Eating right is good for everyone and everything. Nutrition guidelines for cancer prevention are like the ones provided for other diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. The instructions given below are helpful in reducing your risk of being affected by cancer.
Overweight/obese individuals constitute about one-fifth of the cancer-related deaths, but the theory behind these weight-related cancer deaths is still unknown. Belly fat increases the risk of colorectal cancer, pancreatic and uterus cancers and breast cancer in postmenopausal women. Other cancers related to obesity include esophageal, rectal, kidney, thyroid, gallbladder, liver, ovarian and prostate cancer.
Avoid High-Calorie, Low-Nutrient Foods
Avoid consuming foods such as sugar-sweetened beverages, processed snack foods and desserts that are rich in calories but low in nutrition value. Such calorie-dense foods add empty calories without any nutrients leading to weight gain leaving little space for healthy foods.
Eat Lots of Plant-based Foods
Consume abundant fruits and vegetables to lower your risk of lung, oral, esophageal, stomach and colon cancer. As we are still unclear of the fruit/veggie component responsible for fighting against cancer, we should include a variety of whole foods that are rich in nutrients. Dietitians/nutritionists recommend filling half your plate with fruits and vegetables and choosing at least half your grains as whole grains. Beans and peas can be added to the protein or vegetable group according to your wish. Consuming a diet rich in plant-based foods will help you stay on a healthy weight.
Lean Meat is Better than Red Meat
Include protein sources in moderation. Choose lean protein foods instead of red meat, specifically processed meats (ham, bacon and hot dogs), as studies suggest increased risk of colon cancer in people who consume increased quantities of processed meats. The best choice would be plant-based proteins such as beans that would be filling and healthy.
Restrict Alcohol Intake
Any alcoholic drink elevates your chances of cancer, especially of the mouth, pharynx, larynx, esophagus, liver, breast, colon and rectum. Although how alcohol affects cancer risk remains unsolved, alcohol combined with smoking is more damaging. Avoid alcohol completely, otherwise limit its consumption: one drink daily for women and two for men.
Limit Salt/Sodium Intake
Increased salt intake increases the risk of stomach, nasopharyngeal and throat cancers. Evidences don’t exist to show that increased salt usage in cooking or flavoring affects cancer risk but we do know that increased sodium levels are associated with risk of high blood pressure and heart disease. Also, processed foods are the major contributors of sodium rather than the salt added for cooking or seasoning foods. Dietary guidelines suggest individuals to restrict sodium intake to less than 2,300 milligrams daily (about 2 teaspoon of salt) and people with hypertension or prehypertension should further reduce their sodium intake to 1,500 milligrams a day. Become aware of the sodium present in one serving of food by knowing to read food labels from www.firsteatright.com.
Supplements Vs Whole Foods
It is always better to eat whole foods instead of going for supplements. Research proves that the synergy between nutrients found in foods offer protection to our body. Nutritious whole foods and healthy beverages are the best bets against cancer prevention. It is advisable to talk to your physician or a dietitian/nutritionist before taking any supplements.