With more information about cancer, people can make better decisions regarding their health. Considering the evidence of a link between increased cancer risks and diabetes, people with high blood sugar have even more reason to start taking action.
The diabetes and cancer connection does not necessarily mean that diabetes itself causes cancer. Rather, scientists believe that people who exhibit high blood sugar — a resting level of 100 mg/dl or greater — tend to be more likely to develop certain forms of cancer.
One reason for the connection: insulin plays an important role in cell growth. With insulin problems, the body may be less equipped to fight the growth of cancer cells.
While the link is still not fully understood, some key medical facts have been established regarding diabetes and cancer:
High blood sugar levels are believed to increase your cancer risk by up to 15%.
The link between cancer and diabetes holds true for people who are not overweight.
People with prediabetes show higher rates for liver, colorectal and stomach cancers.
Diabetes has also been linked with higher risks of heart disease and other serious conditions.
Whether diabetes has a causal relationship with cancer remains unclear. However, enough evidence has mounted to suggest that risk groups for diabetes likely have higher risk for cancer as well.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with prediabetes, consider the potential risk of cancer as another reason to make changes to diet and exercise.
Cancer changes your perspective. It changes what is important and how you choose to spend your time. Whether you’ve just been diagnosed, are undergoing cancer treatment or count yourself among the growing legion of cancer survivors, cancer is a life-changing event. People with cancer or any debilitating disease realize that what is important is not how long you live, but how you spend your life.
It’s a lesson actor Michael J. Fox learned early in his adult life. Diagnosed with early-onset Parkinson’s disease when he was only 30, Michael has beaten the odds. His 20-year struggle with Parkinson’s hasn’t been easy for him or his family; but his ability to maintain his emotional equilibrium is nothing short of miraculous.
In a recent interview with AARP Magazine, Michael said it took time and family support to accept his fate and move beyond it; but his positive attitude has allowed Michael to become a tireless crusader for Parkinson’s and continue acting. Michael’s uplifting journey offers inspiration for cancer sufferers and others with debilitating diseases. He told AARP that he has been guided by the following thought:
“My happiness grows in direct proportion [to] my acceptance and in inverse proportion to my expectations. That’s the key for me. If I can accept the truth of ‘This is what I’m facing — not what can I expect but what I am experiencing now’ — then I have all this freedom to do other things.”
This fall Michael will use that freedom to star in a new NBC comedy series. HIs message is clear: Set yourself free and live for today.