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Originally published April 25 2008

Skip the Bacon and Stay Thin to Avoid Cancer, Says World Cancer Research Fund

by David Gutierrez, staff writer

(NaturalNews) The World Cancer Research Fund has issued detailed recommendations on how to decrease cancer risk through lifestyle changes, including staying thin and avoiding bacon or ham. A panel of nine teams of scientists reviewed more than 7,000 studies on the relationship between lifestyle choices and cancer.

"If people are interested in reducing their cancer risk, then following the recommendations is the way to do it," Professor Martin Wiseman said. "Cancer is not a fate, it is a matter of risk, and you can adjust those risks by how you behave. It is very important that people feel that they are in control of what they do."

Many of the recommendations were not new - such as not smoking or eating a diet high in fruits, vegetables and whole grains and low in red meat, fish and dairy - but others were more surprising.

One of the more unexpected results was that even among those who are not overweight, the thinner have a lower risk of developing cancer. While the researchers cautioned that people should not become so thin as to risk their health, they said that being as thin as possible within the healthy range is ideal - closer to a body mass index of 18.5 (low normal), rather than the high normal of 25. The researchers believe that body mass index correlates with cancer risk because it approximates body fat content.

Other recommendations include not gaining weight as an adult and avoiding bacon, ham, sugary drinks and alcohol. While acknowledging that some alcoholic beverages may have other health benefits, the researchers said that any alcohol consumption increases cancer risk. They recommended that men drink no more than two alcoholic beverages per day, and that women limit themselves to one.

According Wiseman, if everyone followed the panel's recommendations, 30 percent of all new cancer cases - 3 million a year - could be prevented.

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