The Role of Diet and Lifestyle in Colorectal Cancer Incidence and Survival

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Jillian Vallis, MD
Peizhong Peter Wang, MD, PHD


Colorectal cancer is one of the most prevalent malignancies in the population, resulting in significant morbidity and mortality world-wide. Identifying modifiable risk factors to reduce the incidence and morbidity of colorectal cancer is beneficial on an individual and public health level. Protective lifestyle factors against colorectal cancer incidence includes high levels of physical activity, healthy diets rich in fruits and vegetables, fish, dietary fiber, dairy, and all essential vitamins and minerals. Risk factors for increased colorectal cancer incidence includes a diet high in red and processed meat, alcohol, and tobacco. The evidence regarding the influence of specific vitamins and minerals is still evolving, as well as the etiology behind their mechanism of action in colorectal pathogenesis. Ongoing epidemiological studies are underway to determine the effects of various lifestyle factors on colorectal cancer survival. Overall, lifestyle modification is essential for prevention and treatment of colorectal cancer for improved patient outcomes.


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Chapter 2