Cancer is among the leading causes of deaths globally, which is why there is a lot of fear and myths associated with it. However, what one should realise is that cancer is a preventable disease. Most cancers occur due to an unhealthy lifestyle, involving tobacco use, alcohol consumption, improper diet, inactive lifestyle, and obesity. Controlling these factors is possible, and this is one reassuring fact to help quell the fears and phobia. Yet, there are several other unknown factors causing cancer, and the fact that anyone can be at risk, so, opting for a cancer insurance cover is a sensible decision.
The cost of cancer treatment in India is on the higher side. Those who understand that life can be unpredictable would also agree with the idea of investing in a cancer cover policy. The policy proves to be vital financial support in the hour of need, thus saving a family from the financial stress linked to cancer treatment.
Nowadays, there is so much awareness about cancer prevention and a lot of focus on reducing the risks. Lowering cancer risk is more like a long-term investment and hence, requires discipline.
Some vital lifestyle changes, as explained in this article, can play a significant role in lowering the risk of cancer.
1. Follow Healthy Dietary Habits
Making healthy choices when it comes to food can be the best way to keep the risk of cancer at bay. There are various foods for cancer prevention. Also, if we talk about diet, there are some guidelines one should consider. That includes having ample fruits and vegetables. Moreover, plant-based foods like beans and whole grains and cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower, cabbage, and broccoli effectively lower cancer risk.
There are also certain spices, namely turmeric, garlic, ginger, fenugreek, cumin, and cinnamon, that have nutritional value and therapeutic benefits that work against cancers. Eating the right foods and avoiding refined sugars and unhealthy fats with help tackle another risk factor – obesity.
2. Achieve a Healthy Weight
Modernization has given rise to a sedentary lifestyle, thus, increasing the risks of obesity. Maintaining a healthy body weight will prevent obesity, minimising the chances of breast cancer, and several other cancers like lung cancer, colon cancer, and prostate cancer. That goes to prove how essential physical activity can be for preventing cancer. Individuals can gain many health benefits through regular exercises. The golden rule is to follow a 30-minute moderate exercise routine every day.
3. Stay Away from Alcohol and Tobacco
Alcohol consumption can be directly responsible for declining health with a host of diseases, including chronic liver disease. Similarly, smoking and chewing tobacco are associated with cancer of the lung, mouth, throat, larynx, and pancreas. Those who smoke put the life of people around them at risk, too. There are various health benefits of quitting alcohol and smoking. It is not impossible to give up these bad habits, and all one requires is a strategy that will lead to a healthy life.
4. Shield Yourself from the Sun
Constant exposure to ultraviolet radiation can be damaging to the skin. Skin cancer is a common type of cancer, and it is most preventable if one takes the necessary precautions. At the same time, natural sunlight is a vital source of vitamin D. So; it is essential to strike the right balance. Protective clothing and avoiding the peak time when sun rays are the strongest are some tips on skin cancer prevention that any dermatologist would recommend.
5. Get Quality Sleep
There may not be a direct link between poor sleep and the risk of cancer, but insufficient sleep has been linked to weight gain, one of the risk factors for cancer. Restful sleep at night is also vital for increasing one’s immunity, and helping the body fight infections. Besides, it will help in preventing chronic diseases like diabetes, and hypertension. Experts say that it is crucial to have a minimum of 8 hours of sleep daily.
6. Increase Vitamin D Intake
A low level of Vitamin D in the body is not only harmful to bone health but also increases the risk of breast cancer, colon cancer, and pancreatic cancer. The deficiency of Vitamin D in India is common among the people. Eating foods rich in Vitamin D or including supplements will fulfil the requirements and pave the way for a healthier life.
7. Fight Pollution
Environmental pollution, both outdoor and indoor air pollution, is one of the causes of cancers, particularly lung cancer. The fine carbon particles and other air pollutants are also a leading cause of various respiratory diseases among people in India. Further, exposure to industrial toxins and carcinogens, including asbestos fibres is a potential health hazard for many people. Long-term exposure to pollution can become a risk factor for cancer, too. These are some of the reasons why there should be collective efforts to fight pollution.
Cancer occurs when a normal cell in the body begins to develop abnormally. And, anything that potentially triggers this process is a risk factor. There are still many unknown causes of cancer. Many times, a combination of these factors is responsible for cancer. It may be tough to pinpoint the starting event that has caused cancer to develop. However, some environmental or lifestyle-related risk factors are common causes for cancer that we can easily control.
Simultaneously, knowing the risk factor also helps in understanding whether cancer screening would be beneficial. Early screening and medical check-ups, especially for people who have a family history, becomes necessary in identifying the disease, preventing complications and ensuring successful treatment.
Lakhs of Indians are battling this disease every day, and sadly they also fight the financial difficulties due to the high treatment costs. These statistics are a reminder that there are risks of cancer, but they do not indicate whether one will develop cancer or not. That proves that life is indeed full of uncertainties. While this is true, the best thing one can do is safeguarding loved ones from the risks by encouraging a healthy lifestyle. It is also better to invest in a cancer care plan early in life that will provide insurance cover for various medical expenses in case a person is diagnosed with cancer.
The cancer insurance plan by Care Health Insurance (formerly Religare Health Insurance) is an indemnity-based health cover which offers various benefits, including cashless hospitalisation at over 11,000 cashless healthcare providers. The plan is affordable, and you can customise it, depending on your needs.