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Plenty of whole grains and little meat: this is how to reduce the risk of colon cancer
According to the University Hospital Leipzig (UKL), colorectal cancer is currently the third most common malignant tumor in men and the second most common in women. The rate of new cases in this country is very high in international comparison. With the right diet, the risk of colon cancer can be significantly reduced.
In Germany, more than 25,000 people die from colon cancer every year. To protect yourself, you should take regular checkups from a certain age. A healthy diet is also very important. Because this can protect against colon cancer.
Diet can increase or decrease the risk of colon cancer
As the University Hospital Leipzig (UKL) writes in a current communication, the body receives not only valuable nutrients such as carbohydrates, proteins and fats, but also important vitamins and minerals as well as trace elements with a balanced and high-fiber diet.
Conversely, the following also applies: with constant preference for certain foods and luxury foods you damage your own health.
"This means that the risk of colon cancer can be increased or decreased with the diet alone," explains Lars Selig, head of the UKL nutrition team.
"So: Not every day pork, beef and lamb meat, just a sip of alcohol every now and then, and absolutely no tobacco - that's really the best medicine. And if you then go for plenty of vegetables and fruit, that also helps to keep you healthy. ”
Sufficient exercise and sport naturally go hand in hand with a healthy diet. Because it is often the unhealthy lifestyle - with little exercise, a lot of fast food or ready meals, plenty of excess weight, plus alcohol and smoking - that makes you sick.
Experts estimate that if people lived healthier, the colon cancer rate could be halved. You don't necessarily have to go to the gym or join a sports club.
Literally, the first step to more movement is already done by taking the stairs instead of using the elevator. It is also advisable to go to work by bike instead of by car or bus.
Prefer plant foods
"You don't have to become a vegetarian if you want to eat healthy," says Selig. “But you should definitely prefer plant-based foods. By that I mean raw or cooked vegetables of all kinds, fruit, nuts and whole grain products, ”says the expert.
“If you eat meat, then maybe more poultry or fish. Cakes and sweets, i.e. products with sugar, should rarely be eaten, ”explains the head of the nutrition team at UKL.
"In the case of fats, I advocate vegetable origin, such as olive oil with its monounsaturated fatty acids and rapeseed oil with polyunsaturated fatty acids, against animal fats," says Selig.
"There are only two exceptions for me: The first is fresh sea fish, whose high content of omega-3 fatty acids is healthy. And the second is Christmas. But there is still a long way to go… ”
Regularly for early diagnosis
In addition to a healthy lifestyle, it is also important to take advantage of the offers for cancer screening. This can significantly improve the chances of cure for colorectal cancer or even prevent this disease, explains the Federal Ministry of Health on its website.
As part of the early detection of cancer by the statutory health insurance, insured persons between the ages of 50 and 54 are entitled to an annual stool test, which tests whether there is invisible (“occult”) blood in the stool.
With increasing age the likelihood of becoming ill increases. That is why men over 50 and women over 55 are recommended to have a colonoscopy. This examination is even more reliable than the stool test, cancer precursors can be removed immediately. If the findings are normal, it only has to be repeated after ten years. (ad)
Read also: Proper nutrition can protect against colon cancer and diabetes!
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the requirements of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.