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Colorectal Cancer - Prevention

Your lifestyle

Here are other things you can do to help prevent colorectal cancer:

  • Watch your weight. Being very overweight may increase your risk. And carrying extra fat around the waist seems to be more of a risk than carrying extra fat in the hips or thighs.
  • Eat well.Healthy eating includes a variety of foods. Eat more whole grains, fruits, vegetables, poultry, and fish. And eat less red meat, refined grains, and sweets.
  • Limit alcohol. Have less than 2 drinks a day. People who have 2 or more drinks a day have a slightly higher risk for colorectal cancer.2
  • Get active. Keep up a physically active lifestyle. Being fit helps you look better and feel better and stronger.
  • Quit smoking. Quitting smoking can reduce your risk.

Genetic testing

If you have a very strong family history of colon cancer, you may want to talk to your doctor or a genetic counselor about having a blood test to look for changed genes. Genetic testing can tell you if you carry a changed, or mutated, gene that can cause colon cancer. Having certain genes greatly increases your risk of colon cancer. But most cases of colon cancer aren't caused by changed genes.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: January 21, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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