What can I do to make sure I don’t get cancer?

While there is nothing that can guarantee that an individual will not get cancer, there are steps we can all do to help reduce our risk. There are several lifestyle behaviors that have been identified as possible risk factors. If a person can limit or avoid these risk factors, they can lessen their chances of getting cancer.

Steps to take that may help you lower your cancer risk are:

Avoid tobacco — Tobacco use is strongly linked to an increased risk for many kinds of cancer, and it is estimated that cigarette smoking causes about 30 percent of all cancer deaths in the U.S.

Protect yourself from the sun — Skin cancer has the highest incidence rate in the U.S. Use sunscreen daily and avoid tanning beds and sunlamps.

Remain physically active — Studies show that people who are physically active have a lower risk of certain cancers than those who are not.

Eat a healthy diet — Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables and limit alcohol and high fat foods.

For more information contact Courtney Britton, librarian at Cancer Services of Greater Baton Rouge at (225) 927-2273, cbritton@cancerservices.org , or visit the Education Center at 550 Lobdell Ave., Baton Rouge.

ä Internet Resources:

Mayo Clinic — Cancer Prevention: 7 Tips to Reduce Your Risk


Prevention Topics – NCI


Risk Factors and Prevention – ASCO’s Cancer.net


This column is presented as a service by Cancer Services of Greater Baton Rouge, a United Way affiliate