Healthy Peterborough

Eat well - reduce your cancer risk

A healthy diet can reduce your risk of cancer. Some foods, such as processed foods, red meat and salt-preserved foods, can increase the risk of developing cancer, while others, such as fruits, vegetables and foods high in fibre, can reduce the risk of cancer.

Eating a healthy, balanced diet will help your body get all the nutrients it needs. Fruit and vegetables are an important part of a healthy diet and are an excellent source of many vitamins and minerals, as well as fibre. Fruits and vegetables can also help you keep a healthy weight as they are relatively low in calories.

Try to consume a diet containing:

At least five portions of fruit and vegetables a day

• Plenty of bread, rice, potatoes, pasta and other starchy foods: choose wholegrain foods where possible, as these contain more fibre

• Some meat, fish, eggs, beans and other non-dairy sources of protein

• Some milk and dairy foods

• Just a small amount of foods and drinks high in fat or sugars, such as cakes, crisps and biscuits

Eat more:

Fibre: Many studies show that foods high in fibre reduce the risk of bowel cancer. Fibre - rich foods include wholegrain pasta, bread, breakfast cereals, rice, pulses, fruit and vegetables

Eat less:

Processed and red meat: Strong evidence shows that eating lots of processed and red meat can increase the risk of bowel cancer, and possibly stomach and pancreatic cancer. Processed meat includes ham, bacon, salami and sausages. Red meat includes all fresh, minced and frozen beef, pork and lamb. Fresh white meat (such as chicken) and fish are not linked with an increased risk of cancer.

Salt-preserved foods: could increase the risk of stomach cancer. Salt-preserved foods include some pickled vegetables, salted fish and cured meats. Salt could increase stomach cancer risk by damaging the stomach lining, causing inflammation, or by making the stomach lining more sensitive to cancer-causing chemicals.

For more tips, recipes, and ideas on eating well visit NHS Choices.

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