Archive for Health and wellness

Foods That Help Ease Cancer-Related Nausea

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Cancer treatments such as chemotherapy, radiation, and certain medications can take a toll on patients, with side effects such as nausea. Although you may experience  a loss of appetite during treatment, it is important to find ways to give your body the nutrients it needs.

Here are simple strategies to help you manage nausea. Read more

Can Eating an Alkaline Diet Lower My Risk of Getting Cancer?

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Some people claim that if the fluids and tissues in your body become too acidic – that is, if the concentration of hydrogen in them is too high – your chance of developing cancer increases. Similar claims state that by reducing your intake of certain foods, you can lower your acidity levels, making the body more “alkaline” and less hospitable to cancer.

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Can Coloring Our Hair Cause Cancer?

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The use of hair dyes is widespread. It’s estimated that more than a third of women over age 18 and 10 percent of men over age 40 – a group that numbers in the millions in the U.S. alone – color their hair. Even if exposure to hair dye increases cancer risk only slightly, the effect on public health could be significant.

We turned to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to investigate.

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Exercise Can Help Fight Cancer Fatigue

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By Nancy Campbell, MS

Cancer-related fatigue is one of the most common complaints among cancer patients and survivors. This type of weariness, which typically occurs during treatment or in the first year after, is particularly difficult because it can last for long periods of time and doesn’t go away after sleep or rest.

A growing body of research shows that cancer patients who get regular exercise report feeling less tired.

If you’re interested in starting an exercise routine to address fatigue, consider these tips:

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A User’s Guide to Cancer-Related News

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By Vish Viswanath, PhD

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News about advances in cancer research and treatment appears almost daily. The pace at which new findings are reported, coupled with the complexity of the underlying science, can make it difficult to know which studies are truly significant and which are less so. It’s easy to become confused when reports seem to have varying conclusions.

Here are some tips for becoming a savvy consumer of cancer news. Read more

How to Enjoy Summer without Raising Your Cancer Risk

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by Joanna Steere

As summer takes hold, it’s often hard to resist the delicious aroma of a backyard barbecue or soaking in some rays at the beach. However, it’s important to know the health risks associated with these common activities, especially when cancer’s involved.

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What Are Common Brain Tumor Symptoms?

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by Richard Saltus

People experiencing an unusual or particularly bad headache sometimes worry they might have a brain tumor. Headaches are very common and usually don’t signal a serious illness – but when should you be checked out by a doctor?

We asked neuro-oncologists Lakshmi Nayak, MD, and Eudocia Quant Lee, MD, MPH from the Dana-Farber Center for Neuro-Oncology to review the red flags that warrant a medical follow up:

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Who should have PSA testing for prostate cancer?

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Millions of men each year have their blood tested for prostate specific antigen, or PSA, a normal protein whose levels may be elevated in men with prostate cancer or other benign diseases of the prostate.

However, experts have disagreed on who should be tested, when and how frequently. Some are concerned about whether the benefits outweigh the risks of overdiagnosis and overtreatment. In fact, a federal advisory task force in 2012 recommended against routine PSA testing for healthy men – though many physicians disagreed.

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How to Find Good Cancer Information Online

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For many cancer patients, the Internet serves as a vital tool used to stay in touch with loved ones during treatment, find comfort and advice from other patients and caregivers, or even research clinical trials. But using the Web to learn more about a cancer diagnosis or potential treatments requires a healthy dose of caution. For all of its many benefits, the Internet used unwisely can lead to scams and misinformation, as well.

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Are Tanning Beds Safe?

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If you’re thinking about hitting the tanning beds to get started on your “base tan,” don’t. That’s the advice of Jennifer Y Lin, MD, of Dana-Farber’s Center for Melanoma Oncology.

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