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Replacing Red Meat With Oily Fish Can Protect Your From Colon Cancer

Replacing Red Meat With Oily Fish Can Protect Your From Colon Cancer

Colon cancer occurs when out of control cell growth occurs in the colon – the lower section of the large intestine. According to the Colon Cancer Alliance, this particular cancer is the third most commonly diagnosed cancer in the US. It is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in both men and women combined. The American Cancer Society estimates that  approximately 140,000 people will be diagnosed and more than 50,000 will die from this disease, this year alone.

The good news is – if caught early – it is one of the most highly treatable forms of cancer. Even better news is that in most cases it is preventable.

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Consume Less Red Meat

There have been conflicting reports linking red meat and colon cancer. The results from numerous studies are in and the definitive answer to this question is yes – high consumption of red meat is linked to an increased risk of colon cancer. A meta-analysis of 29 studies of meat consumption and colon cancer concluded that consuming large amounts of red meat increases the risk of developing colon and or bowel cancer by 28%, and eating lots of processed meat increases the risk by as much as 20%.  Australia Nutritionist Teresa Mitchell-Paterson says it all comes down the amount of red meat we are eating.

“It’s about how much red meat you’re consuming,” Mitchell-Paterson told The Huffington Post Australia. “If you’re consuming 500 grams of red meat or 500 grams of red meat combined with processed meat (bacon, salami, sausages, etc.) per week, that’s the amount we try to stay below.”

The primary reason red meat consumption is linked to colon cancer is due to the way it sits in the bowel wall. Experts have found that red and processed meats travel through the bowel slowly. The chemicals in the meat sit against the bowel wall and irritate it. This can cause an increase in inflammation, a quicker turnover of cells and the potential for cancer to develop in that area.

Red meat includes beef, pork, lamb and goat – so foods like hamburgers, minced beef, pork chops and roast lamb are included. Processed meat includes any meat that has undergone any type of chemical processing. This includes meat that has been smoked, cured, and salted such as hot dogs, sausages, salami, bologna, bratwurst, bacon, salt pork, cold cuts and lunch meat, ham, pastrami, pepperoni, smoked fish, corned beef, and jerky. It turns out that when processed, cancer-causing (carcinogenic) chemicals are created in meat and these chemicals, when eaten, increase the risk of colon cancer.

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Below are a few simple tips that can drastically lower your risk for developing this type of cancer:

  • Limit red meat consumption to 500 grams or less per serving and eat no more than two to three servings per week. A good way to measure is by using the palm of your hand as a guide. The serving of meat should be no larger than your palm and 3-4 cms in thickness.
  • Watch how the meat is cooked. Avoid eating meat that has been burnt or charred. Burnt meat releases polycyclic aromatic, hydrocarbons, heterocyclic aromatic amines and N-nitroso compounds, which are dangerous compounds and can wreak havoc on your colon.
  • Combining resistant starch with meat consumption  may lower the cancer risk. Eating foods such as beans, legumes, cold potato, banana, whole grains and seeds along with the meat reduces the contact time against the bowel wall and lowers the overall risk.

Consume More Oily Fish

A great way to help prevent or at least lower your risk of developing colon cancer is by eating more oily fish – or better yet, replacing red meat with oily fish. A recent study revealed a pretty profound result in people who had already developed colon cancer. When the patients in the study consumed small amounts of fish containing omega 3 fatty acids, they cut their chances of dying from cancer by 70 percent. Researchers believe that omega-3 can suppress tumor growth and block blood supply to cancer cells.

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Fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids include “oily fish” such as salmon, mackerel, tuna, sardines, and bluefish. The American Heart Association recommends eating fish at least twice a week, particularly those that are high in omega-3 fatty acids. There are many reasons researchers believe omega-3s assist in fighting cancer. For example, they may reduce the production of enzymes that promote cancer cell growth, speed up the rate at which cancer cell death occurs and suppress the formation of new blood vessels required for cancer cells to grow. The most simple explanation is that the oil from the fish helps to provide a coating on the colon walls and allow foods to pass through the colon more quickly as opposed to just sitting in the walls causing inflammation.

Becoming aware of how to prevent colon cancer is the first step in prevention. Making these very simple changes in your diet can drastically improve your health. Benjamin Franklin said it best: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

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Denise Hill

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

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Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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