Bowel cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed in Australia. It is largely preventable with early detection resulting in successful treatment.
Nutrition plays a vital role in reducing your risk of developing bowel cancer. Eating a plant-based diet, that includes vegetables, fruit, wholegrains and legumes is beneficial for maintaining a healthy bowel. The benefits are said to come from the high fibre intake that plant foods provide, as well as the abundant micronutrients contained in fruit and veggies such as folate and many other antioxidants.
Folate is found particularly in green, leafy vegetables, asparagus, broccoli, avocado and legumes such as lentils. Studies have shown that adequate folate in your diet can reduce the formation of polyps that can increase risk of developing bowel cancer.
Drinking alcohol reduces your folate levels and can increase your risk for cancerous polyps to form. Research has also discovered that processed animal products (such as cheese, salami, and ham) and red meat, particularly when cooked well done, can increase risk of bowel cancer.
So think about including having at least one meat free day in your week, eat your greens and limit alcohol to two drinks per day. Healthy bowel, healthy life!
Watch this video: Who’s at risk for colon cancer? – Amit H. Sachdev and Frank G. Gress