Healthy Lifestyle Improves Colorectal Cancer Prevention (Food)

A healthy lifestyle that limits consumption of red and processed meat and includes fiber and whole grains helps prevent colorectal cancer and mortality when combined with cancer screening, according to a study published in PLoS Medicine.

Researchers monitored cancer incidence and mortality for more than 100,000 men and women from the Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study and scored lifestyle based on body mass index, physical activity, diet, and other factors.

After 26 years of follow up, the number of cancer cases prevented increased by almost 30% when healthy lifestyle was combined with endoscopic screening. Results showed similar improvements for cancer mortality.


Wang K, Ma W, Wu K, et al. Healthy lifestyle, endoscopic screening, and colorectal cancer incidence and mortality in the United States: A nationwide cohort study. PLoS Med. 2021;18:e1003522-e1003540. doi: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1003522.

Provided by Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine

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