The American Cancer Society has updated its guideline for diet and physical activity for cancer prevention, with adjustments to reflect the most current evidence. The updated recommendations increase recommended levels of physical activity and have an increased emphasis on reducing the consumption of processed and red meat, sugar-sweetened beverages, processed foods, and alcohol. They also include evidenced-based strategies to reduce barriers to healthy eating and active living and to reduce alcohol consumption.
Published in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians, the ACS’s flagship medical journal, “The guideline continues to reflect the current science that dietary patterns, not specific foods, are important to reduce the risk of cancer and improve overall health,” said Laura Makaroff, DO, American Cancer Society senior vice president, Prevention and Early Detection. Here is a summary:
Physical Activity for Adults
Previous: At least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity each week.
New: 150-300 minutes of moderate-intensity or 75-150 minutes of vigorous-intensity physical activity per week; achieving or exceeding upper limit of 300 minutes is optimal.
Previous: Consume a healthy diet, with an emphasis on plant foods.
- Choose foods and beverages in amounts that help achieve and maintain a healthy weight.
- Limit consumption of processed meat and red meat.
- Eat at least 2.5 cups of vegetables and fruits each day.
- Choose whole grains instead of refined grain products.
New: Follow a healthy eating pattern at all ages, including:
- Foods high in nutrients in amounts that help achieve and maintain a healthy body weight
- Variety of vegetables—dark green, red, and orange, fiber-rich legumes (beans, peas), and others
- Fruits, especially whole fruits with a variety of colors
- Whole grains.
Limit or do not include:
- Red and processed meats
- Sugar-sweetened beverages
- Highly processed foods and refined grain products.
Previous: Limit consumption. Drink no more than 1 drink per day for women or 2 per day for men.
New: It is best not to drink alcohol. People who choose to drink alcohol should limit their consumption to no more than 1 drink per day for women and 2 drinks per day for men.
Recommendation for Community Action
Previous: Public, private, and community organizations should work collaboratively at national, state, and local levels to implement policy and environmental changes that:
- Increase access to affordable, healthy foods in communities, worksites, and schools, and decrease access to and marketing of foods and beverages of low nutritional value, particularly to youth.
- Provide safe, enjoyable, and accessible environments for physical activity in schools and worksites, and for transportation and recreation in communities.
New: Public, private, and community organizations should work collaboratively at national, state, and local levels to develop, advocate for, and implement policy and environmental changes that increase access to affordable, nutritious foods; provide safe, enjoyable, and accessible opportunities for physical activity; and limit alcohol for all individuals.
“People eat whole foods –not nutrients—and evidence continues to suggest that it is healthy dietary patterns that are associated with reduced risk for cancer, especially colorectal and breast cancer,” says Dr. Makaroff.
The full guideline: acsjournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com
Article: American Cancer Society Guideline for Diet and Physical Activity for Cancer Prevention; CA Cancer J Clin 2020 DOI 10.3322/caac.21591
Should you buy glasses online?
Online vendors for prescription glasses offer on-trend frames at enticingly low prices. From your desk, you can select your frames, enter your prescription and payment details and then just wait for the mail to arrive. But before submitting your order, it’s important to consider the risks.
The low list prices given by online providers typically represents the cost of the frames alone. Your prescription and any add-ons, such as protective coatings and other lens enhancements, will make your total cost significantly higher than the list price would lead you to expect. In addition, if you have insurance, be aware that an online vendor of prescription glasses may not be covered under your plan.
Most online providers of glasses list each item’s frame measurements, including lens width, bridge width, and temple arm length, in their product descriptions. Some even let you upload your photo to “try on” their glasses. But for a precise fit, you’re on your own. The professionals at a traditional brick-and-mortar eyewear store, however, have the tools and skills to fit your glasses to your face perfectly.
To align your natural line of vision with the curvature of the lens, you’ll need to be fitted for vertical and horizontal alignment. Most online providers advise buyers on how to measure their own pupillary distance for horizontal alignment. However, there’s really no way to determine vertical alignment without an in-person fitting.
Not only do the right eyeglasses help you see, but they can also help prevent or delay further degeneration of your vision. Be sure you invest wisely by visiting your local eyewear store.
What to do if you’ve been scratched or bitten by an animal
Dog and cat bites and scratches can transmit serious infections and diseases, including rabies, cat scratch disease, tetanus, osteomyelitis, pasteurellosis, tenosynovitis, septic arthritis, septicemia, and endocarditis. Here’s what you should do if a dog or cat scratches or bites you.
Immediately wash the affected area with mild soap and run it under water for at least 10 minutes.
Call your local health department. You’ll be asked to provide details about the wound, like the size, depth, and location of the lesion, to assess your risk of infection. They may also ask where the event took place and request you to provide information on your medical condition and the animal involved.
Depending on your situation, you may be referred to a local hospital or medical clinic to receive care for your wound. This treatment may include preventive antibiotics or a tetanus vaccine.
If your pet is frightened, surprised, hurt, or annoyed, it may lash out. To avoid being bitten or scratched, don’t touch your pet while it’s eating or sleeping, and don’t tease it by running after it, pulling its tail, or poking it with an object.
Improve your night vision
Though commonly called night blindness, nyctalopia doesn’t involve completely losing the ability to see. Rather, this condition makes it difficult to see in relatively low light.
Many people have difficulty driving at night or adjusting their eyes when moving from a bright area into a dimly lit room. If you’re struggling to see in the dark, here are some easy steps you can take to improve your night vision.
Increase vitamin A
A diet high in vitamin A can increase your level of rhodopsin, a protein in the light receptor cells of the retina. Opt for orange fruits and vegetables like sweet potatoes, carrots, squash, and cantaloupe. Dark green leafy vegetables, eggs, and fish are also rich sources of vitamin A.
Limit light exposure
You can help manage your difficulty adjusting to the dark by limiting your exposure to extreme light conditions. Wear sunglasses on bright days, and reduce the brightness settings on your electronic devices, especially if you work in a dark room.
Massage your eyes
Take a few minutes every hour to rejuvenate your vision with a brief massage. With eyes closed, gently press your palms against your eyelids. Your vision will turn white and gradually fade to black. After a minute or so, release and open your eyes.
Visit your optometrist
Depending on its cause, nyctalopia may be treatable with corrective lenses, surgery, or medication. An optometrist or ophthalmologist will be able to identify any underlying issues and advise you on the best possible treatment.
Does your child need orthotics?
When it comes to children, spotting issues early can help prevent pain and injuries later in life.
Though most kids don’t need orthotics and needlessly using them may impede healthy development, if you detect a problem, it’s important to take action. Early intervention can prevent the development of more serious conditions. Here are some signs that your child might benefit from orthotics.
If your child points their toes inward or outward, or if they walk only on their toes or heels, underlying foot issues may be the cause. Take note if your child seems to stumble or trip frequently.
Examine the shape of your child’s feet. If they have no visible arches, they might benefit from orthotic support. Keep an eye out for bunions, ingrown toenails, and toes that seem to bend sideways.
Your child may limp or complain of pain in their feet, ankles, or knees. Also, pay attention to subtle signs of pain or fatigue. If they seem to avoid running or frequently ask to be picked up rather than walk on their own, they may have foot discomfort.
Check your child’s shoes for signs of unusual wear and tear. In particular, look inside the heel for fraying or chafing. Also, if the toes or heels are excessively scuffed, it may be an indication your child’s gait is out of alignment.
To rule out the possibility of undetected issues, pediatricians recommend your child visit a podiatrist at age 3, when they typically develop their heel-toe walking pattern. Further evaluation is recommended at age 5 when they’re ready to start school and again before they start regular sports activities.
Try micro-exercises to improve health
It’s not like you have the time to run to the gym at lunch, change, exercise, shower, and get back to your desk.
Yet, it isn’t healthy to spend an average of 9.3 hours a day sitting at a desk. In fact, according to Nilofer Merchant of the Harvard Business Review, after an hour of sitting, fat-burning enzymes in the body decrease by 90 percent, the body metabolism slows, blood pools in the legs, and pressure builds at the spine.
That’s where micro exercises come in and, according to one study, doing simple, quick moves at the desk can help you stave off illness and build strength.
Conducted in Denmark, the study surveyed 70,000 workers who had had 30-day illnesses during the previous 12 months. Researchers found that nearly 13 percent of these long-term absences could have been prevented using micro exercise.
The study found that 10 to 15 minutes of micro exercises with resistance bands three times a week also led to improved feelings of vitality and even better teamwork.
Although the study used elastic bands, you don’t need the bands to do micro exercises.
Here are some easy ways the keep and increase strength at your desk:
- Calf raises: With feet flat on the floor, raise your feet to the toes. Do 50 reps. Too easy? Do it standing.
- Ab tucks: Sit up straight. Pull abs to the spine, hold. Do 25 reps.
- Glute squeezes: Sit up straight. Squeeze glutes. 25 reps.
- Lower ab contractions: Sit straight, and lift both legs off the seat. Lower feet just above the floor. Hold. Repeat.
- Press arms: Sit in a non-rolling chair that has armrests. Using armrests, push yourself up with your hands to try to float above the chair. Try to get your arms straight. Then slowly lower yourself back down.
- Leg extensions: On a non-rolling chair, point your toes up and extend your legs out straight. Hold for five to 10 seconds to stretch calves and hamstrings. Repeat.
- One super-micro move: Try tapping alternative toes as you work.
3 reasons you may need to have a tooth pulled
In most cases, if you have a problem with one of your teeth, your dentist can repair it. However, sometimes an extraction may be necessary to remedy the situation. Here are three reasons you may need to have a tooth removed.
1. Untreated cavity
If left untreated, cavities can break down and destroy the structure of your teeth. This can make it difficult to repair them, and if left untreated, the cavities may present a health risk. Therefore, extraction is sometimes the only solution.
2. Severe infection
Over time, a severe infection can destroy a tooth and break down the surrounding bone and tissue. If the bone is severely damaged, the tooth may fall out. Damage caused by a disease like periodontitis is irreversible because the affected structures cannot regrow. Once the disease is in its advanced stages, the only solution may be to have your tooth removed.
3. Lack of space
Your mouth may not be able to accommodate your growing teeth. For example, this often happens with wisdom teeth, the molars at the very back of your mouth. If your wisdom teeth don’t have enough room, they can grow in sideways and cause damage, inflammation, and infection.
There are several other reasons why you may need to have a tooth pulled. Speak with your dentist to learn more.