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Recent research on the genetics of cancer may lead to impression that some are fated for the disease, but that's not necessarily true.
Healthy behaviors could prevent about half of all cancer deaths, according to the American Cancer Society.
Here are 10 lifestyle changes, all based on recent research, that can improve your odds of warding off cancer.
The tips come from Dr. Anne McTiernan, a cancer prevention researcher at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle.
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1. Don't smoke or use any tobacco products. Smoking causes a host of cancers, including cancers of the lung, esophagus, mouth, throat, stomach and pancreas, according to the National Cancer Institute. It's also the leading cause of premature, preventable death in the United States. If you've tried to quit before, don't give up eventually something will work, McTiernan said.Slide 3 of 21
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2. Get screened for cancer regularly. Screening tests can detect cancers of the colon, breast, prostate, cervix and skin (ask your doctor how often to get them and at what age you should start). Even if you don't have any symptoms yet, finding cancer early greatly increases your chances of treatment and even cure. Screening tests can include physical exams, blood tests, imaging and X-rays and genetic tests.Slide 5 of 21
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3. Limit your alcohol consumption. This means no more than two drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women. Oral cancer is six times more common in alcohol users than in people who don't drink, according to the American Cancer Society. And you can't "save up" all your drinks for a week and then binge on Friday night with your weekly "allotment," McTiernan said.Slide 7 of 21
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