Anyone can get cancer. One of the biggest factors that can make a person more likely to get cancer is age: 3 out of 4 cancers are found in people aged 55 or older. But there are many other factors that affect cancer risk and some of them can be changed.
Forty percent of cancers could be prevented with adoption of a healthy lifestyle, says a report initiated by researchers from the International Union Against Cancer (UICC) organization.
1: Quit Smoking Right Away.
Smoking is the single largest preventable cause of cancer. Second hand and third hand smoke are also damaging to health.
2: Eat a Variety of Healthy Foods.
Balance calorie intake with physical activity
Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, brussel sprouts and kalian are believed to be nature's best cancer fighters. Additionally, be sure to include foods high in antioxidants- tomatoes, tea (particularly green tea), red wine, dark chocolate, pecans, kidney beans, and many other foods.
Choose whole grains over processed (refined) grains
A diet high in soluble fibre and low in fat may not only help you lose weight or maintain your weight, it has been linked to a reduced risk of cancers of the colon, esophagus, lung and stomach.
Limit intake of processed and red meats
30 minutes of moderate daily exercise can help to prevent cancer through the following mechanisms:
- Boosting your immune system
- Preventing obesity
- Decreasing estrogen levels
- Decreasing insulin growth factor (IGF) levels - high IGF levels can increase your risk of developing cancer of the breast, colon, and rectum
4: Protect yourself from the Sun
More than 90% of all skin cancer is caused by excessive exposure to the sun’s radiation,
including melanoma, which can be life-threatening.
5: Get Immunized
Certain cancers are associated with viral infections that can be prevented with immunizations. Talk to your doctor about immunization against Hepatitis B and Human papillomavirus (HPV).
6: Avoid Risky Behaviors
Many known carcinogens are found in our living environments, at home and at work. Avoid or minimize your exposure to materials that are known to contain unhealthy chemicals.
Avoid risky behaviors that will expose you to HPV, HIV and Hepatits B and C infections that are known to cause cancer.
7: Get Screened
Regular screening and self-examination for certain cancers may not prevent cancer, but it can increase your chances of discovering cancer early — when treatment is more likely to be successful.
8: Reduce Stress.
We all know that cancer causes stress, but does stress cause cancer?.
Research in cell biology and biochemistry has shown that certain molecules that increase in times of stress have also been linked with several diseases including cancer. Inflammatory pathways activated by stress have been implicated in the development of tumors, metastasis of tumors, and resistance to chemotherapy.
It is important to acknowledge and deal with stress, whether or not it has any affect on the incidence or progression of cancer because doing so will certainly improve your Quality of Life.
Above all, do not regret the past, nor speculate on the future. Just focus on the NOW and enjoy the present.