Cancer is a condition that is affecting more and more people every year and unfortunately we are no closer to a cure than we were several years ago. However, as more and more researchers begin to understand the causes of cancer, we might expect that a cure could be on the horizon soon. There are several forms of cancer, each affecting a different body part in their own way, but one of the most dangerous and prevalence forms of cancer in men, is colon cancer.
Colon cancer, also called colorectal cancer, is a disease marked by cancerous growths in the colon, rectum, and appendix area. Unfortunately, if colon cancer is not diagnosed and treated early on, then it can be very difficult to send it into remission. Even if colon cancer is diagnosed and treated early, it is still very important to be vigilant in medication and therapy in order to prevent the spread of the disease.
Unlike some milder forms of cancer, colon cancer actually spreads violently throughout the body very quickly if it is not treated. Colin cancer is diagnosed via a colonoscopy, which should be done annually, if not semiannually, in middle-aged and elderly men. Early symptoms of colon cancer are bleeding in the anus, weight loss, and fatigue. Unfortunately, these are also symptoms for many other conditions, which can make early diagnosis difficult.
Although it might sound gross, is important to observe your stool patterns for irregularities in the event that colon cancer has appeared in your body. Some symptoms for irregularities to look for, are changes in stool softness, changes in stool occurrence, and changes in stool color. If you notice any blood or mucus in your stool, then you should pay attention for the next several days to see if the signs go away. Sometimes, bloody stool could be result of hemorrhoids or other more minor conditions so if you see one of these symptoms, don’t start to panic right away.
As men get older, mostly in their 60s and 70s, they become a member of a group with an increased risk of colon cancer. Colon cancer also seems to be genetically passed, so if your father suffered from colon cancer than you should take extra care to be checked by a doctor regularly. Some other risk factors for colon cancer are smoking and diets high in red meats and low in fiber. Smoking can also cause several other conditions, so it is recommended that you quit smoking altogether even if you don’t have colon cancer. Also, you should consider moderating the amount of meat in your diet and using healthy vegetables, such as lentils or other legumes as replacements.
Increasing your physical activity can also reduce the risk of colon cancer, so on top of a moderate diet you should also consider getting moderate exercise to three times per week at a minimum. This can also lower your cholesterol and blood pressure levels, which is important for reducing risk of other conditions. The surest path to wellness and disease prevention is by regulating your diet and exercise patterns, but this should come as no surprise to you.
Lastly, alcohol abuse has been proven to increase risk for colon cancer. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but limiting your alcohol intake to one to two drinks per day is important. Although one to two drinks per day can be beneficial, anything more than that is detrimental to your health.
As you can see, many of the risk factors for colon cancer can be eliminated with a simple changes in lifestyle. Although some of them may not be optimal, considering what you have been used to, anything you can do to better your health is well worth it in the long run. However, if you start to notice any symptoms that could be a result of colon cancer and do not go away with time, then I recommend that you see a doctor immediately. Schedule colonoscopies regularly to make sure that you do your part in colorectal cancer prevention.