Breast cancer is a common form of cancer and it’s likely that you know someone that has been affected by this disease. Becoming educated about breast cancer is the best preventative measure. This is especially true if you have a history of cancer in your family. Some studies indicate that there is a 1 in 9 chance of a woman developing cancer in her lifetime. When breast cancer is discovered and treated early, medical professionals are much more optimistic about successful treatment options. As a woman, knowing your body is important, especially when it comes to your health.
Knowing your breasts and performing your monthly self-breast exams is a critical component to noticing any changes that may occur. The recommended age to obtain a mammogram is 40 years old, but as we all know breast cancer has no age bracket and sometimes young women in their 20’s are diagnosed with breast cancer. What can I do to reduce my risk of breast cancer? Lifestyle changes have been shown in studies to decrease the risk of breast cancer-
- Be physically active. Physical activity can help you maintain a healthy weight, which as a result, helps prevent breast cancer.
- No smoking. Studies have shown a link between smoking and breast cancer risk.
- Limit alcohol. Many studies have shown the more alcohol consumption, the greater your risk of develop breast cancer. If drinking alcohol is something you chose to do, it is stated that you limit yourself to one drink a day.
- Weight control. Being overweight or obese increases the risk of breast cancer.
While this disease continues to be a real threat to women (and sometimes even men), researchers have discovered that a healthy lifestyle is the best way to prevent cancer. One very important factor is diet. You should eat a diet that is primarily plant based and one that is low in process foods. Studies have shown that intake of total fat, saturated fat and meats are associated with an increased risk of breast cancer. As shown above, you should also stay away from smoking or second hand smoke when possible. Exercise and maintaining a proper body weight is also very important in preventing breast cancer.
A consistent healthy lifestyle is highly recommended. Since cancer is a disease that starts in our cells, everything we eat, as well as what we are exposed to can affect them. The link between an active lifestyle and breast cancer prevention is shown to be improved when regular exercise is an integral part of a person’s life. Taking care of ourselves is an ongoing commitment that requires self-discipline and knowledge. In the end it is well worth the effort to potentially reduce the chances of sickness and disease. Veronica Foye, is the author of Inspired 2 Survive: Phenomenal Journeys of Breast Cancer Survival to Inspire, Support, and Heal. www.inspiredtosurvive.com. Check out Veronica’s book on her Youtube page: Inspired 2 Survive Book Trailer.