…that you probably don’t suspect – They are: use mouthwash and become a vegetarian.

Although vegetarianism is assumed to be a healthier lifestyle, and vegetarians DO have less cancer in general, there is one kind of cancer that non meat-eaters get more often: colorectol cancer. Researchers can?t figure this one out, since colon cancer is generally associated with eating red meat.

Meanwhile, mouthwash that contains a high percentage of alcohol may be carcinogenic, so you should not automatically swish or gargle after you brush, but save mouthwash for times when you have a bad sore throat (and ask your doctor or dentist about it first). It?s not that the mouthwash itself causes cancer, but it allows other cancer-causing substances to penetrate the mouth and throat tissues more easily. Australians use a lot of mouthwash, and researchers began to notice the high incidence of oral cancer there.

A Brazilian study showed that people who drink alcohol also had a higher risk of contracting oral cancer, undoubtedly for the same reason: the most popular mouthwashes contain higher concentrations of alcohol than wine or beer. In the January 11 edition of the Daily Telegraph, Clair Weaver quotes researcher Michael McCullough as saying, “The most significant difference [between alcohol and alcohol-containing mouthwash] is that one is for pleasure and the other is being recommended as a health product?.If it was a facial cream that had the effect of reducing acne but had a four- to five-fold increased risk of skin cancer, no one would be recommending it.”

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