While much is said and written about cancer treatments, it’s perhaps best to remember this: the best treatment for cancer is prevention. It may be a cliché but it’s 100 percent true.
Those dismissing cancer as a hereditary disease should realize that lifestyle can have a great impact on a person’s chances of contracting one of the many forms of cancer. Likewise, those that believe complying with a set of conditions – like those set out below – guarantees a cancer-free existence should understand that this is certainly not the case. At the end of the day, cancer is arbitrary, and you never know if, or when, you will develop the disease and require any of a number of cancer treatments.
However, there are a number of preventative measures that have been scientifically proven to reduce the risk of contracting cancer. Complying with these will hopefully minimalize the need for cancer treatments, and at least give you a fighting chance.
1. STOP SMOKING
Smoking has been reliably linked to cancer for a long time now. Smokers run the risk of developing lung, throat, mouth, liver, kidney, and stomach cancer, as well as a host more. Even those that inhale smoke – which is where most of the cancer causing chemicals can be found – passively can develop extreme cases of cancer. As such, reducing and eventually quitting smoking can act as a positive preventative method.
2. REDUCE ALCOHOL INTAKE
Alcohol consumption has been linked to the likes of cancer of the liver, breast, and mouth. Even consuming small amounts is considered risky, although the risk grows ever greater the more that is consumed.
3. EAT A BALANCED DIET
We’ve seen how cigarettes and alcohol can negatively impact the body. The same is also true of food though. Many people undergoing cancer treatments do so as a result of a poor and unhealthy diet. It’s not just the food itself either. It’s important then to eat the right types of food (fruit and vegetables, fiber, white meat) and limit that which is harmful (red meat, fatty foods).
4. FIND THE RIGHT VITAMINS
Another important factor in cancer prevention, and one that derives from your diet, is your intake of vitamins. Both Vitamin A and Vitamin C are considered healthy, anti-cancer vitamins. Vitamin A is common in fish, dairy products, and dark vegetables. Vitamin C can be found in citrus fruits and specific vegetables, including broccoli and sprouts.
To put it bluntly; exercise – in the right amounts – promotes better general health and in turn can be a useful tool in preventing cancer. Whether you’re big or small, plump or thin, exercising is a necessity.
6. A HEALTHY BMI
Obesity is also considered a cause of cancer. Maintaining a healthy body mass index is therefore important. Of course, this can be achieved by observing points 3, 4, and 5 above.
7. STAY SAFE IN THE SUN
The ultraviolet rays given off by the sun are radioactive. This has become common knowledge over the past 25 years. As such, minimalizing exposure to these rays will lower the risk of developing cancer, and in turn reduce the need for cancer treatments. It’s also important to limit the use of sunbeds. While research into the impact of these types of artificial-tanning devices continues, most agree that there is a direct correlation with cancer.
8. AVOID CARGINOGENIC CHEMICALS
This one should be straightforward enough. If you’re exposed to carcinogenic – cancer-causing – chemicals and materials, you increase your chances of developing the disease. Of course, in the workplace it may not be possible to avoid such material. In this case it’s vital that you protect yourself with the appropriate clothing and handling techniques.
9. PAY ATTENTION TO STRESS
Modern scientific studies have shown links between stress and cancer. While stress can be good for you in small doses, habitual and long-term stress has a negative impact on the physical and mental aspects of health. If you experience this level of stress, be sure to seek out medical advice sooner rather than later.
10. REGULAR SCREENINGS
Last but certainly not least; be sure to attend regular check-ups with your doctor as well as cancer-specific screenings (e.g. mammogram, cervical smear test). Detecting a cancer early is essential to the success of any cancer treatments.
If you’re lucky, following some or all of these directions may help you to remain cancer free. However, it’s important to remember, being diagnosed with cancer is no longer the end of the world. Cancer treatments have advanced a great deal and today more and more people are taking on cancer and winning.