How Gardening Can Help Reduce Your Risk of Cancer

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With the weather warming and the days becoming longer, we begin breaking out of our homes and shaking off the last dregs of winter. Americans enjoy a renewed interest in outdoor activities with the warmer weather—and while there’s no shortage of outdoor activities, gardening is one that can help boost physical activity levels as well as the number of veggies on your plate.

Gardening is a wonderful activity because it’s scaleable—if you have a small space, like an apartment, you can use window boxes to grow smaller plants like herbs, or find a community garden that has a plot that you can use. If your space is larger, you can grow vegetables like peppers and eggplants, and you might even want to try fruits like strawberries.

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Oral Cancer Awareness Month

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April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month. AICR is raising awareness and providing the latest research on oral cancer prevention and sharing tips on managing nutrition during treatment. Oral cancer includes cancers of the mouth (lips, tongue and cheeks), pharynx and larynx.

Tobacco use and alcohol are the most important risk factors for this cancer. AICR’s CUP report on cancers of the mouth, pharynx and larynx found strong evidence that drinking alcohol and having excess body fat increase risk. Evidence suggests that nutrition can play a crucial role in preventing oral cancer. Having an overall healthy diet and including plenty of vegetables may be helpful in decreasing the risk of cancer.

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Building an Active Community

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This spring, prioritize the types of physical activity that allow you to be in community with others. Getting regular moderate physical activity (at least 150 minutes weekly) and avoiding being sedentary is one of AICR’s cancer prevention recommendations. Here are some easy ways to do just that:     

Walking
Going on a walk is a great way to begin getting active. Catch up with a friend in your neighborhood, explore a new city on a group walking tour while traveling or grab a colleague for a brisk walk to clear your mind after a stressful day at work. Set a goal to walk at least 30 minutes per day at moderate intensity—meaning your heart rate is elevated but you can still carry on a conversation.

Read more… “Building an Active Community”