Cancer and weight: Be a Healthy Weight
Keep your weight within the healthy range and avoid weight gain in adult life. The evidence linking body fatness to cancer is overwhelming and has grown stronger over the past decade.
Exercise and cancer: be physically active
Be physically active as part of everyday life. Walking more and sitting less is a great way to reduce cancer risk. The more active you are, the greater the benefit.
Eat a Diet Rich in Whole Grains, Vegetables, Fruits, and Beans
Make whole grains, vegetables, fruits and pulses (legumes) such as beans and lentils a major part of your normal diet. A healthy pattern of eating and drinking is associated with a lower risk of cancer. Independent studies show that the more closely you follow our recommendations, the more you reduce risk of developing cancer.
Limit Consumption of “Fast Foods” and Other Processed Foods That are High In Fat, Starches, or Sugars
Limiting these products helps you control your calorie intake and makes it easier to maintain a healthy weight. There is strong evidence that diets containing greater amounts of "fast foods" and other processed foods high in fat, starches or sugars are a cause of weight gain, overweight and obesity. Greater body fatness is a cause of 12 cancers.
Limit Consumption of Red and Processed Meat
Eat no more than moderate amounts (12-18 ounces per week) of red meat, such as beef, pork, and lamb. Eat little, if any, processed meat. There is strong evidence that eating red or processed meat are both causes of colorectal cancer.
Limit Consumption of Sugar-Sweetened Drinks
Drink mostly water and unsweetened drinks. There is strong evidence that regularly drinking sugar sweetened drinks is a cause of weight gain, overweight and obesity. Greater body fatness is a cause of at least 12 cancers.
Limit Alcohol to Reduce Cancer Risk
For cancer prevention, it is best not to drink alcohol. There is strong evidence that drinking alcohol is a cause of six cancers, and even one small glass of alcohol a day can increase the risk of some cancers.
Do Not Use Supplements for Cancer Prevention
Aim to meet your nutritional needs through diet alone. We advise against the use of supplements as protection against specific cancers.
For Mothers: Breastfeed Your Baby, If You Can
Breastfeeding is good for both mother and baby. It carries many health benefits, including the ability to reduce your chances of developing breast cancer.
After a Cancer Diagnosis: Follow Our Recommendations, If You Can
Unless otherwise advised, and if you can, all cancer survivors are advised to follow the recommendations as far as possible. Always, check with your health professional about what is right for you.
Not smoking and avoiding other exposure to tobacco and excess sun are also important in reducing cancer risk.
Following these Recommendations is likely to reduce intakes of salt, saturated and trans fats, which together will help prevent other non-communicable diseases.
Check In With Your Health
The choices we make each day can help reduce our risk of cancer.
AICR's new Cancer Health Check will help you learn more about your
choices and how you can stack the odds in your favor.