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Study: Better Lifestyle Choices Could Prevent 23% of Colorectal Cancer Cases

Published on , Last Updated on June 13, 2013

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When it comes to staying healthy and avoiding illness, here’s some classic advice that all of us have heard at some time or another. Eat healthy, exercise regularly, pay attention to our waistlines and consume alcohol and tobacco products moderately.

While there’s no denying the obvious truth of these straightforward recommendations, following them often proves to be easier said than done. Still, the long term benefits of making better lifestyle choices are well worth the effort.

Globally, colorectal cancer [1] kills more than a half million people each year. After studying roughly a decade’s worth of data collected on nearly 60 thousand middle aged and elderly European adults, Danish researchers have concluded that nearly a quarter of all colorectal cancer cases could be avoided simply by making better lifestyle choices [2]. Here are four tips that researchers suggest

Stay Physically Active

Just because you don’t have time to hit the gym three days a week doesn’t mean you can’t still keep your body active. Making small changes to your daily routine can have a huge impact over time. Based upon previously established World Health Organization findings [3], researchers recommend that we stay active for at least 30 minutes a day. Simple things like, parking your car at the far end of the lot when you go shopping, using the stairs instead of the elevator, taking your dog for a walk in the morning or taking a leisurely stroll around the block after dinner, are all easy ways to help counteract a sedentary lifestyle. Really, anything that gets your body in motion is recommended.

Choose to Eat a Healthy Organic Diet

Aside from the obvious nutritional benefits of maintaining a healthy, well-balanced diet, making intelligent choices when it comes to food is one of the single most important things you can do to avoid developing colorectal cancer.

High concentrations of body fat around the abdomen are especially dangerous. Eating right is a great way to boost your metabolism and keep trim. Simply maintaining a healthy waistline can significantly reduce the odds of developing cancer and other forms of disease.

Researchers recommend keeping you abdominal circumference less than 35 inches (88cm) for women or 40 inches (102cm) for men. Obviously, keeping it even less than that is best.

It’s important to eat an abundance of organic fruits and vegetables, not only will you get the necessary nutrients your body craves, but you’ll also get plenty of dietary fiber. High fiber foods play an important role in preventing colon cancer, as well as boosting your metabolism and immune system.

Treat Your Body Right

There’s no point in keeping yourself healthy if you can’t enjoy yourself. That said, it’s still important to be mindful of what substances you’re putting into your body. Experts recommend limiting alcohol consumption to about one drink a day for women, or about two a day for men.

If you’re a smoker or regularly enjoy other forms of tobacco, stop. It’s simply just not worth the risk. Tobacco products — and more specifically the chemicals added to them — are well known carcinogens. Cutting them out of your life for good is one of the best things you could possibly do for your health.

Pick Your Battles

Don’t be discouraged if you find yourself unable to implement all of these tips right away. While they may be simple on paper, working them into your daily routine can be a challenge for even the best of us. It may be true that, together, these lifestyle changes could reduce the odds of developing colon cancer by one-fourth, following just one of them could still lower you risk by as much as 13 percent.

Other Healthy Lifestyle Tips

Following the lifestyle tips above is strongly recommended. But, what if you already do those? Here are a few more healthy lifestyle tips for you to implement into your life.

First, consider taking a probiotic supplement. This will introduce a beneficial bacteria into your digestive tract, will has numerous benefits for you. Also, make sure you get plenty of Vitamin D. Studies have shown that Vitamin D has many health benefits. Unfortunately, other studies have shown that many of us are defieceint in this necessary vitamin. Be sure to get plenty of sun or take a vitamin D3 supplement.

Be mindful of the toxins that are in your living environment. Indoor air quality is a big problem for many of us. Get an air purifier for your house, or if you can afford it, get a HVAC air purifier for your whole house. If you have poor air quality or follow an unhealthy diet, then it would reccommended to get the toxins out of your body. Try doing a colon cleanse, followed by a liver cleanse, harmful organism cleanse and chemical/heavy metal cleanse.

The lifestyle tips listed above is alot of information to take in, we know. The good news is that you don’t have to do all of them. Just try implementing them into your life at whatever pace is most convienent for you. This is truly the best way to improve your health and overall life.

-Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, ND, DACBN, DABFM


  1. Medline Plus. Colorectal Cancer. National Institutes of Health.
  2. Helene Kirkegaard, Nina Fons Johnsen, Jane Christensen, Kirsten Frederiksen, Kim Overvad, Anne Tjonneland. Association of adherence to lifestyle recommendations and risk of colorectal cancer: a prospective Danish cohort study. BMJ 2010 August 23. ;341:c5504
  3. World Health Organization. Avoiding heart attacks and strokes: don’t be a victim – protect yourself (PDF). World Health Organization. 2010. ISBN 92 4 154672 7.

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Posted In: Clinical Studies,Colon Health Blog,Lifestyle Tips
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