Hesperian Health Guides
Cancer and Inequality
Cancer is a difficult problem for everyone, but it is worse for people who are poor. People who are poor or marginalized are more likely to be exposed to things that cause cancer because they live where pollution is worse. They work in more dangerous jobs, and they are subject to more stress. Eating a variety of good food (fresh fruits and vegetables, protein, and whole grains) can help prevent cancer, but some people cannot afford to eat well. And poor people often cannot afford or do not have access to the screenings, medicines, and health services that could find and treat their cancers.
For all these reasons, we say that poverty and inequality also cause cancer.