While the exact mechanisms by which diet is related to cancer have not been completely understood, research has shown that food plays a role in cancer prevention. For example, populations whose diet includes at least five servings of fruits and vegetables a day have lower rates of some of the most common cancers. Fruits and vegetables contain many antioxidants and phytochemicals, such as vitamins A, C, and E, and beta-carotene, which have been shown to prevent cancer. It is not completely clear, however, whether it is individual phytochemicals, or a combination of them, or the fiber in fruits and vegetables that result in reduced risk of cancer.
Studies have shown the risk of prostate cancer drops for men who eat tomato products, possibly because of the phytochemical lycopene. In addition, it has been shown that colon cancer declines among those who drink green tea, which contains antioxidants and phytochemicals, and who regularly eat soy products and foods rich in selenium, an antioxidant.
Those who eat a diet low in fat, especially animal fat, also have lower cancer rates, but again it is not clear whether it is the calories, the amount and distribution of body fat, or the likelihood that a low-fat diet is high in fiber, fruits, and vegetables that is protective against cancer. High-fiber diets are thought to reduce the risk of colon cancer because the fiber helps move food through the lower digestive tract, possibly reducing the contact of any carcinogens with the bowel lining.
behavioral: related to behavior, in contrast to medical or other types of interventions vaccine: medicine that promotes immune system resistance by stimulating pre-existing cells to become active antibiotic: substance that kills or prevents the growth of microorganisms antioxidant: substance that prevents oxidation, a damaging reaction with oxygen phytochemical: chemical produced by plants fiber: indigestible plant material that aids digestion by providing bulk fat: type of food molecule rich in carbon and hydrogen, with high energy content calorie: unit of food energy carcinogen: cancer-causing substance bowel: intestines and rectum estrogen: hormone that helps control female development and menstruation energy: technically, the ability to perform work; the content of a substance that allows it to be useful as a fuel insulin: hormone released by the pancreas to regulate level of sugar in the blood
Scientific evidence indicates that physical activity may reduce the risk of certain cancers. This effect may be due to the fact that physical activity is associated with the maintenance of a healthy body weight. Other mechanisms by which physical activity may help to prevent certain cancers may involve both direct and indirect effects. For colon cancer, physical activity accelerates the movement of food through the intestine, thereby reducing the length of time that the bowel lining is exposed to potential carcinogens. For breast cancer, vigorous physical activity may decrease the exposure of breast tissue to circulating estrogen, a hormone that has been implicated in breast cancer. Physical activity may also affect cancers of the colon, breast, and other sites by improving energy metabolism and reducing circulating concentrations of insulin and related growth factors.
Because of these factors, recommendations of the American Cancer Society to reduce the risk of cancer include: consumption of a mostly plant-based diet, including five or more servings of fruits and vegetables each day; consumption of whole grains in preference to processed or refined grains and sugar; limited consumption of high-fat foods, particularly from animal sources; physical activity; and limited consumption of alcohol.
carbohydrate: food molecule made of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen, including sugars and starches mineral: an inorganic (non-carbon-containing) element, ion, or compound
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All you need is a proper diet of fresh fruits and vegetables and get plenty of exercise and you'll be fine. Ever heard those words from your doctor? If that's all heshe recommends then you're missing out an important ingredient for health that he's not telling you. Fact is that you can adhere to the strictest diet, watch everything you eat and get the exercise of amarathon runner and still come down with diabetic complications. Diet, exercise and standard drug treatments simply aren't enough to help keep your diabetes under control.