Many people consider cancer to be a scary possibility regardless of your lifestyle. Many people do all the “right” things and still develop the disease.
However, experts now believe that a surprising number of cancer cases could be preventable. It is estimated that up to two thirds of the risk of developing cancer could be within the control of the individual.
An example of this is the link to physical inactivity and diet to approximately one third of all United States cancer deaths.
According to the Mayo Clinic’s Director of Complementary and Integrative Medicine Program, Dr Brent Bauer, adopting some simple habits could be a large step towards “addressing the vast majority of health problems”.
1. Eat Healthy
Many people are aware of the potential cancer fighting antioxidants which are contained in foods such as blueberries or kale. However, introducing a few fruits and vegetables into your diet are merely the tip of the iceberg.
According to the American Cancer Society, “overall dietary pattern” is likely to have the most impact on the risk of developing cancer. This means taking a healthy approach to our diet and maintaining our weight.
For example, after going through menopause, carrying additional weight can push estrogen levels high, which can cause breast cells to more aggressively divide, leading to tumors in some cases. Increasing fruit and vegetable consumption together with reducing red meat in the diet can mean “a real difference in your risk”.
2. Work In Some Exercise
Exercise is amazingly beneficial for a number of health conditions. It is well documented to improve heart health and improve mental well being. However, doctors are becoming increasingly aware of the link between physical activity together with healthy eating and the reduction in risk of cancer. Some research has established a relationship between lower levels of breast cancer and higher levels of exercise.
3. Sleep More
Sleep is known to be the time when the body heals itself, but getting adequate sleep may also reduce your risk of cancer. Studies have shown increased risk of breast cancer in women who sleep less than six hours per night over the course of several years, and women who work mostly at night. This is thought to have a link to the hormone melatonin, but the exact relationship is not known.