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6 Ways to Create Anti-Cancer Eating Habits

Countless health-related studies point to the importance of eating healthy, unprocessed, unrefined food to lower the chance of developing cancer. In fact, for anti-cancer eating, present-day nutrition guidelines in the U.S. are nearly identical to those for preventing other illnesses, like diabetes and heart disease. These general guidelines, as outlined below, were created to show us how to choose healthy, wholesome foods, to significantly reduce the risk of developing cancer

anti-cancer eating

1)A Healthy Weight Helps Keep Illness Away

1 in 5 cancer-related deaths is linked to overweight issues and obesity. Though, it is still unclear specifically how weight affects the risk of cancer. Nonetheless, there is a close connection between excessive belly weight and an increased risk of breast, uterine, pancreas, and colorectal cancer in both men and women.  So, a good rule of thumb is to keep your weight in check!

2) Reduce Nutrient-Deficient, Calorie-Dense Foods

Limit the intake of “fake food,” like processed snacks and sugar-sweetened beverages, which have solid fats and added sugars that provide very few nutrients, while be overloaded with calories. With these calorie-dense types of foods, “empty” calories add up very fast, leading to weight gain. Consuming these kinds of fake foods also doesn’t leave much room for healthy, cancer- preventive foods.

3) Lower Sodium Intake

In some cultures, people use salt to preserve, cure, and pickle food.  These processes are associated with their history and way of life.  There is no direct evidence pointing to salt intake as increasing the risk of cancer, but it is connected to heart disease and high blood pressure. For this reason, it is recommended to reduce sodium in your diet. In the U.S., the Dietary Guidelines for Americans highlights the need for individuals to reduce their daily sodium consumption to less than one teaspoon!

4) Fill Your Plate With Fruits, Vegetables, Legumes, And Whole Grains

Eating plenty of vegetables and fruits, as well as legumes, is associated with a lower risk of oral, lung, esophageal, stomach, and colon cancer. At this point in research, it’s unclear as to which precise components in vegetables and fruits are most protective against the development of cancer. Therefore, a variety of wholesome foods that are naturally nutrient-rich is the recommendation. To incorporate them into your diet, add multi-colored fruits and vegetables to your plate, filling half of it with these foods, as well as a serving of whole grains. Also, eating plant-based foods, like beans and peas, can help you maintain a healthy weight and add additional nutrients to your meal.

5) Fun Doesn’t Need To Include Alcohol

Tons of data suggests that all types of alcoholic beverages may increase the likelihood of certain cancers, specifically oral, laryngeal, esophageal, liver, and colon. Therefore, limit consumption to a maximum of one daily drink for women and two for men. Or, better yet, eliminate it entirely.

6) Can Supplements Replace Whole Foods?

Reduce your risk of cancer by eating whole foods, not supplements. In the end, healthy beverages and all-natural, nutrient-rich whole foods are the best sources of cancer-preventative nutrients. If it’s possible to get your nutrition from food instead of pills, your body will always absorb and process it better.  So let food be your first source and only go to supplements if you are unable to get that nutrient in your diet.  If you are interested in taking supplements along with your healthy, wholesome meal plan, talk to your healthcare provider.

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Dr. Candice Seti


California-licensed Clinical Psychologist, Certified Nutrition Coach, and Certified Personal Trainer

Dr. Candice Seti

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