Here’s how you can protect yourself from cancer.
Cancer is one of the leading killer diseases in the world today. It is conceivable that everyone reading this has been affected by cancer either directly or indirectly. You have either lost a relative, friend, neighbour or workmate or know someone close who is battling with this killer disease that is not only devastating to families but to societies as well.
Here’s the good news though, cancer is preventable. The first thing to note, cancer is largely a lifestyle disease – influenced by individual choices or circumstances beyond our control.
Cancer cases have been attributed to the following causes:
- Genetic or hereditary: This accounts for 5-10% of cancer cases. Some forms such as breast and colon cancer are more common in some families. In these cases, normal control of cell division is removed because a specific gene is lacking. These genes, called tumour suppressor genes or anti-oncogenes usually prevent cell replication. Consequently, a form of retinoblastoma appears.
- Chronic infections: 18-26% – Chronic Infections. There is increasing evidence that some infections can eventually cause cancer, and in particular those related to cancers of the stomach, liver, cervix and Kaposi sarcoma (a special type of cancer that occurs in AIDS patients).
- Obesity: This accounts for 23% of cancer cases. Obesity occurs when the amount of calories consumed is more than the amount burned through physical activity. Increased body fat leads to chronic inflammation in the body, higher levels of oestrogen and lower insulin sensitivity. This inflammation causes DNA damage which leads to cancer. Overweight patients also have a much higher risk of heart attack, nerve injury and wound infection post surgery. Obesity alone increases the risk of death after surgery. Cancers of the oesophagus, bowel, liver, gallbladder, pancreas, and kidney cancer may be linked to obesity.
- Environmental: These make up 41% of cancer cases. The effects of industrialization make food consumption a dangerous endeavour. A lot of herbicides and pesticides are used during farming. Water used to irrigate may have dangerous heavy metals. Certain behaviours expose your body to carcinogens and control how your body reacts to them. These include heavily grilled meats, tobacco and exhaust fumes from diesel engines. Certain occupations also expose people to cancer. For instance, people who work on power lines are exposed to electromagnetic fields which cause leukaemia and brain cancer.
Cancer is the abnormal growth of body cells. They defy the genetic program which regulates life and death and in so doing become immortal. As they continue to replicate, they form tumours which grow for as long as they are nurtured. Research shows that cancer cells take 8-10 years to grow to pinhead size for detection.
Cancer thrives on a weak or malfunctioning system. Making sure that your immunity is in tip top condition is key. How do you achieve this? Eat right, detoxify the body regularly, balance your energy through exercise and sleep and practice this lifestyle. Eat food that provides your body with essential micronutrients.
Eating right means eating foods that provide your body with essential micronutrients. Fill your diet with the following nutrients.
- Vitamin D – Fatty fish, liver, egg yolk and sunshine
- Omega 3 – Sardines (omena), spinach, fish oil, chia seeds
- Vitamin K2 – Probiotics – probiotic yogurt, fermented foods, Gouda cheese, cabbage, cucumbers
- Magnesium – Aloe Vera, cassava, beans, nuts, whole wheat bread, brown rice, pumpkin seeds
- Vitamin B12 – Aloe Vera, yogurt, shellfish, tofu, cheese, eggs
- Vitamin E – Aloe Vera, sweet potato, avocado, butternut, broccoli
- Vitamin A – Aloe Vera, yogurt, kale, tomato, carrots, lettuce, fish, tropical fruits (oranges, pawpaw, passion fruit, mangoes)
- Iodine – Aloe Vera, potatoes, strawberries, iodized salt, sea vegetables
- Calcium –Milk, kale, okra, salmon, oatmeal, yogurt, aloe vera, broccoli, oranges, prunes, kiwi fruit
- Iron – Aloe Vera, cassava, poultry, pork, raisins, peas, beans, red meat
- Choline – Peanuts, eggs, liver, yogurt, aloe vera, rice, pasta
This list proves that you have the required micronutrients to prevent cancer within reach, so power to you!
Don’t wait for 8-10 years for cancer to have grown to detection stage to start eating right. Start eating healthy in your next meal.