Today, February 4 is “World Cancer Day”. Everyone you know has been affected by cancer, either directly or indirectly. We all know of someone who has either been diagnosed by cancer, fought cancer, survived cancer or succumb to this horrifying disease. We all have potentially cancerous cells in our body. Cancer doesn’t care who you are, how much money you make, if you are a good person, what race, religion, sexual orientation or age you are. It is non-discriminatory. Only YOU can do something about your own fight to either prevent or early detect this monster.
I have resourced our local “Cancer Care Manitoba” for their tips for prevention and screening. I want to share these with you now as I hope that it will reach more people and save more lives. As an early Valentine’s gift, please share this with your loved ones!
There are 2 major things we all need to do:
A) Get checked! Cancer screening saves lives.
Cancer Screening is for people who have no symptoms of cancer. It helps find cancer early when treatment may work better. It helps prevent some cancers by finding and treating early changes before they develop into cancer.
These are the screens and recommended ages to do them. However, family history or personal medical history may change this with frequency or type of screening.
- Women ages 50-74 should have a screening mammogram every 2 years.
- Women ages 21-69 who have been sexually active should have a Pap test every 3 years
- Men and women should have ages 50 -74 should do a home screening test (stool test) every 2 years.
B) Life a healthy lifestyle to reduce your risk!
There are 5 basic steps or rules to live by: (the 5th is added by myself from my own research)
1. Be Tobacco Free! Don’t use tobacco products of any kind and avoid second-hand smoke. If you are a smoker, quit now and reduce your lung cancer risk by up to 90%! If you don’t smoke, avoid second-hand smoke at all costs! Cigarettes contain 57 known carcinogens, and the smoke from a burning cigarette contains 70% more of these substances than inhaled smoke.
2. Cover Up! The number of skin cancer cases in Manitoba has increased by two-thirds since 1990. The good news is 90% of skin cancer can be cured if caught early! So, SLIP on clothing, SLAP on a hat and sunglasses and SLOP on sunscreen!
3. Shape Up! Just 10 minutes 3 times a day can help protect against colon and breast cancer. You don’t have to run a marathon or buy a gym membership!
4. Check Up! The earlier cancer is found, the more successful treatment is likely to be. Follow cancer screening guidelines and report any health changes to your doctor or dentist.
5. You are what you eat! Healthy eating has been linked to fighting or preventing cancer. Avoid processed or prepared packaged foods, deep fried foods and saturated fats. Eat lots of colours – fresh fruits and vegetables. Choose whole grains as much as possible. Choose lean meats such as chicken or fish and limit red meat. Get Omegas into your diet. Include all these in your diet: Vitamin D, green tea, turmeric, cinnamon, a multivitamin. Educate yourself. There are so many resources on line. Parents, you are in charge of what your kids eat. Set them up with a good nutritional foundation and knowledge.
For more information on Cancer Care Manitoba, their research, how to donate, contact information and more, please visit their website at http://www.cancercare.mb.ca
For more information on World Cancer Day, please visit http://www.worldcancerday.org/