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Journal of Food and Drug Research

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Nutrition role in prevention and cure diseases

Author(s): Lama Alnaeli

 Starting with some statistics from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) which reports that chronic diseases are leading causes of death and disability, 70% of annual deaths are due to chronic diseases. These preventable conditions not only compromise quality of life, they add to rising health care costs (75% of the healthcare cost). The good news is that we have the power to help prevent chronic disease, as making positive diet and lifestyle changes can help reduce risk. Eating healthy foods, getting enough exercise, and refraining from tobacco and excessive alcohol use confer numerous health benefits; including possibly preventing the onset of chronic diseases. A study from the Departments of Epidemiology and Nutrition in Harvard school of public health was done to assess the epidemiological evidence on diet and cancer and make public health recommendations. They found that: • Overweight/obesity increases the risk for cancers of the oesophagus (adenocarcinoma), colorectal, breast (postmenopausal), endometrium and kidney and it was recommended that the body weight should be maintained in the body mass index range of 18.5-25 kg/m2, and weight gain in adulthood avoided. • High Salt intake may possibly lead to stomach cancer; that’s why it is highly recommended that we watch out our consumption of salt preserved foods. • Scalding Hot drinks and foods may possibly increase the risk of oral cavity, pharynx and oesophagus cancer; hence it’s recommended that the temperature of our intakes should always be moderate. • Physical activity, the main determinant of energy expenditure, reduces the risk for colorectal cancer and reduces the risk for breast cancer; regular physical activity is highly advised. Furthermore there are recent findings that food-based guidelines are reflected in specific dietary approaches to improve cardiovascular risk factors, such as the dietary approaches to stop hypertension diet and therapeutic Lifestyle changes, which have shown effectively, benefit hypertension and hypercholesterolemia, respectively. These diets, therefore, significantly reduce coronary heart disease risk and are effective in decreasing cardiovascular morbidity and mortality risk. To conclude, a healthy lifestyle and a good balanced diet are the key of healthy living. Medical nutrition therapy plays a key role not only in curing diseases, but also in preventing it.