Cancer is not a modern disease — it’s been around since the dinosaurs

cancer modern

One of the tropes that I keep reading in the vastness of the internet is that cancer is a modern disease. People keep claiming that cancer is caused by the modern diet, modern chemicals, modern lifestyle, modern agriculture, modern everything.

These trope-pushers want us to believe that our ancestors of just a few hundred years ago never got cancer because they lived some sort of magical life that avoided cancer. Well, of course, many of those people died of infectious diseases that we prevent with vaccines today, so I’m not sure their lives were so magical. And they died before they could develop cancer.

If one is going to make an extraordinary claim like “modern cancer is a man-made disease,” well I expect extraordinary evidence to support that claim. A paper published a few years ago made the claim that cancer was rare in Egyptians based on what has been seen in mummies. Let’s take a look at that, but also examine the evidence of whether cancer is a modern disease or as ancient as the earliest multicellular organisms crawling out of the ocean hundreds of millions of years ago.

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Modern cancer is a man-made disease? Myth debunking

modern cancer

I get so tired of this. I write a lot about cancer because of myths and tropes pushed by the pseudo-medicine world, like modern cancer is entirely a man-made disease. Proved by scientific researchers. And blessed by magical wizards everywhere.

This claim made by the pseudoscience, woo-pushing, junk-medicine believing writers of the article is based on a press-release from the University of Manchester where this research was done. Of course, in the hierarchy of quality biomedical evidence, press releases rank right near the bottom, just above the pseudoscience pushed by the Natural News.

If you’re going to make an extraordinary claim like “modern cancer is a man-made disease,” well you better bring extraordinary evidence. And a press release absolute does not qualify as extraordinary. The whole point of a press release is to “promote” the university. It is not peer-reviewed. And there are stories where the press release isn’t even reviewed by the authors of the study.

But the press release is based on an article published by AR David and MR Zimmerman in Nature Review of Cancer, a highly respected cancer journal. So you all are saying, “wow, that’s evidence.”

Well only if evidence is based on opinion. You see, the article by David and Zimmerman was published in the section of the journal called “Perspectives.” A perspective, especially in this context is a “point of view,” a “viewpoint”, a “stance”, or a “position.” But David and Zimmerman are highly respected anthropologists who have published extensively in real journals. But what do they know about cancer. Let’s look.

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