How can I make healthier choices during and after cancer treatment?

For many people, a diagnosis of cancer helps them focus on their health in ways they may not have thought much about in the past. Are there things you could do that might make you healthier? Maybe you could try to eat better or get more exercise. Maybe you could cut down on the alcohol, or give up tobacco. Even things like keeping your stress level under control may help. Now is a good time to think about making changes that can have positive effects for the rest of your life. You will feel better and you will also be healthier.

You can start by working on those things that worry you most. Get help with those that are harder for you. For instance, if you are thinking about quitting smoking and need help, call the American Cancer Society Quit For Life Program operated and managed by Free & Clear at 1-800-227-2345.

Dr. Mark A. O'Rourke, MD
Hematologist & Oncologist

Healthy choices during and after cancer treatment include a decision to quit smoking, limiting the use of alcohol, a healthy diet, achieving a healthy body weight and regular exercise. Healthier choices after a diagnosis of cancer can improve quality of life and reduce the risk of cancer returning.

Making these choices, however, can be difficult. One place to start is to gather information. Three excellent websites for information are the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute. The next step is to decide to make the healthier choices. This is difficult to do alone. It is helpful to get support from family and friends. It is useful to ask your healthcare professional. Setting small achievable goals is one way to increase your confidence, maintain your motivation and increase your commitment.

The contents of this website are for informational purposes only and are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Nor does the contents of this website constitute the establishment of a physician patient or therapeutic relationship. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.