Colorectal cancer rates are more than doubling in a particularly disturbing way. A new study from the American Cancer Society (ACS) analyzing cancer occurrences discovered that diagnoses of colorectal cancer have increased every generation since 1950. Scientists are unsure of the cause. But luckily for them, another new study has discovered that prolonged use of antibiotics can be linked to the increased the likelihood of bowel polyps, a precursor to rectal and colon cancers. Together, both studies make a compelling argument for the long-term consequences of our current antibiotic use and food system.
They Get Younger Every Year
Cancer is now a fact of life. The likelihood that you or someone you know well has been diagnosed with cancer is already high, and the number of cases diagnosed is predicted to rise to more than 21 million people in 2030. Colon and Rectal cancers are some of the most common cancers, 90% of colon and rectal cancer cases occur in people over the age of 50. According to Rebecca Siegel, the lead author of a new study from the American Cancer Society, “People born in 1990…have double the risk of colon cancer and quadruple the risk of rectal cancer” compared to the risk someone born in 1950 faced at a comparable age.
The American Cancer Society expects to see 13,500 new cases of colon and rectal cancer in people under 50 in 2017. At this point, someone under 50 is more likely to be diagnosed with colon or rectal cancer than the likelihood of anyone of any age is to receive a diagnosis for a less common cancer like Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. The conventional Western diet induces and intensifies inflammation in colonic mucosa within two weeks of being on a conventional Western diet, and that inflammation is one of the precursors of cancer. While the study from the ACS does address diet briefly, it also gives the impression that cancer is something that is just going to happen. But this is where that other study comes in.
Polyp, Polyp, Polyp
For every disease or condition that develops in the body, there are warning signs as it develops. For rectal cancer, one of those signs is small growths on the lining of the bowel known as polyps. Not all bowel polyps are cancerous, but they can develop into cancer later if the issue isn’t addressed. But how do the polyps get there? A study looking at data from a long-term nurses’ health study found that nurses from ages 20 to 39 who had taken antibiotics for at least two months were later in life more likely to be diagnosed with adenomas (a specific type of bowel polyp) than nurses who had not taken antibiotics for a sustained period of time.
Polyps are not the same thing as rectal or colon cancer. It’s likely that if you have polyps that you will never notice their presence. But imagine you took antibiotics for a prolonged period from the ages of one to twenty. Then you took antibiotics for a prolonged period of time from ages twenty to thirty. You also have to contend with the possibility that you are ingesting a steady stream of antibiotics if you consume conventional meat regularly. Each time you come into contact with antibiotics for an extended period of time, the likelihood of developing adenomas increases.
The Steps Are There
These two studies make a compelling argument for the management of cancer risk through lifestyle. Choose to limit antibiotics in the food you eat and medicinal purposes, either through vegetarianism, veganism, natural remedies, or informed consumption. Replace typical health pitfalls like a sedentary lifestyle and a conventional western diet with regular movement and load up on fresh, raw organic produce. With each positive choice, the likelihood of rectal cancer (or any cancer at all) decreases. There is no cancer treatment available that can replicate the benefits of taking care of yourself first.
- How to Detoxify From Antibiotics and Other Chemical Antimicrobials
- Gluten, Candida, Leaky Gut Syndrome, and Autoimmune Diseases
- How to Detoxify From Chemotherapy and Repair the Body
- Cure Cancer Naturally
- Colon and Rectal Cancers Rising in Young People – NY Times
- Antibiotic ‘Link to Bowel Cancer Precursor’ – BBC
- Colorectal Cancer Incidence Patterns in the United States, 1974–2013 – Journal of the National Cancer Institute
- Cancer Statistics – National Cancer Institute
- Long-term Use of Antibiotics and Risk of Colorectal Adenoma – Gut