According to the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR), certain lifestyle factors can adversely affect cancer risk for many of the most common cancers that affect men, including colorectal and prostate, and can be reduced if we change certain behaviors.
To reduce cancer risk and reoccurrence, men and woman should:
- Get regular exercise: aim for 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise at least 5 days per week with the goal of a minimum of 150 minutes of exercise per week.
- Eat a wide variety of plant foods that include fruits and vegetables – 3 servings of non-starchy veggies and 2 servings of fresh whole fruits every day
- Reduce your consumption of red meat. Aim for less than 12 to 18 oz of cooked weight of red meat per week. 3 oz is roughly the size of the palm of your hand, this allows for 4 to 6, 3 oz portions per week. . Enjoy more lean meats like poultry and fish. Minimize your consumption of processed meats such as bacon, sausage, hot dogs, and deli meats. Best to avoid all processed meats if possible. Eat more whole grains and legumes and cut back on processed refined foods. Aim to consume half your daily grains as whole grains.
- Limit consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages such as sodas, juices, and sports drinks. Cut alcohol out completely from your diet or cut back significantly. For females consume no more than 1 alcoholic drink per day and for men consume no more than 2 alcoholic drinks per day.
- Maintain a healthy weight
This might not sound like a ton of fun, but once you incorporate more and more of these habits into your daily life, it will start to feel natural. We truly cannot recommend getting off the couch, exercising, and eating your greens and grains highly enough. Scheduling regular check-ups with your doctor is also essential – don’t wait until you think something’s wrong. Remember that outcomes are better when cancers are caught early.
It’s not that hard to change your eating habits, once you know what you’re doing and get used to it. The days of veggies being boring rabbit food is totally out of date. Try a few of our favorite healthy yet hearty recipes – such as Spicy Chicken Meatball Sandwiches, Southwestern Kale Salad, and Spicy Shrimp Tacos – and we’re sure you’ll find that eating well is actually very delicious.
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