World Cancer Day is celebrated on February 4th every year. This day highlights the importance of greater awareness of cancer prevention and early detection for the general public. In India, the National Cancer Control Program was launched in 1975 to provide cancer treatment facilities in the country. According to the latest data, about 1.1 million new cases are reported annually in India. It is estimated that every 8 minutes a woman dies from ovarian cancer in India. Tobacco (Beedi, Cigarette, Gutka, etc.) accounted for 3, 17,928 deaths in men and women in 2019. Oral cavity and lung cancers account for more than 25% of cancer deaths in men, while breast and oral cavity cancer account for 25% of deaths in women.
The way we live and our lifestyle can have profound effects on our well-being. This applies to both the general population and those with cancer. A healthy lifestyle can serve as the backbone for cancer treatment and help you get back to normal life quickly. It can improve a person’s long-term health.
As for cancer, a healthy lifestyle with the following six factors is very important to adopt in our busy modern-day life to prevent the possible risk of cancer. These tips also help the speedy recovery for those undergoing cancer treatments. Scientific research has also confirmed that these factors can contribute to better health.
The most common cancer is lung cancer. Tobacco contains 7,000 chemicals and at least 70 of them are carcinogenic, which increases the risk of cancer in every part of the body. According to the World Health Organization, tobacco is the single largest cause of cancer death; this would kill about 6 million people a year worldwide.
Tip: If you smoke, stop. (Never too late for long-time smokers: Studies show that those who quit smoking as senior citizens have improved health.) If you don’t use tobacco, don’t start.
Reducing stress levels can help maintain physical and mental health. Persistent mental and physical stress affects the function of the neurochemical, hormone, and immune systems. The research findings confirm that these internal changes in the body gradually affect cancer output.
Here are some tips for managing stress:
Practising pranayama, meditation, and yoga relaxation or taking a break from the daily busy schedule to focus your mind on any hobbies or skills you like.
Government figures show that the average Indian consumes about 18 kg of sugar a year, with an average of about 10 teaspoons of sugar per day. Consuming too much added sugar in the form of sweets or drinks along with a daily diet can lead to obesity and inflammation. This creates a favourable atmosphere inside the body for the growth of cancer cells.
Tip: Reduce or stop white sugar in your daily diet. It is better to use organic jaggery, honey, stevia, etc. instead of white sugar. It is easy to find the sugar content that is hidden in most food products by referring to the list of nutrients/ingredients mentioned on their label. Better to avoid such harmful products.
Exercise is essential during and after cancer treatment. It helps to reduce physical fatigue, weight gain, and stress. A sedentary lifestyle is one of the biggest causes of cancer. Regular exercises can eliminate harmful toxins that are produced by our body with constant mobility. In addition to regular exercise, it is advised not to sit in a single position or sleep for long periods of time.
Tip: Daily walk of 30 to 40 minutes is highly beneficial.
Some plastic containers mineral water bottles contain a synthetic organic compound called BPA (Bisphenol A), which disrupts the body’s endocrine system and increases the risk of breast cancer in women.
Tip: It is not critical that plastic actually causes cancer. But it is better to choose plastics that are BPA-free and use glass containers wherever possible.
According to research published in the Journal of Applied Toxicology, parabens used in toothpaste, shampoos, deodorants, and cosmetics are easily absorbed into the skin and gradually increase the risk of uncontrolled growth of breast cancer cells.
Tip: It is best to use paraben-free daycare materials.