November is pancreatic cancer awareness month, so it’s only fitting that we talk about ways that you can improve the health of your pancreas and help prevent cancer.

Did you know that according to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, pancreatic cancer is now the fourth leading cause of cancer death and is expected to move up to second place?

Things that put you at risk for this type of cancer include being overweight, smoking, and excessive alcohol consumption. The great news is that there are many things that you can do to prevent pancreatic cancer.

The National Cancer Institute found that a healthy diet which focused on fresh fruits and vegetables daily reduced the risk of pancreatic cancer by 15% in more than 500,00 participants! That’s huge, and that means that focusing on a healthy diet is essential to preventing cancer.

A study also found that some of the most protective vegetables against this cancer include yams, carrots, onions, spinach, kale, cruciferous vegetables, and other dark leafy greens.

This gives you one more reason to pay careful attention to what you feed your body. Your dietary choices are either feeding or fighting cancer.

Ready to improve the health of your pancreas?

Here are 3 tips on how to prevent pancreatic cancer:

Tip #1: Strive to Stay at a Healthy Weight  

As it turns out, weight has a lot to do with your risk of pancreatic cancer. According to research, staying at a healthy weight may reduce your risk. Try your best to stay active and eat a clean and balanced diet to promote a healthy weight and an overall healthy body.

Tip #2: Focus on Plant-Based Foods

Plant-based foods are great for overall health, and studies conducted by cancer organizations recommend focusing on plant-based foods to reduce your risk of pancreatic cancer. Strive to get in at least 2 ½ cup of fruits and vegetables into your diet each day. Focus on plant-based proteins such as beans instead of red meat when possible.

Tip #3: Limit Your Exposure to Chemicals   

Not only do certain chemicals increase your risk for other types of cancer and disease, but it’s thought that limiting your exposure to chemicals may be able to reduce your risk of developing pancreatic cancer as well. Here’s one more reason to limit your chemical exposure by choosing greener cleaning products, clean personal care products, and reducing your exposure to workplace toxins as well.

If you’re looking to really boost your health and help prevent cancer, here’s this weeks challenge:

For this week’s challenge, I encourage you to focus on plant-based proteins. Plant-based proteins tend to be much higher in fiber than animal proteins, and studies have found that plant-based foods are an important part of preventing pancreatic cancer. Here are a handful of plant-based proteins that you can add into your diet. I challenge you to try at least two this week.

  • Beans
  • Lentils
  • Chickpeas
  • Quinoa
  • Spirulina
  • Nutritional yeast
  • Hemp seeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
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