The researches claim there are more than 150,000 cancer victims every year in the United Kingdom alone. Their statistics also show that about one in three people in the United Kingdom is likely to get cancer.
University of Manchester researches have concluded that cancer is a disease originating from the modern way of life.
The researchers focused on studying mummies, fossils, and classical literature before concluding this. They concluded that cancer is a man-made disease fueled by the excesses of modern life. They believe this is because tumors were rare until recent times, with environment pollution and poor diet.
In the study of Egyptian mummies, researchers found no cancer signs with an exception of one isolated case. Tissue was taken from hundreds of mummies, rehydrated and then placed under the microscope. The researchers found only one case of cancer in the mummies they examined.
There were some arguments that claimed the ancient Egyptians did not live long enough to develop cancer. This argument was dismissed by researchers saying other age-related disease, such as hardening of the arteries and brittle bones, occurred during this time.
Additionally, the journal Nature Reviews Cancer reports that Fossil evidence of cancer is not solid. It is argued with scientific literature providing a few dozen, mostly disputed, examples in animal fossils. There is a study of thousands of Neanderthal bones has provided only one example of possible cancer case.
The researchers concluded evidence of cancer in ancient Egyptian texts is also tenuous, and linking the cancer cases to be caused by leprosy or varicose veins. Also, it is said the ancient Greeks were the first to define cancer as a disease, distinguishing the benign and malignant tumors.
The 17th century description texts provide us operations for breast and other cancers. Looking at this issue from the scientific side, there is scientific literature of distinctive tumors only occurred in the past 200 years. There are cases of cancer in snuff users in 1761, and scrotal cancer in chimney sweeps in 1775.
Lead researcher of this current study, Michael Zimmerman said there should have been plenty of cancer-related evidence available in ancient societies because they lacked effective healthcare.
“In an ancient society lacking surgical intervention, evidence of cancer should remain in all cases. The virtual absence of malignancies in mummies must be interpreted as indicating their rarity in antiquity, indicating that cancer-causing factors are limited to societies affected by modern industrialization,” Zimmerman said.
Rosalie David, professor and another key role researcher in this study said: “In industrialized societies, cancer is second only to cardiovascular disease as a cause of death. But in ancient times, it was extremely rare. There is nothing in the natural environment that can cause cancer. So it has to be a man-made disease, down to pollution and changes to our diet and lifestyle. The important thing about our study is that it gives a historical perspective to this disease. We can make very clear statements on the cancer rates in societies because we have a full overview. We have looked at millennia, not one hundred years, and have masses of data. Yet again extensive ancient Egyptian data, along with other data from across the millennia, has given modern society a clear message – cancer is man-made and something that we can and should address.”
The researchers recommend a healthy diet, regular physical activity, and maintenance of a healthy weight. Living healthy is the only way we can prevent such nasty diseases as cancer.