There are so many benefits to eating healthy—including that it can help cut your cancer risk—but sometimes the thought of healthy eating seems more challenging than what it actually is. That’s why we’re here to help with our handy tips, tricks, meal plan and shopping list.
If you’re thinking about changing your lifestyle and eating better, you’re already off to a great start. A healthy, balanced diet will not only make you feel good and give you more energy, it can also cut your cancer risk in two ways: indirectly, as it can help you to maintain a healthy weight (an independent risk factor for cancer); and also directly, through eating plenty of nutritious foods that keeps our gut healthy.
A diet high in fruit and vegetables offers our body nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and antioxidants to help protect the body from cell damage and cancer. In contrast, other types of foods (and drinks) can have the opposite effect and have been shown to damage the cells that line the bowel, which can lead to bowel cancer. It is important to ensure our diet is varied and balanced and contains plenty of health promoting foods.
To reduce your risk of cancer, Cancer Council SA recommends:
- Eating plenty of fruits, vegetables and wholegrain foods.
- Limiting consumption of red meat to less than 455 g (700 g raw weight).
- Avoiding eating processed meats such as ham, bacon, salami and frankfurts.
- Limiting consumption of food and drinks high in fat, sugar and salt (and low in nutritional value) such as junk food, biscuits, chocolate, sugary drinks and alcohol.
How to get started?
If you’re not sure how to get started with your healthy eating, we’ve got just the thing—our high fibre meal plan and handy shopping list.
The plan is a guide for a week’s worth of breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks for one adult (plus leftovers to eat the next day or freeze portions for later). It ensures your diet across the week meets the recommended servings across the five food groups, all while helping to reduce your cancer risk and provide other health benefits.
All of the featured recipes are available online to view or download, along with our shopping list to make picking out all your ingredients as easy as possible.
So, what are you waiting for? You’re all set to start eating healthy and reducing your cancer risk.
To find out more about how your lifestyle can impact your cancer risk, visit https://www.cancersa.org.au/prevention/lifestyle-factors/.