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4 Steps to Maintaining a Positive Health Status

Eating healthfully is of the utmost importance in maintaining overall positive health and in preventing some cancers; yet, there are other actions that can also maintain a good, positive health status.  Some of these include ongoing self-education, physician-approved exercise, and socialization.


Ongoing self- education

Self-education represents an important self-directed action that can result in improved health.  Self-education can help promote one’s confidence in achieving optimal health goals [i]. Ongoing education also increases knowledgeable about proper nutrition and health and clarifies the ways to optimally achieve these goals.  By staying updated, one can stay abreast of new advances in cancer treatment and make more educated choices when it comes to decisions related to medical care and treatments.


Physician-approved exercise

It is important to perform physician-approved exercise. Physical activity strengthens the immune system, and enhances and supports digestive system activity.  In addition, a number of studies have demonstrated reduced cancer risk and improved quality of life and survival rate in cancer patients who engage in regular exercise [ii][iii].  It is recommended to begin with 30 minutes of moderate activity each day.  If fatigue or side effects of treatment inhibit the ability to include regular physical activity, it is encouraged to do so in small, manageable amounts. Even a brief slow walk can provide benefits.  It is important to always consult with your doctor before doing any new exercise routine or vigorous activity.



Socialization is a natural part of life and is often used as a measurement of quality of life.  Activities such as exercise are found to be correlated with improved social functioning.  Healthier lifestyle practices that include socialization can help improve overall quality of life and health status [iv].   For example, participating in social events and being active in social environments can help support the adoption and maintenance of nutrition and physical activity behaviors to help people maintain health and well-being [v].


What you can do:

  1. Eat healthy, well-balanced meals rich in cancer-fighting plant foods rich in phytonutrients.
  2. Stay educated to help you keep abreast of new information that can help you to make better decisions regarding your health.
  3. Include regular physical activity, even in small amounts, to help improve overall health and prevent chronic disease.
  4. Remain involved in social activities with friends and family in order to promote healthier lifestyle practices and enhance well-being.



[i] Rager, Kathleen B. “The Self-Directed Learning of Women with Breast Cancer.” Adult Education Quarterly 53.4 (2003): 277-93.
[ii] Zoeller, R. F. “Lifestyle in the Prevention and Management of Cancer: Physical Activity.”American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine 3.5 (2009): 353-61. Print

[iii] “Be Physically Active for at Least 30 Minutes Every Day.” American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR): Recommendations_02_activity. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 June 2012. <http://www.aicr.org/reduce-your-cancer-risk/recommendations-for-cancer-prevention/recommendations_02_activity.html>.

[iv] Mosher, Catherine E., Richard Sloane, Miriam C. Morey, Denise Clutter Snyder, Harvey J. Cohen, Paige E. Miller, and Wendys Demark-Wahnefried. “Associations between Lifestyle Factors and Quality of Life among Older Long-term Breast, Prostate, and Colorectal Cancer Survivors.” Cancer 115.17 (2009): 4001-009. Print.

[v] American Cancer Society. Cancer Facts & Figures 2012. Atlanta: American Cancer Society; 2012
Jessica Iannotta, MS, RD, CSO, CDN

Jessica is a registered dietitian and certified specialist in oncology nutrition (CSO). She studied nutrition at Cornell University and completed her dietetic internship at New York Presbyterian Weill Cornell Medical Center. She obtained her Master's degree through the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. Jessica has worked in inpatient and outpatient oncology settings since 2001 in the North Shore-LIJ Health System. Jessica is in charge of all operations including clinical and culinary operations ranging from menu development to evidence-based website content, relationships with registered dietitians and social workers and developing processes and protocols for intake, management and outcomes analysis of patients.

1 Comment
  1. Interesting quote..thanks!I’ve been thinking laetly that capitalism really can’t work without benevolence of some kind…but I get beat up by my fellow conservatives when I suggest you can’t have capitalism work for us when companies are robbing employees, execs are making 100 MILLION dollars, etc etc…We have to implement more profit sharing, etc………See, this NONbenevolence and abuse of funds gives terrific AMMO to the profs teaching that America’s capitalism is the bane of all evil (and they DO, you know that), creating a whole different type of American …Let this new generation grow up and follow their lib professors and get rid of free market capitalism and everyone MUST go to THE GOVERNMENT..voila, socialism. Voila Obama’s plans.Capitalists..beware! And do something…we can’t go to socialism!

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