The National Cancer Survivor Month is celebrated every year in June to honor and support those who are fighting or have fought the disease.

According to the American Association for Cancer Research, anyone can be a cancer survivor from the moment of the diagnosis throughout their life, irrespective of the course of the disease.

A study by The American Cancer Society has found that more than 18 million people live in the U.S. after surviving several forms of cancer.

The journey of a cancer survivor does not end with the successful treatment of the disease. The survivor needs support to face the emotional challenges and side effects of cancer treatment. It is also important for them to adopt certain changes in their lifestyle to prevent the recurrence of the disease.

Tips to reduce the risk of recurrence

Even when a doctor certifies a person to be cancer free, there is a chance that some cancer cells did survive the battle. No one can guarantee that there will be no recurrence of the cancer.

So, a person who has fought the disease should adopt certain lifestyle changes to reduce the risk of recurrence and prevent side effects caused by treatments.

1. Do Regular Checkups: Going for regular follow-up checkups after cancer treatment is essential for monitoring the health and addressing the side effects of the cancer treatment. These checkups also give survivors a chance to discuss with their doctors any new symptoms or changes in the body that helps in the early detection of any potential recurrence.

2. Healthy Diet: A well-balanced diet that contains fiber, nutrients, and cancer-protective natural phytochemicals is essential for cancer survivors. Health experts recommend limiting red meat, alcohol, junk food, and processed sugar.

3. Exercise: Getting regular exercise and staying physically active reduces the chances of developing several serious health conditions, including cancer. Simple activities such as walking help to reduce fatigue, nausea, mood swings, and pain.

4. Quit Smoking: According to the American Cancer Society, about 30% of all cancer deaths and 81% of all lung cancer deaths are due to smoking. Quitting smoking helps to revive overall health and reduce the chances of cancer recurrence.

5. Maintain a healthy weight: Keeping your weight within a healthy range is the most important step for protecting from cancer, as about 4-8% of all cancers are attributed to obesity.

6. Go for Screenings: It is important to understand that having one cancer does not make a person immune to having a different form of cancer. So, cancer survivors should not miss screenings for other types of cancers.

Cancer survivor
Cancer Survivors Month is celebrated in June every year to honor those who have fought the disease and to support them in their life after battling cancer. Photo courtesy of