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Making the Right Choices to
Reduce Cancer Risk
The University of Georgia
Cooperative Extension Service
Cancer risk can be reduced 6070% by
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Sensible food choices
A healthy weight
Physical activity
Not smoking
Specifically Cancer May
Be Reduced By 
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20% by eating 5 or more vegetables and
fruits per day
30% if you don’t smoke
30-40% if you eat a plant based diet,
maintain a healthy weight and exercise
regularly
What are the major causes of
cancer?
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Tobacco
Inadequate intake of fruit and vegetables
Excess alcohol intake
Obesity
Too much sun
Less Common Causes of Cancer
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Genetics
Pollution
Radiation
Occupational hazards
Nutrition and Activity Guidelines
from AICR and ACS
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Plant based diet with
plenty of fruits and
vegetables
Low fat, low sodium
foods
Less red meat
More whole grains
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Healthy weight
Regular physical
activity
Moderate alcohol if at
all
Save storage and
preparation of food
What good nutrition and exercise
can do
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Lung cancer reduced nearly 30% with
more fruits and vegetables
Stomach cancer reduced 66-75% if fewer
foods preserved with salt were eaten
Breast cancer reduced 33-50% if consume
a plant based diet with no alcohol
Reducing the risk
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Colon and rectal cancer reduced 66-75%
with high vegetable diet with little meat
and alcohol and regular physical activity
Mouth and throat cancer reduced 33-50%
with high vegetable and fruit intake and
little alcohol
Liver cancer reduced 33-66% with less
alcohol and aflatoxin not in food
Four P’s of Prevention
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Plant Based
Portion Controlled
Physically active
Practical thinking
Why a Plant Based Diet Helps
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Fewer calories and less fat
More vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals
and antioxidants
Less alcohol
Plant Based Goals
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5 - 9 servings of
fruit vegetables
3 - 7 whole grains
Phytochemicals
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Diallyl sulfides
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Onions, garlic, leeks
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Carotenoids
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Carrots, cooked
tomatoes, leafy
greens, sweet
potatoes
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Betacarotene
Lycopene
Lutein
Zeaxanthin
Phytochemicals
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Indoles and
isothiocyanates
(cruciferous
vegetables)
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Broccoli, cabbage,
cauliflower, kale,
brussel sprouts
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Isoflavoids
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Soy
Phytochemicals
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Phenolic acids
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Berries, citrus, apples,
whole grains and nuts
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Saponins
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Beans, other legumes
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Terpenes
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Cherries, rosemary,
citrus peel
Over 100 phytochemicals in just one
fruit or vegetable – may
work together so
supplements are not the
same
Ultimate Goal – Meat as a
Condiment – Not the Main Event
The 2nd P - Portion Control
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Prevents overweight and obesity associated
with cancer of –
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Colon
Breast
Pancreas
Kidney
Prostate
Endometrium (lining of uterus)
Reducing Risk
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Prevent childhood weight problems
Have BMI between 18.5 and 25
Don’t gain more than
11 pounds during adulthood
Apple shape more at risk
Just a 10% weight loss is beneficial
Know your portion sizes
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½ cup
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¼ cup
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1 cup
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3 oz.
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½ baseball, rounded
adult handful
Golf ball, scant adult
handful
Baseball, adult fist
Deck of cards, bar of
soap
Other portions of interest
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1 oz. meat – small matchbox
8 oz. meat – thin paperback book
1 oz. cheese – 4 dice
Med. potato – computer mouse
2 tablespoons peanut butter – ping pong
ball
High fat foods
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Increase risk for
cancer of the
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Lung
Colon
Rectum
Breast
Endometrium
Prostate
What are some ways you can cut
fat and calories?
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Snack on fruit and
vegetables
Order smaller
portions
Read labels
Look for lower fat
version of foods
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Steam, bake,
microwave or stir fry
Use fresh over
processed food
Add spices and herbs
instead of fat
The 3rd P – Physical Activity
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Associated with
reduced risk for
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Colon cancer
Breast cancer
Lung cancer
To Lower Cancer Risk
More May be Better
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Moderate to vigorous
intensity
30-45 minutes or
more per session
5 or more days a
week
For kids – 1 hour per
day
Moderate or Brisk Activity
versus Vigorous Activity
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Moderate
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Walk – 4 mph
Canoeing – 3 mph
Gardening
Volleyball
Biking
Dancing
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Vigorous
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Walking hills
Hiking
Tennis
Swimming laps
Jogging
Stair climbing
4th P – Practical Thinking
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Gradual changes
Slow weight loss
Planning activity into weekly schedule
Planning menus, shopping lists and time
for food preparation
In summary
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What are the 4 P’s of cancer prevention?
What does the “New American Plate” look
like?
What are you going to do this week to
lower your risk for cancer?
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