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Microwaving Food Can Cause Cancer: Common Cancer Myths Busted

There's a lot of misinformation about cancer. Here, Dr. Sanjiv Chopra, Chief Executive, Cancer Care Programme, Tata Trusts, busts some common cancer myths & misconceptions.

Written by Longjam Dineshwori | Updated : February 17, 2023 1:33 PM IST

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5 Common Cancer Myths & Misconceptions That You Ought To Know

Cancer causes the highest number deaths worldwide than any other diseases. It accounted for nearly 10 million deaths in 2020, according to WHO. Over the last two decades, the number of cancer cases in India have been increasing alarmingly, with over 26.7 million cases recorded in 2021. While there has been a growing awareness around the risks of cancer in the country, this has also been accompanied by the spread of misinformation about the disease entity. Here, Dr. Sanjiv Chopra, Chief Executive, Cancer Care Programme, Tata Trusts, shares 5 cancer common myths and misconceptions to help you stay updated.

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Myth 1 – Cellphones Can Lead To Cancer

With the increasing use of mobile phones, there is a growing concern that the radiation released by the devices could lead to cancer. It is important to note that mobile phones release controlled radiation, often referred to as radio frequency or radio waves. According to studies, these are low energy and low frequency radiations unable to cause any harm to the human DNA. These devices can often heat-up the area where they are held, i.e. the area between the head and ear. However, this heating isn’t significant enough to cause any harm to health. Also Read - 6 Side Effects Of Cashew Nuts You Must Be Aware Of

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Specific Genetic Mutation

On the other hand, a negative test result means that there were no changes in the genes, chromosomes, or protein, and the person may not be affected by a disorder, is not a carrier of a specific genetic mutation and does not have an increased risk of a particular disease.

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Myth 3 – Microwaving Food Can Cause Cancer

Microwave ovens use microwave radiations, which cause water molecules of the food to vibrate and heat the food. These are controlled radiations and do not cause cancer. The food cooked in the microwave does not become radioactive and has the same nutrient value as cooked conventionally. According to WHO, a microwave works like a light bulb, when the bulb is turned off, no light remains. Similarly, when the food is taken out of the microwave, no ‘microwave energy’ remains in the food.  Also Read - 9 Hidden Benefits Of Eating Mangosteen

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Myth 4 – Eating Sugar Will Increase The Spread Of Cancer

All cells including cancer cells use glucose primarily for growth. However, it is a common misconception that eating sugar increases the spread of cancer. Consuming or reducing sugar in your diet will not affect the growth of cancer cells in the body. While reducing sugar intake has a number of health benefits, it has no effect on cancer.

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Myth 5 – Antiperspirants Or Deodorants Can Cause Breast Cancer

Underarm antiperspirants or deodorants are applied near the breast. They generally contain aluminium based compounds which help in stopping the flow of sweat to the skin’s surface. It is said that these compounds can promote the growth of breast cancer cells. However, there is no clear scientific evidence showing the use of aluminium-containing underarm antiperspirants leading to breast cancer. Also Read - 5 Beauty Secrets For Every Bride-To-Be: Pre-Wedding Skincare Unveiled