With 2018 now at hand, many of us will resolve to reign in our eating habits until the Holiday season returns next fall. The leeway we have understandably allowed ourselves over the past few weeks so as to indulge during the Holidays will be curtailed. So we say!
To help, the National Foundation for Cancer Research is pleased to offer easy-to-follow tips that can assist in ensuring a happier, healthier New Year, and which, over time, may reduce your risk of cancer
Staying healthy by eating well and exercising is one of the best ways to reduce your cancer risk. NFCR recommends these tips for maintaining a healthy lifestyle over the course of the winter, and beyond:
- Eat more vegetables and fruit, and less red meat. Choose colorful fruits and veggies. They are filled with cancer-fighting antioxidants. Turkey is a healthy meat choice. To cut down on fat, remove the skin.
- Moderate alcohol consumption. Remember that regular consumption of alcohol throughout your life can increase your cancer risk. Men should not consume more than 2 drinks per day. To reduce the risk of breast cancer, women should not consume more than 3 drinks per week.
- Get your greens and use healthy cooking oils. Eat spinach, broccoli, green beans and dark, leafy greens. Use healthy oils such as flax, walnut or canola. Try drizzling vegetables with extra virgin olive oil. Delicious!
- Eat wild salmon, tuna or mackerel. They are full of Omega-3 oils, which are great for cellular health and may help prevent cancer.
- Go a little nuts! Nuts such as walnuts and almonds are great sources of protein and healthy fat, so they make a great filler between meals. Don’t overdo it. Healthy fat is still fat.
- Avoid white starch. These are empty calories with very little nutritional value. Your digestive system struggles to handle them. Choose instead food made with whole wheat or multigrain flour.
- Fiber is good! Choose whole grains, beans, barley, lentils, etc. Dried figs, dried cranberries, and dried apricots are great sources of fiber to integrate into your meals.
- Be aware of your sugar intake and high-fat dessert choices. Have your dessert, but keep it balanced. Try a piece of good quality dark chocolate or a poached pear. If you “splurge,” keep it small, and add some extra time to your regular exercise routine.
- Drink 16 ounces of water before eating. Dehydration can be confused with hunger. Keeping hydrated by drinking at least eight 8 oz. glasses of water daily is essential to helping your body function properly.
- Eat a healthy snack at home before attending a party. This will help control your hunger so you don’t arrive at the party ravenous.
- Take time out of your busy schedule to enjoy life and laugh. It is truly the best medicine.
- Exercise is a great way to stay healthy and prevent cancer. Walk, jog, ride your bike, play racquetball, practice yoga—anything to get your body moving! Exercising 5 times a week for at least 30 minutes per workout will have significant positive impacts on your life. Start a family tradition by taking walks or bike rides and continue it throughout the year each time there is a get-together.
- Slow Down. Eat slowly and enjoy time with family and friends. Turn off the TV, phone, and electronics! Eating slowly gives your body time to realize it is full. Thoroughly chewing your food helps maintain a steady rate of metabolism.
- Get at least 7 hours of sleep and stay on your natural schedule as much as possible. Late night eating and drinking will result in a rough night’s sleep.
In addition to these healthy tips, NFCR wants to introduce you to a powerful cancer-fighting manual, our “To Your Health” Recipe Book, filled with delicious and healthy recipes.
“To Your Health” recipes are brimming with cancer-fighting ingredients, including antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables, whole grains and protein. The cookbook also features lifestyle tips, early detection methods and other helpful information on how to further decrease your risk of cancer. It contains more than 50 easy-to-follow recipes, ranging from soups to desserts, and everything in between. It’s available online at https://donate.nfcr.org/a/main-donation.