On Dr. Oz’s Ultimate Countdown, Dr. Oz and Dr. Peter Kozuch discussed the 6 major cancer risks to help us protect ourselves from cancer. Dr. Oz said that 1.5 million cases of cancer occur in the United States of America every year and that 1 in 3 women get cancer at some point during their life. Some factors for cancer are out of your control, but other cancer risks we can control to eliminate or even stop cancer dead in its tracks. Make sure to forward this article to all of your loved ones!
6 Major Cancer Risks:
#6 Risk for Cancer – Lifestyle
Elizabeth helped Dr. Oz with the lifestyle risk for cancer. Are you a smoker? a drinker? or promiscuous? All of these lifestyles increase your risk of cancer. Dr. Peter Kozuch said that some diseases can increase your risk of cancer. Smoking of course is a major cause of lung cancer. Elizabeth is a smoker, but is going to work with Dr. Oz to try to quit for the sixth time. Dr. Oz said that on average, you have to fail 6 times before successfully stopping smoking.
#5 Risk for Cancer – How Much Time You Spend in the Sun
Tina and Dr. Oz spoke about the quiz for how much time do you spend in the sun? Do you wear sunscreen daily, occasionally or have you burnt your skin more than 5 times in your lifetime? While sunburning your skin clearly is a risk for skin cancer, did you know that getting too little sun is also a risk factor for cancer? Sun changes the cholesterol in your body by twisting it slightly, which in turn excretes vitamin D, which dramatically decreases cancer by boosting your immune system. There was a study done on women who work the night shift, and they have a decreased level of melatonin. This lower amount of melatonin causes an imbalance between estrogen levels and melatonin, which apparently makes you predisposed to breast cancer.
#4 Risk for Cancer – Diet: What Are You Eating?
Which of these most closely describes your current diet: high fiber? high fat? high protein? high carbohydrate? If you answered high fiber, great job! If not, then you should increase your fiber intake immediately! Low fiber diets prevent your intestines from clearing out completely and increase your chances of colon cancer. You can reduce your risk of colon cancer by 40% by eating lots of fiber, like whole grain pasta. Fiber also helps to pull carcinogens out of your body. Dr. Oz did a demonstration to show how your colon gets filled with a toothpaste like substance if you don’t eat enough fiber, and that makes it very hard for your poop to make its way through your colon.
#3 Risk for Cancer – BMI (Body Mass Index) – Your Weight & Height
Christina, a guest on Dr. Oz, is 5’8″ and 165 pounds, which (according to the BMI chart) makes her BMI 25, which is perfect! If your BMI is over 30, then you are considered obese – and obesity is a huge risk factor for cancer. 1 in 5 cancer deaths are from overweight people. Dr. Oz says that if you watch more than 3 hours of television a day, your chance of being overweight increases dramatically.
#2 Risk for Cancer – Family History
Does anyone in your family have cancer? Has anyone in your family died from cancer? Grandparents, aunts, uncles, parents, siblings? If you mother had breast cancer, your risk is double that of other people. Family history is particularly important for breast cancer, colon cancer, skin cancer, bladder cancer, ovarian cancer and prostate cancer. If your family member got one of these types of cancers, especially when they were 50 or younger or pre-menopausal, then you are particularly at risk. Certain types of cancer, like breast cancer, are easy to check at home with monthly breast exams.
#1 Risk for Cancer – Your Age
Lisa played a game with Dr. Oz to help us learn at what age we should start to be screened for various types of cancer. Here are the answers:
Skin Cancer – 20 years old
Oral Cancer – 20 years old
Cervical Cancer – 21 years old
Breast Cancer – 40 years old
Colon Cancer – 50 years old
Prostate Cancer – 50 years old
If you have even one of these risk factors, it increases your chances of getting cancer. You can take your own personalized cancer test to determine your cancer risks here.