Cancer is American’s number one health concern, according to AICR surveys. Yet, a new report shows that as a nation we are shockingly slow to make and support lifestyle changes that could prevent about one-half of all cancer cases – and the accompanying cost, loss and suffering – in the United States.
The Cancer Prevention & Early Detection Facts & Figures (CPED) 2013 from the American Cancer Society reports on trends for tobacco use, obesity, diet, physical activity and screening. Although there’s a slowing in the increase of overweight and obesity, over 2/3 of Americans still fall into this category.
The science is clear: by staying lean, eating a healthful plant-based diet and being physically active Americans could prevent 1/3 – or about 400,000 cases – of the most common cancers every year. Just about every American recognizes that tobacco use and too much sun are cancer risks, but many Americans are not aware of the link between obesity and cancer. In fact, if everyone were a healthy weight, we could prevent over 116,000 cases of cancer every year. Continue reading
This is the final Friday of National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month.
If you forget everything else we’ve talked about this month regarding colorectal cancer, please remember this one number:
As in, 50 percent. As in, take the number of colorectal cancers that occur in the United States each year — about 143,500 — and cut it in half.
That’s how many cases we could prevent, just by making healthier everyday choices.
- Move more, every day, in every way.
- Eat more fiber-rich foods like vegetables, whole grains, fruits and beans — and make less room for red meat.
- While you’re at it, skip cold cuts, bacon, sausage, hot dogs and other processed meats.
- The more you follow this advice, the easier it’ll be for you to lose the excess body fat that, we now know, makes colorectal cancer more likely.
Fifty percent. One in two.
That’s nearly 72,000 lives that could be spared this debilitating and too-frequently deadly cancer.
All of us at AICR dearly hope you follow the National Cancer Institute’s advice on screening for colorectal cancer. Catching the disease in its early stages can and does save lives.
But we also hope you emerge from National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month with a new awareness that preventing this disease takes place outside of your doctor’s office. It happens every day, hundreds of times, with every small, unremarkable but vitally important choice you make about what to eat and how to live.
Losing weight and keeping it off is challenging under any circumstances, but combine that with a sedentary job, vending machine food, and office treats and weight loss can seem like an impossible task.
If workplaces could instead help people lose weight, businesses could save a lot of money – from less illness and lower healthcare costs. And if more Americans were at a healthy weight, as many as 116,000 cases of cancer could be prevented every year.
Now, a new study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests how workplaces can help. This preliminary randomized control trial tested whether educating employees about healthy eating, combined with a supportive workplace environment, could help overweight and obese employees lose weight.
For the intervention group, 84 participants at two work sites completed a six month weight loss program and of those, 40 continued with six months more for maintenance. These employees lost on average, 17.5 pounds during the six-month intervention. During the following six-months, they kept the weight off. They also showed improvements in blood pressure, blood cholesterol and glucose levels. Continue reading