Prof. Ibrahim Katibi, an expert in cardiovascular diseases, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, has warned that eating processed foods containing additives and preservatives could cause cancer.
Katibi told newsmen in Ilorin that cancer was the second leading cause of death of the cardiovascular disease both in the developed and developing countries.
According to him, processed foods such as canned foods, and those containing chemicals and additives to prolong their shelf lives were carcinogenic.
He cautioned that saturated fats from red meats, such as hamburger or steak, and high-fat dairy products were linked with several cancers.
“It also appears to increase the risk for cancers in the breast, colon, kidney and gallbladder,” he said.
The cardiologist said that alcohol consumption also increase the risk of cancer of the oesophagus and stomach, especially when combined with smoking.
Katibi warned that “exposure to electromagnetic radiation, invisible, high-energy light waves such as sunlight and X-rays, accounts for a small percentage of cancer deaths”.
According to him, among the 14,500 annual cases of cervical cancer in Nigeria, over 40 million women are at risk.
He said there was need for people to be aware of the symptoms and management, adding that the commonest cancer cases in the country were breast, cervix and prostate.
Katibi called for the creation of National Cancer Institute to promote research and training in cancer.
He said various challenges that contributed to cancer morbidity and mortality in the country was everybody’s problem as government could not tackle them alone.