How to prevent cancer (cancer preventative measures)
Preventing cancer is within our control. Most cancer is linked to unhealthy diet, lack of exercise, stress and tobacco. Most of us see exercise as a way to prevent cardiovascular disease, but there is mounting evidence that it helps prevent cancer as well – particularly of the colon and prostate, two of the biggest threats to men. Exercise is not only beneficial by its ability to regulate insulin levels, it also boosts your immune system. Studies have shown that high insulin levels may stimulate the growth of certain tumors.
How to prevent cancer by exercising
- Never miss a workout
When moderate exercise is repeated on a nearly daily basis, there is a cumulative effect. The result is increased protection from disease. So the next time you plan on skipping a gym session, think twice and get your lazy ass in there.
- Try to do at least one type of exercise every day
Run three or four times a week, play golf twice a week and make use make use of a treadmill and/or an exercise bike during winter time. You will love your body when it’s summer again, because the added cardio workouts will burn off excess fat you might gain during the cold months.
- Make sure each workout lasts about 30 minutes
Try running between six and 12 kilometers, or 3,7 and seven miles a session, and a few times a year increase your mileage to prepare for longer races. Studies show that three or four hours of vigorous exercise a week can reduce your cancer risk.
- Keep your belly and bum trim
It’s important to try and stay lean. Excess fat around your mid-section, buttocks and thighs may increase your risk of developing cancer because it is usually linked with higher insulin levels.
- Down a sports drink during intense workouts
Exercise is generally good for the immune system, but a hard workout of 90 minutes or longer – the kind you would do when training for a marathon – can actually suppress the immune system. One way to offset this effect is to take in sufficient carbohydrates. Drink one litre of a sports drink per hour to suppress the rise of stress hormones like cortisol and keep your body strong during a tough exercise session.
Besides quitting smoking, food is the most effective weapon to protect yourself against cancer. Diet is critical, especially for cancers of the colon, prostate and liver. Fill up on the right foods, and you stand a good chance of becoming a grandparent. Build your meals around the wrong foods, and your odds of cancer increase significantly.
How to prevent cancer with your diet
- See green at dinnertime
Everybody knows you should eat more fruits and vegetables, but too few people actually do it. Only about a quarter of us eat the recommended five servings of fruit and vegetables per day. You should now become one of them. Down a daily six to eight servings of fruit and vegetables and substitute grilled vegetables for meat in your lunchtime sandwiches. You can also drink plenty of orange juice in the morning. At dinner, try and have three different vegetables, including a dark green salad and broccoli. Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli contain phytochemicals that neutralize substances that can trigger malignancies. One study found that the phytochemicals in broccoli are especially good at fighting off bladder cancer.
- Restrict Red meat
We all love a good steak on the grill, but be careful to limit yourself to occasional indulgences. As little as 140 grams a day of red meat- beef, pork or lamb – can nearly double your colon cancer risk. But limiting yourself to one or two 85 gram servings a week, and to lean cuts, can limit your risk.
- Take a multi-vitamin
Taking a multi-vitamin everyday has been associated with a 50 percent decrease in colon-cancer risk. One reason may be that multi-vitamins are a great source of folate, which may keep benign polyps from turning cancerous. It’s also just an overall good health habit.
- Drink only occasionally
Your risk of cancer rises at three drinks a day and is 60 % greater than average if you have six drinks a day. Heavy drinkers who also smoke are 36 times more likely to get cancer as are those who abstain from both habits
- Limit refined foods and fat
The more kilojoules you get from these sources, the more active your cells and the more opportunities they have to become abnormal – the beginnings of cancer. There is evidence that limiting the number of kilojoules you take in can be effective in fighting cancer. By limiting foods made with white flour, sugar, and fat – such as white bread and desserts – and focusing more on vegetables, fruits and wholegrains, you’ll get more cancer fighting nutrients and take in fewer kilojoules.
- Eat more whole-wheat
Eating two servings of oatmeal for breakfast is great for your heart, but you can add cancer protection if you replace one of them with a bowl of All-Bran. For lunch switch to whole-wheat bread sandwiches: wheat bran decreases the amount of time carcinogenic toxins spend in contact with your colon.
- Get the right amount of calcium
Most of us think of calcium as a protector of our teeth and bones, but it’s also a colon cancer fighter. You need 1000 milligrams of calcium per day, and you may be taking in only a third of that from milk and broccoli. Putting a slice of Swiss cheese on your sandwich and having yoghurt as a snack can help you meet your daily needs. Don’t go overboard though: taking in more than 2000 milligrams per day has been linked to an increased risk of prostate cancer.
Prevention is best, but early detection is next in line of defense. The earlier you catch cancer, the better your odds. Some families have one specific cancer running through them, making it easier to target the enemy. But sometimes cancer within one family can be all over the map. Please, go for cancer screenings and check-ups regularly at your local clinic or hospital.