Because I have been running a series of “Cancer Prevention” presentations around Brisbane for the past couple of months, as so happens in Facebook, you get adverts targeted to you! I got one from the Cancer Council for their “Cancer prevention for educators” talk in Brisbane, so being very sceptical and curious, I booked in!
I attended their talk recently. The first thing I noticed was a display of various unhealthy drinks at the front, and which they explained later, was to show the amount of sugar in each, as sugar contributes to weight gain they said. They ignored the main issue of sugar, that it directly causes and feeds cancer, or that it causes inflammation, heart disease, diabetes, and many other chronic health issues! None of that was mentioned.
And the ironic thing they missed was regarding the refreshments table at the back of the room – sugar-laden snacks of muffins and cakes… They just don’t get it do they?!
I expected the “same old” information, and yes that’s what I got. They said at the beginning that it would be evidence-based information. I thought otherwise, as you will see when you read some more of this article…
Their “prevention“ advice was pretty light, and a lot was missing. More troubling was that much of their advice was actually going to cause more cancer in many people.
On the topic of sun health, they want everyone to slather on sunscreens every 2 hours, wear sun protective clothing, wear tight-fitting and wrap-around sunglasses when outside ALL the time, and stay out of the sun ALL year around in Qld, because the UV light levels are allegedly too high and dangerous even in Winter!
They obviously didn’t read or know about my last article on the dangers of wearing sunglasses for prolonged periods – research shows that they block up to 98% of sunlight entering your eyes, but you need this to make your sleep hormone (melatonin), your feeling happy hormone (serotonin) which prevents depression and other mental health issues, and your protective skin pigment melanin, which prevents you burning more severely.
I asked the presenter if they were aware of the health implications of wearing sunglasses, which I summarised, and they said they were not!
I asked a question about the issue of getting enough vitamin D, due to the importance of maintaining good levels to improve health and prevent chronic disease. They said everyone should have enough vitamin D from just walking from their house to their car each day… really?! That’s nowhere near enough from the research I’ve read, and I’ve only seen 2 clients with healthy vitamin D levels in the past couple of years.
The topic of eating well came up, and of course they said to follow the government food guidelines, which we all know is a pile of brown smelly stuff, and is the reason why we are seeing so many chronic health conditions these days. They showed an example of a “good” kids lunch box, which was anything but. It also included a small plastic bottle of water. I commented that they should be informing people of the dangers of using plastic bottles, especially for children, and especially in summer – as the hotter the temperature is, the more hormone-disrupting and cancer-causing chemicals will leach from the plastic into the water. A cancer council representative said it was a good point, but they are just focusing on getting kids to just drink more water at the moment. Even if it’s toxic and cancer-causing?
There was a lot more which was not that exciting, and other bits which were shocking, but I will write about those in another article.
Lastly, I spared their embarrassment somewhat when I spoke to the speaker and her boss afterwards, to ask about what testing is done on sunscreens. They said they are tested by the TGA which uses the highest quality testing. Ok, I said, so how do you explain the 4 hormone-disrupting chemicals, 5 cancer-causing chemicals, and many other toxic ingredients in your own brand sunscreens? (See the info in the meme picture)
They looked a little surprised, but said they have faith in the TGA and their scientists who made it. I asked if they can look further into this, because the resources I used to check their ingredients is highly regarded.
I gave them a copy of the meme picture, and 2 pages of recent published research which contradicted their “advice” on sunscreens, skin cancer, sunglasses, and vitamin D.
I hope they look further into this, as they are supposed to provide “evidence-based” information to the public for preventing cancer. But on what I saw and heard in this presentation, they do neither.