Preventing Lung Cancer

Stop smoking

Obviously the best way to prevent lung cancer is to stop smoking bearing in mind that puffing away on a regular long term basis is responsible for nine out of ten deaths from this disease.

And as lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths in the world it makes a lot of sense to do everything possible to discourage people from smoking.

Anti-smoking education and legislation

In developed countries education programs are set up in schools to deter youngsters from developing the harmful habit and hard hitting television advertising reminds us all that smoking can kill.

Many countries now operate a ban on tobacco advertising and cigarette packets are forced to carry warnings that smoking can seriously damage your health.

And a lot of countries have gone that one step further by banning smoking in public places because of research showing smoking can not only cause lung cancer in the smoker but also increases the risk to all those around them.

In 2003 Ireland was the first country in the world to ban smoking in all workplaces including bars and restaurants. New Zealand, Australia, Norway, Canada, New York and California have also imposed bans on smoking in clubs, bars and restaurants.

Banning smoking (and associated advertising) is not only in the individual’s best interest - it can also save governments a fortune in health care, even when set against the revenue generated by hefty taxes levied on tobacco.

Billions of pounds each year are spent treating people with lung cancer – it’s a huge drain on public health services particularly when the likelihood of a full recovery is very slim.

Avoiding environmental causes of Lung Cancer

But even if you have smoked for years, giving up can prevent lung cancer. Each year as a non smoker gradually reduces the risk of developing the disease. After about 15 years of not smoking the risk of lung cancer is the same as someone who doesn’t smoke.

And also you would be doing those around you a favor as well. Passive smoking causes lung cancer as well.

In a small number of cases lung cancer is caused by other factors – including exposure to asbestos. Nowadays contact with asbestos in the workplace is strictly controlled in many countries to prevent such illnesses as lung cancer or bronchial problems caused by the dust.

Another factor is the naturally occurring gas called radon which seeps from the ground into the foundations and cracks of houses and other buildings. Radon is known to cause lung cancer. In the majority of developed countries there are radon protection agencies which can monitor the levels of radon in a property and advise if there is any risk.

It’s a well known fact that if you have a diet rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants and take regular exercise these measures can reduce the risk of and prevent certain cancers such as lung cancer.


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