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The European Code Against Cancer

EUROPEAN CODE AGAINST CANCER - 12 ways to reduce your cancer risk.


1  Do not smoke. Do not use any form of tobacco.

2  Make your home smoke free. Support smoke-free policies in your workplace.

3  Take action to be a healthy body weight.

4  Be physically active in everyday life. Limit the time you spend sitting.

5  Have a healthy diet:

  • Eat plenty of whole grains, pulses, vegetables and fruits.
  • Limit high-calorie foods (foods high in sugar or fat) and avoid sugary drinks.
  • Avoid processed meat; limit red meat and foods high in salt.

6  If you drink alcohol of any type, limit your intake. Not drinking alcohol is better for cancer prevention.

7  Avoid too much sun, especially for children. Use sun protection. Do not use sunbeds.

8  In the workplace, protect yourself against cancer-causing substances by following health and safety instructions.

9  Find out if you are exposed to radiation from naturally high radon levels in your home. Take action to reduce high radon levels.

10  For women:

  • Breastfeeding reduces cancer risk. If you can, breastfeed your baby.
    • Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) increases the risk of certain cancers. Limit use of HRT.

11  Ensure your children take part in vaccination programmes for:

  • Hepatitis B (for newborns)
  • Human papillomavirus (HPV) (for girls).

12  Take part in organized cancer screening programmes for:

  • Bowel cancer (men and women)
  • Breast cancer (women)
  • Cervical cancer (women).


Find out more about the European Code Against Cancer at: