Many of us are very much concerned about the risk factors for cancer because of the spontaneous detection of cancer in normal healthy-looking individuals. Seemingly, for most of us, there are no apparently risk factors for cancer as we have been made to believe that only smokers, drinkers and tobacco-eaters can get cancer – others are safe. But the reality is far beyond this common myth. Therefore, a better understanding of all the common risk factors and lifestyle factors is very important to prevent some types of cancers or to minimize the risk of certain types of cancer. The following information is an attempt to highlight such factors.

Artificial Sweeteners

There are two sugars that have often been talked about a lot as far as health is concerned, but the big question here is can these sugars cause cancer. According to a research study done in rats saccharine induced the growth of cancer cells in rats, but no study has so far proved any link to saccharine use and cancer in human beings. Similarly, there is no substantial research-based evidence to prove the role of aspartame in the growth of cancer cells in human beings either.

X-Rays

X-rays in small dose do not increase the risk, but in general higher dose of radiations from X-rays pose a potential risk for cancer. Even low doses of X-rays can raise the risk of getting cancer by a smaller amount if the exposure to such doses is repeated. However, as a rule of thumb, there is no amount of radiation which is considered as totally safe. Therefore, it is always better to avoid X-rays as much as possible, unless it is very much essential.

Cell Phones

The radiation emitted by cell phones is same as that emitted by microwave ovens. So far there is no conclusive research to establish a link between cell phone and cancer. However, more research and substantial evidence is needed to completely rule out the link. However, to be on a safer side, it is better to minimize cell phone usage or use it for chatting rather than calling frequently is another option. Using a hands-free device is also advisable to minimize the risk if any.

 Meat cooked at High Temperatures

Red meat, hot meat, meat cooked at high temperatures, preserved meat is not good for your health. Less meat consumption is alright, but excessive consumption of red meat and processed meat and the meat preserved by using nitrates could increase the risk of stomach and colon cancer. Just one hotdog a day is enough to raise the risk bar several times. Polyaromatic hydrocarbons are the compounds that are released when meat is cooked at high temperatures. Scientists are studying how these compounds can increase cancer risk.

Bisphenol in Plastics

Bisphenol is a chemical used in water bottles, containers, plastic products, clear plastic bottles and dental sealants. Many people think that this chemical can cause cancer, but FDA says no because the current levels of bisphenol used in products are safe for human use.  However, those who are worried about its usage can avoid foods and drinks stored in clear plastics. For hot foods, glass or steel is a better option.

Human Papillomavirus

Human papillomavirus is one of the causative agents of oral cancers in men and it can also cause cervical and ovarian cancers in women. It is transmitted through unprotected sex, high risk sexual activities and oral sex. The infection is most commonly transmitted to males. But all sexually active males don’t get cancer as HPV in most cases goes away on its own. However, prevention is always better. To lower the risk, vaccination is a better preventive measure. In addition, avoiding multiple sex partners and unprotective sex also minimizes the risk.

Coffee

There is a good news for coffee lovers and for those who begin their day with a cup of hot coffee. Though excess amount of coffee is not good for health, but moderate amounts of coffee is actually good as it helps in minimizing the risk of Alzheimer’s, dementia and depression and also some types of cancers – such as uterine cancer, prostate cancer, liver cancer and oral cancers.

Dental Fillings

As far as dental fillings are concerned don’t need to worry much – according to experts they are usually safe and do not pose any risk of cancer. Silver amalgum is a mixture of mercury, copper, zinc, tin and silver. It is used as dental fillings. It does not pose any health risk as studies have found no link between silver amalgum used in dental fillings and cancer of any type or any other health issue.