Food and Cancer: What you need to know

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At the age of 35, Laura Glynn was diagnosed with breast cancer. She underwent a mastectomy and the cancerous cells were successfully removed.  The experience made Laura take a look at her lifestyle, and she immediately took action to ensure the cancer would stay away for good.

According to Dr. Kathy Chavez, from the Raby Institute for Integrative Medicine, 10-30% of cancers are caused by diet and lifestyle. In fact, changing your habits can dramatically decrease your chances of getting cancer. Dr. Chavez says, “Even if you have a genetic predisposition, the way you live your life is really going to determine your health.”

Laura took Dr. Chavez’s words to heart and immediately changed her eating and exercise habits. She replaced processed foods with organic produce, cold water fish, and nuts. Laura also cut out coffee and decreased her alcohol intake. ‘I do believe that not only has it prevented the breast cancer from coming back, but it also helps me from preventing other disease from occurring,” Laura says.

Dr. Chavez has tips to prevent cancer:

  • Incorporate 5-7 servings of fruits and vegetables into your daily diet.
  • Aim for 30 grams of fiber per day.
  • Eat cold water fish, like sardines and salmon.
  • Get 30 minutes of exercise 5 days per week
  • Limit your alcohol consumption.
  • Cut down on red meat, specifically charred, grilled meats.
  • Cut out processed and sugary foods.

Finally, Dr. Chavez says it is most important to talk to your doctor if you’re noticing any changes in your body like weight gain in your abdomen, fatigue, or lack of sleep. She says, “You want to take all of these symptoms of your health not being quite right and act on them before you develop a cancer.”


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