This advice seems obvious - eat right, exercise, drink in moderation and you reduce your risk of cancer - nothing new here.
But, the thought of linking lifestyle to cancer got me thinking about how we view our lifestyle and the choices we make every day.
My own cancer came after a long stressful period of long work hours, poor diet, lack of exercise, relationship issues and minimal sleep. It didn't feel right. I wasn't happy.
Perhaps, instead of looking at the things we have in our life as something to blame the cancer on - instead of feeling guilty about the individual things we do that might contribute to the development of cancer (indulging in an unhealthy treat, or drinking a few glasses of wine at a party) - we should think about how our life feels.
Does our life feel right? Are we happy? Generally, when our life is in balance, and we are happy, eating well, and active - then our immune system is happy and functioning perfectly. It is only when life gets out of balance that conditions exist for cancer, and we feel this: we are tired, we are depressed, we lack motivation.
Look at your life. Are you happy? What would you change? Do you feel run down because of obligations to work or family or neighbors... don't let yourself get run down, you can't help anyone if you get sick - so it's critically important that you maintain a lifestyle that works for you. Take the time to nurture yourself.
Look at your life. Does it feel right? Whatever doesn't feel right, move toward minimizing or hopefully getting rid of that. What makes you feel healthy and alive? Try to include more of that in your life.
Yes, lifestyle contributes to cancer. But rather than constantly looking at study after study for the specific unhealthy lifestyle choices, as cancer survivors let's listen to our bodies. When your body is tired and run down, it's telling you to change your lifestyle. When it feels great, then your lifestyle is probably fine, even if you cheat on your diet a bit.
Your body has the energy and resources to fight cancer when it is feeling good - do what feels right for your body. That's the best lifestyle choice for you!