About Cancer

Cancer is a defect of the cells in our body. Our cells are the building blocks of our body, they come together to form our tissues and similar tissues work together to form our organs. In cancer, cells become defective and they multiply uncontrollably forming a mass of abnormal cells called a tumour. This tumour can grow and spread throughout the body so that the organs of the body are unable to function properly. This process can start in any part of the body meaning that there are over 200 types of cancers. The most common being breast, lung and bowel cancer.

Cancer and the Black Community

Overall the black community is slightly less likely to develop cancer than the white population but there are some cancers that are of particular concern to the black community.  These include:

Prostate Cancer

  • Black men are two times more likely to develop prostate cancer than white men

Find out more about black men and prostate cancer as well as symptoms, risk factors, diagnosis and treatment here

Breast Cancer

  • Black women are slightly less likely to develop breast cancer than white women but are more likely to die from it
  • Black women tend to develop breast cancer at a younger age than white women

For more information on black women and breast cancer as well as symptoms, risk factors, screening and diagnosis please click here 

Cervical Cancer

  • Black women over the age of 65 are more likely to develop cervical cancer than their white counterparts

Multiple Myeloma

  • The black community is 2-3 times more likely to develop multiple myeloma

There is a possible increased incidence of stomach and liver cancers in the black community as suggested by national data-sets in the UK

Defeating Cancer: Prevention

You can reduce your risk of developing cancer by adopting a healthy lifestyle. This means

  • Eating  5-10 portions of fruit and vegetables every day
  • Reducing the amount of red and processed meats you consume
  • Keeping active and taking part in physical activity for least 150 minutes every week
  • Reducing fat, sugar and salt intake
  • Not smoking
  • Reducing your alcohol consumption
  • Eating more fibre
  • Getting to and maintaining a healthy weight

Defeating Cancer: Awareness of Symptoms

Detecting cancer at an early stage means a greater chance of survival, this is because the cancer is confined to a small area and hasn’t yet spread so it can be easily treated.More cancers can be detected earlier if there is a greater awareness of symptoms and if people visited their GP/family doctor as soon as they notice any symptoms,

To recognise the symptoms of cancer it is first important to understand what is normal for you and then if you notice anything out of the ordinary then please do visit your GP or family doctor. In general, the key symptoms to look out for are:

  • Unexplained pain that lasts for more than 3 weeks
  • An unexplained lump anywhere on your body that lasts for more than 3 weeks
  • A cough that won’t go away
  • Abnormal bleeding
  • A change in bowel habits for 3 weeks or more
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • A change in the shape, size or colour of a mole

If you do have any of these symptoms don’t panic as you can get these symptoms for a number of reasons that are not related to cancer,  but it is worth going to your GP/doctor to understand what has caused these symptoms.

Defeating Cancer: Cancer Screening

Cancer screening programmes aim to test the general public for cancer at a very early stage before symptoms appear. There are currently three main screening programmes:

  • Breast Cancer Screening
  • Bowel Cancer Screening
  • Cervical Cancer Screening

We encourage you to  be screened as in the case of bowel and cervical cancer screenings,  these tests can pick up pre-cancerous conditions and hence prevent you from developing these cancers. All the screening programmes can detect cancer at an early stage when it is easier to treat.

More Information

For more information you can email us, info@thelakefoundation.com

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