12 Easy Ways to Slash Your Cancer Risk (and Your Waistline!)

decrease your risk for many forms of cancer by following these healthy tips.

May 9, 2011— -- Trim the Fat

The more fat you eat, the greater your risk of developing a highly fatal form of cancer. In a study of more than 500,000 people reported in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, those who ate the most fat (about 40 percent of their daily calories) were 23 percent more likely to develop pancreatic cancer than those who ate the least (about 20 percent of their cals). Limit fat to 20 to 35 percent of your calories—about 40 to 70 grams total in an 1,800-calorie diet.

Go For Yolk

Research in 2009 suggests that egg yolk may be cancer-protective. The yellow stuff is rich in choline, which has been linked to lower rates of breast cancer. One yolk delivers 25 percent of your daily needs.

Hail a Cabbage

Each 22-calorie cup of cabbage is loaded with sulforaphane, a chemical that increases your body's production of the enzymes that disarm cell-damaging, cancer-causing free radicals.

Be Like Popeye

A 2009 report in the International Journal of Cancer shows that people who ate the most folate-rich leafy greens, such as spinach, had half as many skin cancer tumors as those who ate the least. It's thought that the folate in greens may help repair DNA.

Bite a Blackberry

It contains anthocyanins, powerful antioxidants that have been shown to fight various forms of cancer, according to a new study in Cancer Prevention Research.

Try the Cheese Platter

A large-scale study of 120,000 women found that premenopausal women who consumed a lot of dairy products, especially low-fat and fat-free ones, ran a lower risk of breast cancer.

Serve the Salmon

Or any other fish high in omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s can help mollify your cancer risk.

Eat the Whole Grain

Whole-grain carbohydrates are a great source of fiber. European researchers found that those with the highest daily intakes of fiber also had a 40 percent lower risk of developing colon cancer.

Sip Hot Tea

A 2007 study in The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry found that drinking 2 to 6 cups of hot green tea a day helps prevent skin cancer and may reverse the aging affects of the sun's rays. Drink it hot to reap the greatest amount of catechins, a type of antioxidant with proven anti-cancer properties.

Get a D

Foods high in vitamin D, like low-fat milk, help detoxify cancer-causing chemicals released during the digestion of high-fat foods, according to a study at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.

Order Drinks with a Twist

According to University of Arizona research, lemon zest and orange zest contain d-limonene, an antioxidant that can reduce your risk of skin cancer by up to 30 percent if you consume quantities as small as 1 tablespoon per week.

Color Your Plate

A 14-year study found that those whose diets were highest in fruits and vegetables had a 70 percent lower risk of digestive-tract cancers.


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