Do you Know Blood Cancer?

Last reviewed on: 10th October, 2020

Blood cancer is a canopy term for cancers that affect the blood, bone marrow and lymphatic system. Blood cancers affect the building and activity of your blood cells. Most of these cancers begin in your bone marrow where blood is created. Stem cells in your bone marrow grown and evolve into three types of blood cells; Red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets. 

The normal blood cell development process in blood cancer is disturbed by uncontrolled growth of an abnormal type of blood cell. These abnormal blood cells (cancerous cells) inhibit your blood from carrying out many of its roles, like combating infections or inhibiting serious blood loss (bleeding). 

There are three types of blood cancer as explained below; 

1. Leukemia 
Is a type of cancer that originates in your blood and bone marrow, it is caused by the quick production of abnormal white blood cells. Most of those abnormal white blood cells cannot fight infection, and they undermine the ability of the bone marrow to create red blood cells and platelets. 

2. Lymphoma
Is a type of blood cancer that attack the lymphatic system, lymphatic system removes excess fluids from your body and produces immune cells. Lymphocytes are a type of white blood cell that combats infection, abnormal lymphocytes turn into lymphoma cells, which reproduce and accumulate in your lymph nodes and other tissues. Later, these cancerous cells ruin or weaken your immune system. 

3. Myeloma 
Is a cancer of the plasma cells, plasma cells are white blood cells that cause disease and infection fighting antibodies in your body. Myeloma cells inhibit the normal production of antibodies, leaving your body's immune system damaged and prone to infection. 

Blood cancer can cause a range of symptoms or nothing at all, the following are some common symptoms of blood cancer;
  • Stomach pain, particularly in the upper abdomen
  • Bone ruptures
  • Joint pain
  • Easier bleeding
  • Inflamed liver and glands, such as the spleen and lymph nodes
  • Tiredness
  • Fever and sudden fear
  • Recurrent infections
  • Recurrent urination
  • Nausea
  • Nighttime sweats
  • Unrecognized weight loss
Though the exact cause of blood cancer is not known, a number of aspects are accompanying with its growth. Several blood cancers are more common among older adults, and some is likely to run in families. Some infections also seem to raise the risk of certain blood cancers, as they deteriorate the immune system. 

Some common treatments for blood cancer 
Numerous treatments are available for blood cancers, checkout the following;
  • Biological treatment to attack cancer cells
  • Chemotherapy to strike cancer cells
  • Involvement in a clinical trial testing gifted new treatments for blood cancers
  • Radiation therapy to strike cancer cells
  • Stem cell transplant to give a healthy stem cells that can create healthy blood cells
  • Targeted therapy to strike specific cancer cells
  • Alert waiting to recognize when to start treatment
Other treatments for blood cancer 
Other treatments may be supplementary to aid with your general state of health and any complexity of the cancer; check out the following; 
  • Medications for preventing nausea if needed
  • Antibiotics and other medicines to decrease the likelihood of acquire infections
  • Blood transfusions to short-term replace blood components including red blood cells or platelets
  • Dental care to control oral symptoms of leukemia or aromatherapy (chemotherapy)
  • Dietary therapy to help people with cancer keep their strength and nutritional status
  • Pain medicines if needed to increase wellbeing
  • Surgery to eliminate an inflamed spleen or to treat bone ruptures
  • Vaccinations to avoid diseases like the flu and pneumonia
Complementary treatments
Corresponding treatments may help certain people to better compact with blood cancer and its treatments. These therapies, occasionally referred to as substitute therapies, are used in combination with traditional medical treatments. These treatments are not destined to substitute for traditional medical care. It is important to notify your doctor if you are using nutritional supplements or homeopathic remedies as they might intermingle with the recommended medical therapy. 

The following are very essential tips to prevent all type of cancer including blood cancer; 

1. Sustain body weight within the usual range during adulthood
Upkeep of a healthy weight during lifetime might be one of the most vital ways to safeguard against cancer. Evidence confirms that only a small percentage of cancers are inherited. Environmental factors are most essential and can be adapted, food, nutrition, physical activity, and body conformation play a crucial role in the avoidance of cancer. 

Being as slim as possible within the average range from age 21 is ideal for cancer protection, but at some time in life, it aids to lose weight if you are obese. 

2. Be physically energetic for at least 30 minutes every day 
All forms of physical activity safeguard against some cancers as well as against obese. As fitness improves, perform moderate exercises for 60 minutes or more or for 30 minutes or more of strong physical activity every day. 

3. Limit intake of calorie-dense foods (i.e sugary drinks) 
Since weight gain is one of the risk factor of blood cancer and other related cancer, it is essential to prevent weight gain by avoiding calorie dense foods. Examples of calorie dense foods includes; fast foods with high fat content, dry processed foods for instance chips and candy bars, bagels, pretzels, and dried cereals. 

Dry processed foods contain a lot of calories into very small portion. You can swallow about 1,000 to 2,000 calories before you’ve fulfilled your hunger. 

Consume low calorie dense diet such as water rich and fiber rich foods like fruits, vegetables, beans, hot cereals, and potatoes and other starchy vegetables. Foods with a lot of water and fiber commonly deliver a lot of stomach substantial volume, but not a lot of calories. 

4. Eat mostly foods of plant origin
Consume at least five portions of fruits and vegetables every day, and eat comparatively unprocessed whole grains and legumes ‘beans’ per every meal. 

All these foods contain considerable amounts of dietary fiber and a diversity of micro-nutrients, and are low or comparatively low in calorie density. For example beans are really high in fiber, so they will fulfill your appetite for a long time. 

5. Limit alcoholic drinks
Experts advise that you should limit alcohol consumption to not more than two units a day for men and one unit a day for women. Alcoholic drinks are associated with mouth, larynx, and colorectal cancer and may also give rise to liver cancer.

6. Limit intake of red meat and processed meat
Red meat comprising beef, pork, and lamb along with processed meats like sausage, bacon, hot dogs, salami, and chicken are probable causes of some cancers including colon, esophagus, lung, stomach, and prostate cancer. 

Likewise diets with high levels of animal fats are often comparatively high in calories, increasing the risk of overweight. 

Experts recommend that instead of red meat, consume white meat including poultry and seafood. Also you are preferred to consume flesh from wild animals, birds, and fish, that nutritional values are different from those of household and industrial reared creatures, is also preferred.

7. Limit salt intake
Salt is essential for human health but at levels lower than those normally consumed in most parts of the world. Salt and salt-preserved foods are likely to cause some cancers, mostly stomach cancer. 

Experts recommend that for cancer avoidance you should consume processed foods with added salt with less than 2,400 milligrams of sodium a day. 

8. Target to meet nutritional needs through food alone, not supplements
Consuming supplements for cancer avoidance might have unpredicted adverse effects, the best source of nutrition is foods, not dietary supplements. It is advisable to consume naturally rich foods than artificial ones with high, potentially dangerously levels.

9. Mothers to breastfeed and children to be breastfed
The proof on cancer and other diseases shows that continual exclusive breastfeeding is defensive for the mother as well as the child. Meaning that mother should breastfeed her milk only with no other food or drink including water. 

Experts recommend that mothers should breastfeed their infants exclusively up to six months and continue with corresponding feeding later.

10. For cancer victims, follow the recommendations for cancer avoidance
People who have had colon cancer are considerably less likely to suffer a disease recurrence, if they implement a healthier diet and lifestyle. This also looks to be the case for breast and prostate cancers. 

Experts highlight the importance of not smoking and avoiding exposure to tobacco smoke. 

If you’ve any opinion about this article let us know by commenting below, you are welcome! See you next time!

Posted by: Lusubilo A. Mwaijengo

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