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An Inside Look At How Pollution Causes Cancer

An Inside Look At How Pollution Causes Cancer

Cancer is one of the most feared and least understood diseases of our time. Although great strides have been made in understanding possible causes and best ways to treat, this new knowledge can sometimes seem like a mixed blessing. The more we learn, the more obvious it becomes that many of the things we eat, touch, and expose ourselves to every day contain ingredients or materials that could increase our chances of developing cancer.

Cancer is caused by changes in a cell’s DNA – its genetic “blueprint.” Substances and exposures that can lead to cancer are called carcinogens, according to Some carcinogens do not affect DNA directly, but lead to cancer in other ways. For example, they may cause cells to divide at a faster than normal rate, which could increase the chances that DNA changes will occur.

Since cancer is the second most common cause of death in the United States, you’d think that public health agencies and regulating organizations would be doing everything possible to limit our exposure to carcinogens…but that’s just not the case. In fact, less than 2 percent of all chemicals manufactured or processed in America have been tested for carcinogenicity.

As the infographic below shows, exposure to these substances through use of household chemicals, low-quality decorations, poor lifestyle choices, and even the furniture in our homes could increase cancer risk. Likewise, the way our state governments choose to regulate toxic industries (or not) can have an impact on whether or not these cancer causes chemicals are present in our air, water, and soil.

We must control our exposure when we can, by eliminating these harsh chemicals and carcinogen-laden products from our immediate environment whenever possible. And keep up the pressure on elected officials and industry leaders who seem content to allow these materials to be produced without testing or regulation.

America's Cancer Clusters

Also Check Out:

10 Cancer-Causers To Eliminate From Your Home

Top 5 Vitamins That Protect Against Cancer

Sunscreen Ingredients May Put You At Risk For Cancer

Infographic source:

Read more: Cancer, Conscious Consumer, Environment, Health, Leukemia, Non-Toxic Cleaning, , , , , , ,

Image via Thinkstock

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Beth Buczynski

Beth is a freelance writer and editor living in the Rocky Mountain West. So far, Beth has lived in or near three major U.S. mountain ranges, and is passionate about protecting the important ecosystems they represent. Follow Beth on Twitter as @ecosphericblog or check out her blog.


+ add your own
3:51AM PDT on Apr 27, 2013

Thanks for the info

11:30PM PDT on Mar 27, 2013

Thank you.

11:29PM PDT on Mar 27, 2013

Thank you.

7:19PM PST on Feb 6, 2013

thanks...should be read by everyone....

8:53AM PST on Feb 3, 2013

Great article,thanks much Beth.

2:39AM PST on Jan 31, 2013

Thanks for the article Beth

5:19AM PST on Jan 29, 2013


10:24AM PST on Jan 24, 2013

Thank you.

9:37AM PST on Jan 24, 2013

Thank you for sharing.

9:24AM PST on Jan 24, 2013


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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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