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Book review: Bahamian physician pens cancer prevention book


Published: May 28, 2013

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“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

— Traditional proverb


Cancer! The very mention of the word can send shock waves down the spines of the family members of one who is ill, for this disease, or group of diseases, happens to be one of the major maladies in the world today, causing much suffering and leading to many deaths in communities in every corner of the globe.

As we recognize Cancer Awareness Month, think about whether a member of your family died from cancer, whether you are suffering from cancer, and whether you learn ways and means of preventing it? If your answer to any of the questions is yes, then you really need to read “A Simple Plan to Prevent Cancer”, authored by Dr. Joseph Evans, a urologist.

The Bahamian physician writes in an easy to read, lucid style, avoiding or explaining technical medical terms, which are normally outside the vocabulary of those without a degree in medicine. As such, this book can be read and understood by the man on the street, which is in keeping with the author's desire to inform the general public about ways and means of preventing cancer.

The book is informative, with every page filled with up to date information. Dr. Evans points out that “cancer is the condition in which cells grow out of control, spread to other parts of the body and kill the body". Cancer, then is certainly not a term to describe one particular disease, but rather a general term to cover any condition in which cells grow out of control. Thus, the physician reveals that there are over 200 kinds of cancer, which afflict every organ of the human body!

The doctor’s motto in writing this work becomes abundantly clear in the introduction, "Certainly if cancer can be successfully treated, it can be successfully prevented." Concisely, Dr. Evans seeks to demonstrate that cancer can be successfully prevented. In pursuit of this objective, the physician presents a simple plan to prevent cancer. And as is to be expected, he warns the reader that he/she can only benefit from the plan by strictly and consistently and meticulously following its instructions.

An integral part of the plan advocated by Dr. Joseph Evans has to do with diet. This is indicated on the front cover with its display of fresh fruits and vegetables. Pointing out that according to the American Cancer Society, 35 percent of all cancers could be prevented by following a healthy diet. He places high priority upon what is eaten on his plan. This is certainly in keeping with growing consensus on the part of medical professionals that a healthy diet is essential for good health. As someone put it, "You are what you eat!" He then goes on to give more useful facts about cancer.

The sections in which the urologist discusses the rate of cancer around the world are extremely interesting. According to the latest statistics available (2008), Denmark with a rate of 326.1 per 100,000 inhabitants has the highest rate of cancer in the world, followed by Ireland and Australia. The USA, with a rate of 300.2, ranks seventh and The Bahamas, with a rate of 126, leaves us with no reason for complacency. In addition, the physician provides a tremendous amount of information about cancer which the reader is bound to appreciate.

While, however, placing high priority on diet, the physician emphasizes that there are certain aspects of daily living or lifestyles which must be adhered to in seeking to prevent cancer. Accordingly, he puts forward a plan which combined with diet and a “lifestyle” (healthy habits) to combat cancer. The plan advocated by the good doctor states plainly in direct candid style which makes this book very useful.

• Drink lots of water daily, squeezing fresh lime or lemon juice in drinking water.

• Exercise daily in fresh air.

• Get exposure to sunlight daily.

• Avoid all animal flesh and animal products in the diet.

• Eliminate use of tobacco, caffeine, alcohol and refined sugar.

• Use flax seed oil as a source of healthy fatty acids.

• Eat a plant-based diet.

• Drink freshly made green vegetable drinks or juices often.

• Take supplements daily including vitamin D and multivitamins and minerals.

A diet rich in vegetables and fresh fruits, and the avoidance of red meats and alcohol along with adequate rest and exercise, are the main features of the plan for preventing cancer. It is noteworthy that Dr. Evans is a deeply religious gentleman and so urges the reader to undergird the healthy lifestyle advocated with prayer.

This book is designed mainly for laypersons. Those who are professionals in the medical field, however, are not ignored. The writer presents a list of the sources and articles in medical journals which may be consulted by persons in the medical field or anyone wishing to pursue study on cancer at a more advanced level.

There is no doubt that this book is most relevant to us in The Bahamas, for ours is a nation in which cancer presents major challenges. Daily we hear reports about persons who are suffering from cancer and of those who have died having suffered greatly from this disease. There is hardly a family in our nation which has not been touched by this disease. Many leading figures of our nation all suffered from this disease which led to their demise.

The rate of suffering from cancer in The Bahamas is much higher than many countries of the third world, and more recent studies have revealed that the rate of breast cancer among women in The Bahamas ranks amongst the highest in the world.

As we are about to celebrate our nation’s 40th birthday, it is a clarion challenge to us to do what we can to support research to determine why the rate of cancer is so high. More pertinently, however, it behooves each and every one of us to heed the advice of Dr. Evans and make the changes in our diet and lifestyle which are essential to prevent cancer. We need to change our eating habits so that we consume more fresh fruits and vegetables and less red meat. So, if you know persons who are suffering from cancer or making every effort to prevent cancer, then give them a copy of Dr. Evans’ book. More pertinently, get your copy and make the changes in your diet and lifestyle that may prevent you from becoming yet another victim of cancer. In the case of cancer and all maladies, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure".

Dr. Evans specializes in the treatment of diseases of the male reproductive/urinary system including the penis, testicles, bladder and prostate gland.

Title: A Simple Plan To Prevent Cancer

Author: Joseph I. Evans, MD.

Date of publication: 2013 (revised edition)

Publisher: Joseph Evans Media

Cost: $10

On sale: At the Urology Clinic, Hawkins Hill and Rosetta St., Palmdale, Nassau and Bethel’s Superstore, Freeport, Grand Bahama.

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