By Dt. Deepshikha
Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Hospital
The type of foods we eat can help us reduce our cancer risk. Our body need nutrients from food to give us energy, keep us warm and protect us from disease. We can make food choices that give us a greater chance of avoiding cancer as well as meeting our body’s needs.
EAT A HEALTHY DIET: Basing our diets on plant foods can reduce our risk of cancer. These foods contain plenty of fiber, water and health protective nutrients and natural compounds called PHYTOCHEMICAL (ANTIOXIDENT) Plant foods tend to be lower in calories, so they can help us in maintaining a healthy weight. For example: - tomatoes, berries, papaya, orange etc.
- LIMIT YOUR INTAKE OF RED & PROCESSED MEAT: Red meat refers to beef, pork, lamb& goat; foods like hamburgers, minced beef. Although eating a lot of red meat is linked to BOWEL CANCER.
Processed meats are meats which have been preserved by smoking, curing or salty or by addition of the preservatives (include ham, salami, hot dogs and some sausages), in which cancer causing substances( carcinogens) can be formed. These substances can damage cells in the body, leading to the development of cancer.
- WATCH YOUR WEIGHT: Being overweight not only causes heart disease and diabetes, it also cause different type of cancer such as BOWEL, COLORECTAL, BREAST, PANCREATIC. Weight gain:-
Calories consumed > Calories used
- Weight loss can improve health.
- Discuss a diet plan with a Dietician.
- Consume a nutritious diet.
- Avoid fat and sugar rich foods.
YOU DON’T HAVE TO EAT LESS,
YOU JUST HAVE TO EAT RIGHT…
- LIMIT YOUR INTAKE OF SALT: Consuming too much salt can increase our risk of stomach cancer as well as high BP. A high salt intake can damage the lining of the stomach in ways that make cancer.
- If u enjoys salty and pickled foods, eat them in moderation.
- Avoid ready to cook food products (packed food), as they are high in salt (Do check the labels before buying).
- CUT DOWN ON FAT: Diet high in fat increase our risk for many types of cancer like BREAST, PROSTATE, and COLON.
- Fat that increase cancer risk are found in products like red meat, egg yolk, full cream milk and desi ghee.
- Fat that reduces cancer risk are unsaturated fats some include olive oil, mustard oil, flax seed oil, canola oil and rice bran oil.
Include roasted and baked dishes instead of fried item in your diet.
- AVOID ALCOHAL AND SMOKING: Drinking alcohol regularly can increase the risk of several different type of cancer.
Heavy drinking can cause Cirrhosis of liver, which can then lead to cancer. Smoking and drinking together increases your risk of developing Throat and Mouth cancer. The more you cut down on alcohol and smoking, the more you reduce your risk of developing cancer.
- BE ACTIVE: Being physically active can reduce your risk of cancer and cancer recurrence. It also help avoid weight gain, obesity, heart disease and diabetes, as well as making you feel better both physically and mentally. The more active you are, the more you reduce the risk of cancer like Bowel, Breast and Endometrial cancer.
Cut down on:
Watching T.V., being on a computer or playing computer games, taking lifts and escalators, sitting for more than 30 minutes at a time.
Breaking up your sedentary time with Aerobic exercise (30-60 minutes daily) - jog, cycle, brisk walk, swim, dance, aerobics, housework etc.
Take stairs instead of lifts and escalators, walk to nearest shop, garden.