Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Colorectal cancer prevention

Getting regular screening tests for colon cancer is the single best way for protection from the colorectal cancer. Although there is no sure way to prevent colorectal cancer, but there are things we can do that might help decrease the risk such as avoiding risk factors and increasing protective factors. Screening is recommended starting at age 50 for people who are not at increased risk of colorectal cancer. There are several different screening options available. People at higher risk, such as those with a strong family history of colorectal cancer, might start screening at a younger age. In the previous article, we mentioned that the following risk factors increase the risk of colorectal cancer:
    • Age
    • Family history of colorectal cancer
    • Personal history
    • Inherited risk
    • Alcohol
    • Cigarette smoking
    • Obesity
We have to state that these following protective factors decrease the risk of colorectal cancer:
    • Physical activity
    • Aspirin
    • Combination hormone replacement therapy
    • Polyp removal
Avoiding cancer risk factors may help prevent certain cancers. Risk factors include smoking, being overweight, and not getting enough exercise. Increasing protective factors such as quitting smoking and exercising may also help prevent some cancers.

o   Avoid obesity and weight gain.
o   Limit red meats.
o   Eat more vegetables and fruits.
o   Limit processed meat.
o    Increase the intensity and amount of your physical activity.
o   Get the recommended levels of calcium and vitamin D (see below).
o   Avoid excess alcohol.

Some studies suggest that taking a daily multi-vitamin containing folic acid, or folate, may lower colorectal cancer risk, but not all studies have found this. Also, some studies have suggested that vitamin D, which you can get from sun exposure, in certain foods, or in a vitamin pill, might lower colorectal cancer risk. Because of concerns that excess sun exposure can cause skin cancer, most experts do not recommend this as a way to lower colorectal cancer risk at this time. Other studies suggest that increasing calcium intake may lower colorectal cancer risk. Calcium is important for a number of health reasons aside from possible effects on cancer risk. Calcium and vitamin D might work together to reduce colorectal cancer risk, as vitamin D aids in the body’s absorption of calcium.  A few studies have found a possible link between a diet that is high in magnesium and reduced colorectal cancer risk, especially among women.

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