According to a worldwide study on cancer prevalence and mortality conducted in 2000, colorectal cancer is the third most common form of cancer in the world. Colorectal cancer accounts for nearly 1 million cases worldwide and nearly half a million deaths worldwide in 2000. While the number of cases continues to climb, the death rates of started to decline, however the five year survival rate for colorectal cancer in Canada remains at approximately 60%.

The best way to beat colorectal cancer is to prevent it! Here we address some of the risks for colorectal cancer and what you can do to defend yourself.

A study published by Public Health Nutrition, “Diet, Nutrition and the Prevention of Cancer”, address cancer prevention with respect to diet on a general and specific level.  The study indicates that incidence of colorectal cancer are approximately 10-times higher in developed countries than in developing countries, and suggests that diet may attribute to up to 80% of the difference. Thus we must conclude that the Western diet is a major determinant risk of colorectal cancer, and meat consumption is one of the most significant factors.

Meat – Studies show a strong correlation between meat consumption and colorectal cancer mortality. However, other studies show varied evidence illustrating the connection between the two. The strongest conclusion would suggest that there is a defined increased risk of colorectal cancer with high consumption of preserved and red meat.

According to a study from 2010, published in Cancer Research:

“Scientists in the US who undertook a large study to investigate what biological mechanisms might be behind the already established link between colorectal cancer and consumption of red and processed meat, confirmed that such a link exists and suggested the main players are three compounds: heme iron, nitrate/nitrite, and heterocyclic amines.” (Read the full study)