Dr Cris here, with The Ask Dr Cris Show. Today’s question comes from Lisa, she is frightened, she is frightened by all of the media hype around cancer and how it seems like every second person has cancer these days, and she’s concerned that she will develop cancer and wants to know how she can prevent that. That is a great question.
I think there’s two sides to this, first yes cancer rates have increased. There are two sides to that I believe. One is that our detection rates have gotten better, so we’ve become better or more efficient at detecting cancer earlier so that sometimes artificially elevates the amount of individuals diagnosed with cancer because they’re either picked up, where previously in years gone by they wouldn’t have been picked up, or we pick them up earlier so it has come to the light a lot sooner.
The other part of that is we are living a lot longer, so the longer we live, unfortunately, the more susceptible to cancer that we are only because of the general wear and tear of our bodies. Still to this day the majority of cancers do happen as we get into the older age range not so much in the younger age range. How do you prevent or safeguard yourself towards developing cancer?
The best thing you can do is look after your lifestyle factors. So looking after your health, making sure you’re within a healthy weight range, weight greatly increases your risk of cancer if you are carrying too much. Fruits and vegetables! Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables in your diet. It safeguards you especially the different coloured fruits and vegetables. I talk about this a lot in my book ‘Healthy Habits’ it’s about the different rainbow coloured fruits and vegetables so do include those in your diet. Get some exercise! Exercise does reduce cancer risk. Studies have shown that moderate levels of exercise done consistently, doesn’t matter what type of exercise, just keep your body moving and it helps to ward down some of those free radicals that can cause damage and cause cancer to form in the first place. The fourth and final is do look at your stress levels and anxiety. Stress, unfortunately it can be one of the first triggers to start off some of that cancer process.
There are no hard and fast rules with moderating stress it is doing what works for you. Is it changing your job, is it changing your environment, or just changing your perspective towards your environment which sometimes involves counselling or hypnotherapy. There is lots of strategies for that. But I think that those are some great tips to avoiding the scare of cancer. Don’t be frightened just look after your health as best as possible.
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Holistic Medical Doctor, Author ‘Healthy Habits, 52 Ways to Better Health‘