Oncology Professor Angus Dalgleish suggests five things we can all do to decrease the chance of getting cancer …
Cancer effects every one of us directly or otherwise! The good news is, there are simple and practical steps that can be taken to minimize your chances of getting cancer. A combination of dietary and lifestyle changes can be implemented to ensure you are doing all you can to avoid cancer.
1. Don’t Panic
Firstly, although cancer is an undeniably frightening prospect, it is important to stay calm when experiencing what you think may symptoms. We all experience aches and pains that can be scary, but we tend to really know when something is seriously wrong. It is important not to confuse the two, for the sake of your own sanity as well as our NHS. So listen to your body, is something genuinely wrong? Make a record of your symptoms so you can present clearly to your GP.
2. Think Anti-Inflammatory
For years I took aspirin on a daily basis to keep inflammation at bay. Those with inflammatory activity react far less efficiently to cancer treatment, so it is a good idea to stay on top of any inflammation on an on-going basis. Bromelain is a widely accessible anti-inflammatory and is naturally found in the core of pineapples.
3. Vitamin D is Key
Vitamin D is another ally when it comes to fighting cancer. Patients of mine with low levels react less effectively than those with high. Topping up Vitamin D levels is one of the first steps I take. Fortunately, there are natural means of ensuring your levels stay high. During the summer months – make sure you are spending around 20 mins a day in direct sunlight. And top up with supplements outside of the sunny season.
4. Cutting Out Sugar
Perhaps the most difficult step! Diet plays a key factor in our overall health and cancer is no exception. Regular processed and sugary foods can be detrimental when treating cancer. It is a good idea to keep intake of such foods to a minimum. You can definitely decrease the chance of getting cancer by eating less sugar!
5. Wait 3 Weeks
Just as step number one – it is a good idea to wait 3 weeks before seeking medical help. Dependent on nature and severity of symptoms of course, too much stress and pressure on both yourself and the NHS is not a good idea. If symptoms persevere past the 3 week mark, consider the problem to be of a more concerning nature and seeing your GP is advisable.
By Professor Angus Dalgleish, Professor of Oncology at St George’s University of London and Principal of the Institute for Cancer Vaccines and Immunotherapy
Founded in 2000, the Institute for Cancer Vaccines and Immunotherapy is a unique charity which exclusively funds research into cancer immunotherapy and vaccines. Overlooked for many years by major funders, immunotherapy is now becoming a standard treatment for many different types of cancer.