OCEANSIDE–Colon /colorectal cancer is not exactly the greatest conversation starter and you probably want to avoid talking – or even thinking – about it.
But, there is a good reason why you should: March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, an opportunity to learn about the ways to prevent this disease, which will impact an estimated 143,360 Americans this year. How can you ensure you are not one of them?
“Any form of cancer is dangerous but, fortunately, colorectal cancer is one type that could be averted,” says Coach Berry R.B., a fitness expert and owner of Dare to be Fit Personal Training Studio in Oceanside, CA. “Not only do we have an effective screening method, which can detect and remove cancerous growths fairly early, but there are also pro-active lifestyle measures that can help prevent this disease altogether.”
Yes, you have heard this many times before, but it is worth repeating: among the most effective ways to prevent colorectal cancer – the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States – are diet and exercise.
Here’s what your doctor will likely tell you:
- Your risk of developing colon cancer increases if you are physically inactive, obese, and regularly eat a diet high in red or processed meat, refined grains, and animal fats.
- If you lead a sedentary lifestyle, you are about twice as likely to develop colorectal cancer as people who are physically active.
In fact, a few years ago, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and Harvard University found that people who exercised regularly and continually were 24 percent less likely to develop this disease than those who exercised the least – or not at all.
How can physical activity help lower rates of colon cancer?
In several ways, Berry says.
“Being overweight increases the risk of colorectal cancer and so does having diabetes,” he explains. “Regular exercise substantially lowers both these risk factors.”
To reduce your risk of developing colon cancer, Berry recommends a regular fitness program that will effectively burn calories and fat.
“There are numerous workouts that are especially beneficial, especially when combined with healthy eating habits based on calorie-restricted, low-fat, high-fiber diet,” he says. “A trainer can provide guidance and support you’ll need to achieve these goals.”
Berry adds that an exercise program and healthy diet “will not only help reduce the risk for colorectal cancer, but also for other types of cancers and lifestyle-related conditions, such as heart disease. And THAT is certainly a great conversation starter!”
Coach Berry R.B. is a Retired Master Gunnery Sergeant with over 30 years of experience keeping Marines and Civilian personnel in top physical condition. From a passion to help people change their lives through health and fitness, Coach launched the “Dare to be Fit” program in Oceanside.
To learn more about Coach Berry’s weight loss program, he can be reached at email@example.com, or (760) 967-6847