I’m not big on making New Year’s resolutions. By February I have usually forgotten about them. However, this year I decided that I want to include better foods in my family’s diet. We have been eating more fruits and vegetables, less meat, primarily organic products and less processed foods. And honestly, this is a resolution that myself and my family have been practicing – and that I plan to keep.
In my attempt to keep this resolution I have been watching documentaries about food and food practices in the United States and throughout the world. Whether it’s a documentary promoting veganism, vegetarianism or just general healthier eating there seems to be one common theme: a healthy diet and exercise can prevent cancer. What??? I feel that most of what we hear about preventing cancer is “don’t smoke” and “put on sunscreen”. I don’t believe that it is widely advertised that diet and exercise can prevent cancer. Why not?
A quote from the American Cancer Society’s website states: “For most Americans who do not use tobacco, the most important cancer risk factors that can be changed are body weight, diet, and physical activity. One-third of all cancer deaths in the United States each year are linked to diet and physical activity, including being overweight or obese, while another third is caused by tobacco products.”
So the truth is out there. We are not able to control our genetics, so not all cancer is preventable. However, we can eat better, we can exercise and we can avoid tobacco products. So why don’t we practice these life styles? Laziness? Financial issues? Accessibility issues? Or do people have no idea that what they eat and the fact that they don’t exercise can lead to cancer? Whatever the reason, it is something needs to change.
February is cancer prevention month. OncoLink is here to teach you how you can reduce your cancer risk. During the month of February we will be posting webucation recordings concerning cancer prevention topics, including: exercise, nutrition, colon cancer screening and lung cancer screening. You can also check out OncoLink’s “Risk and Prevention” tab for more information. You can also take the What’s My Risk? survey to learn more about your cancer risk – and how to get started with healthy changes.