PO Box 45
IRON RIVER, MICHIGAN 49935-1423
CANCER PREVENTION AND EARLY DETECTION
There is a wealth of information available on cancer prevention and early detection. There are general guidelines regarding actions to maintain or gain optimal health. Each person, being unique, must consult with their own health care professional to decide what is best for him/her. Here are a few general items:
1. Eat a healthy diet limiting foods that have lots of calories, but very little nutrients. The dietary guidelines may be changing, but if a diet is too extreme with one component, be more cautious about following it. You may also need to take a multi vitamin or other supplements as advised by your health care provider.
2. Exercise. This doesn't mean you have to be Jane Fonda, Richard Simons or any other fitness guru. The recommendations for exercise can be confusing, but a combination of cardiovascular and strength training exercises is usually a good combination. Check with your health care provider about a routine that's right for you.
3. Don't smoke. Cigarette smoking has been proven to cause cancer.
4. Wear sun screen and limit your time in the sun avoiding time outdoors from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 pm. The recommendation for SPF protection is also up for discussion, SPF should definitely be greater than 15, and follow the directions for application and re-application.
5. Drink 6-8 glasses of water a day unless your fluid intake is limited for other health reasons. This is in addition to other fluids you drink. Remember, alcohol and caffeine drinks like coffee, tea, and soda dehydrate you. If you are physically active, your amount of water intake will need to be increased. Our bodies are made up mostly of water, so it is very important to be well hydrated and keep waste moving out of our systems.
6. Maintain a healthy weight. This figure can be decided between you and your physician. There are billions of dollars spent on diet aides, etc. There are no quick fixes. The bottom line is that you have to take in fewer calories and get moving to burn more calories to lose weight. This may require substantial changes in lifestyle, but is necessary especially if you are obese. Obesity contributes to higher rates of diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, etc. People generally feel better when they are at a healthy weight.
7. There are many types of health screening. Self breast exam, self testicular exam, skin exam, pap smear, pelvic exam, oral exam, eye exam, prostate exam, Colonoscopy, blood pressure screening, screening for diabetes, bone density tests, and cholesterol screening. Check with your health care profession about what tests are right for you and the frequency with which the screenings should be done. Unfortunately cost is a deterrent for many people. Check with your health care professional for any type of programs available for limited income patients.
CANCER INFORMATION SERVICE: 1-800-4-Cancer(l-800-422-6237) or on the Web: http://cancernet.nci.nih.gov