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March is Colon Cancer Awareness Month! 🎗️

This picture holds a special place in my heart—it's my daughter's tattoo. She got it after undergoing colon surgery about 3 years ago. While she didn't have colon cancer, issues with her colon required surgical removal. Did you know you can live without your colon? But instead of resorting to drastic measures, let's prioritize regular screenings for early detection! Spread awareness and save lives. 💙 #ColonCancerAwareness #EarlyDetectionSavesLives





Colon/colorectal cancer affects millions worldwide. Colon cancer originates in the colon (large intestine) or rectum which is the final part of the digestive system. Typically starts as a small clump of non-cancerous cells called polyps, which over time can become cancerous. While the exact cause remains difficult to find, certain risk factors have been identified that put individuals at greater risk.

·       Age: Colon cancer predominantly occurs in individuals over the age of 50 however more and more young people are becoming diagnosed each year. 

·       Family history:  Those individuals with a family history of colon cancer or polyps are at greater risk for developing colon cancer.

·       Lifestyle choices:  diets high in red or processed meats, low fiber diets and obesity have been linked to greater risk of colon cancer. Obesity, excessive alcohol consumption and smoking also puts individuals at greater risk for developing the disease.

·       Genetic Conditions: there are hereditary conditions that can predispose certain individuals to develop colon cancer. Familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) and Lynch syndrome are two conditions.

So how can you prevent or limit your risk for developing this disease??

·       Regular exercise and engaging in regular physical activity can reduce your risk of not only obesity but also lower your risk of colon cancer.

·       Balanced diet: Limiting red meat, eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables and whole grains is important in preventing the disease.

·       Smoking cessation and limiting alcohol consumption decreases the likelihood of developing colon cancer.

·       Regular screenings:  While the age of colon cancer screening used to be 50 The United States Preventative Task Force (USPSTF) recommends starting screening at age 45 and screening every 10 years unless you are told to return sooner by your health care provider.

Early detection is key when combating colon cancer. If colon cancer is detected early on before it has spread to other parts of the body it is highly treatable with a greater success of positive outcomes.  This is why it is so important to get regular screenings so your health care professional can identify any abnormalities in the colon before they turn to cancer.

 

By understanding risk factors, healthy lifestyle choices and the importance of regular screenings your risk of developing colon cancer can be significantly reduced. So let’s come together and bring awareness this month so the burden of this disease can be minimized. 

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