Cancer is a group of more than one hundred separate diseases in which cells in a part of the body begin to grow out of control. The body is made up of hundreds of millions of living cells. Normal body cells grow, divide, and die in an orderly manner. Cancer growth starts when abnormal and unregulated cells grow out of control. This growth destroys surrounding body tissues and may spread to other parts of the body in a process that is known as metastasis. Cancer cells travels into the bloodstream or lymph vessels where they begin to grow and replace normal tissue. When cells divide at an accelerated rate, they often begin to form a mass of tissue called a tumor. Tumors can also release substances that destroy tissues in close proximity to them. Cancer can develop in almost any organ or tissue, such as the lung, colon, breast, skin, bones, or nerve tissue. Untreated cancers can cause serious illness and even death. Not all tumors are cancerous. Tumors can be either malignant or benign. A malignant tumor is cancer, and a benign tumor is not. The difference between a benign tumor and a malignant tumor is that a benign tumor will not spread or metastasize to distant parts of the body, and usually it will not grow back once removed. Benign tumors are almost never life threatening. A benign tumor is either surgically removed, or it may be left in place and simply observed over time.
Cancer is the second most common cause of death in America after heart disease. In the U.S., cancer accounts for nearly 1 of every 4 deaths. Cancer is far more predominant in western countries. The diet in these countries is a major factor of this epidemic. The average American consumes 2-3 pounds of sugar per week in the form of table sugar, corn sugar and high-fructose corn syrup in foods; highly processed and refined foods; high fat, saturated fat and animal fat. The three most common cancers in men in the United States are: prostate cancer, lung cancer, colon cancer. In women in the U.S., the three most common cancers are: breast cancer, colon cancer, lung cancer. Half of all men and one-third of all women in the U.S. will develop cancer during their lifetimes.
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