Colorectal cancer which is often referred to as “colon cancer” is the second leading cancer killer for both men and women in the United States with over 150,000 new diagnosis every year and around 50,000 deaths (as of 2008). Cancer refers to abnormal growth of cells inside human body. This abnormal growth of cells could be in your blood, throat, mouth, lungs or even your colon. The colon is our large intestines. Colon cancer is a serious condition and must be treated as soon as possible before the abnormal growth of cells increase and ruins the natural process if the body. Colon cancer can be seen as uncontrollable cells in the colon.
Colon cancer begins its journey in the lining of our bowel. Developing very rapidly, colon cancer if left untreated, can spread into the muscle layers that are situated beneath the bowel. If colon cancer is still unnoticed then this abnormal cell growth can penetrate through the walls of the bowel. When colon cancer is only within the walls of the bowel then there is a greater prognosis for a patient to get a successful surgery and get the colon cancer removed. However, if this stage is not tackled right on time, the colon cancer can spread to other parts of the body making it almost impossible to completely treat.
Colon cancer symptoms usually are not very apparent on the surface, but they occur deep inside the human body. But if you have anemia, bloating, fatigue, abdominal pain, sudden weight loss, jaundice, or diarrhea it is advised to get examined by a doctor, especially if there is a combination of these symptoms. It may not be a cancerous condition, but it is best to be safe. Another sign of colon cancer risk is the presence of rectal bleeding. Blood in stools should be a rather alarming symptom that something is wrong and should be treated as such.
Colon cancer usually starts in the later stages in life. People within the age bracket of 60 to 70 tend to be at risk to develop colon cancer. People who have had colon cancer and it has been treated are very much prone to develop it again. It is even researched that if it runs in the family and even if you are fit and healthy and not the age of 60 plus, that there is a greater risk of developing it. Proper screening and a scheduled colonoscopy to search for colon polyps are advised if you are in a high risk group. .
Colon cancer can also be caused by smoking. Smoking makes the entire blood to act abnormal in various parts of the body, hitting most hard in the lungs, throat and bowel. Other than age, genetics and smoking, colon cancer can be a result of poor eating habits. The colon is a tube that stores food for a while inside it before being excreted. When a diet is rich in red meat with hardly any sign of green vegetables, eggs and even fish, then the bowel is badly affected since red meat cannot be digested easily and quickly.
Poor lifestyle and not getting enough exercise can contribute to not only this disease, but many others. The blood stream needs inflow of pure oxygen to remove any toxins that may have accumulated. Excessive sitting and eating fatty foods and not doing anything to digest them can be a risk factor for colon cancer.
Alcoholism and alcohol abuse are also risk factors for colon cancer. The level of alcohol in our body can only be managed up to certain limit, but amount greater than what our body can take creates a state of abnormal cells to grow inside the colon.
There are usually two ways of treating colon cancer. Colon cancer can be treated with surgery, either by completely removing the abnormal growth of cells from the bowel or by chemotherapy. It has been seen that people who go for surgery are better off and have healthier lives and better chances of survival than from people who go for chemotherapy. Therefore, when a patient is in the process of being treated from colon cancer, there has to be certain lifestyle changes laid out by the physician for the patient so that the colon cancer stays within limits and does not make treatment any more difficult.
The diet during colon cancer treatment must be full of all kinds of vitamins. These vitamins help remove deficiency in a human body like feeling lethargic , weak and having black outs. A proper diet must also include foods rich in minerals since they help regaining body salts.
It is highly recommended for people who have had colon cancer to get a regular check up so that any relapses can be spotted early. If colon cancer is kept under check then there are less chances of developing it again. Even if you develop it, again the chances of treating it would be higher than if it was left ignored.
The risks of colon cancer should be talked about more often. Awareness can help many people take preventative measures, like having a colonoscopy exam, as well as making healthier dietary and lifestyle changes.
Proper vitamin intake by either taking supplements or having a balanced diet can help. Juicing is another way to take a preventative step and enrich your diet with fresh fruits and vegetables. By improving one’s diet and lifestyle and regular check ups with a doctor, colorectal cancer risk can be greatly diminished.