Beat Cancer To­day

We asked doc­tors and re­searchers: how do you dodge one of Aus­tralia’s top killers? One an­swer is ob­vi­ous: don’t smoke. Here are 10 more

Men's Health (Australia) - - Contents -

Use top docs’ per­sonal pre­scrip­tions to take on the big C.

MIST YOUR MUG

Your skin wins your body’s prize for “Most Likely To Get Cancer”. Every morn­ing, der­ma­tol­o­gist Dr Joseph Sobanko uses generic broad-spec­trum SPF 30 sun­screen with ei­ther zinc or ti­ta­nium diox­ide. He shuts his eyes and ap­plies an even coat on his face af­ter he brushes his teeth and combs his hair. We like Lit­tle Urchin Nat­u­ral Sun­screen SPF 30 ($24.95, lit­tleurchin.com.au).

WRAP IT UP

A diet rich in veg­eta­bles, fi­bre and omega-3 fats can curb in­flam­ma­tion and help fight cancer. Dr Philippe Spiess, a gen­i­touri­nary on­col­o­gist, eats what he calls a “power egg break­fast wrap”. He heats ¼ cup of frozen spinach in a pan and mixes it with an egg and 200 milliliters (nearly a cup) of egg white. The cooked mix­ture then goes into a whole wheat wrap with a pinch of cheese, a third of an avo­cado and a ta­ble­spoon of hot sauce. To en­sure good sleep at night – when cell re­pair oc­curs – he takes a mela­tonin sup­ple­ment 30 min­utes be­fore lights out. Na­ture Made gum­mies go down easy.

POP LOW-DOSE AS­PIRIN

As­pirin does more than soothe aches and sti­fle heart at­tacks; it curbs colon in­flam­ma­tion. Cancer spe­cial­ist Dr Daniel Rosen­berg tells every­one he knows to take 81 mil­ligrams a day. Ask your doc­tor first, be­cause some peo­ple run the risk of ex­ces­sive bleed­ing. “If your doc­tor ap­proves, you should do it,” he says. In a study re­view pub­lished in An­nals of In­ter­nal Medicine, peo­ple who took 75-1,200 mil­ligrams of as­pirin daily for at least a year re­duced their risk of dy­ing of col­orec­tal cancer by 33 per cent over 20 years.

TAKE A SKIN SUP­PLE­MENT

An­thony Rossi, a der­ma­tol­o­gist, takes nicoti­namide each morn­ing with wa­ter and food. Nicoti­namide is a form of vi­ta­min B3 that may re­duce the for­ma­tion of cer­tain skin can­cers, pos­si­bly by blunt­ing the cell dam­age in­duced by UV rays. (But tak­ing it doesn’t ex­empt you from us­ing sun­screen.) Al­ways check with your doc­tor be­fore start­ing a new sup­ple­ment, of course.

BOLT DOWN SOME NUTS

When Dr Matthew Yurgelun, a med­i­cal on­col­o­gist, needs a snack, he eats al­monds or pis­ta­chios. “It’s a great way to quell hunger and keep me from snack­ing on fatty or sug­ary foods that can con­trib­ute to weight gain and obe­sity-re­lated dis­eases, such as cancer,” he says. A Na­tional In­sti­tutes of Health study even showed that smok­ers who snacked on nuts re­duced their risk of lung cancer, pos­si­bly be­cause nuts curb ox­ida­tive stress as­so­ci­ated with smok­ing. Eat 20-24 nuts a day.

OR­DER THE FISH

UCLA urol­o­gist Christo­pher Sai­gal eats fish but not meat. A typ­i­cal din­ner is a salmon fil­let with brown rice and veg­eta­bles. Try it twice a week. “I tell pa­tients that ‘heart healthy’ foods have been as­so­ci­ated with a lower risk of de­vel­op­ing prostate cancer and a lower risk of pro­gres­sion of prostate cancer af­ter di­ag­no­sis.” Plus, a UK study re­view linked red and pro­cessed meats with col­orec­tal cancer.

CALM THE HELL DOWN!

Chronic stress can feed cancer. Here’s your 15-minute pre­scrip­tion from urol­o­gist Dr Nel­son Ben­nett: sit with the door closed, phone si­lenced. In­hale deeply through your nose and ex­hale from your mouth 10 times. Close your eyes and no­tice the sounds around you – even the hum of flu­o­res­cent lights. Then bring your thoughts to your breaths. Don’t worry if your mind wan­ders. It took Ben­nett about 15 ses­sions to get com­fort­able. “The more I prac­tised it, the eas­ier it got,” he says. You’ll get pos­i­tive re­in­force­ment: less stress with dead­lines and bet­ter fo­cus on de­mand.

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