Starch, fats ac­count for can­cer high rate

The African - - NEWS - BY HARRIETH MANDARI

TAN­ZA­NI­ANS have been re­minded to change their life styles and eat bal­anced di­ets in­stead of starch and fats as these foods con­trib­ute to the high rate of can­cer pa­tients in the coun­try.

Sta­tis­tics re­leased re­cently by the Tan­za­nia So­cial Out­reach Ini­tia­tive (TASOI), show that in ev­ery 100,000 Tan­za­ni­ans, be­tween 30,000 and 44,000 can­cer cases are re­ported each year.

“Un­til now peo­ple don’t have the ten­dency of go­ing for can­cer check up ev­ery year which is un­healthy and dan­ger­ous for their lives and most of the af­fected vic­tims are women be­tween age 25 and 45who are at re­pro­duc­tive age stage,” said Dr Wal­ter Shoo, a Can­cer Spe­cial­ist at Ocean Road Hos­pi­tal.

He said Tan­za­nia has a big short­age of can­cer clin­ics, thus most pa­tients are be­ing brought to Ocean Road Hos­pi­tal when at crit­i­cal stage.

“Peo­ple should know that this dis­ease has no spe­cific signs when at early stage, so if it hap­pens one starts hav­ing some signs in­clud­ing non stop bleed­ing for women, they suf­fer to death,” he said. TASOI Sec­re­tary Belinda Mlingo told The African that there is need for the Govern­ment and health stake­hold­ers to en­sure that peo­ple are ed­u­cated on the dis­ease.

She said ac­cord­ing to sta­tis­tics, each year the rate of can­cer pa­tients in­creases and cur­rently Ocean Road Hos­pi­tal at­tends about 4,000 to 5,000 pa­tients suf­fer­ing from cer­vi­cal can­cer, and 1,600 to 3,000 suf­fer from breast can­cer and more than 1,000 at­tend prostate can­cer clinic.

“Prostate can­cer af­fects mostly men be­tween 55 years to 70 and this is caused by eat­ing much red meat, fatty foods and also can be in­hered from the fam­ily,” she said.

Sta­tis­tics show that in Tan­za­nia be­tween 1,200 and 1,300 men are be­ing af­fected by the Prostate can­cer ev­ery year.

“Re­search done in 2010, showed that 8.9 per­cent pa­tients at­tended at clinic at the Kil­i­man­jaro Chris­tian Med­i­cal Cen­tre (KCMC), while at Muhim­bili Na­tional Hos­pi­tal 38 per­cent of men were found to have been af­fected by the dis­ease,” she said.

TASOI is a Non-Gov­ern­men­tal Or­ga­ni­za­tion con­sist­ing dif­fer­ent ex­perts who ed­u­cate so­ci­ety on the im­por­tance of good health and its ef­fects on the eco­nomic sec­tor.

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