Why Don’t We All Get Cancer?

Science-Report_Why-Don't-We-All-Get-Cancer_The-Health-Sciences-Academy

by Alejandra "Alex" Ruani — Get free science updates here.

Did you know that each of your body cells may experience up to one million DNA breaks per day?

That’s a lot of DNA mistakes!

If there are so many mistakes occurring in our cells, then why don’t we all get cancer?

To find out, grab “Why Don’t We All Get Cancer?” below:

 

Download PDF NOW!

 

Conveniently download this 42-page science report. Contains links to extra reading materials and scientific references.

Topics covered in this report:

  1. Trillions of DNA mistakes a day
  2. Our collective life expectancy
  3. Why are people living longer?
  4. Longer lives, shorter telomeres
  5. Side effects of a long life
  6. What is cancer?
  7. Why are cancer rates increasing?
  8. A DNA molecule contains genes
  9. The instructions in your genes
  10. Only some mistakes matter
  11. DNA mutations lead to cancer
  12. More body cells, higher cancer risk?
  13. Peto’s Paradox
  14. The Naked Mole Rat
  15. Destroying pre-cancer cells
  16. The destiny of that cell
  17. DNA repair
  18. Our own version of auto-correct
  19. Apoptosis
  20. Back-up plan: Your immune system
  21. Fighting for a good cause
  22. Our own internal body guard
  23. Immune cells on the attack
  24. Make sure you get enough sleep
  25. Don’t forget to exercise
  26. And eat your vitamins
  27. Your key takeaways
  28. Learn more
  29. References and resources

 

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Our Research Team is developing a brand-new course around cancer prevention and longevity and we'd really appreciate 2 minutes of your time to complete this brief survey.

After reading, share your thoughts:

  1. What's the most shocking stat from this report?
  2. How grateful do you feel about your body's repair mechanisms?
  3. Are there any action steps you would take, or things you would change as a result of this report?

Share them with our community in the comments section below!

The-Health-Sciences-Academy-Alejandra-Ruani-small1-right
Alex Ruani leads the research division at The Health Sciences Academy, where she and her team make sense of complex scientific literature and translate it into easy-to-understand practical concepts for students. She is a Harvard-trained scientific researcher who specialises in cravings and appetite neurobiology, nutrition biochemistry, and nutrigenomics. Besides investigating and teaching the latest advances in health and nutrition science, Alex makes it easier to be smarter with her free Science Catch-ups every other Thursday.
Connect with Alex via email.


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25 Comments

  • Michelle

    Reply Reply May 7, 2015

    Do you know that different countries actually have different rates of cancer? If you look worldwide, your chance of being diagnosed with cancer during your lifetime is 1 in 3 people. In the UK or USA, your rate rate could even be as high as 1 in 2. Other countries may have better numbers. Nigeria has the lowest rate of cancer, but this may be due their having a shorter life span. Interesting to think about…

    • Maurice

      Reply Reply May 7, 2015

      That feels a bit like a double-edged sword Michelle! I presume it must be linked to predominantly environmental factors then? How would one interpret this?

      • Chinmay

        Reply Reply May 7, 2015

        Or, it could be that their diagnostics arent set up very well. For instance in India the MRSA incidence is negligible but thats cause its not been diagnosed/reported down properly.

      • Michelle

        Reply Reply May 7, 2015

        It kinda of is a double edge sword. Chinmay is right in that diagnostics is also a big part of it. If we look at the other side of it, Denmark has the higher incidence of cancer. Yet their lifespan is the same as other countries. It is likely that detection there is higher than in other countries.
        Remember this is cancer incidence and not mortality too. If we catch cancer earlier then we have a greater chance of treating the disease and our mortality risk should decrease.

  • Goulven

    Reply Reply May 7, 2015

    Nice one! I found another motivation to try and get more sleep…

  • Damian

    Reply Reply May 7, 2015

    I really enjoyed this report. I learned so many basic facts that I just didn’t even think about – like the fact that it takes a number of cell mutations to cause cancer. Also the body’s own ‘fight back’ (and that cancer cells can ‘hide’) were very well explained.
    I look forward to the next installment!

    • Alex

      Reply Reply May 7, 2015

      Damian – thanks for sharing, this is the kind of knowledge most people don’t have. And yes, the human body is remarkable… but not invincible. Time to look after our 37 trillion cells a bit better :-)

  • JoJo

    Reply Reply May 7, 2015

    Another fascinating report! I didn’t know that naked mole rats do not get cancer, but without their high levels of hyaluronan I guess I need instead to focus on keeping those telomeres as long as possible :-)

    • Michelle

      Reply Reply May 7, 2015

      JoJo, absolutely right. We all need to live a healthy lifestyle to keep our telomeres as long as possible.

  • Maurice

    Reply Reply May 7, 2015

    Wow, this report really does make you think twice (or 37 million trillion times) about how our body operates and the things we can do ourselves to help our body. Great read. Personal trainers will love the part on DNA repair.

  • Chinmay

    Reply Reply May 7, 2015

    This is really interesting bit of work! Kudos to Alex and Michelle for putting this up together. Being a cancer biologist I would say that this has been very well articulated.. Thanks for it! :D

  • Jeannete Sawyer

    Reply Reply May 7, 2015

    Excellent report, clear, concise and easy to follow. A very useful article for most.

  • Thomas

    Reply Reply May 7, 2015

    Really good report. I must share it with everyone as it is incredibly easy to read

    • Alex

      Reply Reply May 7, 2015

      Thomas – music to my ears, and thanks for sharing this knowledge with others!

  • Until today, I had always been frustrated by a lack of research into the aetiology of cancers, as this weakens the evidence-base for particular dietary changes aimed at cancer prevention.

    However, you’ve made me see cancer in a whole new light! Knowing that there is evidence to support ways that we can increase our chances of being able to DEAL with potentially harmful genetic mutations is very reassuring! Thank you for opening my eyes to this new (much more optimistic) viewpoint.

    Thanks Michelle and Alex. A great read, and definitely one to save for future reference.

  • Anita

    Reply Reply May 8, 2015

    Thanks for a great report. As someone who has cancer and works night shifts, you have prompted me to get my melatonin levels checked.

    • Alex

      Reply Reply May 8, 2015

      Anita – thanks for sharing, much of your cells’ repair job happens when you sleep, and also when you disconnect your mind, see more about the relaxation response here: https://thehealthsciencesacademy.org/healthy-living/can-you-change-your-dna-to-look-younger/ And please take good care of yourself, we’ll be thinking of you :-)

    • Michelle

      Reply Reply May 8, 2015

      Anita, I’m glad that you got something out of the report. Having your melatonin checked sounds like a great idea. There are many research studies that suggest a link between cancer and melatonin levels.
      Take care.

  • YOLANDA

    Reply Reply May 8, 2015

    Thanks Michelle, and thanks Alex for all other fascinating reports!
    Clearly it is shocking, but this course is providing me with a lot of information I can use to help myself and other people around me, so we can do something about it. Certainly, there is not a magic bullet, but information is crucial!
    Thanks a lot for sharing! I am enjoying my online course so much! :D

    • Alex

      Reply Reply May 8, 2015

      Yolanda – I love to hear that! The more we learn about our bodies and the foods we eat, the better choices we can make, and by helping others you’re also helping yourself, it keeps you on your toes :-)

  • Monika

    Reply Reply May 8, 2015

    Thank you for sharing this report. I had no idea. This report clearly explains why’s and how’s. It is easy to read and follow. I agree with Yolanda, it was a bit of a shocking read but such an eye opener. I have been having problems with sleep and energy lately and getting enough sleep has been my on top of my list. Yes, definitely another reason to get more sleep and exercise in the week.

  • Manny

    Reply Reply May 9, 2015

    What a fantastic report.. Thank you for simplifying such a difilcut topic.. I read some research papers about cancer, but some of the terms I couldn’t understand. My mum was diagnosed with breast cancer 9 years ago (now clear) and Will definitely share my knowledge you kindly prepared..
    Thank you again

    • Michelle

      Reply Reply May 10, 2015

      Manny, the medical information out there can be very confusing and complicated for sure (even for us researchers). That is why we at The Health Sciences Academy try to break it down and make it more understandable for everyone. I’m glad to hear your Mum is doing ok. Take care of yourself.

  • Michelle

    Reply Reply May 10, 2015

    Monika, I’m glad that you enjoyed the report. Unfortunately we tend to focus more on how our body betrays us and makes us sick. But out bodies are very strong and if we treat it right, it will be much happier and healthier.

  • Laurent

    Reply Reply May 11, 2015

    This report is a must read, congrats Alex and Michelle. Such a clear way to explain important scientific concepts and ideas. Looking forward to read the next one!

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