Cancer Council of WA heads to Midland, Nedlands, Mandurah and Northam to bust myths


Christina Line (Cancer Support Co-ordinator) and Mikala Atkinson (Regional Education Officer), from the Midland office of Cancer Council WA. Picture: David Baylis www.communitypix.com.au d481005
Christina Line (Cancer Support Co-ordinator) and Mikala Atkinson (Regional Education Officer), from the Midland office of Cancer Council WA. Picture: David Baylis www.communitypix.com.au d481005

DOES sunscreen cause cancer? Coffee? Red meat?

To mark 60 years of operation, the Cancer Council of WA is heading to Midland, Nedlands, Mandurah and Northam as part of its tour around the state to debunk common cancer myths.

Cancer Council WA regional education officer Mikala Atkinson said there were many cancer myths out there that were easily spread via social media.

“In order of popularity, the most popular myth pages are related to artificial sweeteners, toothpaste, chlorine, sunscreen and coffee and tea, however there’s no evidence to suggest any of these things increase your cancer risk,” she said.

“These myths are often a result of obscure studies, misinterpretation of research and commercial interference.

“For example, a competitor may start a rumour about ingredients used by their competitors to position their own product as a more desirable product.

“The ease in which people can post things on the internet and across social media makes it very easy for these myths to spread.”

Ms Atkinson said people needed to focus on what would reduce their cancer risk and not those that cause unnecessary anxiety and concern.

“What we do know is that one in three cancers can be prevented by healthy lifestyle choices,” she said.

“In Australia, approximately 37,000 – or one third of cancer cases each year – are preventable.

“Evidence shows that smoking cigarettes, not being SunSmart, drinking too much alcohol, being overweight, not doing enough physical activity, eating too much red and processed meat, and not eating enough fruit and vegetables increase a person’s cancer risk.

“Our free cancer myths Q&A session is an opportunity to come down and have your questions answered by our experts.”

To register visit http://bit.ly/2FA5oHU or call 1300 65 65 85.

Thursday, April 5
10.30am to 12pm
Old Midland Courthouse
49 Helena Street, Midland

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