Cancer Prevention Methods You May Not Be Following
Cancer Prevention Methods You May Not be Following
Cancer is something that everyone is concerned about these days, and for mostly legitimate reasons. There are a lot of bogus cancer studies floating around on the Internet, and misinformation about what really causes cancer runs rampant online, but that doesn’t mean a healthy fear of cancer isn’t a good thing. It’s potentially better to be safe than sorry when it comes to The Big C, after all.
However, there are extremes that turn into the snake eating its own tail. For instance, being obsessed and paranoid about developing cancer to the point of unhealthy habits and mental defect isn’t good for you. Some media consumers take every new claim they read online at face value, believing that anything and the kitchen sink has the potential to make them ill.
On the other end of the spectrum, throwing caution to the wind and doing nothing to prevent cancer isn’t desirable either. In fact, you see more people completely ignoring cancer risks than obsessing over them. There are typical cancer prevention standards like diet and exercise that we all know about, but what other prevention methods are there that are flying under the radar?
Weight, Food and Cancer
There are a lot of different claims out there that say X food will cause cancer or Y food will prevent it — but it’s not necessary to go into such specifics here. There are plenty of myths regard superfoods that are actually advertising gimmicks and old wive’s tales that don’t actually work, all of which could be debunked. Instead of splitting hairs, let’s instead focus on some dietary standards that everyone should follow in order to reduce their risk of developing cancer:
- Plant sourced foods are in. It stands to reason that the more natural the foods you eat are, the less likely you are to develop cancer. Eat your fruits and veggies — even though you were supposed to be doing that anyway.
- Manage your weight. Some people genetically run heavier than others, but obesity has been linked to 13 different kinds of cancer. Keep your diet low calorie and as sugar free as possible (refined sugar, anyways).
- Processed meats have been linked to cancer causing carcinogens by the World Health Organization. Avoid them at all cost.
- Choose healthy fats. Again, natural foods are always better for you than processed foods containing chemicals and preservatives that don’t occur in nature.
Be Wary of the Sun
We should all know that when going to the beach, it’s best to put on some sunscreen and avoid spending too much time directly in the sun’s rays. However, that doesn’t mean we’re let off the hook anytime we’re outside. Avoiding skin cancer can be as easy as following these simple guidelines:
- Simply stay shaded. When you aren’t directly in the sun’s rays, skin cancer is less likely to be included in your future.
- It’s obvious that we all want to stay cool in the summer, and we usually do this by shedding the jeans and swapping long sleeves for tanks and other more exposed clothing. Instead, go for covering yet breathable clothing to help prevent direct contact with sunlight.
- The strongest sun rays can be found from 10 AM to 4 PM. Avoid the sun during this time period as much as possible.
Be Smart about Viruses
Many people don’t think about how viruses can actually cause cancers. Not all viruses, but some indeed can.
- Practicing safe sex can prevent the spread of HIV and HPV, both of which can cause cancers. HPV is known to cause cancer of the cervix, anus, throat, vulva, penis and vagina, while HIV can lead to AIDS which is also a precursor to some types of cancer (liver, lung, anus).
- Immunizations that can prevent viruses should be taken note of. There are vaccines out there for HPV and Hepatitis B; the latter of which is a precursor in some cases to liver cancer. Get vaccinated
Other Cancer Prevention Methods
The above areas aren’t the only ways to prevent cancer. Here are some miscellaneous tips that can reduce your risk for cancer in the future.
- Drink a lot of water. Water is a natural detoxicant as it can flush out your system efficiently and quickly. Cancer causing agents in urine can be processed through your system faster the more water you drink.
- Get screened as early as possible. For those that know their family’s cancer history, it’s important to discuss the potential for cancer with your doctor. If you aren’t sure of your family’s cancer history, be honest about this with your general physician. It’s always better to screen early than to screen too late.
- Not sure if your diet is up to snuff? We can’t all be expected to immediately get our diet on track over night. Take a multivitamin regularly, and make sure you’re getting enough calcium — it’s a mineral that’s been linked to reducing colon polyps.
Finally, don’t ignore sudden health changes because you think they’ll go away or because they simply can’t be cancer. Talk to your doctor regularly about changes in your health in order to be truly sure cancer isn’t a possibility. It may be too late for cancer prevention in some cases, but it’s never too late to fight.