Thursday, January 14, 2010

another pet peeve.

I feel like I've been using this blog to rant a lot lately. I guess that's what it's for though, right?

It really bothers me when people talk about "finding a cure for cancer".

Let's get this out of the way first:

That is never. Going. To. Happen.

"Cancer" is an umbrella term that describes a group of diseases in which cells uncontrollably divide, and in some cases spread to different parts of the body. There are cancers that you can live with for 15 years and not be affected by. Then there are cancers that move so fast and are so invasive that you are dead within weeks. There are lots of different causes and triggers for this process to occur, which means that there are going to be lots of ways to approach the healing process. There will be treatments available that will work for one type of cancer and not another. This is why, when hearing that someone has cancer, I try reserving my reaction until after I hear what kind it is, and what stage it's at. Stage 1 prostate cancer? Is the most common type of cancer in Canadian men. It often grows slowly and can be treated successfully. Stage 4 stomach cancer is a different story.

There are lots of things you can do to prevent cancer from forming, although doing these things will not guarantee that you don't get it. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables. Drink lots of water. Limit your alcohol intake. Exercise regularly. Don't smoke. Stay at a healthy weight.

Moral of the story: there will never, ever be one pill or one injection that will cure all cancers. That's why we need to spread our resources and support various organizations that are raising money for cancer research, in all its various forms.

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