How To Prevent Cancer
A blog post for The Foundation for Living Beauty by Jovanka Ciares
If anyone had an infallible answer to the question posed in the title of this article, they would be the most powerful human on earth. Cancer touches each and every one of us. You may have struggled with it yourself, may know someone who is or sadly and seemingly inevitably, love someone who will struggle with this disease in your lifetime.
While we are all vulnerable to the disease, living with pollutants, toxins and other substances known as carcinogens inside our bodies, we need never be passive witnesses to the development of cancer or any other life-threatening disease.
First, cancer does not occur overnight. By the time your doctor finds a tumor, those cancerous cells are years old, evolving deep inside of you and struggling to survive and reproduce as your body’s immunity fights to get rid of them. Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, your body has an uncanny ability to fight the nastiest of organisms and maintain homeostatic (i.e. internal stability, balance and finally, health).
So, is it possible to prevent cancer, a disease that often takes years to manifest? I believe we can. But you can’t wait one more day; you must start today making changes in your diet and lifestyle that will give you a better chance at preventing these cells from multiplying, turning into cancer and robbing you of many great years. My initial guidelines include:
- Become a student of your own body: never again should you rely solely on doctors to confirm your state of health. Listen to the cues your body is giving you and use your intuition to look for alternative practices to help you stay stronger, full of energy and health.
- Start consuming a diet that is 100% whole foods with an 80/20 ratio of plan foods (vegetables, legumes, whole grains) versus animal flesh (meat, fish, dairy, eggs). The goal is to eventually move to a 100% plant-based diet, as the only diet shown to reduce cancer risk across all populations.
- Learn what nutrients are better at preventing cancer and start incorporating them into your diet. In my work as a Clinical Herbalist, I’m often asked which nutrients or plants have anti-cancerous properties. The answer is always: A lot of them! Too many to mention here but not hard to find with a simple Google search. This shows you that you can find multiple options that you personally love and can enjoy each and every day.
- Learn about alternative treatments like herbalism, Ayurveda and Chinese medicine as a way to complement your diet, supplement and assist in the healing process. Plants as medicine have been used for over 6,500 years by all cultures around the world and today, they are becoming more mainstream to help you in ways that Western medicine cannot: in the prevention of cancer and other life-threatening diseases.
- Work to eliminate from your life all relationships or circumstances that cause you high levels of stress, anxiety or unhappiness. Research suggests that chronic stress can make cancerous cells spread faster. Stress hormones can also compromise your immunity, potentially leading to the development of the disease.
- Embrace regular detox practices like juicing, fasting, sweating or colonics to help reduce the amount of toxins, pollutants, and carcinogens in your system.
While we may never be able to stop the development of diseases like cancer, wouldn’t it be incredible if we can slow it down a few long decades? That’s a bargain I’m happily willing to take.
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The recommendations above are based on the author’s research and findings and do not guarantee the prevention of cancer.