Ingredients and Simple Steps to Reduce Your Risk of Breast Cancer
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. Breast Cancer is a serious disease and can be life-threatening. According to the American Cancer Society over 232,000 women will be diagnosed with new cases of invasive breast cancer this year. Women are not alone in developing this disease as it also affects men. The American Institute of Cancer Research (AICR) estimates that 2,200 men will also be diagnosed with new cases of breast cancer this year. Many elements contribute to increased risk of breast cancer such as family history, or genetic factors such as the carrying the BRCA-1 gene. There are many items that are within our control to reduce our risks.
Listed below are “Ingredients and Simple Steps” to help reduce your risk of breast cancer:
1. Eat a Healthy Diet
What we choose to eat and how we prepare it can significantly reduce our risk of breast cancer by providing our bodies with necessary nutrients to reach and maintain a healthy weight and optimal health. Animal proteins, refined processed foods, artificial sweeteners, chemical additives found in processed foods have all shown to increase breast cancer risk. Therefore, a healthy diet consists of an eating pattern made up of predominately plant-based whole foods. That means choosing to eat leafy greens, juicy fruits, colorful vegetables, all varieties of beans and legumes, and fiber rich whole grains.
Alcohol consumption was shown to increase a woman’s risk of breast cancer. The Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA), reported that women who consume between three and six alcoholic beverages per week have an increased risk of breast cancer therefore, it may be in our best interest to limit or avoid alcohol all together.
2. Reduce or Manage Stress
When individuals are under stress they may indulge in unhealthy behaviors such as smoking, drinking alcohol or binge eating. In order to ward off these bad habits it is a good idea to reduce or manage stress. You can start by developing a healthy attitude. Plan adequate time to relax, meditate and breathe deeply. You can achieve measurable differences in just 10 minutes per day!
3. Exercise Regularly
Regular exercise has several benefits. An analysis done by University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill reports that “researchers have found that physical activity – either mild or intense and before or after menopause – may reduce breast cancer risk, but substantial weight gain may negate these benefits.”
Current recommendations from the CDC states that adults should accumulate a minimum of 30 minutes or more of moderate intensity physical activity on most, preferably all days of the week. Look for opportunities to move more. Try to take the stairs instead of the elevator, park further away in a parking lot or take a walk after dinner.
There is no guarantee. Making these small changes can significantly reduce your risk of developing this life-threatening disease. Do you want to learn more on how to make healthy lifestyle choices? I can help!