The doors of LILT are open to everyone: each of us has a story, a life, and can give us much. In 2022 LILT, the Italian League for the Fight against Cancer, turned 100 years. 100 years of information, prevention and even treatment rooted in the territory to eradicate cancer. LILT in Turin is one of the first to be born in 1927, and is chaired by Donatella Tubino, a biologist and nutritionist who has been engaged in the fight against cancer for more than twenty years. In the interview, the president explains the importance of cancer associations to train aware citizens and to help less fortunate people.
Cancer and prevention, from school to business
It is very important to carry out a prevention activity on the territory with a capillary network not only in the San Giovanni Antica Hospital but also by increasing the presence of LILT in companies and schools. LILT in Turin operates in hospitals, but above all through a capillary network of doctors, psychologists and volunteers, because the first step to combat cancer is prevention. Starting from the children of the kindergarten and then arriving at the high school students and workers, the aim of the association is to explain the benefits of proper nutrition, the harm of smoking and the advantages of an active lifestyle. Among the information campaigns, Tubino highlights the importance of informing young high school women about good self-testing practices to prevent breast cancer.
There are three types of prevention: primary, secondary and tertiary. Primary prevention is to talk to people, in places of aggregation like schools, about proper lifestyles. In secondary prevention, however, there is already the intervention of oncological visits, and here LILT plays a real role in supporting health.
Tertiary prevention, on the other hand, is the most complex type of prevention and is completely based on the incessant work of the volunteers of the association. This prevention helps people alone and without family members, who sometimes have difficulty even buying bread and milk. Psychologists are crucial in this step, because they have all the tools to offer emotional support to those who are less fortunate and have no one to turn to.
Earning Health: LILT project against false myths and true risks
According to Donatella Tubino of myths to dispel there are many referring to the LILT project called “Guadagnare salute“. Many believe, for example, that the harmful substances in cigarettes are only nicotine and tar. There are 460 other toxic substances, some far more harmful than nicotine such as DDT, uranium and substances found in plastic. These substances do not only endanger the lungs, because they freely circulate in our body. But this is not the only myth to be eliminated.
It is believed that a pregnant woman must eat more to feed the baby: this belief has been largely debunked by gynecologists and can be dangerous for health.
Earning Health aims instead to inform young people about the real risk factors, such as the family history of each person.
We try to make it clear, in particular to girls, that in case of breast cancer in the family it is particularly important to have proper self-examination and constant visits in order to live in serenity.
It’s much better to hear ‘see you next year’ than a patient saying ‘I wish I had come earlier’.
LILT’ s future passes from young people
The constant fight against cancer through prevention, says Donatella Tubino, never stops. The LILT, in fact, is in continuous search of new methods and collaborations to be increasingly present in the territory and teach important techniques such as self testing, fundamental against breast cancer.
The synergy between LILT, regional authorities, companies and schools is essential to train informed and aware citizens from all points of view. LILT is constantly expanding and evolving in search of Turin and Italian companies to work with, such as Revée.
Every day a new company knocks on the door of LILT to inquire about possible collaborations. This is very inspiring, it makes us feel important and it convinces the Association that we must continue in this direction.Despite the assiduous work of LILT in Turin already gives good results, Donatella Tubino is convinced that a correct training of young doctors and psychologists is fundamental in the fight against cancer. Young professionals are fundamental: they transmit their desire to do and optimism. LILT opens its doors to all, volunteers and professionals.