The American Cancer Society released new recommendations for colorectal screening starting at age 45 instead of 50 for people at average risk (1).

Colorectal cancer is one of the more common cancers—it’s reported that 1 in 20 individuals will develop colon or rectal cancer at some point in their lifetime. The links between diet, weight, and exercise and colorectal cancer risk are some of the strongest for any type of cancer.

Important lifestyle recommendations will help protect your colorectal health:          

Optimize your weight. Being overweight or obese increases your risk of getting and dying from colon or rectal cancer. Eating healthier and increasing your physical activity can help you control your weight.

Eat more vegetables, fruits and whole grains and less processed food. Diets that include a lot of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains have been linked to a lower risk of colon or rectal cancer. Decrease your intake of processed and refined food and meats, in particular, hot dogs and some luncheon meats, which have been linked with a heightened risk of colorectal cancer.

Exercise regularly: Physical inactivity increases your chance of developing colon or rectal cancer. Increasing your physical activity may help decrease your risk.

Stop smoking Long-term smokers are more likely than non-smokers to develop and die from colon and rectal cancer.

Decrease your alcohol intake. Alcohol use is linked with a higher risk of colorectal cancer. The American Cancer Society recommends 1 drink a day for women and no more than 2 drinks a day for men.

Changing these lifestyle habits not only lowers your risk of cancer but also the likelihood of other serious chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. At STR!VE, we take a lifestyle approach to prevention, partnering with members to create a personalized plan for proper nutrition, daily movement and managing stress. We’ll help you get the resources and support you need through our partnerships and ongoing wellness education.

Additional Resources:

STR!VE Weight Management Group, next session begins June 14

The American Cancer Society Guide to Quitting Smoking


Colorectal cancer screening for average‐risk adults: 2018 guideline update from the American Cancer Society. CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.

Six Ways to Lower Your Risk for Colon Cancer. (2018, May 30).