Monday, 23 January 2012

Katrina Evans - Eat Smart. Be Fit. Fight Cancer.

Living a healthy lifestyle can go a long way toward preventing disease, including reducing the risk of developing cancer. Maintaining a proper diet is an important part of a healthy living plan that can go a long way. Smarter food choices early on in your life will set you up for success. Less active individuals combating obesity with a poor diet are at a significant risk factor for developing cancer. Science has shown that dietary changes along with regular exercise can improve overall health and help to prevent and treat chronic disease such as cancer so get to it and start setting goals!

Cancer, like many other diseases, is a condition where inflammation plays a primary role. The typical diet today is comprised of low-nutrient, highly processed foods, unhealthy fats and sugars, preservatives, and artificial ingredients that contribute to inflammation in the body. Toxic chemicals in our foods and environment overload our bodily systems and lead to illness.

Experts agree that consuming a diet rich in fruits and vegetables is an important part of a healthy eating plan. Fruits and vegetables contain powerful antioxidants and phytonutrients that support a healthy immune system, protect bodily cells, help to maintain healthy cholesterol levels and are shown to reduce the risk of disease, including cancers like pancreatic cancer, mesothelioma, or even colon cancer. Fruits and vegetables contain fiber that aids in proper digestion and regulates release of sugar into the bloodstream. This is particularly important in managing cholesterol levels and preventing chronic disease. The high fiber and water content of fruits and vegetables gives us a feeling of fullness so that we are less likely to overeat.

Utilizing an abundance of fresh and nutrient-dense whole foods is important for optimal wellness. Along with fruits and vegetables, other important foods in a healthful diet include whole grains, eggs, dried beans, nuts and seeds, seafood and lean meats, and healthful fats. These healthy foods are packed with beneficial nutrients, including antioxidants, fiber, protein, omega-3 essential fatty acids and complex carbohydrates to support healthy insulin levels. Drinking adequate amounts of water, the most important nutrient for our bodies, keeps us adequately hydrated and is essential for flushing toxins from our system.

Along with diet, The American Cancer Society now recommends at least 30 minutes of regular exercise 5 days per week to reduce the risk for cancer. Exercise aids in cancer prevention by boosting the immune system, promoting heart health, balancing energy and hormone levels, and supporting the antioxidant defense system and DNA repair process in the body. When developing an exercise regime that is right for you, don’t be afraid to consult a doctor or do your own research like Alex. Find out specifics like, what is mesothelioma, thyroid cancer, or the cause of kidney cancer and what foods can have a protective effect against them, how can green tea help prevent heart disease, or is garlic really considered a “super food?” Getting a jump start preventing cancer with proper dieting and exercise practices from a young age is a lot easier with the right tools and attitude.

Making healthy food choices is an important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle and can play a critical role in the fight against cancer.

Katrina Evans is a recent college graduate and aspiring writer especially interested in health and wellness. She wants to make a difference in people’s lives because she sees how cancer has devastated so many people in this world. Katrina also likes running, reading and listening to cool podcasts.

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