Healthy habits help survive cancer
While cancer remains a serious and often deadly disease, major medical advances have greatly improved survival rates. In fact, most cancer survivors are older adults. Of the more than 12 million cancer survivors in America, 60% are age 65 or older, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
More than 60% of all cancer survivors were diagnosed 5 or more years earlier and 14% were diagnosed 20 or more years ago.Reduce your risk
Older adults are more likely to have other health conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease. Reducing the risk factors for disease and effectively managing any known conditions help keep a person healthy to prevent or fight many diseases, such as cancer.
The American Cancer Society recommends the following steps to reduce the risk of getting cancer:
•Avoid tobacco products and secondhand smoke: Smoking accounts for nearly 30% of all cancer-related deaths. Cigarettes, cigars, pipes and chewing tobacco have been proven to cause cancer. Studies show that ex-smokers have less cancer than people who continue to smoke.
•Reduce alcohol use: Drinking alcohol in excess, no matter what kind, is linked to a higher risk of certain types of cancer. Limit alcohol intake to two drinks per day for men and one drink daily for women.
•Avoid sun overexposure: Do not use tanning beds or sun lamps. When outdoors in the sun, wear protective clothing and use a sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher.
•Eat healthily: A diet of mostly fresh produce and whole grains with limited red and processed meats has been shown to reduce the risk of many cancers.