More than 500,000 new cases of cancer are diagnosed each year. That is equivalent to approximately one new case per minute. Cancer develops when your body produces more cells than it can use. This can occur when the body is taxed with repairing chronic inflammation, which can directly result from poor health choices like smoking, alcohol and substance abuse, or obesity. For Men’s Health Month, Semper Fit wants you to know three things you can do to decrease your risk for cancer.

Ditch the Tobacco and Drink Alcohol Responsibly

Substance abuse greatly increases an individual’s risk of developing cancer. A staggering 30 percent of cancer deaths can be attributed to tobacco use and 3.5 percent to heavy alcohol consumption. Individuals interested in quitting to improve their health, should seek guidance of qualified health professionals. If you’re struggling with tobacco or alcohol, visit your local Substance Abuse Counseling Center.

Stay in Shape

Obesity affects 43 percent of American men and is linked to 13 different types of cancer. At high body fat percentages, our bodies produce heightened levels of estrogen and insulin, which can lead to breast and pancreatic cancers. Men also tend to store more fat around their organs, placing them at greater risk of developing kidney, colon, and esophageal cancer. Daily exercise and a well-rounded diet are two of the most powerful tools in combatting obesity and decrease your risk for cancer.

Maintain a Healthy Diet

 The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that, with proper self-care, 30-50 percent of current cancer cases could have been prevented. Eating nutritious foods have been proven to prevent certain cancers. Subsequently, certain foods have been linked to certain cancers, for example, processed meats, such as bacon, can increase your risk for stomach and colorectal cancers. 

The best thing you can do to prevent cancer is to take ownership of your health, and Semper Fit is here to help! Visit your local Semper Fit Health Promotion Program for available resources.