Did you know thatapproximately 90 percent of colorectal cancers are thought to be preventable? Or thatuterine (endometrial) cancer is the most common cancer of a woman’sreproductive system?

 JKCC-table

Shownhere staffing the Colon and Uterine Cancer Awareness Month table are Q fromPHGI, Laura Hamel from Gyn/Onc, Marylou Osterman and Beth Souders from theJKCC.

OnTuesday and Thursday of this week, the Joan Karnell Cancer Center held a Colon and Uterine Cancer Awarenesspresentation in the Elm Garden Cafeteria. Employees and visitors were able to learn moreabout colon and uterine cancer prevention and discuss issues with health careprofessionals such as: risk factors for colon and uterine cancer: signs and symptoms; colon cancer screening – facts and myths; nutrition – foodsto eat that reduce your risk for colon and uterine cancer; genetics – how yourfamily history affects your risk for colon and/or uterine cancer; and prevention –what steps you can take today to reduce your risk.

March is National Colorectal Cancer AwarenessMonth

Colorectalcancer is the third most common cancer for men and women in the United States.In the majority of cases, colorectal cancer develops from abnormal growths inthe colon or rectum called polyps. The good news is that according to theCenters for Disease Control and Prevention, 60 percent of colorectal cancersare preventable by removing polyps before they become cancerous. 

Thefirst lines of defense against colon cancer are:

  • Scheduling regularcolorectal cancer screenings with colonoscopy, starting at age 50.
  • Talking with yourdoctor about a cancer risk evaluation and getting earlier or more frequentcolonoscopies if you have a family history of colon cancer.

While some risk factors for colon cancer such as genetic predisposition cannotbe controlled, research has shown diet, exercise and maintaining a healthy bodyweight can help prevent some cancers.

The American Institute of Cancer Research (AICR) estimates that 45 percent ofthe colorectal cancers diagnosed each year in the United States are preventable.Based on extensive research, the AICR suggests that following theserecommendations will reduce your risk of colorectal cancer.

Tips to Lower Your Risk of Colon Cancer

  • Be as lean as possible, without being underweight. Researchers havefound evidence that excess fat, especially, around the waistline, increasesyour risk for colon cancer as well as heart disease and diabetes.
  • Eat a balanced, nutritious diet. The AICR recommendsfilling at least two thirds of yourplate with vegetables, fruits, whole grains and beans. These foods arepacked with cancer-fighting properties, water and fiber, which keep you fullerlonger.

  • Limit your intake of red meat and avoid processedmeats. Adiet high in red meat (beef, lamb and pork) or processed meats (any meatthat is preserved by salting, curing or smoking such as hot dogs, sausage orbacon) has been shown to increase the risk for developing colon cancer.Scientists suspect that the preservatives used in processed meats and the highamount of saturated fat found in red meats are the contributing factors. TheAICR recommends limiting the intake of red meat to no more than 18 ounces(cooked weight) per week.
    • Deckof cards = 3 oz of meat
    • Amatchbox = 1 oz of meat
  • Get moving. Exercising for 30 minutes a day inany way for five days each week helps you to maintain a healthy body weight.There is also evidence that regular physical activity reduces colorectal cancerrisk.
  • Reduce your alcohol intake. There is convincingevidence that alcohol consumption is a cause of colorectal cancer in men and aprobable cause in women. The AICR recommends limiting alcoholic drinks to nomore than two drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women.
    One drink = 12 oz of beer, 5 oz of wine, or 1oz of liquor.
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