A risk factor is anything that raises or lowers
your chances of getting a disease. Some risk factors, such as lifestyle
choices, are within your control. Genetics, and/or a family history
of cancer, are risk factors over which you have no control.
Lifestyle risk factors include diet, smoking,
alcohol consumption, and exercise—all of which can impact your
chances of getting cancer.
Environmental risk factors include exposure
to carcinogens in the atmosphere, at home, or at the workplace, and
Another disease or medical problem can weaken
your immune system and become a risk factor for cancer.
Some people are more sensitive to risk factors
than others. Just because you have one or even several risk factors
does not necessarily mean you will succumb to cancer. Just as a healthy
lifestyle with no other risk factors will not guarantee that you
will remain cancer-free. However, the more you know about risk factors
the more you can avoid unhealthy choices that may lead to cancer.
To learn more about risk factors for specific
cancers, click on the links below.
Factors for Breast Cancer
Risk Factors for Colorectal
Risk Factors for Lung Cancer
Risk Factors for Prostate
Risk Factors for Skin Cancer