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Reduce your cancer risk with these simple, everyday changes

"Take Control of Your Cancer Risk" dispels misconceptions about cancer and outlines simple daily habits that can reduce your risk. #newdaynw

Is cancer a genetic predisposition preventable with lifestyle adjustments, or simply a bad roll of the dice?

More than one million people in the U.S. receive a cancer diagnosis each year and about 600,000 die. While many believe that cancer is genetic, the little-known fact is that most cancers are caused by lifestyle.

John Whyte, MD, WebMD’s Chief Medical Officer, joined New Day NW to discuss simple lifestyle changes we can all make to reduce our risk and answer true-or-false questions about cancer, which are outlined in his new book, "Take Control of Your Cancer Risk."

Changes we can all make:

  • We need to treat food like a prescription medicine because that's how powerful it is. We need to think twice about whether to eat a potato chip or an orange because those choices help determine risk. It's also important to find out what herbs we may need to jumpstart our cancer-prevention diet.
  • Exercise smarter, not longer. We all know the benefits of exercise. But walking 10,000 steps a day might be a mistake when it comes to preventing cancer. It's the intensity that matters.
  • Quality sleep, rather than quantity of sleep matters. When it comes to sleep, we try to convince ourselves that we will "catch up" on it later. Well, it just doesn't work that way, and getting quality sleep is essential when it comes to reducing risk of cancer.
  • Manage stress and inflammation. We can’t simply will ourselves to not get cancer. But what we can do is learn how to manage stress and the harmful inflammation that it causes in the body. 
  • Brushing those teeth! There’s a link between mouth bacteria, gum health, and cancer. In fact, people with gum disease have a 25% increased risk of cancer. Make sure to add daily flossing to your routine.

Segment Producer Suzie Wiley. Watch New Day Northwest 11 AM weekdays on KING 5 and streaming live on KING5.com. Contact New Day.