Dietary changes, physical activity keeps cancer at bay

April 13th, 2009 - 4:53 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, April 13 (IANS) Some changes in our diets, more physical activity and weight control could cut down colon and breast cancer cases by over 45 to 38 percent, according to a report by the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR).
In 2006, a total of 15,918 new cancer cases were diagnosed in Iowa out of which 1,858 were colon cancer and 2,156 were breast cancer.

“The best way to statistically reduce your chances of cancer is to avoid smoking,” said Iowa Department Public Health (IDPH) ‘Fit for Life’ coordinator Dennis Haney.

“But this report indicates a significant number of cancer cases could be prevented just by eating better, moving more and maintaining a healthier weight.”

According to the 2006-2007 Iowa Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), more than 80 percent of all adults did not eat the recommended number of servings of fruits and vegetables (at least five each day).

In addition, 60 percent of adults did not participate in the recommended amount of physical activity, and nearly 65 percent of Iowans were considered overweight or obese, said an AICR release.

In addition to improvements in diet and fitness, cancer prevention should include limiting sun exposure and using sunscreen; drinking alcohol only in moderation, if at all; and having regular health screenings such as mammograms, pap tests and colorectal cancer exams.

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