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November 5, 2009 | 1 minute read

Colon Cancer is Preventable

People need to know that colon cancer is largely preventable, was the key message from the first presenter — David S. Alberts, MD — at AICR’s research conference. With everything we know about colon cancer prevention, he said, it’s unimaginable that colon cancer is still the second leading cause of cancer deaths.

We know all the clinical behaviors that are required for a person to prevent this disease.

The development of colon cancer is a long continuum; it doesn’t happen overnight, in months or a few years. We know all the clinical behaviors that are required for a person to prevent this disease: physical activity, a healthy diet. This sequence has a 20-30 year period during which time we can intervene and do something about its development.

He noted that one point today’s USA Today story missed was the importance of physical activity. You can overcome the obesity problem with physical activity, he said. We also know that obese people who are physically active reduce their risk of colorectal cancer just like anybody else.

This is a message that should be on everyone’s breakfast and dinner table. And every time you do sit-ups, it’s taking a step to prevent colon cancer.

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