The Third Expert Report

Diet, Nutrition, Physical Activity and Cancer: a Global Perspective was a report produced in 2018 by World Cancer Research Fund International on behalf of the World Cancer Research Fund network charities AICR, WCRF UK and WKOF.

Our Third Expert Report, Diet, Nutrition, Physical Activity and Cancer: a Global Perspective, assessed the past decade of cancer prevention research and the links between diet, nutrition, physical activity and cancer.

Go to the Resources and toolkits page to access additional downloads including the complete Summary Report PDF or to request it in print.

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A landmark in cancer prevention

Our independent panel of global experts has been evaluating the evidence on cancer prevention for many years. The 2018 report was our third comprehensive analysis since 1997 of the worldwide body of research available.


This internationally acclaimed report is a collaboration between four organisations under the umbrella of the World Cancer Research Fund network:

A unique, global database

The first and second Expert Reports, when they were published in 1997 and 2007, respectively, were landmarks in the science of cancer prevention. Since the second report, scientists at Imperial College London have been adding information to a unique and growing database of evidence relating to cancer prevention and diet, nutrition and physical activity.

This forms the basis of our flagship Global Cancer Update Programme (CUP), an ongoing analysis of evidence related to diet and cancer prevention. Evidence from the CUP Global enables World Cancer Research Fund to publish reports on individual cancer types, the most recent being our report on colorectal cancer in 2017.

Authoritative, evidence-based Cancer Prevention Recommendations

In the past ten years, the need for authoritative, evidence-based recommendations on how to reduce the global burden of cancer has grown. There is strong evidence from the CUP Global, for example, that being overweight or obese puts you at increased risk of many cancers.

We’re experiencing a global obesity epidemic, declining physical activity among both children and adults in many parts of the world, and an increase in the consumption of energy-dense foods. If these current trends continue, overweight and obesity are likely to overtake smoking as the number one risk for cancer.


Covers of the Third Expert Report as well as the reports from 2007 and 1997A blueprint for cancer prevention

Our Third Expert Report is a vital resource for anyone involved in preventing cancer. It ensures that everyone, from researchers to policymakers to the public, can access the most up-to-date information on how to reduce the risk of developing cancer. It also identifies areas for future research into cancer prevention and survival.

You’ll find the answers to many more questions about the report, including who wrote it, how the evidence is analysed and why the world needs it, on our FAQs page. You can also browse the glossary for an explanation of many terms used throughout the report.

> Go to Resources and toolkits to access downloads, graphics and slide bundles

Changes between the Second and Third Expert Reports

There were important shifts in emphasis between the 2007 Second Expert Report and the Third Expert Report, published in 2018.