Tumors can be benign, pre-malignant, or malignant, and caused by several different factors. Malignant ones are cancerous, while benign are not.
When cells are formed, they have the ability to differentiate. When cells begin splitting in a mother’s womb, they program themselves for specific jobs. Some become heart cells, some become the brain, and so forth, until the body is fully formed. Cells also have the ability to self-regulate. When new cells are needed, they know how to produce more and to stop when no more cells are needed.
When cells continue to be created, this can cause tumors. Tumor cells cannot differentiate or self-regulate, but continue to grow until they are discovered. Tumors begin to apply pressure to surrounding body parts and nerves, causing health problems. This is especially true of those in the brain.
No one is sure exactly what causes tumors to begin growing. There are, however, several things that can increase a person’s risk of developing one. Some of these risk factors are environmental. Exposure to radiation or toxic substances can increase the risk, as can sun damage.
There are several behavioral risk factors for tumors. Smoking, alcohol, and drug are all risky behaviors that increase the chance of developing them. An inactive lifestyle and obesity are also risk factors. There are also several foods that may cause tumors. These include artificial sweeteners, grilled foods, sugar (in large quantities), hydrogenated oils, and processed foods.
Some causes are inherited. A strong family history of tumors increases the chance that a person from that family will develop a tumor. The location where they develop is also thought to have a genetic basis in some people. For example, if your mother, grandmother, and sister all had breast cancer, there is a very good chance that you will develop breast cancer as well.
There are no definite ways to prevent all types of tumors. However, a little prevention can reduce the risk in drastic ways. Exercising and eating a well-balanced diet are two of the best ways to reduce the risk. Avoiding tanning booths and sun damage can also help to prevent their formation. Eating a lot of fruits and vegetables, which contain antioxidants, are another great way to prevent tumors.
The rate of people killed by cancer increases each year. By being aware of what can increase a persons risk for developing tumors, it may be possible to reverse this trend. While the reason they form is not known, knowing how to decrease the chances of developing one is one of the best health moves a person can make.