Three Ways To Reduce Your Bowel Cancer Risk
Do you think of Bowel Cancer as an ‘old person’s’ problem?
Most people do, but did you know that the rate of bowel cancer in younger people has doubled over the past 20 years?
The other issue with this is that along with young people not suspecting it and putting off going to see the doctor, your doctor (who may be used to only seeing it in older patients) may not think to check for it straight away. Unfortunately because of this it is often in the later stages (stage 3 or 4) when diagnosed, which greatly reduces their chance of survival
So apart from encouraging you go to the doctor straight away if you have any unusual bowel issues, here are my top three ways to help you reduce your risk of bowel cancer.
1. Make sure you poo every day!
Okay, I know that they say whether you poo 3 times a day or 3 times a week, as long as this is usual for you then this is normal. Personally I do not agree. My analogy is this….
You put your full rubbish bin outside the front of your house and it is 37 degrees.
It has still not been emptied after 3 days – what does it smell like?
Yup, not good huh!
Your internal body temperature is 37 degrees (approx) and your poos/faeces/stools are basically your body’s garbage.
It is full of waste products that your body has decided it doesn’t want. So I believe it’s best to ’empty’ that garbage daily.
If you would like to ‘go’ more often there are 3 things you need to do:
- Drink at least 5 glasses of water each day – more if it is humid, when you exercise, or if you are very tall and thin (i.e. have a large surface area!)
- MOVE! Our ‘elimination systems’ in our body require us to move around for them to work optimally. So basically, the more you sit, the harder it will be to sh*t!
- Every day eat a lot of foods that are naturally* high in fibre. This includes fruit, vegetables, wholegrains (but not too much wheat) and my all-time favourites – LEGUMES 🙂
If you would like more help with this, go and see a dietitian who specialises in bowel health
2. Regularly include foods that contain prebiotics
3. Avoid processed meat and limit your red meat intake
*By naturally high in fibre, I mean don’t start using lots of fibre supplements as they can have a negative effect on you such as bloating, wind, discomfort, diarrhoea, and some of them can even worsen constipation. Foods naturally high in fibre contain the right balance of everything that is best for your body. They also limit how much of them you can eat!
Learn more about reducing your risk here