Lifestyle Choices That Can Reduce Your Risks for Cancer
We often hear people say that “cancer runs in the family,” and in some cases this proves to be true, with abnormal genes being passed along from generation to generation, therefore making cancer within the family a hereditary issue.
However, cancer “running in the family,” tends to occur because many family members have certain risk factors in common with one another (such as smoking or obesity).
There are numerous lifestyle changes that can be made to “take charge” of your own life and decrease your personal risks for cancer. Read on for 5 straightforward and easy efforts!
1. Do not smoke – Quitting smoking, or not starting in the first place, will significantly decrease your chances of getting cancer. The American Cancer Society stated that in 2012 about 173,200 cancer deaths were caused by tobacco use
2. Maintain a healthy weight – Obesity is associated with increased risks of cancers of the thyroid, esophagus, gallbladder, breasts, colon, and kidney. In addition to reducing your risks for cancer, maintaining a healthy weight will also decrease your risks of heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure!
3. Eat healthy – “Eating healthy” doesn’t necessarily mean eating meal portions that keep you at a healthy weight. It means choosing foods wisely! Consume lots of antioxidants – they work to strengthen the body’s defense against potentially dangerous substances called free radicals, and be sure to avoid a diet that is high in fat consumption.
4. Be an active individual- Being a physically active individual (moderate exercise at least 3 or 4 days a week) can make a big difference in your health and wellbeing! If you don’t enjoy going to the gym, find a sport to play with friends, or go for longer walks with the dog each day. There are many ways to stay active!
5. Get tested – Many cancers can be detected through early screening, but you’ve got to visit your doctor in order for this to work. Don’t skip out on your annual physicals, and know which screenings are important at what age. The American Cancer Society provides a set of guidelines here.
These tips were provided to you by RN Cancer Guides, an organization of specialized oncology nurses committed to providing peace of mind, comfort and confidence throughout journeys with cancer. To learn more about our organization, click here.