ENT Head & Neck Surgery Center

Rm 02, 5/F., Kai Seng Commerical Centre,
4-6 Hankow Road, TST Kln, HK
(near Kowloon Hotel)
Tel: (852) 3100 0555
Fax: (852) 3100 0556

Lawrence Chow / ENT Doctor

5 Tips To Follow To Avoid Nasopharyngeal Cancer

We’ve talked about how certain types of foods or activities cause throat cancer and general types of cancer.


Nasopharyngeal cancer is one of the many types of cancer associated with the ENT (ears, nose, and throat). It’s also one of the rarest types and only occurs in 1 out of 100,000 individuals. The risk associated with developing nasopharyngeal cancer increases with age and can happen at any age.


Today, we’re going to list some of the things you can do to avoid nasopharyngeal cancer.


1.Quit smoking!

Although there have been no studies directly linking nasopharyngeal  cancer to tobacco use, quitting smoking has a lot of benefits. This also reduces your risk for other types of cancer that may develop complications or metastasize to different areas of your body, including the back of your throat.



2.Reduce alcohol intake.

There is a study that confirmed the role of alcohol in causing multitude types of cancer by direct physical contact alone. Alcohol coming into contact with epithelial cells increases their chances of mutating and spreading.


Since nasopharyngeal cancer is so rare, not much study has been focused on its relationship to alcohol intake. This does not mean alcohol is ruled out, as several studies have pointed out that alcohol certainly causes a lot of other types of cancers, of which its severity matches that of smoking.



3.Limit the consumption of cured meats.

Nasopharyngeal cancer has higher incidence rates in parts of the world where a staple of their diet includes cured meat or fish. Nasopharyngeal cancer affects more Chinese and individuals from South East Asia.


Studies in the UK also revealed that immigrants of Chinese descent still had the same probability of developing nasopharyngeal cancer, and have attributed the cause to cured or dried fish. Compounds called nitrates or nitrites which form during the curing process are known to have mutagenic effects on human cells.



4.Don’t neglect allergic rhinitis.

It turns out this harmless illness causing thousands of people unnecessary discomfort can increase one’s chances of developing nasopharyngeal cancer. A study conducted in Taiwan revealed that people who have had more than four visits to a clinic for their rhinitis complaints had more chances of developing nasopharyngeal cancer.


They determined the probable cause was due to chronic and repeated nasal inflammation that resulted in epithelial cells mutating and developing into cancerous types. Don’t forget to take your antihistamines!



5.Eating more fruits and vegetables.

We’ve heard of this so many times before and it’s become a cliche but it still holds true. By doing the exact opposite of what’s causing NPC, an individual has lesser chances of developing the disease.


The way it works is that a steady supply of much needed vitamins and minerals keep cells healthier. Cells only function at their best if the DNA is resistant to disintegration or mutation. Vegetables or fruits have the necessary compounds to maintain the structural integrity of the DNA, decreasing the chances of developing any type of cancer, NPC included.


Did you find the information useful? If so, continue reading our posts.


For details of the ENT services, diagnosis, and treatment, please consult our ENT specialist.




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