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Cancer Protection Is All About Making Smart Decisions

Aug 17, 2007
When you think of cancer protection, a physician's office probably comes to mind. But protection is more than just going to the doctor. It involves making the right decisions with aspects of your life to help prevent a life-threatening disease. Even if you think you're a healthy individual, it could be beneficial to step back and see what needs to be changed in your habits to make you healthier.

There are several ways you can protect yourself from cancer. One way is to maintain a healthy diet. Diets including plenty of fruits and vegetables allow a person to receive the necessary vitamins linked with cancer protection.

It is also important to include healthy fats found in olive, canola and sunflower oils. These are high in Omega-3 fatty acids, which have been linked to keep the heart healthy and prevent other deadly diseases.

Limiting your intake of red meats is very important when it comes to a healthy diet. Instead, you should focus on including more lean proteins, such as chicken and fish. Other ways to improve your diet are to eat hearty whole grains found in certain breads, pastas and rice dishes. Make sure to always avoid fried foods that are high in trans-fats.

Aside from a healthy diet, you can practice cancer prevention by taking certain supplements and vitamins. Vitamin E, selenium and lycopene have been connected with lowering a man's risk of developing prostate cancer. Fish oils have also been linked with preventing cancer of the prostate. There has even been research suggesting calcium supplements could help a person prevent colorectal cancer.

Going to the doctor is important even if you are trying to lower your risk of cancer. Doctors can perform certain screenings to help protect you from a life-threatening disease. Women are recommended to start having yearly mammograms sometime after age forty. Younger women should have regular clinical breast exams performed by a physician or do breast exams at home to watch for abnormalities.

Men and women should have a colonoscopy, beginning in their fifties, every ten years to watch for colorectal cancers. Men can protect themselves from prostate cancer by using certain chemoprevention drugs. These are man-made drugs or vitamins used specifically to suppress or prevent cancer.

PSA tests or digital rectal exams are other methods available to men who are at high risk for prostate cancer. Discuss all the treatments and screenings available with your doctor to determine what you should do based on your personal and family medical history.

Lifestyle is a major factor in your efforts at cancer protection. Smoking has been linked with several cancers, such as lung, prostate, bladder and breast cancer. It is imperative for smokers to quit this unhealthy habit because it will greatly reduce their risks of developing cancer.

Doctors recommend women watch their alcohol consumption as part of breast and cervical cancer control. Other ways to improve your lifestyle is to work plenty of physical activity into your daily schedule. Whether you join a gym, buy a treadmill or play outside with your children, exercising is an important factor in cancer protection.

Cancer protection could mean small changes or complete overhauls to daily routines, depending on your current lifestyle. Lowering your risk of cancer may include joining a gym or buying vitamins and dietary supplements. It could mean you have to quit smoking or using other tobacco products. Whatever change you make to your current situation will put you closer to living a healthy and cancer-free life.
About the Author
Andi Michaels has worked in healthcare and now runs health related websites on topics including cancer prevention as well as sites on lung conditions
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