As I wrap up my blog series on the prevention of cancer I would like to leave you with the top 7 ways to prevent cancer.
You’ve heard it a million times before. But consider this: If you smoke, you are 23 times more likely to develop lung cancer than someone who doesn’t smoke. Compare that to a women who had a first degree relative (mother, sister, or daughter) diagnosed with breast cancer; her overall risk is only twice that of a woman with no first-degree relative diagnosed with breast cancer. Yet what do women tend to worry most about? Breast cancer.
Cut back on the Alcohol
Drinking beyond healthy levels (generally, one serving a day) is a major cause of breast, bladder, stomach, esophageal, liver, and colon cancers, among others. Scientists suspect the link may be due to the effects of acetaldehyde, a suspected carcinogen that forms as the body metabolizes alcohol. This compound reacts with natural compounds that are required for cell growth. This reaction can cause DNA damage to cells, which can, in turn, lead to a malfunctioning cell division.
About one in three cancers are the result of poor diet and being overweight, particularly breast, colon, rectal, stomach, prostate, and pancreatic cancers. When you’re overweight, your body produces more estrogen – linked to breast, ovarian, and uterine cancers; and more insulin, which can increase inflammation and free-radical damage.
In addition to getting seven to nine servings a day of fruits and vegetables, studies find that diets low in red meat and high in whole grains also result in lower levels of various cancers.
Physical activity not only helps you maintain a healthy weight but also it reduces the percentage of body fat and helps your muscles better use insulin, reducing insulin blood levels and free-radical production. Specific studies find that regular physical activity can slash the risk of bowel cancer by half, the risk of uterine cancer by a third, as well as significantly reduce the risk of ovarian, breast, and colon cancers.
Spoon on some tomato sauce
Lycopene, an important antioxidant in tomatoes, pack a big punch again cancer. Just 10 tomatoes a week reduces the risk of prostate cancer by a third and the risk of breast cancer up to 50 percent. The thing is, you get way more lycopene if the tomatoes are cooked, which releases more of the chemical. Even just gently heating a chopped tomato will up the content. Not big on tomatoes? The great news is that Watermelon also packs a powerful lycopene punch! And who doesn’t like Watermelon? Research even indicates that more Lycopene is available in Watermelon because with Tomatoes they need to be heat treated for maximum Lycopene benefits.
Drink Water like a thirsty camel
The more water you drink, the more you dilute toxins in food and other liquids, reducing their damaging effects on your colon and bladder. One major study found that just six 8 ounce glasses of water every day slashed the risk of bladder cancer in half in men; while another found 45 percent reduce risk of colon cancer in woman who drank a lot of water throughout the day. Try and use reusable bottles, like Cool Elephant Stainless Steel Water bottles to avoid a huge pile up of plastic bottles. I’ve purchased one of these for a bunch of my friends this year. They are great! Check out the link below.
Come back on Wednesday where my blog focus switches to Osteoporosis. Are you destined to be the hunched over old man or woman in your later years?
Giving you the most current and up to date advice on living a longer and active life.
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