Breast Cancer: one in eight women will be diagnosed in their lifetime. Most (if not all) of you can name at least one relative, neighbor, or friend that has, had, or defeated the cancer. Since men grow breast tissue as well, they can be diagnosed with the disease but it is the most common cancer of women, so the focus often lies on women. Since it is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we wanted to post a nutritional blog that could possibly help any of you, male or female, who needs advice on prevention!
My view point on the power of proper nutrition changed when I learned that three-fourths of cancers can be prevented through healthy diet and lifestyle. Three-fourths! I don’t know about you but that gives me a certain amount of comfort that, in a small way, we have the power!
Breast cancer is considered a genetic cancer by many so there are no promises. Also, there is no sure fire way to completely prevent any type of cancer but there are some nutritional tips that can help avoid those vexing cancer risk factors.
- This one may (not) be a shocker: exercise. Weight gain as an adult leads to a stronger chance of being diagnosed. The best way to avoid this is through exercise, which helps prevent any number of other health issues. Two birds meet one stone.
- Stick to one glass of wine a day. Those who drink an excessive amount of alcohol have shown a stronger chance of getting breast cancer. Since wine is such a relaxant, I cannot blame anyone who wants to sit back after a long day at work and drink a few glasses. Try to keep it at a one drink maximum.
- Don’t smoke. (I feel that this does not need further explanation).
- Mothers who breast feed for a year (or longer) are less likely to get breast cancer versus a mother who did not breast feed. Breast feeding has also shown a prevention in ovarian cancer, postpartum depression, and type 2 diabetes.
- Get screened often! Especially get screened if you have a family history of breast cancer. This is not a "prevention" technique but more of a way to receive the good news that you defeated the disease or to avoid a late diagnosis.
I have included links to Susan G. Koman's website, throughout this post, to provide any further research options you wish to pursue. Also, below are some of the trusted sites I found my information from (most was learned in my medical nutrition therapy class but I do not have a web link of my notes for y'all).