New study reveals that bacon and beer could increase your risk of cancer by 40 percent
If you asked me which fictional character's life I would like to adopt for the rest of my time on this Earth (let's not go into why you'd ask me that), I'd probably respond by saying "Homer Simpson". Why not, really? He's got a loving wife, precocious offspring, a whole litany of weird jobs and friends; but most importantly, I'd want to live Homer Simpson's life because I would get to eat mostly bacon and beer for the rest of my days.
Healthy eating's one thing, I'm sure - but I think that there's no point in life being so long if you don't get to enjoy it once in a while. Beer and bacon are two of life's greatest mouth pleasures, and although we know they're not exactly health food, there's got to be a bit of wiggle room on the whole deal, right?
Turns out the answer is no - that's at least according to a new study from World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF), who say that cutting out bacon and beer could help to lower your risk of getting cancer by as much as 40 percent. They underwent a massive study in order to best understand how to reduce the risk of cancer.
Compiling research data from more than 51 million people, the WCRF say that even small amounts of processed meats and booze can have a huge effect on your risk of cancer. They expect that the number of new cancer cases will rise to 24 million globally by the year 2035 (an increase of 58 percent), and that as many as 40 percent of all cancers are quite preventable.
Alongside cutting out bacon and beer, the report states that there's quite a few things you could be doing to lower the risk of cancer. One of the biggest factors in cancer risk, according to the study, relates to obesity: 12 different cases can be prevented by simply watching our weight, with liver, ovary, prostate, stomach, mouth and throat, join bowel, breast, gallbladder, kidney, oesophagus, pancreas and womb cancers all avoidable.
"Avoiding tobacco in any form, together with appropriate diet, nutrition and physical activity, and maintaining a healthy weight, have the potential over time to reduce much of the global burden of cancer," states the report, with the WCRF announcing they've come up with a 10-point plan to reduce the risk cancer, with a presentation of their findings expected at the European Congress on Obesity in Vienna, Austria.
"However, with current trends towards decreased physical activity and increased body fatness, the global burden of cancer can be expected to continue to rise until these issues are addressed, especially given projections of an ageing global population. If current trends continue, overweight and obesity are likely to overtake smoking as the number one risk factor for cancer."
So how exactly do you live your life with an eye on cancer risk? The report suggests that while cutting out processed meat like bacon and drinks like beer definitely help, you can also employ a diet rich in whole grains, vegetables, fruit and beans to help you along the way. It sounds like it's going to be a challenge to give up bacon and beer, but I think that the reward is well worth the suffering, don't you?