The Cleveland Browns are a bit defensive about their recent record — even though it improved last year, they’ve won only eight games in the past three seasons! But coach Freddie Kitchens is confident that Cleveland’s new players, defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, defensive end Olivier Vernon and safety Morgan Burnette, will make a difference this season.

A good defense is also essential when it comes to your health, and a new study published in JNCI Cancer Spectrum lays out just what you can do to defend yourself from cancer: Clean up your plate!

In 2015, researchers found that a poor diet was responsible for over 52,000 cases of colorectal cancer, 14,400 cases of cancer of the mouth, pharynx and larynx; 3,165 cases of uterine cancer; 3,050 post-menopausal breast cancer cases; 2,017 cases of kidney cancer, 1,564 of stomach cancer and 1,000 of liver cancer, in the U.S.

What blows your defenses? If you skip whole grains, fruits, veggies and (low-fat) dairy and gobble up processed and red meats, you’re losing the game. Add sugar-sweetened beverages and obesity? That’s linked to an increased risk for 13 types of cancer!

So, one more time, YOU have a lot of control over your health. Your first (but far from last) step is to avoid highly processed and sugar-added foods and beverages; skip red and processed meats; eat seven to nine servings of fruits and veggies and two servings of whole grains daily. Make every meal a super bowl of goodness! Maybe the Browns can do that, too!

Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into “The Dr. Oz Show” or visit

Oz is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Roizen is chief wellness officer and chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic.

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