When it comes to cancer prevention, the saying “You are what you eat” may apply.
We might also add: “You aren’t what you DON’T eat.”
According to the World Cancer Research Fund, about 20% of all cancers diagnosed in the US are linked to excess body fat, physical inactivity, too much alcohol, and last but not least, poor nutrition.
Processed foods are the main ones to avoid. A recent study shows a 10% increase in cancer among those who eat ultra-processed foods. These include:
• packaged breads
• packaged sweet or salty snacks
• soda and sugared drinks
• processed meats
• instant soups
• ready meals
What’s left to eat? Plenty! Here are just some foods that could help lower your risk of cancer:
• acai berries
• beans and peas
• chili peppers
• coffee (yeah!)
• dark green leafy vegetables (i.e., spinach, kale & swiss chard)
• ground flaxseed
• whole grains (i.e., brown rice, oatmeal, barley, & millet)
• winter squash
While diet is important, it’s just one of many possible factors. If you feel you might be at risk, a cancer policy from your association and AMBA is designed to cover treatments that might not be available locally, which may include travel and other out-of-pocket expenses.
In the meantime, even small dietary changes could make a big difference.