A recent government study said the best way to become healthier is to “eat less.” Duhhhhhh. Now here is another report that describes how “About a third of all common cancers in the United States, China and Britain could be prevented each year if people ate healthier food, drank less alcohol and exercised more. That’s pretty obvious too.

“The World Health Organization (WHO) says regular exercise can prevent many diseases such as cancers, heart diseases and diabetes…and adults should do at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise a week. This could be done by walking for 30 minutes five times per week or by cycling to work every day…Low levels of physical activity are the main cause of an estimated 21 to 25 percent of breast and colon cancers, 27 percent of diabetes cases and 30 percent of heart disease cases worldwide.”

The advice of this study is a non-issue for some of us. Yesterday before an hour of heavy snow shoveling off the roof, I played tennis twice—two hours each time—and two of the women in my afternoon doubles game had also played tennis that morning. One of them plays eight times some weeks.

I know there a millions of people who DO exercise and eat healthfully and still get cancer or die from heart attacks and strokes. Bad breaks for sure. But those who ignore this advice are just asking for trouble. The question I can try to answer in another post is “Why don’t people don’t make more diet decisions and undertake more physical activities that are good for them? Are they just self-destructive? Too lazy? Focused only on the short-term, immediate gratification experience?”

Here are more excerpts from this Reuters article:

“It is distressing that even in 2011, people are dying unnecessarily from cancers that could be prevented through maintaining a healthy weight, diet, physical activity and other lifestyle factors,” Martin Wiseman, a World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) medical and scientific adviser, said in statement.

Estimates from the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) and the WCRF suggest that making simple lifestyle changes could prevent some 40 percent of breast cancers alone in Britain and the United States, as well as tens of thousands of colon, stomach and prostate cancers.

In China, 620,000 cases, or 27 percent are preventable, the WCRF said, as are about 35 percent, or 340,000, in the United States and 37 percent in Britain. Healthier lifestyles could prevent 61,000 cancers in Brazil and 79,000 in Britain.

Cancer is a leading cause of death around the world and its incidence is rising. Each year around 12.7 million people discover they have cancer and 7.6 million people die from some form of the disease. There are about 200 known types of cancer.