Most cancer incidents and deaths are a result of modifiable lifestyle choices, including diet, according to data published online in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians. Researchers analyzed data from 2014 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Cancer Institute and assessed cancer incidence rates and morbidity attributable to risk factors including red and processed meat intake, overweight, and low intake of fruits, vegetables, and dietary fiber.
During that year in the United States, 42 percent of cancer cases and 45 percent of cancer deaths were linked to avoidable risk factors, with excess body weight among the highest risk factors. These data suggest preventive health care measures may strongly reduce cancer risk and related deaths.
Islami F, Goding Sauer A, Miller KD, et al. Proportion and number of cancer cases and deaths attributable to potentially modifiable risk factors in the United States. CA Cancer J Clin. Published online November 21, 2017.