Colorectal cancer is the 2nd deadliest in the US

Even though it is the last day of March, I thought this was an important topic to write about this month. March is colorectal cancer awareness month. Did you know that colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States, but that it is also one of the most preventable forms of cancer? Proper screenings paired with healthy diet and lifestyle can significantly reduce your risk of developing this disease. Rather than focusing on a single food or nutrient, research has shown that choosing a diet that emphasizes plant based foods such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and olive or vegetable oils is beneficial for not only general health, but also helps prevent many chronic diseases. Maintaining a diet higher in plant foods and lower in animal foods, such as the Mediterranean diet, has been associated with a significantly lower risk of developing colorectal cancer.
Key components of the Mediterranean diet/lifestyle:
· Eating primarily plant-based foods, such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts on a daily basis
· Replacing butter with healthy fats, such as olive oil
· Using herbs and spices instead of salt to flavor foods
· Limiting red meat to no more than a few times a month
· Eating fish and poultry at least twice a week
· Drinking red wine in moderation (optional, and if you don’t drink currently it is not recommended that you start)
· Daily physical activity
If you are interested in learning more about nutrition counseling sessions with a registered dietitian at Noble Hospital, please call 413-568-2811 ex: 5671 for more information.

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