a tall tale...

Research suggests that taller people may be at greater risk of developing cancer.

An increased risk
Findings from a new study conducted on almost 150,000 post-menopausal women revealed that height was significantly associated with cancer risk over a period of about 12 years. For every 10cm increase in height the researchers observed a 13% increase in cancer risk, and this relationship was evident for all types of cancer encountered over the course of the study, including that of the ovaries and breast. What is more the association between height and cancer didn’t change when other risk factors for cancer development were taken into account.

While this particular study was one of the first to critically examine other cancer risk factors in the context of this research, it is not the only one to reveal a potential link between height and cancer development. Several other studies, including one conducted on almost 90,000 Canadian women have shown exactly the same thing. And it has even been suggested that men tend to be greater risk of numerous cancers (including that of the digestive tract, lung, urinary system and skin) simply because they are generally taller than women.

Reducing your cancer risk
Since there is not much we can do about our height we can only ponder this seemingly bizarre notion - if you are concerned that your towering frame puts you at risk, know that a few simple lifestyle choices can help prevent cancer:

» Don’t smoke – smoking has been linked with numerous kinds of cancer not just that of the lungs.

» Make healthy food choices – include plenty of fresh produce in your diet; limit bad fats (in processed and  animal products), refined carbohydrates, and high-sugar and processed food, and drink alcohol only in moderation.

» Maintain a healthy weight and get active.

» Protect yourself from the sun by limiting direct sun exposure, using sun screen, covering up and avoiding  tanning beds.

» Get regular check-ups to increase the likelihood of early detection, but take only those tests that are specifically recommended for your particular risk profile.

» Consider supplementing with nutrients with cancer-protective benefits like indole-3-carbonole, di-inoly-methane (DIM), curcumin, vitamin D3, fish oil, green tea, resveratrol, coenzyme Q10, selenium and other antioxidants.

Taking these preventative steps can help improve your overall health and reduce your risk of cancer, whether you are tall in stature or vertically challenged.

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