Thursday, May 2, 2013

Healthy Lifestyle Tips: Worried About Cancer? You Have More Control Than You Think!

If you have done any research on cancer, you probably walked away with one of two responses:

1. Fear: OMG! What am I gonna do?
2. Empowered: Wow, I have more control than I think!

The truth of the matter is that it doesn't really matter what kind of reaction you had. Why? Think about it. If you had a fear reaction, then you can live in fear but you won't be helping yourself live a longer, healthier life. So while that reaction may be perfectly normal, if you are interested in a healthy lifestyle, it's time to dump that reaction!

The second reaction is far more helpful, not to mention far more truthful.

Why You Have a Lot of Power Over Cancer
If you read studies put out by the American Cancer Society (ACS) and other researchers in this field of study, you may be amazed to discover these facts:
  • 1/2 to 2/3 of our cancer risk is under our own control
  • 1/3 of all cancer deaths in the U.S. are correlated with physical inactivity and diet
In other words, living a healthy lifestyle has a lot to do with whether we are at risk for cancer or not. Most of the factors that lead to a healthy lifestyle are common sense, and may have you saying, "Yeah, yeah... I've heard these before." You may have heard these tips before, but if you really want to reduce your risk of cancer, then you really have to LIVE these tips, not just read about them or know about them.

So please, read the following healthy lifestyle tips with an eye toward really integrating them into your everyday life, not just nodding along in agreement with no intention of actually using them.

Healthy Lifestyle Tip #1: Exercise, Even a Little
Consistent exercise has been linked to a reduced risk in cancer, according to research on the subject. For instance, certain studies demonstrate that higher levels of physical activity are correlated with reduced rates of breast cancer. The ACS recommends a mere 150 minutes per week of moderate physical activity--anything from gardening to a quick walk around the block!

Healthy Lifestyle Tip #2: Eat Right in Two Simple Ways
There are plenty of articles out there on how to eat right, so we won't bore you with all the details. However, there are two particular areas of dietary focus for supporting your body's ability to fight off cancer.

First, eat 5 servings of fruits and veggies daily, especially the colorful ones, which tend to have many antioxidant properties. When shopping, look for yellow peppers, leafy greens, orange fruits, and blueberries. If you think 5 servings sounds like a lot, you can supplement your dietary intake with anv antioxidant-packed capsule.

Second, decrease your intake of red meat and go for more plant-based proteins, such as those from tofu and beans. Does that mean you have to give up all those juicy steaks and ribs? Nope. Just remember, a healthy lifestyle is all about moderation!

Healthy Lifestyle Tip #3: Get Your Beauty Rest

While our society currently rewards workaholic behavior and frowns on people who need their "beauty sleep," the truth of the matter is that people who get a healthy eight to nine hours of sleep tend to develop cancer less frequently than those who get seven hours or less of sleep. Some experts suggest that the hormone melatonin could be the cause. When we sleep, the absence of light triggers the body's production of melatonin, which seems linked to decreased risk of cancer. Although researchers are not totally clear on the connection, that connection is definitely present. So... get your beauty sleep as much as you can. Now that's a health tip that should be easy to follow!

Healthy Lifestyle Tips and You
Not to beat a dead horse, but if you managed to make it through the list of healthy lifestyle tips above, we have to ask: did you actually take any of it in? Did knowing that those simple tips can probably reduce your risk of cancer make you feel any more motivated to take action?

We hope so! I mean really... it's not like we suggested you run a marathon, give up all animal protein, or work harder. In fact, we suggested you sleep more and work less... how hard can that be, right? Sleep more, get healthier!

Well, the choice is up to you as always, especially since you now know that you have a LOT of control over your cancer risk. It's all about living healthy and being happy!

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