Diet and Exercise, and the Connection to Cancer Prevention

If you watch what you eat and increase your physical activity, can you reduce your cancer risk? Both are important factors, according to the American Cancer Society, which notes that quitting smoking is another key to reducing your risk for cancer.

Being physically inactive, having excessive body fat, drinking too much alcohol and lacking proper nutrition are contributing factors in about 20 percent of the cancers diagnosed in the United States. According to the World Cancer Research Fund, these risk factors are preventable.

The American Cancer Society recommends that you do the following to help reduce your risk of cancer:

  • Stay at a healthy weight.
  • Increase your physical activity.
  • Eat healthier foods. Try to eat about 2½ cups of fruits and vegetables every day, and cut back on the amount of red meat and processed foods that you eat.
  • Select whole grains.
  • Don’t drink excessively.

Talk to your health care provider about all the ways you can reduce your cancer risk. If you do not have a primary care physician, call 1-800-BayCare (1-800-229-2273) or find a doctor near you.