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Cancer Fighting Foods

Cancer is the leading cause of death in Canada. In fact, it is responsible for 30% of all total deaths in our country. It is estimated that 2 out of 5 Canadians are expected to develop some form of cancer in their lifetimes, and 1 out of 4 of those diagnosed will die from it.

With those grim figures in mind, it is no surprise that most of us are on the constant look-out for ways to protect ourselves from the disease. Perhaps the best defence, however, is quite simply to live healthy, active lives, and there’s no better place to start than your diet. Although not a magical cure for cancer, certain food items have cancer-fighting properties. Including these in your diet, coupled with regular exercise, are sure-fire ways to decrease your risk of cancer.

A predominantly plant-based diet is ideal for warding off cancer. Meals should contain at least 2/3rd plant type foods. Amongst other health benefits, this ensures a diet low in saturated fats.

Folate-rich foods

There is a correlation between levels of folate in the body and the chances of DNA mutation. Eating folate-rich foods such as cereals, oranges and spinach may decrease your risk of pancreatic cancer by up to 50%.

Source foods

  • Cereal
  • Pasta
  • Orange
  • Spinach
  • Romaine leaves
  • Dried beans
  • Asparagus
  • Brussels sprouts

Teas contain antioxidants called flavonoids. Once such flavonoid called kaempferol has been shown to work well against cancer. Women in a study who increased their kaempferol intake showed a lower rate of ovarian cancer, and post-menopausal women had a decreased risk of breast cancer.

The recommended dose for this antioxidant to work well against cancer is an about 10-12 milligrams daily or approximately 4 cups of tea.

Source foods

  • Various types of teas
Vitamin D

Vitamin D has been known to cut the risks of breast cancer by half. It works by curbing the growth of cancerous cells in the body. It is recommended that an adult should receive a minimum daily dose of 1000 IU of vitamin D.

Source foods

  • Sunshine
  • Milk
  • Cod
  • Shrimp
  • Chinook salmon
  • Eggs
Cruciferous vegetables

Cruciferous vegetables such as kale, cabbage and Brussel sprouts have all been shown to help with the prevention of prostate and colon cancer. It is important to note however that studies have shown that these health benefits are activated only by chewing or cutting the vegetables.

Source foods

  • Kale
  • Turnip greens
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Broccoli
  • Brussel sprouts

Curcumin’s anti-inflammatory properties are its essential trait for fighting cancer. Recent studies have shown that curcumin suppresses the transformation and invasion of cancer cells, by disrupting cell-signalling pathways in the body. Its benefits have been shown to be effective against bladder and gastrointestinal cancer.

Source foods

  • Turmeric
  • Curry powder

How to tell if a mole is cancerous

skin-cancer-mole-womens-healthAlmost everyone has moles on their body. While a majority of them are harmless, some can be deadly. A normal or benign mole is often evenly colored, round or oval in shape, about ¼ inch in diameter and can either be flat or raised. Some moles are present at birth, but the majority appear during childhood. New moles that show up on adults should be examined closely as they could be a sign of melanoma.

Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer and can develop anywhere in the body that has pigments. It is however curable if diagnosed in its early stages. Certain factors may significantly increase your risk of skin cancer, such as chronic sun exposure, severe sunburn as a child, a family history of the disease or by simply having fair skin.

How do you to tell if a mole is cancerous?

One of the best way to tell if a mole is cancerous is by the way it looks. Aside from the sudden appearance of a mole a change in shape, size or color of an existing one is the most probable sign of melanoma.

You may also like: Immunization for adults

Dermatologists recommend using the ABCDE method to identify possible signs of the disease during your routine screening. It determines if mole is cancerous by using the following characteristics as indicators:

  • A = Asymmetry: One side of the spot is very different from the other.
  • B = Border: The spot has irregular edges. Either notched or blurred.
  • C = Color: If the color is inconsistent throughout the spot.
  • D = Diameter: If the spot is larger than the size of a pencil eraser or ¼ inch.
  • E = Evolving: Is it changing in size, shape or color.

Not all melanomas fit the descriptions above, so if you have any doubts about a spot on your body it is best to consult your doctor right away.

To help decrease your risks of getting melanoma you should limit your exposure to sunlight and use sunscreen when possible. Since early detection is key to prevention, regularly screening your body for irregular spots is very important and may even save your life.

Immunization for Adults

When we hear the word immunization, we often think they are for children. But being protected from contagious diseases is important for all of us.

Immunization is the process by which a person is vaccinated for a certain type of infectious disease, to boost their resistance or immunity. The treatment stimulates the immune system’s antibodies to help better combat the infection. These vaccines save lives. In fact they have decreased the death rate of infectious diseases to less than 5% to date. It is important to know that even though you were vaccinated for a particular type of disease as a child, you may need to get it done again later in life. This is especially important for seniors and those with weakened immune systems.

What should I be immunized for as an adult?


Although rarely fatal, the flu virus may cause complications with those that have compromised immune systems. High risk individuals such as seniors and pregnant women should be vaccinated every year, as the flu virus may have evolved and changed.


The shingles is caused by the same virus as the chicken pox. This is why it is very dangerous to contract the chicken pox as an adult. Shingles causes painful skin rash and blisters, which may spread to the face and eyes and could cause blindness. Even if you have already had chicken pox as a child, the virus could stay in your body and re-activate when your immune system is compromised due to complications or age. Chances of getting the shingles increases after the age of 50, but getting the vaccine reduces your chances by 12-50%.


Depending on your destination, there may be multiple types of diseases you should be vaccinated for. But if you are and avid traveller you should be immunized for polio, diphtheria, hepatitis and the measles regardless. If you are unsure which shots you need, speak to your doctor or visit a travel clinic. Just make sure to give it plenty of time as some vaccines may take up to 2 weeks to become fully effective.


Adults who did not receive the following vaccines as a child should make sure they get them right away:

  • Tetanus
  • Diphtheria
  • Pertussis (whooping cough)
  • Measles/Rubella (German Measles)
  • Mumps
  • Varicella (chicken pox)
  • Pneumococcal disease (pneumonia) – over the age of 65

Adults may have better developed immune systems than children, but that doesn’t make us immune to diseases. Make sure you get all the necessary immunizations today.

National Aboriginal Day 2015


Sunday June 21st is National Aboriginal Day. This special day that was started in 1996 is meant to celebrate the culture of all First Nations, Inuit and Mètis people in Canada. It allows people of all backgrounds the opportunity to celebrate and share knowledge about Aboriginal people`s values and customs. With events across the country such as summer solstice festivals, sacred fire extinguishing ceremonies and traditional feasts, there are plenty of things to do for the entire family.

National Aboriginal Day is celebrated on June 21st of every year. This particular date was chosen due to its correlation with the summer solstice, and coincides with many other Aboriginal group`s traditional celebrations.



Here is a list of a few events you can attend this year.


National Aboriginal Day at Trout Lake
 Date & Time: Sunday June 21, 9:00am – 5:00pm
Location: Starting at 1607 Hastings (Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre) and moving to Trout Lake (3350 Victoria Drive).
Learn more here: click here

Victoria Aboriginal Cultural Festival
Dates: Friday, June 19, 2015 – Sunday, June 21, 2015
Location: Royal BC Museum campus, 675 Belleville Street, Victoria
Learn more here: click here

National Aboriginal Day – Langley
Date & Time: Sunday June 21, 12:00pm – 3:00pm
Location: Douglas Park (2055 Douglas Crescent), Langley, BC
Learn more here: click here

National Aboriginal Day Community Celebration – Nanaimo
Date & Time:Sunday, June 21, 10 am to 2 pm
Location: Bowen Park (500 Bowen Road, picnic area off Wall Street), Nanaimo
Learn more here: click here

JIBC National Aboriginal Day Celebration – New Westminster
Date & Time:Wednesday, June 17, 2015 10 am to 2:30 pm
Location: JIBC New Westminster (715 McBride Blvd), New Westminster
Learn more here: click here

National Aboriginal Day – Williams Lake
Date & Time: Sunday June 21, 10 am to 2:30 pm
Location:Boitanio Park (Borland St. & 7th Ave.), Williams Lake
Learn more here: click here

First Peoples’ Festival – Victoria
Date & Time: Sunday June 19 – 21
Location:Inner Harbour Ship Point (wharf and broughton), Victoria
Learn more here: click here

National Aboriginal Day – Richmond
Date & Time: Sunday, June 21, 1 pm to 3 pm
Location:Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Site (12138 Fourth Avenue), Richmond
Learn more here: click here

Whistler National Aboriginal Day
Date & Time: Friday, June 19, 10 am to 4 pm
Location: Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre (4584 Blackcomb Way), Whistler
Learn more here: click here

The Rule of 72

Have you ever wondered how long it will take for your investment to double in value? The “Rule of 72” can help you get a rough estimate of how many years you can expect to wait. The formula is quite simple really. You simply divide the annual rate of return by 72 to get your number. For example, a $1 investment at a 10% rate of return will take 7.2 years to double (72/10=7.2). But as mentioned above, the rule should only be used to get a rough estimate. For the example above the exact number of years it would take for that investment to double would actually be 7.3 years, giving the Rule of 72 formula a .1 year margin of error. Below is a chart showing the differences in calculations using the Rule of 72 and the exact calculations. As you can see the accuracy is highest at 7%-9%.

Rule-of-72(click to enlarge)