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There is no way to guarantee that you won’t get cancer, but there are steps you can take to reduce your overall risk.
- Quit smoking or, better still, never start.
- Maintain a healthy weight, but avoid diets. Strict diets usually result in weight regain because they are difficult to follow long term. It is far better to make moderate changes that will last you for a lifetime.
- Be physically active. Aim for at least 30 minutes, preferably more, on most days of the week. Mix it up – play a game of footy, go for a surf, walk the dog.
- Eat your greens, reds and yellows …to meet your recommended fruit and veg intake (five serves of veg and two serves of fruit daily) you only need to have a mid-morning and afternoon fruit snack, a big salad or vegetable soup for lunch and a decent portion of veggies with your dinner Easy!
- Ditch the white stuff and eat a variety of wholegrain, wholemeal and high-fibre foods such as cereals, breads, rice and pasta. Aim for at least 2 serves a day.
- Go easy on the red meat. Swap it for chicken, seafood or even some legumes and stay clear of processed meats as these have been linked to increased risk of bowel cancer.
- Cover up when out in the sun – it’s not just sunscreen, cover up with long sleeves if possible, wear a hat and don’t forget your sunnies. Like skin, your eyes can be damaged, especially if you are exposed to glare from water, snow or sand.
- Get to know your body and what is normal for you, and see your doctor when you notice any changes. Have all the recommended screening tests.
- Cut back on the booze. When it comes to cancer, there’s no safe amount of alcohol, so men who choose to drink should have no more than 2 standard drinks a day – that doesn’t mean you should drink every day, give your body a break.
- Choose a diet low in fat and salt.
For further advice call 13 11 20 or visit www.cancercouncil.com.au