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A Co-publication of the American Cancer Society and Demos Health

Cancer experts say more people than ever before are now likely to develop the disease at some time, but due to early intervention, the chances of survival are also increasing. Co-published with the American Cancer Society, Reduce Your Cancer Risk: Twelve Steps to a Healthier Life provides comprehensive information about how to reduce cancer risk organized around a 12-step action plan. Written by a patient-expert, a cancer research doctor and reviewed by the American Cancer Society, the book takes the reader from how to assess one’s cancer risk on to the latest cutting edge research on lifestyle changes that can cut an individual’s risk factors. Reduce Your Cancer Risk separates fact from fiction about cancer.

The Most Up-to-Date Information On Personal risk assessment Life style changes Preventive health strategies Genetic counseling Preventive anti-cancer medications The latest cutting-edge research

The American Cancer Society is dedicated to eliminating cancer, saving lives and reducing suffering through research, education, advocacy and service. Filled with the most-up-to-date information from the largest and most trusted voluntary health organization those with a cancer diagnosis, those whose lives have been touched by cancer, and those who are interested in preventative care will find Reduce Your Cancer Risk is an invaluable resource.

;Cancer Science or Cancer Myths: How Do You Tell the Difference?; 1. What is Cancer Risk; 2. Assessing Your Cancer Risk: From the Web to Your Doctor's Office; 3. Playing Detective: Discovering Your Family History of Cancer; 4. Protect Yourself Against Skin Cancer; 5. A Powerful Anticancer Strategy: Physical Activity, Nutrition, and Avoiding Obesity; 6. Saving Your Life: Leaving Tobacco Behind; 7. Guarding Against Cancer: Staying Safe from Infection; 8. Guarding Against Cancer: Staying Safe From Infection; 9. The Environment Around Us: Get the Scoop on Chemicals, Pollution, and Everyday Products; 10. Making Decisions: Preventive Anticancer Medications and Surgeries; 11. When You Already Had Cancer: Steps You Can Take for Good Health; 12. Stress Busters: Staying Positive One Day at a Time; Conclusion: Putting it all Together; Appendix: Evaluating Scientific Evidence;

"This book provides one of the most comprehensive sources of information on genetic, behavioral and environmental sources of cancer risk available today. It is beautifully and compellingly written for individuals and families who want to reduce their cancer risk as much as possible."-Patricia Carney, PhD, Professor of Family Medicine and of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Associate Director for Cancer Prevention, Control and Population Studies, Oregon Health and Science University

"Boughton and Stefanek have done the research and deliver an easy-to-follow guide for understanding and managing cancer risk. No matter what your family history or your risk for cancer this book has important information to help manage your risk."-FORCE: Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered;"This book provides one of the most comprehensive sources of information on genetic, behavioral and environmental sources of cancer risk available today. It is beautifully and compellingly written for individuals and families who want to reduce their cancer risk as much as possible."-Patricia Carney, PhD, Professor of Family Medicine and of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Associate Director for Cancer Prevention, Control and Population Studies, Oregon Health and Science University

"Boughton and Stefanek have done the research and deliver an easy-to-follow guide for understanding and managing cancer risk. No matter what your family history or your risk for cancer this book has important information to help manage your risk."-FORCE: Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered

Published: Demos Health on
ISBN: 9781932603927
List price: $16.95
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"Reduce Your Cancer Risk" has to be one of the best books I've read on the topic in many years. It exceeded my expectations in so many areas, I don't know where to begin.I had expected the authors to either bore me with endless statistics that would eventually make my eyes glaze over, or, I expected to be condescended with sentences and vocabulary aimed to the lowest common denominator of reading skill. But instead, I was pleasantly surprised by the intelligent yet common sense tone of the text mixed with a good balance of supporting documentation and facts.Even though I have considered myself well versed on the topics of health and nutrition, especially for someone not in the medical profession, I learned something new with nearly every page in the book. (I must confess that I skimmed two chapters that did not apply to me: tobacco and 'when you've already had cancer.').If you read with a highlighter or ink pen, bring more than one, because you'll definite use them up as you read this. I've recommended and shown this to friends, although I won't loan it out for fear of not getting it back. This is worth owning, reading, and referring to time and time again. The information packed within will have you re-examining and evaluating your lifestyle choices and the impacts those choices have on your long-term health.The only beef I have with this wonderful book is: first, the stance of support for censoring Hollywood to remove smoking from its films, which I believe is naïve; and second, no mention that I noticed about the connection between general oral health and the link to increased risks of other types of cancer. The only other concern I have is in the Obesity and Cancer chapter in which the author passively supports fad diets as a way of initiating weight loss, i.e., Atkins, South Beach, etc. Those short term solutions never have the lasting effect that straight forward exercise and diet-control have, and in some cases have the opposite effect.All in all, this book belongs on every bookshelf in every home in the country.more
Blurb:I was as hesitant about this book as I was hopeful; I wasn’t in the mood for a cliche-filled self-help handbook featuring dubious statistics. I was happily surprised to immediately discover that the book’s authors were scrupulously dedicated to providing facts based on the scientific method, with considerable fealty to the way in which studies are presented to the public. The book was a fast, informative, relevant primer on cancer, with tons of useful and trenchant website links for those who want additional info. As with anything, results are what matter, and this handbook produced those: I talked my 65-year-old mother into getting her first colonoscopy (she’s gloriously clean!), and have scheduled myself for an MRI. Thanks to all involved for this unflinching but laid-back and positive primer on the bane of cancer; you made it just a little less terrible.Full Review:My interest was piqued upon encountering Reduce Your Cancer Risk: Twelve Steps to a Healthier Life, co-published by the American Cancer Society. Having become fairly obsessive about my parents’ logevity now that they’re in their mid-60s, the potential of enhanced health and cancer awareness in only 12 discrete steps was tantalizing. However, I was looking for a solid reference book, not one inundated with all the sound bytes and cliches I see advertised around the Web many times a day; I demand the sound and rigorous application of the scientific method behind any medical facts presented me. I ended up having worried needlessly that Reduce Your Cancer Risk would be of the same ilk as many of its self-help brethren.No one wishes to spend days upon end reading a book about avoiding or ameliorating cancer; one wishes to easily digest the information, and feel relaxed about accepting the advice and facts. My first impression was that the style of writing was plain and personable, and the advice and statistics easy to grasp and backed up by verifiable fact. Barbara Boughton quickly establishes herself as witty, approachable, calm, and smart; someone you’d like to have espresso (er -- i mean a whole wheat bagel) with while discussing the daunting topic of cancer. Because she’s frank about her own pains, fears, and embarrassments in dealing with hereditary cancers and cancer testing, the material becomes instantly more credible. At the outset, I’d assumed Dr. Michael Stefanek’s contribution to the book would be mainly to lend the prestige of a medical doctor who works for the American Cancer Society; the feel of the book is typically self-help’ish when one first picks it up and looks at it. However, early in the book, we’re treated to a succinct, accurate primer on how to interpret the math behind the medical lingo and statistics dished out to the public via media sound bytes. At the end of the book, Dr. Stefanek again treats us, this time with a compact system with which to devise a plan for incorporating and establishing new behaviors to help us remain cancer-free, or to help us beat current cancers. The system seemed a bit obvious and intuitive, but it’s worth a look if you’ve been unsuccessful in adopting healthier habits on your own.If you’re Web-savvy, you know how quickly things change; a perfectly good url may work one day, and present you with a 404 error the next. I checked every single one of the dozens of links (at the end of June, 2010), and all worked beautifully, first try, with very little automatic redirecting. To achieve this, there must have been expediency in getting the book to press; this is probably why a bit of attention to editing was lost, as I did find a handful of grammatical errors. Still, this didn’t in any way cloud my opinion of the information presented, nor of the authors. Cancer is a nasty, palpably evil thing. This book helps mitigate some of the terror via positively-presented, highly useful facts. Because of this book, I talked my mother into getting her first colonoscopy at age 65 (her colon is gorgeously clean!), and I found out that I am at high risk for breast cancer, thus catalyzing my decision to schedule an MRI. Cancer sucks; this book makes it suck just a little bit less. And maybe, it’s gonna save your life. Check it out, and pass it on.Keywords: cancer, “cancer research”, “medical reference”, “reference”, “cancer reference”, “american cancer society”, “cancer risk,” “reduce cancer risk,” “avoid cancer”, “medical reference,” “cancer reference,” “cancer news,” “cancer studies”more
“Reduce Your Cancer Risks: Twelve Steps to a Healthier Life” (ISBN 978-1932603927) is an excellent book to read if you have had one or more close relatives with cancer and are concerned about your risks. Some of the information can be found or is common knowledge but there is information such as which tests would be more useful in different situations. The book is well put together, easy to read and has references if you want to explore any subject further.more
“Reduce Your Cancer Risks: Twelve Steps to a Healthier Life” (ISBN 978-1932603927) is a 256 page paperback book by Barbara Boughton and Michael Stefanek, PhD. The book was edited by Ted Gansler, MD and published by Demos Health. This book is the first edition and it was released on May 4, 2010. The book consists of a preface, acknowledgments, a section on “Cancer Science or Cancer Myths: How Do You Tell the Difference,” and twelve chapters. The book also contains a conclusion, an appendix, and an index. “Reduce Your Cancer Risks: Twelve Steps to a Healthier Life” has been written in conjunction with the American Cancer Society.Barbara Boughton has written for Women and Cancer, MAMM, In Touch, Better Homes and Gardens, Alternative Medicine, Consumer Reports and she regularly writes for Lancet Oncology as well as Medscape.com. She is a health and medical journalist. Her co-author, Dr. Michael Stefanek, PhD has worked at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland, where he was the Chief of the Basic Biobehavioral Research Branch. He was also the Vice President of Behavioral Research and Director of the Behavioral Research Center with the American Cancer Society in Atlanta Georgia. Both authors are knowledgeable about their subject matter. The fear of getting cancer is very real for many individuals. In the book’s dedication, Boughton and Stefanek reveal that they both have relatives that have suffered from cancer. The book starts out with Barbara Boughton sharing the story of her mother’s experience with breast cancer which immediately draws the reader in, especially if they have had loved ones with the disease. Hence, the authors immediately grab the attention of the reader and offer a work that is genuinely sympathetic to those individuals that fear cancer. The personal approach at the beginning of the work sets the feel for the entire book. The authors explain the common fear of cancer, how some individuals may even overestimate their cancer risks, and that people may live with unnecessary fear and anxiety. The purpose of the book is to reduce anxiety and worries about cancer by becoming informed about risks and prevention. “Reduce Your Cancer Risks: Twelve Steps to a Healthier Life” examines cancer risks one by one and then shows the reader positive things that can be done to eliminate the risks one faces. The book explores ways of researching the latest information on cancer including using tools from the doctor’s office as well as information on the Web. The reader gets tips on how to research family medical history, how to protect oneself against skin cancer, and how to use good nutrition and exercise as a cancer preventative strategy. Advice on quitting smoking, staying free from infections, and the best cancer screening tests is also offered. Environmental carcinogens are also examined as well as preventative surgeries and medications. The reader even gets advice on how to beat stress.From diet and exercise to advice on quitting smoking advice, the book is as inclusive as it can possibly be when it comes to improving one’s lifestyle and lowering cancer risks. This book does what others do not; as the authors researched cancer risks and prevention they discovered that very few books approached the subject of risk assessment and prevention together. It is filled with information on how to determine one’s individual chances of getting the disease and how statistics can be used to determine one’s absolute risks. Up to date information is offered about genetic testing, preventative medications, complementary and alternative medicine, and the work seeks to destroy cancer myths and contradictory information about the disease. The authors boil down statistics to their simplest terms; they back their arguments with the most recent research, and the book is written in a clear and easy to understand manner. The book is ideal for the casual reader looking to know about cancer prevention, researchers, people with loved ones that have the disease, and cancer patients and survivors.more
Reduce Your Cancer Risk was co-written by a medical journalist and a cancer researcher and was published in association with the American Cancer Society. As expected with such a collaboration, the information is well-researched and presented in a very readable format. While it may not be the most exciting read, the book is an excellent resource for lay people looking to gain a basic understanding.Two sections jump out as the most important and useful for a general readership. First is the introductory section and appendix on how to read news stories publishing medical research. The explanations of the use (and misuse) of statistics and of the basic research process help the reader learn how to interpret news reports that are often exaggerated. The second important section is the first two chapters in which the authors define cancer risk and discuss how to assess your own risk.The remainder of the book contains information on reducing your risk for developing cancer and discussions of several specific cancer types. The tips on reducing cancer risk are largely common-sense approaches like avoiding tobacco, alcohol, and excess sun exposure or eating well and exercising. While it is interesting to see just how much these steps can help, there is little new in these chapters about what steps to take. The discussions on certain types of cancer would be of more interest to specific audiences, but are worth at least a skim for the general reader.Overall, this is a book that is worth-while for people to pick up and read. However, those looking for an in-depth look at cancer may want to consider other publications.more
Co-written by a medical/health journalist and a doctor with the American Cancer Society, Reduce Your Cancer Risk is a straightforward book that dispels myths and fears about cancer and replaces them with knowledge and action. The first chapter is dedicated to clearing up misunderstanding resulting from the way statistics are reported, which is foundational to processing the rest of the information in the book as well as any information you come in contact with apart from the book. The text is not difficult to understand, although it's not very engaging either. Most of the suggestions on life style changes and preventive health strategies seemed to be fairly common knowledge: don't smoke, achieve and maintain a healthy weight, exercise, eat whole foods, etc. The book is well referenced, and includes numerous book and website recommendations for continuing your search for more information.more
I cannot overestimate the value of prevention of any disease, much more so the prevention of cancer. That's why I found this book quite enlightening. It's very well-rounded, has an appealing format, and the scientific facts are adequately explained even for the lay people. I liked the stress on proper nutrition to prevent cancer. I appreciated the mention and a good explanation of soy controversy. Also, as I live in southern Texas, the chapter on skin cancer caught my undivided attention. All in all, it's a good book to educate people about the prevention of cancer. I got this book through Early Reviewers and I will keep referring to it in future for a healthier lifestyle.more
I am not a health nut, but do have an interest in maintaining a somewhat healthy lifestyle, so I requested Barbara Boughton’s Reduce Your Cancer Risk from Librarything’s Early Reviewer program. When I received the book I realized that it is put out by The American Cancer Society and as expected, the information included is from the standpoint of the established medical community. Mention is given to alternative treatments, but these are accompanied by warnings that all claims should be backed up by solid medical research and anecdotal accounts should be treated with skepticism. Each chapter in the book is indeed backed up by notes citing studies and research.I read through the entire book, although some chapters were not of particular interest to me. For example, I am aware (isn’t EVERYONE??) that smoking can cause cancer. An entire chapter discusses the risks of tobacco use and ways to quit the habit. It highlights differences between a nicotine patch, nicotine gum, etc. I imagine this would interest someone trying to quit smoking. There is also a chapter about various viruses that raise the risk of cancer. I didn’t know there were any. But aside from HIV, the viruses are rare, and the bottom line seems to be to practice safe sex.The book emphasizes that healthy diet and exercise can reduce your risk for cancer. That’s old news for most of us. I did take away a few new tidbits from those chapters, however. I never realized that a diet high in salt could increase cancer risk. Boughton also emphasizes that studies show the benefits (in cancer risk reduction) of eating many fruits and vegetables, yet those same risk reductions do not seem to occur for people using supplements as their source of the nutrients found in fruits and vegetables. There is also a handy little chart that tells me that keeping my weight below 140lbs (I’m 5’3”) lowers my cancer risk. Interesting.The parts of the book I found to be most interesting deal with risk perception, risk assessment and the pros and cons of preventative (drug and surgical) measures. Boughton says that a frequently quoted statistic states that a woman’s risk of getting breast cancer is 11%, but those numbers actually refer to a woman’s risk beginning at age 20 and going all the way to 80 years old. In fact, for a woman between the ages of 20 and 50, the risk is only 2%. From 50-70 it’s 6% and from 70-80 it’s 3%. Added together, it comes to 11% as a lifetime risk. This kind of information does not do anything to lower cancer risk, but may be reassuring to the reader. Genetic testing, preventative drugs and preventative mastectomies and removal of ovaries are all discussed in detail in the book.Reducing Your Cancer Risk is an up to date reference source, but with the constant cancer research that is going on, some of the information is sure to quickly change. Still, much of the data and definitions may prove to be helpful to those interested in cancer prevention.more
Read all 8 reviews

Reviews

"Reduce Your Cancer Risk" has to be one of the best books I've read on the topic in many years. It exceeded my expectations in so many areas, I don't know where to begin.I had expected the authors to either bore me with endless statistics that would eventually make my eyes glaze over, or, I expected to be condescended with sentences and vocabulary aimed to the lowest common denominator of reading skill. But instead, I was pleasantly surprised by the intelligent yet common sense tone of the text mixed with a good balance of supporting documentation and facts.Even though I have considered myself well versed on the topics of health and nutrition, especially for someone not in the medical profession, I learned something new with nearly every page in the book. (I must confess that I skimmed two chapters that did not apply to me: tobacco and 'when you've already had cancer.').If you read with a highlighter or ink pen, bring more than one, because you'll definite use them up as you read this. I've recommended and shown this to friends, although I won't loan it out for fear of not getting it back. This is worth owning, reading, and referring to time and time again. The information packed within will have you re-examining and evaluating your lifestyle choices and the impacts those choices have on your long-term health.The only beef I have with this wonderful book is: first, the stance of support for censoring Hollywood to remove smoking from its films, which I believe is naïve; and second, no mention that I noticed about the connection between general oral health and the link to increased risks of other types of cancer. The only other concern I have is in the Obesity and Cancer chapter in which the author passively supports fad diets as a way of initiating weight loss, i.e., Atkins, South Beach, etc. Those short term solutions never have the lasting effect that straight forward exercise and diet-control have, and in some cases have the opposite effect.All in all, this book belongs on every bookshelf in every home in the country.more
Blurb:I was as hesitant about this book as I was hopeful; I wasn’t in the mood for a cliche-filled self-help handbook featuring dubious statistics. I was happily surprised to immediately discover that the book’s authors were scrupulously dedicated to providing facts based on the scientific method, with considerable fealty to the way in which studies are presented to the public. The book was a fast, informative, relevant primer on cancer, with tons of useful and trenchant website links for those who want additional info. As with anything, results are what matter, and this handbook produced those: I talked my 65-year-old mother into getting her first colonoscopy (she’s gloriously clean!), and have scheduled myself for an MRI. Thanks to all involved for this unflinching but laid-back and positive primer on the bane of cancer; you made it just a little less terrible.Full Review:My interest was piqued upon encountering Reduce Your Cancer Risk: Twelve Steps to a Healthier Life, co-published by the American Cancer Society. Having become fairly obsessive about my parents’ logevity now that they’re in their mid-60s, the potential of enhanced health and cancer awareness in only 12 discrete steps was tantalizing. However, I was looking for a solid reference book, not one inundated with all the sound bytes and cliches I see advertised around the Web many times a day; I demand the sound and rigorous application of the scientific method behind any medical facts presented me. I ended up having worried needlessly that Reduce Your Cancer Risk would be of the same ilk as many of its self-help brethren.No one wishes to spend days upon end reading a book about avoiding or ameliorating cancer; one wishes to easily digest the information, and feel relaxed about accepting the advice and facts. My first impression was that the style of writing was plain and personable, and the advice and statistics easy to grasp and backed up by verifiable fact. Barbara Boughton quickly establishes herself as witty, approachable, calm, and smart; someone you’d like to have espresso (er -- i mean a whole wheat bagel) with while discussing the daunting topic of cancer. Because she’s frank about her own pains, fears, and embarrassments in dealing with hereditary cancers and cancer testing, the material becomes instantly more credible. At the outset, I’d assumed Dr. Michael Stefanek’s contribution to the book would be mainly to lend the prestige of a medical doctor who works for the American Cancer Society; the feel of the book is typically self-help’ish when one first picks it up and looks at it. However, early in the book, we’re treated to a succinct, accurate primer on how to interpret the math behind the medical lingo and statistics dished out to the public via media sound bytes. At the end of the book, Dr. Stefanek again treats us, this time with a compact system with which to devise a plan for incorporating and establishing new behaviors to help us remain cancer-free, or to help us beat current cancers. The system seemed a bit obvious and intuitive, but it’s worth a look if you’ve been unsuccessful in adopting healthier habits on your own.If you’re Web-savvy, you know how quickly things change; a perfectly good url may work one day, and present you with a 404 error the next. I checked every single one of the dozens of links (at the end of June, 2010), and all worked beautifully, first try, with very little automatic redirecting. To achieve this, there must have been expediency in getting the book to press; this is probably why a bit of attention to editing was lost, as I did find a handful of grammatical errors. Still, this didn’t in any way cloud my opinion of the information presented, nor of the authors. Cancer is a nasty, palpably evil thing. This book helps mitigate some of the terror via positively-presented, highly useful facts. Because of this book, I talked my mother into getting her first colonoscopy at age 65 (her colon is gorgeously clean!), and I found out that I am at high risk for breast cancer, thus catalyzing my decision to schedule an MRI. Cancer sucks; this book makes it suck just a little bit less. And maybe, it’s gonna save your life. Check it out, and pass it on.Keywords: cancer, “cancer research”, “medical reference”, “reference”, “cancer reference”, “american cancer society”, “cancer risk,” “reduce cancer risk,” “avoid cancer”, “medical reference,” “cancer reference,” “cancer news,” “cancer studies”more
“Reduce Your Cancer Risks: Twelve Steps to a Healthier Life” (ISBN 978-1932603927) is an excellent book to read if you have had one or more close relatives with cancer and are concerned about your risks. Some of the information can be found or is common knowledge but there is information such as which tests would be more useful in different situations. The book is well put together, easy to read and has references if you want to explore any subject further.more
“Reduce Your Cancer Risks: Twelve Steps to a Healthier Life” (ISBN 978-1932603927) is a 256 page paperback book by Barbara Boughton and Michael Stefanek, PhD. The book was edited by Ted Gansler, MD and published by Demos Health. This book is the first edition and it was released on May 4, 2010. The book consists of a preface, acknowledgments, a section on “Cancer Science or Cancer Myths: How Do You Tell the Difference,” and twelve chapters. The book also contains a conclusion, an appendix, and an index. “Reduce Your Cancer Risks: Twelve Steps to a Healthier Life” has been written in conjunction with the American Cancer Society.Barbara Boughton has written for Women and Cancer, MAMM, In Touch, Better Homes and Gardens, Alternative Medicine, Consumer Reports and she regularly writes for Lancet Oncology as well as Medscape.com. She is a health and medical journalist. Her co-author, Dr. Michael Stefanek, PhD has worked at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland, where he was the Chief of the Basic Biobehavioral Research Branch. He was also the Vice President of Behavioral Research and Director of the Behavioral Research Center with the American Cancer Society in Atlanta Georgia. Both authors are knowledgeable about their subject matter. The fear of getting cancer is very real for many individuals. In the book’s dedication, Boughton and Stefanek reveal that they both have relatives that have suffered from cancer. The book starts out with Barbara Boughton sharing the story of her mother’s experience with breast cancer which immediately draws the reader in, especially if they have had loved ones with the disease. Hence, the authors immediately grab the attention of the reader and offer a work that is genuinely sympathetic to those individuals that fear cancer. The personal approach at the beginning of the work sets the feel for the entire book. The authors explain the common fear of cancer, how some individuals may even overestimate their cancer risks, and that people may live with unnecessary fear and anxiety. The purpose of the book is to reduce anxiety and worries about cancer by becoming informed about risks and prevention. “Reduce Your Cancer Risks: Twelve Steps to a Healthier Life” examines cancer risks one by one and then shows the reader positive things that can be done to eliminate the risks one faces. The book explores ways of researching the latest information on cancer including using tools from the doctor’s office as well as information on the Web. The reader gets tips on how to research family medical history, how to protect oneself against skin cancer, and how to use good nutrition and exercise as a cancer preventative strategy. Advice on quitting smoking, staying free from infections, and the best cancer screening tests is also offered. Environmental carcinogens are also examined as well as preventative surgeries and medications. The reader even gets advice on how to beat stress.From diet and exercise to advice on quitting smoking advice, the book is as inclusive as it can possibly be when it comes to improving one’s lifestyle and lowering cancer risks. This book does what others do not; as the authors researched cancer risks and prevention they discovered that very few books approached the subject of risk assessment and prevention together. It is filled with information on how to determine one’s individual chances of getting the disease and how statistics can be used to determine one’s absolute risks. Up to date information is offered about genetic testing, preventative medications, complementary and alternative medicine, and the work seeks to destroy cancer myths and contradictory information about the disease. The authors boil down statistics to their simplest terms; they back their arguments with the most recent research, and the book is written in a clear and easy to understand manner. The book is ideal for the casual reader looking to know about cancer prevention, researchers, people with loved ones that have the disease, and cancer patients and survivors.more
Reduce Your Cancer Risk was co-written by a medical journalist and a cancer researcher and was published in association with the American Cancer Society. As expected with such a collaboration, the information is well-researched and presented in a very readable format. While it may not be the most exciting read, the book is an excellent resource for lay people looking to gain a basic understanding.Two sections jump out as the most important and useful for a general readership. First is the introductory section and appendix on how to read news stories publishing medical research. The explanations of the use (and misuse) of statistics and of the basic research process help the reader learn how to interpret news reports that are often exaggerated. The second important section is the first two chapters in which the authors define cancer risk and discuss how to assess your own risk.The remainder of the book contains information on reducing your risk for developing cancer and discussions of several specific cancer types. The tips on reducing cancer risk are largely common-sense approaches like avoiding tobacco, alcohol, and excess sun exposure or eating well and exercising. While it is interesting to see just how much these steps can help, there is little new in these chapters about what steps to take. The discussions on certain types of cancer would be of more interest to specific audiences, but are worth at least a skim for the general reader.Overall, this is a book that is worth-while for people to pick up and read. However, those looking for an in-depth look at cancer may want to consider other publications.more
Co-written by a medical/health journalist and a doctor with the American Cancer Society, Reduce Your Cancer Risk is a straightforward book that dispels myths and fears about cancer and replaces them with knowledge and action. The first chapter is dedicated to clearing up misunderstanding resulting from the way statistics are reported, which is foundational to processing the rest of the information in the book as well as any information you come in contact with apart from the book. The text is not difficult to understand, although it's not very engaging either. Most of the suggestions on life style changes and preventive health strategies seemed to be fairly common knowledge: don't smoke, achieve and maintain a healthy weight, exercise, eat whole foods, etc. The book is well referenced, and includes numerous book and website recommendations for continuing your search for more information.more
I cannot overestimate the value of prevention of any disease, much more so the prevention of cancer. That's why I found this book quite enlightening. It's very well-rounded, has an appealing format, and the scientific facts are adequately explained even for the lay people. I liked the stress on proper nutrition to prevent cancer. I appreciated the mention and a good explanation of soy controversy. Also, as I live in southern Texas, the chapter on skin cancer caught my undivided attention. All in all, it's a good book to educate people about the prevention of cancer. I got this book through Early Reviewers and I will keep referring to it in future for a healthier lifestyle.more
I am not a health nut, but do have an interest in maintaining a somewhat healthy lifestyle, so I requested Barbara Boughton’s Reduce Your Cancer Risk from Librarything’s Early Reviewer program. When I received the book I realized that it is put out by The American Cancer Society and as expected, the information included is from the standpoint of the established medical community. Mention is given to alternative treatments, but these are accompanied by warnings that all claims should be backed up by solid medical research and anecdotal accounts should be treated with skepticism. Each chapter in the book is indeed backed up by notes citing studies and research.I read through the entire book, although some chapters were not of particular interest to me. For example, I am aware (isn’t EVERYONE??) that smoking can cause cancer. An entire chapter discusses the risks of tobacco use and ways to quit the habit. It highlights differences between a nicotine patch, nicotine gum, etc. I imagine this would interest someone trying to quit smoking. There is also a chapter about various viruses that raise the risk of cancer. I didn’t know there were any. But aside from HIV, the viruses are rare, and the bottom line seems to be to practice safe sex.The book emphasizes that healthy diet and exercise can reduce your risk for cancer. That’s old news for most of us. I did take away a few new tidbits from those chapters, however. I never realized that a diet high in salt could increase cancer risk. Boughton also emphasizes that studies show the benefits (in cancer risk reduction) of eating many fruits and vegetables, yet those same risk reductions do not seem to occur for people using supplements as their source of the nutrients found in fruits and vegetables. There is also a handy little chart that tells me that keeping my weight below 140lbs (I’m 5’3”) lowers my cancer risk. Interesting.The parts of the book I found to be most interesting deal with risk perception, risk assessment and the pros and cons of preventative (drug and surgical) measures. Boughton says that a frequently quoted statistic states that a woman’s risk of getting breast cancer is 11%, but those numbers actually refer to a woman’s risk beginning at age 20 and going all the way to 80 years old. In fact, for a woman between the ages of 20 and 50, the risk is only 2%. From 50-70 it’s 6% and from 70-80 it’s 3%. Added together, it comes to 11% as a lifetime risk. This kind of information does not do anything to lower cancer risk, but may be reassuring to the reader. Genetic testing, preventative drugs and preventative mastectomies and removal of ovaries are all discussed in detail in the book.Reducing Your Cancer Risk is an up to date reference source, but with the constant cancer research that is going on, some of the information is sure to quickly change. Still, much of the data and definitions may prove to be helpful to those interested in cancer prevention.more
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