Fight cancer with these lifestyle changes

Find out which changes in your diet and lifestyle will minimize your risk of cancer, reduce the risk of recurrence and speed up full recovery if you have had cancer.

The anti-cancer diet

  1. Decrease the following from your diet:
    • Avoid, or at least limit, your intake of red meat to a maximum of 310g (11oz) a week, or 150g (5óoz) twice a week –150g (5óoz) is roughly a palm-sized portion.
    • Avoid, or rarely eat, burned meat – be it grilled, fried or barbecued – or processed meat products (most pies, burgers, sausages).
    • Minimise your intake of fried food. Boil, steam, poach or bake food instead.
    • Limit your intake of dairy food, choosing organic whenever possible. Ideally, avoid it if you have any cancer, but certainly avoid it completely if you have breast, prostate or colorectal cancer.
    • Don’t drink alcohol and, if you do, certainly limit your intake to one drink a day if you are male, or one drink four times a week if you are female. Ideally, limit your intake to three drinks a week, preferably choosing organic red wine.
  2. Increase the following in your diet
    • If you eat meat, choose organic low-fat varieties, game or free range and organic chicken.
    • Eat fish, such as herring, mackerel and salmon, instead of red meat, as well as white fish. Arctic cod and halibut are the least polluted.
    • Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables – seven or more servings a day (organic whenever possible).
    • Have a variety of colours in your selection of fruits and vegetables, including something red/orange every day (such as carrots, sweet potato, tomatoes, peaches or melons) and something blue/ purple (such as berries, cherries, grapes or beetroot) and something yellow (mustard or turmeric) most days.
    • Have a serving of cruciferous vegetable every day. This includes broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower and kale.
    • Eat a clove or two of garlic every day.
    • Choose shiitake mushrooms and spice up dishes with turmeric. These contain anti-cancer agents.
    • Have some soya milk or tofu, or a bean dish, every other day.
    • Add flaxseeds to your breakfast and use flaxseed oil in salad dressings. Generally avoid refined vegetable oils – use only cold pressed oils.
    • Eat wholefoods, such as wholegrains, lentils, beans, nuts, seeds and vegetables, all of which contain fibre. Some of the fibre in vegetables is destroyed by cooking, so it’s good to eat something raw every day.
    • Drink green tea and ‘red’ herb teas, rich in antioxidants, or regular tea, in preference to coffee. However, for general health, don’t drink excessive amounts of any caffeinated tea.
    • Have a shot of CherryActive every day (see
    • Drink six glasses of water each day, or herb or fruit teas if you prefer, perhaps with a glass of diluted juice or cherry concentrate. An excellent choice for immune boosting would be cat’s claw tea sweetened with blackcurrant and apple concentrate.

A typical anti-cancer menu

Immune Berry Booster: a delicious, textured blend of yoghurt, berries, wheatgerm and seeds
Oat Muesli with Berries: a hearty, healthy breakfast full of variety – oats, berries, yoghurt and more
Super Oats: filling and full of flavour – oats with fruit and seeds

Mid-morning snack:
A piece of fruit with a small handful of nuts

Winter Warmer Soup: a chunky vegetable soup
Carrot Soup in the Raw: carrots and other ingredients, blended raw and heated gently to serve
Rainbow Root Salad: a wonderfully colourful mixture of carrot, cabbage, parsnip and beetroot in a tangy vinaigrette
Recovery Soup: vegetables and tofu, seasoned and blended cold, then heated to serve
Carrot and Sweet Potato Soup: flavoured with a hint of coconut, this soup is warming and delicious

Mid-afternoon snack:
Watermelon Protection: a refreshing shake
Berry Juice Cocktail: vibrant and tasty

Thai-style Buckwheat Noodles with Shiitake Mushrooms: shiitake mushrooms and tofu sautéed in spices and served on nutritious noodles
Salmon in a Hummus and Mushroom Sauce with Sweet Potato: the title speaks for itself – a gourmet meal
Fish Stew with Artichokes and Oyster Mushrooms: a delicious, thick stew, brimming with goodness too.

You can find recipes for all of these meals and snacks in my book Say No to Cancer.

Lifestyle changes

The combination of changing your diet, taking protective nutritional supplements and making a few lifestyle changes designed to reduce your exposure to carcinogens is likely to reduce your overall risk of developing cancer by at least 50 per cent, and even as high as 90 per cent. In real terms this could mean adding 10–20 years to your life (as well as adding life to your years). Your greatest chance of reducing your risk is by starting early – it is never too soon for prevention.

Top ten lifestyle tips

Listed below are the top ten lifestyle tips for reducing your exposure to potential carcinogens. Some are relatively easy to put into effect. Others, such as cutting down your exposure to exhaust fumes, depend on where you choose to live and work, and how you get from home to work, and vice versa. Such factors should be part of your long-term plan. Your health is your greatest asset. It is worth protecting.

  1. Don’t smoke, and minimise the time you spend in smoky environments.
  2. Minimise the time you spend in traffic jams, breathing in exhaust fumes, and, if possible, live in a less polluted area.
  3. Minimise your exposure to very strong sun and use a good sunscreen, ideally containing vitamin A (such as Environ’s RAD), which protects your skin from damage but doesn’t stop you making vitamin D. A sunscreen is especially important if you have fair hair, light eyes and many moles. Don’t combine alcohol and strong sunlight.
  4. Use natural alternatives to drugs whenever possible. Don’t have oestrogen- or progestin-containing HRT and have an X-ray only if it is absolutely essential.
  5. If you use a mobile phone, use it infrequently and use an earphone attachment.
  6. Don’t heat food in plastic, and reduce the amount of drinks and fatty foods you buy that are packaged in direct contact with soft plastics.
  7. Switch to natural detergents and check that your bathroom and household products don’t contain known carcinogens.
  8. Don’t use pesticides in your garden or on your indoor pot plants.
  9. Control the level of stress in your life. Prolonged stress depletes your immune strength.
  10. Get enough sleep. It is vital for the immune system.

To learn more about how to reduce your risk of cancer, recurrence or to speed up recovery read Say No to Cancer.