Battling with cancer is hard. The diagnosis and treatment can be difficult and frightening. This process can be draining, and even after you have made it past the hurdles, you may still need to learn how to live your life as a survivor.
With the development of medicine and people becoming more informed, cancer survivors are not only living for long but also living better and are adopting healthy lifestyles. It is never early to start taking care of yourself, whether as a patient or survivor. Whether you are undergoing treatment or post-treatment, the following six tips are essential in boosting your mental and physical health.
1. Exercise Regularly
Working out regularly is one of the most important things to do to improve your life. It is tough for most people to stick to their exercise routines. This can be tougher for survivors who may have been through treatment and have a busy schedule. Exercising regularly has many benefits for both mental and physical health. It boosts the immune system as well as improves the mood. It may also reduce the risk of other chronic illnesses and cancer recurrence.
2. Eat Healthy Meals
Another essential tip on how to take care of yourself is watching what you eat. After treatment, it can be hard to know which foods would be good for you. The internet is full of misleading information, with people talking about ‘wonder’ diets. The reality is cancer survivors should eat healthy meals that everyone else consumes. This will give the body nutrients as well as boost the immune system.
3. Maintain a Healthy Weight
Many things are known to cause weight gain. Cancer treatment and diagnosis can cause stress and changes to a patient’s routine, making it hard for survivors to monitor and maintain their weight. Watching your weight is an important aspect of living a healthy life. Try to integrate working out into your routine.
4. Avoid or Reduce Alcohol Intake
It would be best to avoid alcohol intake or reduce the amount consumed. One of the primary reasons for this is improving heart health and reducing future cancer risk. Additionally, alcohol can be a source of stress and depression.
If you don’t drink, you don’t need to start and if you do, keep it to moderate consumption. You can avoid alcohol intake by avoiding parties centered on alcohol consumption and choosing nonalcoholic drinks during occasions and meals. If you have an alcohol problem, it would be best to consult a health care expert.
5. Avoid Smoking and Secondhand Smoke
Experts advise on quitting smoking for cancer patients and survivors. Avoiding smoking is essential in preventing the development of illnesses such as stroke, heart disease, or even a second cancer.
On the other hand, if you are not a smoker, you need to avoid secondhand smoke. Though it may not affect you like smoking yourself, spending time around smokers might increase the risk of heart disease and cancer.
6. Stay Connected With Family, Friends, and Other Survivors
There’s a huge advantage in keeping in touch with other cancer survivors as well as with your loved ones. Building a strong social bond will improve your life significantly. This is because you will become less stressed by having the support of friends and family, especially since cancer can seem isolating.
You can achieve this by attending survivor support group meetings, which can be the best place to express yourself and share feelings with people that have been through the same situation. With advancements in technology, you can arrange these meetings via social media platforms and video apps. This would be a great way to connect with other people.