You’ve heard of Movember, but have you heard of Decembeard? Putting the hair the other way around, Decembeared is designed to bring awareness to Bowel Cancer or colorectal cancer.

Bowel cancer is the fourth most common cancer in the UK affecting almost 42,000 people every year and 268,000 people living in the UK have been diagnosed with the condition. It predominantly affects people over the age of 50 with 94% of new cases within this age bracket. However, bowel cancer can strike at any age with 2,500 affecting people under the age of 50. In total, 1 in 14 men and 1 in 19 women will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lifetime.

Thankfully, bowel cancer is treatable and curable if diagnosed early. In fact, nearly everyone who is diagnosed at the earliest stage ends up surviving, but if the disease is allowed to develop, then your chances drop significantly.

There are also common risk factors which you can prevent against in your day to day life. For instance, 1 out of 10 bowel cancer diagnosis ink the UK are linked to drinking alcohol with the same amount being linked to smoking tobacco.

Diet and weight is also a strong link to bowel cancer. 13% of cases are linked to being overweight or obese. Anyone with a BMI of 25 or higher due to excess fat puts themselves at a 33% increased risk of contracting bowel cancer.

When it comes to your diet, there are two predominant factors: fibre and meat. The more meat you eat, the higher your chance of bowel cancer is. Conversely, the less fibre you eat the higher your risk of bowel cancer is. Therefore, it’s helpful to introduce some plant-based days into your week where you avoid animal products in favour of fruits, vegetables, and other natural high-fibre foods.

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