Our society teaches us that cancer is just something that happens randomly. But that’s not always the case. Yes – cancer has a random element. You never know which cells might go haywire. But it’s also predictable. For instance, did you know that people living in traditional areas of India only have 5 percent of the risk of developing bowel cancer compared to people living in the US? Lifestyle factors are driving much of the difference. You could always make small lifestyle changes to beat cancer.
Small Lifestyle Changes To Beat Cancer
I’d like to share some of the official advice for preventing cancer effectively. Some of these ideas are mainstream, while others might seem controversial.
Protect Yourself From The Sun
Sun damage is responsible for a large number of skin cancers every year. But it’s also highly preventable.
Here’s how to stop it:
- Stay in the shade while outside
- Avoid exposure to direct sunlight between 10 am and 4 pm
- Cover exposed areas of skin in sunscreen
- Don’t use tanning beds
Get Regular Medical Checkups
Next, ensure that you get regular medical checkups to make sure you remain healthy. You can use your local oncology department for visual examinations, diagnostics tests and biopsies.
You should also get regular screening for common types of cancer, including breast, cervical, skin and colon.
Eat A Healthy Diet
The diet you eat is one of the best long-term predictors for whether you’ll develop cancer at some point in your life. Focus your diet on fruits and vegetables and try to avoid consuming too much meat, eggs, sugar and processed foods. Keep your plate looking as natural as possible.
Cancer is also more common in people who are overweight and drink alcohol to excess. If you do drink, do so in moderation. Drinking too many wines, beers and spirits can lead to cancers of the colon, breast, lung, kidney and liver.
Always limit your consumption of processed meats, such as sausages or salami, as much as possible. Eating large amounts of these products could raise your risk of cancer as much as smoking.
Speaking of which, smoking is one of the leading risk factors for developing cancer at a young age. Using tobacco increases the risk of developing throat, larynx, lung, mouth and pancreatic cancers. Chewing tobacco also causes cancers in the oral cavity.
Health experts recommend avoiding tobacco products entirely. If you find it hard to live without nicotine, chew gum or use patches.
Remain Physically Active
Lack of physical activity is a leading cause of rising cancer rates in Western countries. People aren’t moving their bodies enough to encourage cell repair and renewal thanks to their work. And it’s increasing the likelihood of cancer emerging.
According to research, adults who engage in any level of physical activity – no matter how small – experience benefits. So just going for a 10-minute walk can be enough to move the needle and make you healthier.
Ideally, you should strive for around 150 minutes of moderate activity per week, or 75 minutes of vigorous activity. However, the more exercise you add to the mix, the better. There isn’t an upper limit for risk reduction.
Thanks for the good advice, Corinna. I need to pay special attention to the skin cancer tips. Unfortunately, when I was younger getting a suntan was a goal of my friends and I. Now I cover up and use sunscreen, but I didn’t for years.
Yes, a lot of lifestyle issues are related to cancer. We can do our best and take care, but everything is not in our hands!
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Wonderful advice! Exercise is important, too :), as well as handling stress effectively. I just wanted to let you know that your I’m eating the elephant post shows up in code ;).