In recent years, the incidence of colon cancer among young people has been on the rise. The American Cancer Society recently updated its colon cancer screening guidelines, recommending that most people have their first colonoscopy by age 45. Regardless of your age, the following five steps can help prevent colon cancer.
1. Eat more vegetables and healthy fats
Salwa Bakkali-Derksen, MD, an internist at the Mayo Clinic Health System in Owatonna, Minnesota, points out that research shows that a Western diet is associated with higher rates of colon cancer. People who eat high-fiber foods are less likely to develop colon cancer. It is recommended to limit the intake of meat, especially processed meat, and consume healthy fats such as olive oil, Omega-3-rich salmon, avocados and nuts, as well as in oils. Fried foods are limited to low in processed fat.
2 Take action
Exercise is known to be good for heart health and maintain weight. But exercise can also reduce the risk of certain cancers, including colon cancer. It is recommended to exercise for at least 30 minutes every day.
3. Monitor weight
The American Cancer Society states that being overweight increases the risk of colon cancer, as well as breast cancer (in postmenopausal women), rectal cancer, esophageal cancer, pancreatic cancer, and kidney cancer. Your weight should be controlled within a normal range. If you are overweight and need help losing weight, you can consult your doctor.
4. Drink less and don't smoke.
Drink in moderation. No more than one drink per day for women and no more than two drinks per day for men. For smokers, it is recommended to quit smoking. You can follow your doctor's advice and participate in a program to help you quit smoking.
5 Follow the guidelines and conduct regular screenings
Stop at the beginning. One of the most important cancer prevention strategies is to follow colon cancer screening guidelines and conduct regular colon cancer screenings based on age, risk factors, family history, etc. for early detection and early treatment.
The purpose of colon cancer screening is to detect abnormalities in the colon, such as polyps and early cancers. Not all colon polyps develop into cancer, but most colon cancers start as polyps. Removing polyps before they turn into cancer can greatly reduce the risk of colon cancer.
Colonoscopy is the most common screening method for colon cancer. Other colon cancer screening methods include computed tomography (CT) colonoscopy, fecal immunochemical tests, multi-target fecal DNA testing, etc. Among them, multi-target fecal DNA testing is the latest screening method, which in addition to looking for hemoglobin , also looks for DNA molecules that colon cancer and polyps may find in the stool. If the result of fecal DNA testing, fecal immunochemical testing, or CT colonoscopy is positive, a complete follow-up colonoscopy evaluation is required.