Head of the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, European University of Lefke (EUL) Faculty of Health Sciences Asst. Prof. Dr. Nazal Bardak Perçinci gave information on “Cancer Awareness and Healthy Nutrition”.
“Cancer disease ranks second after heart diseases among all causes of death in the world and in our country”
Perçinci said, “Cancer is a disease that occurs with the uncontrolled proliferation or spread of cells. Cancer disease ranks second after heart diseases among all causes of death in the world and in our country. The World Health Organization emphasizes that 7.4 million deaths were due to cancer in 2004 and that if no measures are taken, this number will reach 12 million by 2030. “The top five cancers that cause the most frequent deaths in the world are lung, stomach, colon ‐ rectum, liver and breast cancers, respectively,” she said.
In the continuation of Perçinci’s statement, “According to the results of the campaign against smoking habits and smoking, representing the whole country, the smoking rate in the population over the age of 15 is 62.8% for men, 24.3% for women and 43.6% on average. The smoking rate of 15‐18 age group youth was found to be 30%. Studies on cigarette addiction show that the majority of young people have started this habit at the age of 15-20. The risk of cancer increases in individuals who have insufficient and unbalanced nutrition, do not do enough physical activity, live sedentary or are obese. Eating high-fat foods increases the risk of colon, uterus, and prostate cancer. The risk of breast, colon, esophagus, kidney and uterine cancer increases in individuals who do not do physical activity and who are obese. The World Health Organization, in its “Health for All” strategy in its studies for the European Region; “It guides countries in improving health-related lifestyles, reducing preventable health problems, and developing positive health behaviors.”
Perçinci explained the relationship between some nutrients and cancer as follows;
“Our diet and what we eat affect cancer development. In today’s lifestyle, food additives have become a part of our diet. While some of the additives are carcinogenic, some of them increase the effectiveness of carcinogens. Carcinogenic ones are not allowed to be used in foods. When allowed, these effects are unknown, but if understood later, it is prohibited. It has been determined by experiments that some synthetic additives cause liver cancer, upon which the use of these substances in foods is prohibited. Studies evaluating the relationship between coffee consumption and cancer give conflicting results. When the results of these studies are examined, the incidence of some cancers increases in parallel with coffee consumption, while it is concluded that coffee consumption is protective in some types of cancer. Products created by using probiotics and prebiotics together are called synbiotics. With synbiotic application, the life span of probiotic bacteria extends and they colonize better in the colon. Vitamin C counts as a free radical scavenger, and a high intake of vitamin C-rich foods (eg citrus fruits) may play a role in reducing the incidence of gastric cancer. ”
Perçinci shared the following information about cooking methods and the relationship with cancer;
“The types and amounts of the foods consumed are as important as the cooking methods. During cooking, there are beneficial changes in nutrients as well as harmful changes. The main purpose during cooking is to reveal beneficial changes as well as to avoid harmful changes. During the improper preparation of foods, many harmful components arise, some of which are carcinogenic compounds. As a result of environmental pollution, there are polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in foods such as frying and roasting, in foods such as frying and roasting, or in food structures, depending on the way of cooking in smoked foods in vegetables, fruits and seafood. Due to the thermal and oxidative reactions occurring in frying oils, using the same oil for a long time negatively affects the acceptability and nutritional value of the products fried in that oil. Volatile degradation compounds such as aldehydes, ketones, hydrocarbons, alcohols, acids, esters and aromatic compounds are formed in oils by oxidation. Using frying oils more than three times will cause the oil to burn. Burnt fat contains carcinogens. It has been reported in studies that cooking methods such as barbecue, grill and pan-frying are more effective in the formation of heterocyclicamines compared to cooking methods such as microwave cooking and boiling / steaming. In addition, it has been determined in many studies that the use of spices and plant extracts rich in components with antioxidant effects prevents the formation of heterocyclicamine. “