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Colon cancer Increase Found in Generation Z – ‘Western Diet’ Blamed

Colon cancer – also known as colorectal cancer – is being detected a lot more frequently among the members of Generation Z – people born in the 1990s. This is surprising considering that this type of cancer usually affects older generations; however, scientists at Ohio State University say they have found that a “Western Diet” is the culprit in the case of such increased instances of cancer among the younger generations.

The Western diet is a modern dietary pattern linked to an increase in colorectal cancer, especially in young adults. It is characterized by high intakes of pre-packaged/processed foods, refined grains, red meat, high-sugar drinks, sweets, fried food and many high fat items. These types of foods have long been cited as a cause of growing health problems among Americans, especially obesity and obesity among youth. However, this is the first time a study has shown a connection to colon cancer among youth.

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Generation Z, also known as Zoomers, is the demographic cohort succeeding Millennials and preceding Generation Alpha. Researchers and popular media use the mid-to-late 1990s as the starting birth years and the early 2010s as the ending birth years.

The researchers stated in their report that Colorectal/Colon cancer (CRC) is becoming more common in young adults (under 50). While some cases are due to genetic faults, the cause of most early-onset CRC remains a mystery.

Scientists believe diet may play a role. A Western diet, high in fat and low in fiber, might disrupt the balance of bacteria in the gut. This imbalance, called dysbiosis, can lead to inflammation and weaken the body’s defenses against tumors.

Another area of research is epigenetics, which studies how the environment can influence genes without changing the underlying DNA code. Epigenetics may help explain how diet and other lifestyle factors contribute to early-onset CRC.

The Mayo Clinic explains that colon cancer is a growth of cells that begins in a part of the large intestine called the colon. The colon is the first and longest part of the large intestine. The large intestine is the last part of the digestive system. The digestive system breaks down food for the body to use.

Colon cancer typically affects older adults, though it can happen at any age. It usually begins as small clumps of cells called polyps that form inside the colon. Polyps generally aren’t cancerous, but some can turn into colon cancers over time.

Polyps often don’t cause symptoms. For this reason, doctors recommend regular screening tests to look for polyps in the colon. Finding and removing polyps helps prevent colon cancer.

Basically, what you eat does matter. Food that causes inflammation of the colon or intestines could also cause colon cancer. So watch what you eat.

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