While a wide-open frontier of medicine is finding cures for cancers, our job in the meantime is to avoid getting them in the first place. Of course, genetics plays a large role, but that doesn't mean that you're simply a card in a game of cancerous blackjack. Luck doesn't determine everything; in fact, we'd argue that you have enough control to make sure it doesn't. The main thing you can do to decrease your chances of cancer is reduce the repetitive injury to your normal cells—so that there's less chance that p53 will make a mistake and allow cancer to kill off a weakened but necessary cell, and then grow and spread.
How do you do that? By being aware and taking steps to protect yourself against many of the Major Agers that we have already discussed, such as toxins, infections, mitochondrial damage from oxygen free radicals and genetic defects. In addition, take these steps to help prevent the birth (and spread) of cancer cells. See the next page to get started.
Excerpted from "YOU: Staying Young" by Michael F. Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet C. Oz, M.D. Copyright © 2007 by Michael F. Roizen, M.D., and Oz Works LLC, f/s/o Mehmet C. Oz, M.D. Reprinted by permission of Free Press, a Division of Simon and Schuster, Inc.