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How to Prevent Pancreatic Cancer in the Elderly

According to the National Cancer Institute, pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest types of cancer, and there is a steep increase in risk that occurs beginning at the age of 50. Although this may be scary news to hear, there are many things that can be done to prevent your senior loved one from developing pancreatic cancer.Redondo Beach elderly care experts have a few suggestions.

Cease Tobacco Use

If your loved one smokes, he or she has another reason to quit, since almost 20 percent of all new pancreatic cancer cases involve the current or past use of tobacco. However, those who quit can have their risk reduced to that of a nonsmoker within 5 to 10 years.

Maintain a Healthy Weight

Obesity is another risk factor that can easily be managed. Those with extra abdominal girth are at the highest risk. Your loved one should be encouraged to stay active throughout the day to the best of his or her physical ability. A caregiver in Redondo Beach can help ensure this happens. Walks, senior exercise classes, and eating a balanced diet can all reduce the risk of pancreatic cancer.

Limit Alcohol Use

Seniors who consume one drink a day or abstain from drinking are at a lower risk for pancreatic cancer. However, those who drink 2 to 4 alcoholic beverages a day will need to eliminate the extra alcohol if they want to prevent its development. This is especially true if your loved one drinks and smokes at the same time because these two factors together nearly double the risk.

Reduce Red Meat Consumption

Current research indicates eating red meat regularly may slightly increase a senior’s risk for developing pancreatic cancer. Meat cooked at high temperatures is also suspect. Choose white meat such as chicken or fish as often as possible for your loved one’s meals and limit grilled red meats to once a week or less.

Check Vitamin D Levels

Vitamin D has protective qualities against developing this type of cancer. Make sure your loved one eats a diet rich in vitamin D and encourage limited amounts of time in the sun. If necessary, consider a supplement to ensure your loved one has enough of this critical nutrient to help prevent pancreatic cancer.

Following these healthy tips can help your loved one prevent many health complications, not just pancreatic cancer. If your loved one needs help maintaining a healthy lifestyle, reach out to Home Care Assistance for live-in and part-time care in Redondo Beach.Our caregivers can assist your loved one with exercise, prepare nutritious meals, and even go grocery shopping. To learn more about our senior care services, call one of our friendly Care Managers at (310) 504-0506 today. We look forward to hearing from you.