It’s likely that you’ve previously heard that a healthy diet and regular exercise can reduce your risk of developing cancer. That’s great, but not all malignancies respond to lifestyle changes in the same way. The American Cancer Society has provided a closer look at the sometimes complex connection between nutrition, activity, and 13 different malignancies. Fortunately, many of the measures you take to prevent one cancer also prevent you from developing another.
The obvious method of prevention for bladder cancer is quitting smoking. There is some evidence to suggest that eating lots of veggies and drinking a lot of water can also reduce your risk.
Everyone agrees that food and exercise have no impact on your risk of developing brain cancer.
There are no guarantees when it comes to breast cancer, but you can reduce your risk by exercising at least four hours per week and drinking alcohol only in moderation (one drink per day for women). There is some weak evidence that eating a lot of fruits and vegetables will also be beneficial.
It should come as no surprise that there is a reasonably high correlation between food and risk for colorectal cancer. Consuming a lot of fruit and vegetables may reduce the risk, whilst eating a lot of red meat may increase it. Getting enough calcium and vitamin D is important because they may help prevent colon cancer. However, men may wish to keep their calcium consumption to 1,500 mg per day as high calcium levels may raise their risk of prostate cancer.
According to research, vigorous exercise may be even more beneficial than moderate, regular physical activity in reducing the risk of colorectal cancer (particularly colon cancer).
Endometrial cancer is more common in overweight women, in part because excess body fat can mess with hormone levels. A woman’s risk can be decreased by maintaining a healthy weight through diet and exercise. One drink of alcohol per day is the maximum that may be helpful.
Obese people are more likely to get kidney cancer for unknown causes. The prevention advice is to maintain a healthy weight to reduce your risk of contracting the illness.
Lymphomas and Leukemias
Similar to brain cancer, there is no evidence linking these blood malignancies to a person’s eating or activity habits.
The best strategy to prevent lung cancer is to abstain from all tobacco products since smoking is undoubtedly the leading cause of the disease. However, those who consume their recommended daily intake of fruits and vegetables appear to be more resistant to the illness.
Antioxidant supplements were once thought to be able to prevent lung risk, but that hope has since vanished. High doses of vitamin A and beta-carotene supplements may actually modestly raise the risk of lung malignancy in smokers, according to extensive studies. In conclusion, it’s generally best to obtain antioxidants naturally, such as through fruits and vegetables.
Esophageal and Oral Malignancies
When combined with smoking, excessive alcohol use can raise your chance of developing esophageal and oral malignancies. A risk factor appears to be being overweight or eating too little fruits and vegetables. Your chances will increase if you limit your alcohol use to one or two drinks a day, keep a healthy weight, and consume lots of produce.
If nutrition affects ovarian malignancy risk in any way is unknown. To be safe, though, stick to the fundamentals: consume a lot of fruits and vegetables and only moderate amounts of alcohol.
Blood sugar levels have a significant impact on the pancreas because it is the organ responsible for producing insulin. Your sugar metabolism can be messed up by being overweight and not exercising, and it can also raise your risk of developing pancreatic cancer. Consuming a lot of processed and red meats appears to increase the risk, although fruits and vegetables provide protection.
Red meat and excessive dairy consumption can raise the risk of prostate malignancy. Positively, there is some optimism that natural antioxidants (such the lycopene found in tomatoes) may help reduce the risk. However, this is still up for debate. The greatest option is to eat a lot of fruits and veggies.
Nothing unexpected here: It appears that consuming at least five servings of fruits and vegetables daily reduces the risk of stomach malignancy. Avoid foods high in salt or nitrates for additional protection (including processed meat, such as hot dogs).