LECTURE

Colorectal cancer:

Diet as a risk factor & effective prevention

Evidence-based prevention

Nearly 80% of all colorectal cancers are preventable through a healthy lifestyle.  

 

The world is witnessing a steadily increasing incidence of colorectal cancer especially in Western countries. The current forecast of the IARC (International Agency for Research on Cancer) for the next 15 years until 2035 is a dramatic increase of cancer patients by 60% to 2.2 million cases worldwide, even considering the population growth of our planet. 

 

Particularly shocking is that more and more young people under the age of 50 are affected.

Nearly 80% of all colorectal cancers are preventable through a healthy lifestyle

Over 50% of cancer cases can be attributed to diet: a high proportion of industrially processed foods, alcohol and products of animal origin at the expense of cancer-preventing plant-based foods are the main culprits.

In particular, animal proteins and saturated fats cause a toxic milieu change in the gut and alter the function of the gut microbiome to our health detriment: an ideal breeding ground for the development of chronic (subclinical) inflammation, mutations and eventually colon cancer.  

In stark contrast, the risk of cancer in Africa is almost 20x lower than in Europe or America. This was already observed in the 1970s by “Fibre Man” Dr. Burkitt on his research trips to Africa: Colorectal cancer and digestive disorders were virtually non-existent among the Ugandan population.

What exactly do these populations do differently? Which factors in the western world are contributing the most to the epidemic of colorectal cancer development? What is the role of the gut microbiome and what exactly can we do to effectively prevent colorectal cancer? 

The current evidence on colorectal cancer risk factors and effective prevention.

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