What I believe to be the most powerful cause of cancer is the exhaust from tail pipes. It is really the only thing that all people are subjected to, with varying degrees, across the country (USA is the only place I will be examining). Other things like diets have changed and I find it very convincing that those too play a huge role in cancer.
1 in 2 people are at risk of cancer in our life time.
This should floor you. This number is so incredibly large for any disease, and here we are, looking at one of the most scary on earth.
First - what causes cancer in exhaust?
Every process that uses fire proceeds chemically via a 'radical' process. Radical doesn't mean far-out here, it is a specific type of chemical reaction which involves radicals. Radicals are incredibly reactive species, with most of them reacting nearly instantaneously. The interesting thing is, when a radical reacts there are only two possibilities;
1. If it reacts with a non-radical, a new radical is formed.
2. The only way to get rid of radicals is if two radicals meet and react with each other.
Since they react so quickly, you may be able to imagine this "radical" jumping from molecule to molecule - forever, or until it meets another radical. Technically, a radical has an unpaired electron, but the molecule is uncharged. This unpaired electron is very reactive. The most important thing about radical chemistry as far as cancer is concerned, is every molecule that reacts with a radical becomes changed, with very little keeping their original structure. Perhaps you are beginning to see the connection.
When we combust fossil fuels, we create radicals, most of these radicals meet other radicals and 'cancel each other out' so to speak, and are no longer radicals. But, some persist, never finding another radical to pair with, continually reacting in the air, and unfortunately, once in a while, in our lungs. These radicals cause chain reactions, whether in the air or in our bodies, and can only be stopped by encountering another radical.
There is one saving grace, though. Anti-oxidants. The chemistry behind 'bad' radicals and 'good' radicals is very interesting. Anti-oxidants in their normal state are radicals, but their ability to react with radicals and become radicals themselves is important. When a radical encounters an antioxidant, the antioxidant takes on a radical form. The nature of the antioxidants, though, is that this radical form is very stable, due to the chemistry of the molecule. In a way, the antioxidants can act as shuttles, harboring this radical, and preventing it from further chain reactions.
I want to show you a picture of the most powerful carcinogen know to man;
And here is two of the most powerful anti-oxidants:
These probably won't mean much to you. But what is important is double bonds. It is interesting that the very thing that makes diesel fuel so powerful as a carcinogen, also creates anti-oxidants powerful anti-cancer agents. A double bond oxygen, adjacent to a double bond anywhere else allows free-radicals to be very stabilized. Notice that in the bottom two, there are many double bonds adjacent to a double bonded oxygen (don't worry if this is jibberish).
There is a controversy whether these vitamins and anti-oxidants actually do decrease cancer probabilities any more so than any other diet. I think it is farse because by eating these compounds you are eating healthy anyways.
Artificial food colorings and dyes are also harmful, but not as harmful as anything that gets created in a fire process.
Tips to avoid radicals:
1. Avoid heavy traffic areas if possible, especially near highways (just to consider in your next house).
2. Avoid grilling and eating freshly-charred food. The longer food sits after being charred, the less carcinogens will be present.
3. Eat many dark-colored fruits and vegetables (or colored at all). The coloring in fruits and vegetables ARE the antioxidants! The diversity of colors is also important. Try and get a rainbow of colors in your diet.
4. Ride a bike (for everyone else's sake).
5. When you cook, don't allow smoke to form. This is radical chemistry!
My next post will be about some other things, such as the Burzynski Clinic (anti-cancer clinic), chemotherapy, and pharmaceutical industry (probably not going to be a happy post...).