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Long Term Lifestyle Changes May Dramatically Reduce Your Cancer Risk

A recent study from researchers at the Queen Mary University in London shows that certain lifestyle choices can have a serious effect on your risk of developing cancer. In fact, the researchers believe that over 40 percent of cancers could be avoided by making different lifestyle choices.

The results were published in the British Journal of Cancer on December 6, 2011.

The researchers found 14 environmental and lifestyle cancer causes. A third of those 14 were related to smoking, alcohol, diet and obesity. Smoking was the number one cause of cancer,responsible for 23 percent of cancers in men and 15.6 percent of cancers in women. The second leading cause for men was a lack of fruit and vegetable consumption, but for women it was obesity.

Other dietary factors included lack of fiber, too much salt, and eating too much red and processed meat. Additional causes of cancer included radiation exposure, lack of exercise, occupational exposure to chemicals, excessive sunlight exposure and specific infections. Specifically for women, both hormone replacement therapy and choosing not to breastfeed were found to be causative factors.

The study is yet another contribution to the body of knowledge showing that it’s a good idea to follow a healthy lifestyle. While there are certainly no guarantees, this study shows that long term lifestyle changes can lower your cancer risk.

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