Cancers in adults under 50 years are on the rise all over the world. A recent study has found that certain types of cancers have dramatically increased globally beginning around 1990. These types of cancer can be diagnosed before the age of 50 and include
In order to understand why the younger population is at risk of being diagnosed with cancer, the researchers analyzed extensive data including global data regarding 14 different types of cancer and looked into the occurrence of any trends that would cause possible risk factors.
They also explored previous studies of clinical and biological information on early-onset cancers in contrast with later-onset cancers. The researchers found that early life exposure factors include a person’s lifestyle including diet, weight, environmental exposure, and microbiome.
These risk factors have changed considerably over the last decades. This could be caused by the trend of a westernized diet and lifestyle. Other risk factors include alcohol consumption, smoking, obesity as well as eating highly processed food, and having unhealthy sleeping habits.
The study found that children nowadays are getting less sleep than they did decades ago. The researchers also found that among the 14 early-onset cancers, 8 were related to the digestive system and unhealthy consumption of food and alcohol. These feed the microorganisms in our gut and alter our microbiome.
The researchers were aware however that the increase in certain types of cancer could also be due to the more widespread availability of early screening but they could also tell that the gradual increase of the 14 types of cancer is not only due to early detection programs.
The researchers also observed something called the birth cohort effect. The birth cohort effect shows that people born at a later time, or a decade later are at greater risk of developing cancer later in their life. Researchers say that this is likely due to risk factors they were exposed to at younger age.
The researchers also believe that the risk level of cancer will continue to rise in future generations