5 Tips to Help Prevent Colon Cancer
According to statistics, colon cancer takes the lives of nearly 40,000 people a year. Colon cancer is one of the most alarming diseases, but you should remember that it’s also one of the cancers with the best prognosis if it’s diagnosed and treated in its early stages.
First of all, it’s important to know that colon cancer, like all other types of cancer, cannot be 100% prevented because it’s impossible to control all the factors that cause it. But by maintaining a healthy lifestyle and a proper diet you can put yourself in a good position to avoid it. That’s why today we want to give you some basic tips and guidelines that will help you avoid this problem as best you can.
It’s worth trying these tips for your overall health and your peace of mind!
Nutritional guidelines to prevent colon cancer
1. Eat plenty of fiber
How much fiber do you consume in a day? Maybe every once in a while you think of this nutrient, but other times, thanks to your busy lifestyle, you grab the first thing you find in the fridge and eat it quickly. That’s why so many people these days are prone to eating pre-cooked, frozen foods that are high in saturated fats, salt, and white flour, which are all difficult for the body to digest.
These foods oversaturate the liver and the intestines, causing toxins to build up that affect their core functions, while at the same time attacking the colon and harming its effectiveness. It’s important that you become aware of this and understand how important it is to eat plenty of fiber in your daily diet. An adequate amount, therefore, is between 25 to 35 grams a day.
Below is a list of some essential foods for getting enough fiber in your diet:
- Whole grains
- Brown rice
- Green leafy vegetables
- Root vegetables like beets and carrots
2. Limit your intake of harmful fats
As you already know, there are certain fats that are good for the body – like olive oil, and the fatty acids contained in fish like salmon. These are staples in what’s considered to be the healthiest diet in the world: the Mediterranean diet.
But fats from red meat, sugars, pastries, and more can be very bad for your health and are some of the triggers for the development of colon cancer. You should try to avoid them. Know that when you eat a lot of fat your body has to increase the amount of bile and stomach acid used to process them, and this directly affects your colon. It’s very dangerous.
3. Increase your antioxidant intake
Why not start out your day with a tablespoon of olive oil and a few drops of lemon juice? Drinking a glass of warm water with some lemon juice is another great idea. Both are excellent ways to cleanse the body from the start of your day and to get your proper “cocktail” of antioxidants.
It’s all about being aware of what your body needs, and rising to the challenge of making changes in your diet and getting those antioxidants that will strengthen your ability to fight the free radicals that cause cancer.
Fruits and vegetables that are high in vitamin A, C, and E are ideal for getting high levels of antioxidants, so be sure to add the following foods to your diets:
- Oranges and lemons
4. Folic acid
Plenty of studies have demonstrated the importance of getting enough folic acid to prevent colon cancer. Folic acid is also known as vitamin B9, which strengthens and improves the functions of the digestive system, from your stomach to your colon. It helps optimize cellular growth and protects you from disease.
So don’t think twice when it comes to taking supplements, if you think it’s necessary. You can always talk to your doctor first, or look for the right supplements in the pharmacy or natural food store. You can also get plenty of folic acid from a healthy diet. Here’s a list of foods to put on your grocery list:
- Fresh orange juice
- Brussels sprouts
- Sweet potato
5. Vitamin D
As both researchers and nutritionists have found, your chances of developing colon cancer are much lower if you have adequate levels of vitamin D. The instant you start suffering from a lack of this vitamin, you run the risk of numerous diseases and colon cancer is one of the most dangerous.
The main problem people have is that there’s not a lot of vitamin D available in food sources, so talk to your doctor who can order the proper blood work and decide whether or not you need to increase your levels of this vitamin. If you do, they can prescribe supplements that will be very helpful. But do pay attention to the following natural sources that can help increase your levels:
- Get out in the sun, but be careful to avoid excessive sun exposure in the middle of the day, between 10am and 2pm, when the sun is the most intense.
- Eat more salmon and sardines.
- Try chicken liver.
- Drink milk with added vitamin D, available in most grocery stores.