The World Cancer Research Fund/American Institute for Cancer Research (WCRF/AICR) continuously review and assess the body of evidence on diet, physical activity and cancer.
Their 2007 expert report “Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity, and the Prevention of Cancer: a Global Perspective” is the most current and comprehensive analysis of the literature on diet, physical activity and cancer available.
The report sets out ten evidence-based recommendations for cancer prevention that were developed by 21 leading scientists from around the world:
WCRF/AICR’s Recommendations for Cancer Prevention include:
- Be as lean as possible without becoming underweight
- Be physically active for at least 30 minutes every day
- Avoid sugary drinks. Limit consumption of energy-dense foods (particularly processed foods high in added sugar, or low in fibre, or high in fat)
- Eat more of a variety of vegetables, fruits, wholegrains, and pulses such as beans
- Limit consumption of red meats (such as beef, pork and lamb) and avoid processed meats
- If consumed at all, limit alcoholic drinks to 2 for men and 1 for women a day
- Limit consumption of salty foods and foods processed with salt (sodium)
- Don’t use supplements to protect against cancer
Special Population Recommendations
- It is best for mothers to breastfeed exclusively for up to 6 months and then add other liquids and foods
- After treatment, cancer survivors should follow the Recommendations for Cancer Prevention
And, always remember – do not smoke or chew tobacco
There is some truth to the saying: ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’. Avoiding energy-dense foods (those high in fat and sugar), sugary drinks, salty foods, and red and processed meats are all important steps for the prevention of cancer. Try to enjoy a varied diet rich in fruit, vegetables and wholegrains, be active and maintain a healthy weight in order to live a longer and healthier life.
Want to know more about preventing cancer through a healthy diet? Please find below (in the attached files) a series of booklets that provide practical information about WCRF/AICR’s recommendations for cancer prevention.