Our achievements

Some of our many successes include being the first organisation to identify the link between diet and cancer, and building the world’s largest source of scientific research on cancer prevention through diet, weight and physical activity

Our achievements since we were founded 30 years ago reflect our commitment to helping people reduce their risk of preventable cancers.

Funding research

  • Since we were set up in 1990, the World Cancer Research Fund network has funded over £110 million of research. We were the first organisation to identify the link between diet and cancer – now a widely accepted fact. Among our many research findings, we can also confirm that being overweight is a major cause of at least 12 different types of cancer.
  • We fund vital projects on different cancers, as well as studies into how to survive cancer.

Supporting future experts

  • We award six Fellowships a year to outstanding applicants to enable them to attend nutritional epidemiology courses to increase their expertise in cancer prevention.

Interpreting evidence

  • Our pioneering Continuous Update Project is the world’s largest source of scientific research on cancer prevention and survival through diet, weight and physical activity. It is continuously updated allowing us to constantly monitor the latest research and regularly review our recommendations, so the public can be assured they are receiving the most accurate and proven information at all times.
  • Our landmark First and Second Expert Reports in 1997 and 2007 were the most comprehensive reports ever published on the links between cancer and diet, nutrition and physical activity. Building on those achievements, in 2018 we launched our Third Expert Report, Diet, Nutrition, Physical Activity and Cancer: a Global Perspective, which is based on studies comprising 51 million people, of whom 3.5 million were diagnosed with cancer.
  • The report's findings are summarised in our authoritative Cancer Prevention Recommendations. Over 20 independent studies show that the more closely you follow our Recommendations, the lower your risk of developing cancer.

Informing the public and health professionals

  • World Cancer Research Fund works to deliver reliable and high-quality health advice. All of our publications are reviewed by members of the general public to ensure our information is understandable and relevant to the audience. 
  • We educate children and their families through Eat Move Learn, our online resources about healthy eating and the importance of moving more.
  • We support cancer survivors by providing practical tips and advice – such as our Eat well during cancer booklet, recipes for people living with cancer, and online support groups where people with cancer can come together and share their stories as well as get personalised advice from an oncology dietitian.
  • Our Informed newsletter for health professionals was praised by 96 per cent of survey respondents for giving them a better understanding about the link between lifestyle and cancer.
  • Our online cancer prevention workshop is aimed at health professionals and covers information about lifestyle and cancer prevention.
  • A YouGov survey of the UK public found the number of people aware of the link between eating processed meat and an increased risk of cancer has increased from 33 per cent ten in 2010 to 56 per cent in 2020.
  • We have developed health tools including our Cancer Health Check, an exercise calorie calculator  and a BMI calculator, which help people reduce their cancer risk. Our health tools are used by up to 25,000 people every month.
  • We hold cancer prevention workshops for companies to advise employees about the link between cancer and diet, weight and physical activity.

Campaigning for change

  • We've encouraged thousands of people to make small changes to their lifestyles to help reduce their risk of developing cancer through our 100 Calorie Challenge and I CAN... campaigns. Nine out of ten people who received our daily email tips said they intended to make long-term changes to their lifestyle.
  • World Cancer Research Fund backed the sugary drink levy that was introduced in the UK in 2018, and which led to the average sugar content of drinks decreasing by 29 per cent. We also called for a watershed on junk food ads, which was announced in the summer of 2020.
  • We want to empower people to make choices that will help them lead happy, healthy, cancer-free lives.