How can I lower my risk for cancer?
How can I lower my risk for cancer?

One of the most important preventive measures you can take against cancer is making healthy lifestyle choices. In general, you will lower your risk for cancer by taking the following steps:

  • Eat a varied diet low in fat with lots of vegetables and fruits.
  • Balance the food you eat with physical activity.
  • Don't use tobacco in any form.
  • Avoid strong direct sunlight and wear protective clothing and sunscreen lotion.
  • If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation.
  • Read and follow warning labels on various household products, including pesticides and cleaners.
  • Be aware of risks associated with your job and wear appropriate safety equipment at all recommended times.
  • See a physician on a regular basis and follow his/her recommendations regarding lifestyle and cancer screening.

To learn more:

PDQ Cancer Information Summaries: Prevention
(National Cancer Institute)
These articles talk about risk factors and methods for preventing cancer. Each article discusses one type of cancer (breast, prostate, ovarian, and others). Tobacco use is the subject of an article. Each article is offered in a version for patients and a version for health professionals.
Colorectal Cancer Prevention and Treatment
(American Gastroenterological Association)
Find out about colon cancer prevention on the site of the American Gastroenterological Association.
Preventing Lung Cancer
(American Lung Association)
Tips on how to prevent lung cancer.
The New American Plate
(American Institute for Cancer Research)
This site teaches you how to create meals that lower your risk for cancer and other chronic diseases, while managing your weight at the same time.

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Written by: Nancy C. McKeehan, M.S.L.S.
Reviewed by: Jeffrey G. Schultze, M.D.
Last Modified: Thursday February 05, 2015 11:14 AM