Tips for Making 2021 a Healthier Year

SATURDAY, Jan. 2, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- A New Year's resolution to take better care of yourself is one you should keep, especially in the era of COVID-19.

Wearing a mask, maintaining a safe distance from others and washing your hands frequently are going remain important in 2021. But don't forget to prioritize a healthy lifestyle that improves your overall health and quality of life, and helps prevent cancer, according to experts at the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey.

The institute offers the following tips:

Eat a healthy diet and watch your weight.

  • For cancer prevention, the American Institute for Cancer Research and the American Cancer Society recommend maintaining a healthy weight, staying active and eating a healthy diet. That's one rich in whole grains, vegetables, fruit and beans, with a minimum of red and processed meats, fast food and processed foods high in fat, starches or sugars. Avoid sugary drinks.

  • Cutting out alcohol lowers the risk of many cancers, including breast cancer.

Exercise regularly. It has many benefits for physical and mental well-being.

  • Current guidelines recommend at least 150 to 300 minutes a week of moderate-intensity, or 75 to 150 minutes a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity.

  • Muscle-strengthening activities should also be included.

  • Sitting for a long time watching TV or using the computer is discouraged.

  • Find fun ways to stay active, such as online exercise classes, or walking or jogging in your neighborhood.

Quit smoking.

  • Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death. Quitting smoking will lower the risk for many cancers, including those of the lungs, mouth, throat, blood, bladder, esophagus, stomach, pancreas and kidneys.

Getting preventive care is an important step to manage your health.

  • This includes cancer screenings, which can detect cancer before it spreads.

More information

For more on a healthy lifestyle, head to the American Cancer Society.

SOURCE: Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey, news release, Dec. 28, 2020

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