These cancer prevention tips are sponsored by the American Cancer Society; however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
Happy February, friends! February is National Cancer Prevention Month and in honor of this very important occasion, I am sharing about a very special topic. A little more than a year ago, I lost my precious grandmother to cancer. She was one of my favorite people in the world, and while there’s no doubt we have all been touched in some way by cancer, there are things we can be doing for ourselves and our families now to improve health and help reduce the risk of
Everything about my grandmother was special. She was the most talented person I have ever known. Poet Laureate of Arkansas, she could create a poem at a moment’s notice, she could create a jingle out of any scenario, and then sit and play it on the piano in any key. One of her many specialties was making crafts. She would look at things like empty milk cartons, what some look at as trash, and turn them into an elaborate Easter egg basket.
She was a school teacher and a preschool teacher for 45 years. She would take me to the library during the summers and I often got to go to book signings and meet the author. I still have some of those books, treasured memories of her. She helped foster my love for reading and writing, which I believe is one of the reasons I love creating content and writing here on the blog.
My grandmother battled cancer when she was the young age of 45…not too far ahead of where I am. She had five children and had brain cancer. She fought hard, and her five children, 10 grandchildren, 13
But she had to face cancer again at 88 and she passed away due to complications. She was our precious grandmother, mother, wife, friend, and confidant. While cancer seems to be around every corner, I want to do what I can to protect myself and my beloved family and there are some steps that we’ve implemented for a healthy lifestyle.
CANCER PREVENTION TIPS
Healthy Diet: Eat a diet of whole, real foods. Diets full of whole grains, leafy greens like broccoli and cauliflower, and tomatoes, could help reduce risk of cancer. We try to avoid processed foods where possible and reduce the amount of sugar we eat. I’m trying to teach my kids at an early age to eat more vegetables and fruits, and salad is honestly one of their favorite meals!
Active Lifestyle: Find a way to exercise or fit in physical activity, whether it’s playing a round of basketball or soccer with your kids, or making time for exercise at the gym. Try for either 75 minutes of vigorous activity, or 150 minutes of moderate activity (or a combination of both) throughout the week.
An interesting statistic I just learned is that sitting for long periods of time has been linked to a greater risk for cancers like colon, endometrial and lung…use any excuse to walk around throughout the day whether it’s walking the stairs during lunch or parking far away from the store so you can get in more steps.
Maintain a Healthy Weight: By focusing on the two things above, maintaining a healthy weight should be easier. This is important because being overweight or obese is linked to an increased risk of many cancers. I try to limit high-calorie foods and always read my food labels. I’m often surprised at just how much sugar and how many calories are in some of the foods I’ve regularly eaten in the past but have been able to replace with healthy, whole foods.
Sun Protection: This is a big one for me because I have fair skin, but it’s really important for all of us no matter your skin tone. I use a sunscreen in my skin care and makeup routine every morning, and I apply daily on skin when I know I’ll be getting direct sunlight. Most skin cancers are a direct result of exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun, and it doesn’t matter what the weather conditions, even on cloudy or chilly days, use sun protection when you’re outdoors. When you are outside, stay under the shade, use a hat and sunglasses, and use SPF 30+. Unfortunately, I used the tanning bed far too long in my teens but I avoid tanning beds now.
Screening: Screening can actually catch some cancers early, improving the chances for successful treatment. Check out the American Cancer
A few other tips that are important:
Moderate Your Alcohol Intake as alcohol has been linked to several types of cancer. American Cancer Society recommends no more than one drink a day for women and two drinks a day for men
Avoid Tobacco. Smoking is by far the leading risk factor for lung cancer but it often interacts with other risk factors. Smoking not only increases…the risk for lung cancer, it’s also a risk for cancers of the mouth, kidney, liver, bladder, pancreas and more.
I hope these cancer prevention tips will help you lead a healthy lifestyle and avoid the 1 in 3