World Cancer Day: Get the facts
Cancer continues to devastate peoples’ lives and destroys their futures. By 2030 it is estimated that the number of global cancer cases will rise to 21 million from 12.7 million in 2008.
This is why we are working to stop cancer before it starts and why the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) and the World Cancer Research Fund global network (WCRF) is supporting World Cancer Day, led by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC).
We are adding our voice to voices around the world to dispel the myths about cancer and ensure people get the facts.
One of the most persistent and widely-held myths is that cancer is just ‘bad luck’ or ‘fate’.
The truth, however, is that about a third of the most common cancers could be prevented through sticking to a healthy diet, being physically active and managing our body weight.
Prevention is by far the most cost-effective and sustainable way of reducing the cancer burden.
While individuals can play their part, global, regional and national policies and programs are needed to help support people in making healthier lifestyle choices. This is essential if cancers caused by factors such as alcohol, unhealthy diets and lack of physical activity are to be reduced.
AICR and WCRF are calling on world leaders to urgently implement the commitments in the UN Political Declaration on the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and tackle the challenges of cancer and other NCDs around the world.
We endorse, along with UICC and many others, the World Health Organization’s target of a 25% reduction by 2025 in premature deaths from NCDs, including cancer.
Unless we take swift, collective action to raise awareness about cancer prevention, and practical strategies are put into place, millions of people will suffer the anguish of cancer.
World Cancer Day is the ideal opportunity to banish the myths and get the facts about cancer so we, and those we love, have the best chance of stopping cancer before it starts.
Here in the US, World Cancer Day is only the start of National Cancer Prevention Month. Throughout February, AICR will redouble our ongoing efforts to drive home the message that many cancers – nearly 400,000 cases every year in the U.S. alone – never have to happen.
President, World Cancer Research Fund Global Network
Published on January 23, 2013