Jakarta. Cancer, one of the most lethal noncommunicable diseases, is the second leading cause of death globally.
In 2012, according to the World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer, the disease in Indonesia has claimed almost 2 million lives, with breast cancer being the main cause of death of female patients and lung cancer of men.
According to the World Cancer Research Fund International, breast cancer is also the most common type of cancer (25 percent of all cases) in women around the world, while lung cancer is most common in men (17 percent of all cases), followed by prostate cancer (15 percent).
The research body said there is a direct link between the disease and lifestyle. Cancer can be prevented with a healthy diet and regular physical activity.
Indonesians are at cancer risk due to the use of household solid fuel, tobacco, physical inactivity and diabetes.
The Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) has urged millions to fight cancer through sports, with an initiative titled "Support through Sport," on the World Cancer Day on Saturday (04/02).
"Around a third of all cancers are preventable through lifestyle changes, such as increasing physical activity and leading a less sedentary lifestyle," UICC chief executive Cary Adams said in a statement.
"A large number of people also find exercise to be of great benefit to their wellbeing either during or after treatment."
According to studies, physical activity reduces the risk of recurrence and death by about 40 percent in breast cancer patients, and alleviates the side effects of cancer treatment, such as fatigue and depression.
World Cancer Day is observed on Feb. 4 annually to raise awareness of the epidemic and to encourage prevention, early detection, and treatment.