Dairy Farmers Team up with the Canadian Colorectal Association of Canada

The Dairy Farmers of Canada have teamed up with the  Colorectal  Cancer Association of Canada (CCAC) to promote healthy balanced diets with their new “Get Enough” App.  The really outstanding new is that when you download this app and begin to use it the Dairy Farmers will contribute $1.00 to  Colorectal  Cancer Association of Canada every day you utilize the app. What have you got to loose; it is a tremendous way for you to stay healthy and help you make sure you are eating the right foods while at the same time giving back to a very important cause.

For more information on the program go to GET ENOUGH and start using the app today.

Quote from the GET ENOUGH Website

Colorectal cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer and the second most common cause of cancer death in Canada. Colorectal cancer is also one of the most preventable types of cancer.

According to the World Cancer Research Fund, the key factors in preventing colorectal cancer are leading an active life, eating well, cutting down on alcohol, and not smoking.

Whole grains, pulses, vegetables, and fruits contain fibre, which keeps your digestive system running smoothly. Experts also recommend limiting your intake of processed meats as these have been shown to increase the risk of colorectal cancer.

A balanced diet composed of a variety of nutritious foods is an important part of maintaining good health. Canada’s Food Guide recommends an intake of 2-4 servings of Milk & Alternatives, including 500 ml of milk each day. 

WHO Cancer Report

In October 2015, the World Heath Organization released a report from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) relating to processed meat and colorectal cancer. As experts weigh in on these warnings on processed meat, we thought this article from Independent out of the UK provided some helpful guidelines for reducing your risk of cancer:

  1.  Stop smoking.
  2. Avoid the sun.
  3. A diet that is low in red meat.
  4. Foods high in fibre.
  5. Two servings of fruit and three servings of vegetables a day.
  6. Obesity and being overweight.

Check out the full list on www.independent.co.uk.

Oh… and don’t forget to get screened for early detection and prevention of Colon Cancer.

Not Knowing is Not the Answer

“The National Cancer Institute of Canada (NCIC) acknowledges colorectal cancer as the third most common cancer and the second most common cause of death from a cancer among men and women in Canada, second only to lung cancer. If, however, the cancer is detected early through screening, it may be highly treatable and need not be deadly. In a majority of cases, colorectal cancer is preventable and yet each year in Canada, thousands of people are diagnosed with advanced colorectal cancer.”

The Colorectal Cancer Association of Cancer has put together an in-depth page listing the different types of screening for colorectal cancer including:

  1. Guaiac Fecal Occult Blood Test (gFOBT)
  2. Fecal Immunochemical Test (FIT or iFOBT)
  3. Flexible Sigmoidoscopy
  4. Colonoscopy
  5. CT Colonography (Virtual Colonoscopy)
  6. Stool DNA Test (sDNA) or Fecal DNA Testing

Each one is described in detail on their “Screening & Diagnostics: A guide to screening tests” page. Check it out!

Photo of Colorectal Cancer Association Transit Advertising from 2011.

Great Marketing. Important Message.

As we continue on this quest of bringing awareness to colon cancer as the second leading cause of both male and female cancer-related deaths in Canada, and the recognition that with early detection and treatment over 90% of these cancer-related deaths could and should have resulted in a full recovery, we have also been looking to like-minded organizations for inspiration.

no-one-wants-to-see-this-merediths-miracles-colon-cancer-foundationOne such organization is a non-profit out of the United States, Meredith’s Miracles, which we discovered when we found this hilarious transit campaign.

Would this get your attention…?

I think so! But it’s the message underneath that is really important:


Colon cancer is the second most deadly cancer. But, detected early, it’s also one of the most treatable.”

Well done, Meredith’s Miracles.

Colon Cancer continues to ignore age boundaries.

The world has lost another young man to Colon cancer. Today the Globe & Mail covered the story of Matthew Wuest, the founder of popular hockey site CapGeek.com. Based in Nova Scotia, Wuest quietly built up an audience for what many perceived as the MOST important online resource in hockey.

CPT115_HKN_OBIT_Matthew_Wuest_20150320“Matthew Wuest brought the NHL’s complex salary-cap system to the masses through his wildly popular and influential website CapGeek. And he did it on his own, often from a laptop at his kitchen table in Halifax.

Wuest’s creation was the go-to source for salary and contract information for everyone interested in hockey. When he shut it down in January, fans and NHL insiders shared in the disappointment, not realizing that Wuest was battling colon cancer.

Wuest died Thursday at the age of 35.” –read the full story at GlobeandMail.com

It is time to stop considering colon cancer an “old person’s disease” and make screening more accessible to everyone young and old.  After all, “Not Knowing is Not the Answer.

Take Care of Your Colon

Many of you have asked for another copy of the letter Tom wrote for last years registration kit.

Your Colon… “Out of sight should never mean out of mind”…

Colon Cancer has changed our families and many of our friend’s lives forever. I first met Chris when he was young boy and over the years watched him develop into an accomplished student, athlete and successful young man. Chris was a contributor, he was a difference maker, his passing is a loss to many but mostly to our family…he was my stepson.

Most of you know me, I am Tom Matthews and I first met Chris when he was only four years old. He was the guy that did it right, read the rules, played by the rules, took life seriously, sometimes too seriously …except of course when he didn’t… and likely we didn’t know too much about that, after all we were the parents.

Since Chris’s death on May 23rd, 2013 I have been trying to figure out how this could possibly have happened, what happened, and how to better understand this disease, this cancer, this terrible and fast moving cancer.

What follows is what I know so far and trust me I will continue to search for answers. I hope you will take the time and take seriously the information that is being shared with you regarding Colorectal Cancer and most importantly the need for all of us to push for diagnostics and early detection.



Every week:

  • 423 Canadians are diagnosed with colorectal cancer
  • 175 Canadians on average die from colorectal cancer


Colorectal Cancer:

  • Is the second leading cause of death from cancer in both men and women
  • Is only surpassed by death from lung cancer
  • Kills more Canadians than Breast and Prostate Cancer combined



  • • If diagnosed in stage 1 or stage 2 colorectal cancer is almost 90% curable

So connect the dots…Colorectal Cancer is 90% curable… and yet Colorectal Cancer is the 2nd leading cause of death from cancer in this country…what’s wrong with this statement, in my opinion…. everything.


In BC and Alberta:

  • Medical protocol directs physicians requisition a colonoscopy for persons under the age of 60 only if there are symptoms including blood in the stool or immediate family history of colorectal cancer. Note that immediate history means parents and grandparents and does not extend to aunts/uncles/cousins.
  • Medical protocol will not permit the requisition of a FIT TEST (which is a lab test to determine if there is any blood in the stool) under the age of 50, unless you have symptoms or immediate family history, as outlined above.
  • If you are able to qualify for a FIT test and if the test is positive (blood in the stool) you will then be eligible for a colonoscopy. Currently that may take up to 5 months to occur (South Okanagan averages).

Chris’s Journey:

  • Chris was always and advocate of his own health
  • At 25 he asked for and was denied a request for a colonoscopy
  • While at the time he had no symptoms his family history of colon cancer was extensive but not consider to be immediate family
  • Later (after being diagnosed with colon cancer) Chris’s Oncologist reviewing Chris’s family history was shocked that he had not had early detection /screening


We all need to increase the discussion on Colon Cancer – this means we have to make poop, pooping and everything about our digestion and digestive system an acceptable topic for conversation.

You must advocate for your own health

It is too late for Chris but many others don’t have to die if all of us push to ensure that the tests that exist are more widely available

I have discovered a clinic in Kelowna where they can preform private colonoscopies. The clinic is called Okanagan Health Surgical Centre. They have three general surgeons that perform this procedure. The FIT TEST, which is also available at Okanagan Health Surgical Centre, does require a doctor’s requisition, which is available at the surgical centre with no conditions.

For further information regarding a FIT TEST or information about scheduling a private colonoscopy contact:

Okanagan Health Surgical Centre
website: okanaganhealthsurgical.ca
telephone: 250-868-9799

At the Giants Head Grind on race day in the park Okanagan Health Surgical Centre will have an information booth in Summerland District Credit Union tent to provide further information. They will be available from 10:00 Am to 1:00 Pm and 3:00 PM to. 5:00 Pm.

Finally I have also discovered through the Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada that there are two blood tests that are available to detect colorectal cancer:

  1. Septin 9 and
  2. Cologic http:/cologiclabtest.com

Both require a requisition/prescription from a doctor.

Recently I was told to by a member of the Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada, “the trick is to get the physician to prescribe the test and then if you receive a positive result ensuring that there is a high priority placed on the timing of your colonoscopy.”

Despite my preliminary findings ……you really can take steps towards the early and curable detection of colorectal cancer. 

Thank you for taking the time to join us at the Giants Head Grind- Christopher Walker Memorial Race.

Tom Matthews