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What Food to Eat to Prevent Colon Cancer

Colon cancer is one of the most prevalent cancers globally. Some factors contributing to its development

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What Food to Eat to Prevent Colon Cancer?

Colon cancer is one of the most prevalent cancers globally. Some factors contributing to its development, such as genetics, gender, and age, maybe beyond control. However, modifiable factors to decrease colon cancer risk include weight, diet, and lifestyle choices. This article provides information on dietary recommendations to reduce the risk of colon cancer.

Foods that increase the risk of colon cancer

  1. Highly processed foods (Ultra-processed food, UPF): These foods undergo multiple chemical processes and often contain additives to enhance flavor, make them highly palatable, and preservatives to prolong shelf life. They are typically high in fat, sugar, salt, and refined carbohydrates, with minimal micronutrients and fiber. Examples include soft drinks, sugary fruit juices, snacks, biscuits, cakes, candies, and ready-to-eat or -heated meals, such as instant noodles, burgers, and pizza.
  2. Red meat or processed meat
    • Red meat includes beef, pork, lamb, venison, and goat meat.
    • Processed meats include sausages, bacon, ham, cold cuts, and deli meat.

Foods that may help reduce the risk of colon cancer

Currently, there is no definitive evidence on foods that prevent colon cancer. However, some studies suggest that foods high in calcium, vitamin D, and flavonoids, such as nuts and legumes, may help prevent colon cancer. Some experts recommend consuming high-fiber foods, such as vegetables, fruits, and unprocessed grains, to promote good bowel function and potentially reduce the risk of various chronic diseases, including colon cancer.

Behaviors that may help reduce the risk of colon cancer

Avoiding excessive alcohol consumption, quitting smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, and engaging in regular physical activity are recommended behaviors to reduce the risk of colon cancer.

Colon cancer prevention

The most effective method for preventing colon cancer is undergoing regular screening tests, which can catch precancerous polyps in their early stages, allowing doctors to remove them before they develop into cancer. The screenings should begin at age 45 or earlier for individuals at high risk, such as those with chronic inflammatory bowel disease or a family history of colon cancer.

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Published: 31 Mar 2024

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