There used to be the repugnant epidemics of communicable / contagious diseases few decades ago in the world that used to claim many lives. The trauma of the situation used to be significant & highly comparable to something like novel Coronavirus, COVID-19 of the current times. With the progress of the medical science and the inventions of the life saving medicines like vaccines, antibiotics and antivirals, the hazardous impact of those communicable diseases started easing. People started living longer as the preventive measures or treatments were available for those bacterial and viral infections.
With growing urbanization and industrialisation, the lifestyles of the people underwent gigantic transformation that made significant impact on their financial, physical, mental and social health. Though human beings appreciated & cherished those changes in financial and social facets of life, the impact on their mental and physical health was discouraging. India was actively participating in the process of globalisation a couple of decades ago therefore there was no way that we could have remained immune to the repercussions. The aforementioned physical impact lead to increase in non-communicable diseases. Some of the popular diseases are diabetes, other metabolic diseases, cardiovascular diseases like blood pressure, ischaemic heart disease; Cancer etc. By the nature, these diseases are chronic; those develop slowly and do not create medical emergency or trauma immediately but can turn out to be life threatening if not treated on time and controlled well. But these disease have a high potential of impacting patients quality of life a great deal.
Cancer is a disease which I can speak about with authority; myself being an oncologist or a cancer specialist that it is definitely a catastrophe to patients body, mind and pocket. However if diagnosed in early stages can improve the chances of cure and survival. With the progress in medical science, we are able to treat patients well despite advanced stage of the disease to offer reasonable survival and quality of life to patients. Over 11,00,000 new patients are diagnosed with cancer in India every year and unfortunately, 60%-70% of them report to us in the advanced stage. That's overtly alarming.
I would like to draw your attention to something beyond these depressing figures. You will wonder that 50%-60% of the cancers are preventable and demands only a few lifestyle adaptations that can be achieved without much of a difficulty.
Following are some of the examples:
- - Keep your body weight under control. Obesity is the culprit in many of the non-communicable diseases
- - Exercise regularly for minimum 30-45 minutes. That's the most affordable immunisation
- - The "Tobacco Kick" is terribly harmful and causes cancers of various body organs. Quitting Tobacco is an inescapable necessity to keep cancer away
- - Vaccines for Cervical Cancer in females are available. Consult your Gynaecologist or Oncologist (Cancer Specialist) to know the appropriate age for immunisation in girls
- - Avoid Alcohol consumption. At least, keep it under control
- - Maintain your eating schedule everyday. Avoid over-eating, however tempting it may be
- - Eat a well-balanced diet. Food should include sufficient amount of Protein and Fibre content
- - Food cooked at home is all the more healthy and safe as compared to outside eatables. Avoid junk food
- - Minimum 7-8 hours of sleep everyday is necessary. Follow it
Mould your lifestyle a little to be able to keep away from Cancer because nothing is precious than your health. Remember, where there is a will, there is a way!
Dr. Vashishth Maniar
MD, DM, ECMO
Consultant Cancer Specialist
Mumbai Oncocare Centre- Ghatkopar, Mumbai
Contact- 9987899700 / 022-21020017 / 9769707204
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