Tue, Dec 02, 2014 - Page 4 News List

HPA releasing colorectal cancer prevention film

By Stacy Hsu  /  Staff reporter

The Health Promotion Administration (HPA) is to release a new short film promoting preventive measures against colorectal cancer, which has topped the list of the 10 most common cancers in the nation for six consecutive years.

The film is to feature four measures to prevent colorectal cancer: reducing consumption of red meat and increasing the frequency of exercise; eating a variety of fruits and vegetables; avoiding obesity; and undergoing fecal occult blood testing regularly.

“Colorectal cancer has been ranked the most common cancer for six consecutive years and the third-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the country. It can be attributed to the Taiwanese love of barbecued foods and red meat, their lack of regular exercise and the growing problem of obesity,” Health Promotion Administration Director-General Chiou Shu-ti (邱淑媞) said.

Chiou said that research has shown that consumption of processed meat products and red meats increases one’s risk of developing colorectal cancer, as does eating barbecued meats laced with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, which are chemical compounds that form during grilling or barbecuing and the exposure to which has been linked to increased cancer risk.

“Also, overweight people face nearly two times the risk of colorectal cancer than their thinner counterparts, and about 21 to 25 percent of colorectal cancer cases can be attributed to inadequate physical activity,” she said.

Chiou said fecal occult blood testing is a non-invasive, painless screening test that can reduce the mortality rate for colorectal cancer by up to 30 percent and is free for people aged between 50 and 74.

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