How can someone avoid cancer?


Quick Answer

Avoiding the use of tobacco in all its forms, maintaining a healthy weight, being physically fit, eating right and limiting alcohol intake can help to reduce an individual's risk of cancer. In addition, avoiding ultraviolet sun exposure and tanning beds and getting screened for cancers can help to stave off or prevent the disease.

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Full Answer

According to the American Cancer Society, smoking causes 30 percent of all cancer deaths and 90 percent of all deaths from lung cancer. It is the most preventable cause of death in the United States. Around 400,000 Americans die each year from smoking and as many as 73,000 nonsmokers die from exposure to smoke. When the number of deaths caused by suicide, murder, illegal drugs, car accidents, AIDS and alcohol are combined, they still don't outnumber the deaths from smoking. Thus, quitting smoking can reduce a person's risk of developing cancer.

Obesity contributes to as many as 20 percent of cancer deaths, so maintaining a healthy wait can help prevent cancer. Exercising for at least 30 minutes daily on 5 days of the week can also help, as can eating more vegetables and fruits and less red meat. Cutting back to one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men, avoiding exposure to sun, and being proactive about cancer screenings can further reduce an individual's propensity to develop cancer.

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