Cancer is a word and disease that we have learned to fear from a young age.
Usually, it is associated with a grandma or grandpa passing away, or a GoFundMe page you may see as you scroll through Facebook associated with a tragic case that is affecting the child of a friend.
But what do you really know about cancer?
Other than it is a disease that can lead to death, most people do not know much about what cancer really is.
Here are five surprising but important things you may not know about this disease, and hopefully by learning them, you can be prepared to deal with it if it comes up in your life or the life of someone close to you.
Most forms of cancer are actually preventable
According to research, more than half of the cases and deaths are actually preventable.
This is why it is important to eat your fruits and veggies, exercise, and go to the doctor regularly.
There’s no way to have a universal cure
Technically, though people may have the same types of this disease, the way it manifests in each person is unique. Each is a different form of the disease, which is why it would be nearly impossible to find a cure for it that would work for every person who has it.
In the last ten years, there have been over 200 types of cancers identified, with more likely to be found.
Even though this may seem like bad news to find out there are different forms of the disease, it has also led to the creation of more individualized and tailor-made ways to combat for each individual person.
Eating hot dogs and lunch meat could be cancer-causing
Hot dogs and cold cut meats contain a preservative and flavor additive called nitrites which, when consumed, cause a chemical reaction within the body and turn into carcinogens. These can then turn into cancer.
This hasn’t prevented most of the population from still eating a ton of hot dogs; in fact, Americans ate over 20 billion hot dogs in 2017.
Sleep is a big contributing factor
Studies have found that those who get lower amounts of sleep, about less than six hours a night, are more susceptible to getting the disease.
Oncologist or hematologist
If you were to receive a diagnosis, you’re likely to be referred to an oncologist. This is someone who studies and treats cancer. You’re also likely to see a hematologist. A hematologist is someone who studies hematology, or blood and blood diseases, especially based on the type of cancer that you are diagnosed with.
You might have to visit a hematologist early in the cancer-testing process. They can study your blood and identify any issues.