So, I wanted to get some things off my chest to hear out what others think.
I will have to give you a brief history of my lifestyle because it is precisely that which gives me constant anxiety. Basically, first of all, I am 21. But for as far back as I can remember, I used to eat junk food all the time. When I say junk, I don't mean chocolate, cookies, or fatty and sugary foods (although I did also eat a lot of that stuff); I mean I always had processed meats and fries - that was my dinner for years and years. I used to have Rice Crispies in the mornings for breakfast and drink a lot of coke.
I never really ate fruit or veg (I think I ate healthy until about 5 probably). At the moment (and only for about 7 months), I have an apple and a banana each day. I also have broccoli, green beans & potatoes almost everyday. Other days I have peas with potato. I have fish 4 times a week. Pork twice a weak. On the sunday I have chicken with parsnip, carrot, onions, green beans, mushrooms and garlic. For lunch I have cucumber & pepper sandwiches with tuna. Other days I have bagels with lettuce, cheese and ham; and also a baguette with bacon and lettuce other days. I have a "routine" that I follow. I drink a lot of coffee (perhaps an average of 6 a day but sometimes I could have up to 12); sometimes I have orange juice; I usually sometimes drink a lot of water. I am considered "slightly underweight". But I am actually really skinny in my eyes and always have been.
Also, I used to smoke since I was about 12. I quit last september. I have only ever occasionally drank alcohol. I smoked marijuana hardcore (everyday) for about 3 years as well (from 14 to 17; I know that is really bad).
So basically, having treated my body so badly for all this time, I finally now consider myself to be quite healthy (although just recently I haven't been sticking to the routine because my sleeping patterns are everywhere). But now I have sever anxiety lingering inside me even if I don't feel any symptoms of something. This is because I feel like the damage has already been done and I fear that my risk of cancer at the moment is sky high. This of course amplifies my anxiety if I feel any slight hint of a symptom.
I don't know what to do. The plus to all of this is that my anxiety actually makes me treat my body better. I don't ever want to touch another cigarette ever again. I have refused to buy alcohol on multiple occasions when I have been out with others who have been drinking. Of course, I try to stick to my eating routine as best to my ability when I am sleeping better.
But I constantly worry and fuss about every little symptom. And when I look at the statistics, although the numbers are always on my side when it comes to my age, the risk factors are not. And when I see that the 1% of cancer incidence rates are in my age group, my thought is that those are probably people who lived like me and treated their body badly like I did for all those years. And so no statistic works for me anymore.
I recently saw that on average, in my country (UK), 5 people are diagnosed with stomach cancer each year in my age group (20-24) - but that doesn't help me one bit. Because I think those 5 each year were probably eating processed meats and eating fatty foods and smoking and drinking and everything.