Can you really prevent the big C by following a clean diet and creating healthy lifestyle choices? Many experts believe the foods you eat (and don’t eat) play a bigger role than you may realize.
Although many professionals differ in their opinion on the best path to a guaranteed cancer-free life, there are a few biggies that most experts agree can certainly decrease your chances of having to face off against it. These are the top tips that appear to be unanimous across the board:
1. Avoid smoking at all costs! A no-brainer for sure, but definitely worth mentioning over and over again.
2. Watch out for processed meats and cooking any type of meat over an open flame (I’m talking to you chicken!).
3. Make sure you work out; I’ll bet you already knew this, but are you actually doing it? By exercising and keeping your body fat in check, you greatly decrease the pro-inflammatory effects that excess fat has on your body—and long story short, decrease the odds of the big C.
4. Eat your veggies! Why take man-made drugs to combat what could be prevented with nature’s medicine?
New to the list is veganism, or, adopting a completely plant-based diet. Studies have shown on numerous occasions that vegetarians have the lowest occurrences of all cancers. This got researches thinking—well, if vegetarians are doing so well, what of vegans? According to best-selling author and health and wellness activist Kathy Freston, “A new study just out of Loma Linda University funded by the National Cancer Institute reported that vegans have lower rates of cancer than both meat-eaters and vegetarians. Vegan women, for example, had 34 percent lower rates of female-specific cancers such as breast, cervical, and ovarian cancer. And this was compared to a group of healthy omnivores who ate substantially less meat than the general population (two servings a week or more), as well as after controlling for non-dietary factors such as smoking, alcohol, and a family history of cancer.”
She actually goes into further detail on the specifics of how this is achieved, but due to space accommodations, we will only mention it broadly. For some reason the women put on the plant-based diet for two weeks were “… found to suppress the growth of three different types of breast cancer” and “[s]imilar results were found for men against prostate cancer (as well as against prostate enlargement).”
Animal protein is known to increase the cancer-causing growth hormone known as IGF-1; by eliminating animal foods from our diet, we can literally turn off this “switch” to help discourage the growth of the cancer cells.
Freston sums it up nicely whenever she states how “This makes sense when you consider the research done by Drs. Dean Ornish and Nobel Prize winner Elizabeth Blackburn; they found that a vegan diet caused more than 500 genes to change in only three months, turning on genes that prevent disease and turning off genes that cause breast cancer, heart disease, prostate cancer, and other illnesses. This is empowering news, given that most people think they are a victim of their genes, helpless to stave off some of the most dreaded diseases. We aren’t helpless at all; in fact, the power is largely in our hands. It’s on our forks, actually.”
There are numerous benefits to adopting a plant-based lifestyle; I have been following one for several years now and even throughout my pregnancy. I have clear skin, unbridled energy, excellent health and bloodwork, never, ever get sick, and never have to worry about my weight. If you are new to the idea, start slow so that you don’t give up before you begin. Check out www.goveg.com to explore more information or email me if you have any questions. I love hearing from yall!
Crystal Manjarres is the owner of Pink Island Fitness, a private personal training and Pilates studio on Marco Island. She is a Certified Personal Trainer, Licensed Massage Therapist, Certified Colon Hydrotherapist and Stott Pilates certified instructor. Her focus is “Empowering men and women of all shapes and sizes”. To send in a question, email PinkIslandFitness@Live.com. She can also be reached at www.PinkIslandFitness.com and 239-333-5771.