cancer, colon and rectal cancer, and breast cancer in women.

Worst behaviors for males

Males were more likely to suffer from risk factors because of all cancer deaths, deaths from these causes accounted for in men 50.6% of the total and in women 36.3%.
Globally in 2019, the top five regions in terms of age-standardized cancer mortality rates attributable to risk were Central Europe, East Asia, High-Income North America, South Latin America, and Western Europe.
Another notable consideration: unhealthy lifestyles increase over time (we talked about it in detail HERE
), from 2010 to 2019, global cancer deaths attributable to avoidable risk are increased by 20.4%. The largest percentage increase in attributable cancer deaths across tier 1 risk factor categories was in metabolic risks (related to nutrition and body mass), which increased by 34.7% from 2010 to 2019.

August 19, 2022 (change August 19, 2022 | 13:50)

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