Over 40% of breast and bowel cancer cases in rich countries are preventable through diet, physical activity and weight control alone, experts say.
Simple measures like cycling to work and swapping fatty foods for fruit can make all the difference for these and many other cancers, they say.
Globally, each year there are millions of these preventable cancer cases, the World Cancer Research Fund estimates.Its report makes recommendations for "clean living" policies. According to the report, about a third of the 12 most common cancers in high-income countries and about a quarter in lower income countries could be prevented through diet, exercise and weight control. This include cancers of the throat, lung and bowel. The figures do not take into account the impact of smoking, which alone accounts for about a third of cancers.
The panel of 23 experts who compiled the report say urgent action is needed to avert a crisis, with cancer rates set to increase.