Last year, The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) announced that processed meat is now considered a Group 1 carcinogen due to the strong links with colorectal cancer in humans. Colorectal cancer affects both the rectum and colon and is the 3rd most diagnosed type of cancer in the USA.
The colon is responsible for forming, storing and eliminating waste material in the body, while also being responsible for maintaining a healthy balance of beneficial gut bacteria. Luckily, this type of cancer is preventable, with only 5-10% of the deaths caused by genetic defects. 35% of the cases are caused by an unhealthy diet, 30% are caused by smoking, 20% are caused by infections and the rest of cases are caused by stress and environmental pollution. However, there’s a 50% chance to prevent the disease. Here’s how:
Consume more fruit and vegetables
Fruit and vegetables contain antioxidants and other cancer-fighting compounds such as magnesium. Just a 100 mg. increase in magnesium can lower the risk of colorectal tumors by 13%, while reducing the risk of colorectal cancer by 12. The anti-cancer effects of the mineral are probably due to its ability to reduce insulin resistance. The phytochemicals in fruits and veggies can also fight carcinogens and regulate the rate at which your cells reproduce. Vegetables are rich in fiber as well, which has been confirmed to lower cancer rates. Cruciferous vegetables contain sulforaphene which can impair the growth of colon cancer-derived tumors.
Dry plums can reduce the risk of colorectal cancer as well by increasing the levels of the beneficial bacteria in your gut. However, increasing your fiber intake is the best way for prevention of cancer – according to a study, the risk decreases by 10% for every 10 gr. of fiber you consume. Dry plums contain a lot of fiber and polyphenols which are great against several types of cancer. Other great sources of fiber are chia seeds, flaxseeds and hemp seeds.
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