National Cancer Prevention Month is coming to a end, so we’d like to do one more post about cancer awareness and prevention. Specifically, we’d like to talk about liver cancer.
Liver cancer is considered one of the more preventable cancers since 80% of the primary liver cancers worldwide are caused by exposure to Hepatitis B and C. Hepatitis B and C are preventable infections, since they are spread through sexual contact and blood, respectively. Make sure you know the health of your sexual partner. If you are uncertain, use protection. Also, use safe practices around needles.
Unfortunately, there is no vaccination for Hepatitis C. Hepatitis C is spread through blood. The best way to prevent Hepatitis C is to avoid using intravenous drugs or fluids (such as a saline or electrolyte bag) unless prescribed by a doctor and administered by a trained professional in a hospital setting. Do not share needles. It is not recommended that a person do at home piercings or tattoos. Please go to a sterile and safe parlor for any tattoo or piercing.
Another way to prevent liver cancer is to not drink excessively. Heavy drinking can cause cirrhosis, which is linked to liver cancer. Smoking is also a cause of liver cancer (as well as many other cancers), so it should be avoided as much as possible. Maintaining a healthy weight can also decrease your chances of getting liver cancer, since fatty liver disease and diabetes are both linked to liver cancer. Fatty liver disease is typically found in persons who are obese. Please be aware that you can be a thin person and still be classified as obese if your BMI or body fat percentage is too high. You can also be a curvier person and still be considered fit if your metabolism is healthy and your lifestyle is an active one. Every body is different, so please consult with your doctor to find out what weight is best for your body, and what fat percentage is ideal for yourself. When we advise maintaining a healthy weight, we do mean a weight that is best for your individual body that allows it to function in a healthy manner. Again, please consult your doctor and discuss what your ideal weight is.
Remember, early dectection is a big factor in cancer treatment, so please get regular check ups and screenings with your doctor to be sure that your body is healthy.