HOW TOP DOCS AVOID CANCER
WE ASKED PHYSICIANS AND RESEARCHERS: HOW DO YOU DODGE CANCER? ONE ANSWER IS OBVIOUS: DON’T SMOKE. HERE ARE 10 MORE WAYS THESE EXPERTS PROTECT THEMSELVES.
MIST YOUR MUG
YOUR SKIN WINS YOUR BODY’S PRIZE FOR “MOST LIKELY TO GET CANCER.” EVERY MORNING, DERMATOLOGIST DR JOSEPH SOBANKO, OF THE UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA, USES GENERIC BROAD-SPECTRUM SPF 30 SUNSCREEN WITH EITHER ZINC OR TITANIUM DIOXIDE. HE SHUTS HIS EYES AND SPRAYS AN EVEN COAT ON HIS FACE AFTER HE BRUSHES HIS TEETH AND COMBS HIS HAIR. 2 POP LOW-DOSE ASPIRIN
This does more than soothe aches and stifle heart attacks; it curbs colon inflammation. Daniel Rosenberg, director of the Colon Cancer Prevention Program at the University of Connecticut Health, tells everyone he knows to take 81mg 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 in Annals of Internal Medicine, people who took 75mg to 1,200mg of aspirin daily for at least a year reduced their risk of dying of colorectal cancer by 33 percent over 20 years.
4 TAKE A SKIN SUPPLEMENT
Dr Anthony Rossi, a dermatologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, 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. 5 PITCH PLASTIC JUNE CHAN, A PROFESSOR OF UROLOGY AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA AT SAN FRANCISCO, PACKS HER LUNCH – BUT NOT IN PLASTIC, WHICH MAY CONTAIN CANCER-PROMOTING CHEMICALS. SHE PACKS SALAD (KALE, FETA, PUMPKIN SEEDS, RAISINS) IN A MASON JAR.
SWEAT FOR 75 TO 150 MINUTES
Dr Keith McCrae, an oncologist with the Cleveland Clinic Cancer Institute, works long hours but fits in exercise six days a week. He loves road biking – 40km to 50km most weekdays, more on weekends. A study in JAMA Internal
Medicine found that people who did 1¼ hours of vigorous or 2½ hours of moderate activity a week had a 31 percent lower risk of dying of cancer than those who didn’t work out. Exercise helps tame inflammation, possibly reducing cancer risk.
7 CALM THE HECK DOWN!
C Chronic stress can feed cancer. Here’s youryo 15-minute prescription from urologist Dr Nelson Bennett of Northwestern University FeinbergFe School of Medicine: Sit with the door closed,clo phone silenced. Inhale deeply through youryo nose and exhale from your mouth 10 times.tim Close your eyes and notice the sounds aroundaro you – even the hum of fluorescent lights.lig Then bring your thoughts to your breaths.bre Don’t worry if your mind wanders. It tookt Dr Bennett about 15 sessions to get comfortable.co “The more I practised it, the easierea it got,” he says. You’ll get positive reinforcement:rei less stress with deadlines and betterbe focus on demand. BOLT DOWN SOME NUTS When Dr Matthew Yurgelun, a medical oncologist at DanaFarber Cancer Institute, 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 to 24 nuts a day.
ORDER THE FISH
UCLA urologist Dr 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. 10 START THE DAY GREEN GREEN TEA IS PACKED WITH ANTIOXIDANTS. ALAN WAN, A MEDICAL ONCOLOGIST AT NORTHWESTERN MEDICINE KISHWAUKEE HOSPITAL, HAS A CUP EACH MORNING. IN A 2016 STUDY, MAO FENG GREEN TEA HAD ONE OF THE HIGHEST ANTIOXIDANT LEVELS PER BREW.