It is thought that about one-third of all cancer cases are associated with our lifestyle. Although we cannot control our genetic makeup, we can make a number of lifestyle changes to lower our risk of developing cancer. Many factors are modifiable, including cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, diet, physical inactivity, and stress. We also tend to have habitual behaviors that are highly related to cancer risk. This clustering of habits makes it easier to attribute a risk to a lifestyle factor.
Fast food is readily available and energy-dense. Many people indulge in these foods and consume them in large portions. While many studies have linked these foods to cancer, the majority of the evidence is from studies of fried chicken, French fries, and high-calorie beverages, which are often high in sugar or unhealthy fats. The typical Western diet, which includes meat, dairy products, added sugars, is linked to overweight and obesity.
While some dietary components are protective of cancer, others may not be. In general, the study looked at four key components of diet that were correlated with the risk of cancer. The most significant was meat, which is a carcinogenic substance. The study found that meat and excess salt were responsible for about 5% of cancers in 2010.