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Cancer Risk Climbs with Sleep Apnea

Cancer more common is those with sleep apnea.

Patients with sleep apnea experienced 3.4 times the risk of cancer mortality than those with no sleep apnea during a 20 year follow-up in Australia after controlling for leading risk factors. This is consistent with other observational studies. Researchers have been spurred by mouse studies that suggest hypoxia (lack of sufficient oxygen) may spur tumor growth. Also, all-cause mortality risk was 4.2 times higher in those with sleep apnea.

PositiveTip: Visit a sleep specialist today if you suspect you have a sleep disorder.

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Longevity Linked to Plant-rich Diets

Moms are right: Eat your fruits and veggies!

Consuming seven or more servings of fruits and vegetables daily reduced all-cause mortality, cancer and cardiovascular disease according to a large British study. The average consumption was just under four portions per day. It is not hard to eat seven servings as the standard portion size for most fruits and vegetables is one-half cup. This study also found that canned fruits are linked with increased mortality, possibly because of the high sugar content.

PositiveTip: Eat lots of fruits and vegetables, mostly fresh, for a healthy life.

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Could Antioxidant Supplements Protect Cancer Cells?

Antioxidant supplements may protect the cancer cells instead of us.

New research in mice that already had lung cancer suggests antioxidant supplements decrease the activity of a gene (p53) which destroys defective cells, including cancer cells. The supplements caused the number of tumors in the mice to triple, grow faster and become more aggressive. This has not been studied in humans, but it does raise a cautionary flag.

PositiveTip: Sticking with a healthy diet rich in antioxidant sources and skipping the supplements may be the best.

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Cancer Now World's Biggest Killer

Global battle against cancer depends on more than treatment alone.

Today is World Cancer Day. Cancer now kills 8.2 million people each year in the world, with a total economic burden of US$1.16 trillion. The International Agency for Research on Cancer has released World Cancer Report 2014. There has been an 11% rise in the global incidence of cancer, and cancer cases are forecast to increase by 75% during the next two decades. Treatment alone is not enough, preventive measures are essential.

PositiveTip: Lower your risk with a wholesome diet, plenty of exercise, and an ideal weight.

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Consuming Nuts Can Lower Risk of Death

Nut consumption may actually lower mortality rates.

Analysis of 75,000 women in the Nurses Health Study and more than 40,000 men in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study revealed those who ate nuts once a week had a lower mortality rate than those who do not eat nuts. When nut consumption increased even more, mortality rate fell for both cancer and heart disease. Tree nuts and peanuts demonstrated similar results.

PositiveTip: Nuts should be a part of a balanced, healthful diet.

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Diabetes-Cancer Links

Type 2 diabetes and cancer risk are connected!

Did you know there are links between type 2 diabetes and cancer? These risks are elevated for liver, pancreas, colon and endometrial cancers; probably higher for breast, bladder, kidney and non-Hodgkin lymphoma, also. Lifestyle choices influence the risk for both diseases. Choices that decrease the risk of cancer also promote the control of diabetes because of shared risk factors. To learn more read the American Institute of Cancer Research discussion of this topic.

PositiveTip: Eat healthfully, exercise daily, and maintain ideal weight to reduce the risk of cancer and type 2 diabetes.

Humans Can't Change Bad Behavioirs

It is difficult for humans to change the way they do something when they have been doing it the same way for a long time. New research on the often deadly cancer, melanoma demonstrates this frustrating tendency as described in the Bible.

“Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard its spots? Then may you also do good who are accustomed to do evil.” Jeremiah 13:23 (NKJV)

"A sow that is washed returns to her wallowing in the mud." 2 Peter 2:22 (NIV)

"As a dog returns to its vomit, so fools repeat their folly. Proverbs 26:11 (NIV)

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Small Intakes of Alcohol Increase Cancer Risk

Light drinking increases the risk of cancer!

More than 3.5% of all cancers are attributable to drinking alcohol, and there is convincing evidence that this increases the risk for cancer of the colon, breast, larynx, liver, esophagus and mouth. Most of this evidence came from studies of high and moderate intake of alcohol. An analytical review by Italian researchers of 222 studies involving almost 92,000 light drinkers (up to 1 drink/day) has found even this level of drinking is associated with increased risk of mouth, esophagus and breast cancer.

PositiveTip: Avoid even small amounts of alcohol to minimize your risk of cancer.

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Alcohol and Cancer Risk

Only 1.5 drinks of alcohol per day significantly increases the risk of cancer.

Alcohol use accounted for about 3.5 percent of all cancer deaths in the U.S. That means that almost 20,000 Americans die from cancer each year as a result of drinking. Researchers estimated that each alcohol-related cancer death cost 18 years of potential life. Among women, breast cancer was the top cause of cancer death; in men it was cancers of the upper airway and the esophagus.

PositiveTip: There is no safe threshold for alcohol and cancer risk!

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Could Less Screening Actually Be More?

Are we really over-diagnosed in America?

Meet Dr. Timothy Wilt. You probably haven't heard his name. He has not authored any books, blogs, or newspaper columns. He doesn't even have a TV show! He is a member of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, a 16 member panel of independent experts. He is an evidence-based doctor, interested in quality healthcare for all. 

PositiveTip: Learn more about Dr. Wilt and why he is interested in altering your view of cancer screening to reduce early-screening anxiety.