Help Protect Yourself from Breast Cancer
Help Protect Yourself From
Many of us have known someone who has had to take on the courageous battle against breast cancer. In the United States 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer in their life. According to the American Cancer Society, it’s estimated that over 230,000 women will develop breast cancer this year and about 40,000 will die from it. These numbers are scary. It is essential that we educate ourselves about breast cancer so it can be caught early on.
There’s no way to prevent breast cancer, but there are things you can do in your life to help fight against breast cancer.
1. Exercise regularly. Exercise helps our body in many ways. It helps to keep our cardiovascular system strong. Regular exercise also keeps our immune system high. Obese women are up to 60% more likely to develop any cancer than normal-weight women, according to a 2006 study by British researchers. Estrogen is produced in fat tissue and estrogen is fuel for many types of cancer. Having a healthy body will help fight off cancer if you should be faced with a cancer diagnosis.
2. Eat your fruits and veggies. Adding Fruits and veggies high in antioxidants to your diet can help lower your risk of getting cancer. It’s recommended that women 19 – 50 years old get 7 – 8 servings of fruits and vegetables every day, and women over 50 should get 7 servings. Avoid sugar as much as possible.
3. Breastfeeding for at least six months has been shown to reduce the risk of breast cancer.
4. Breast cancer is not contagious however it can be passed down through generations. It is important to know your family medical history on both your mother and father’s side of the family. Be sure to talk with you Midwife about your family’s medical history. Women who have no family history of breast cancer can still develop it however those with a family history are at a higher risk.
5. Stay up to date on health checkups with your Midwife. Follow through with appointments for mammograms. In between your yearly check ups you can be doing self exams at home. Knowing the appearance and density of your breast can help in noticing changes in your body. Early detection raises ones chance of survival.
6. Stop smoking. Smoking increases your chance of getting cancer. Smoking doesn’t only affect your lungs. Talk with your Midwife on ways to help you kick the habit.
Make an appointment with your Midwife to discuss your family history and to discuss further what you can do to help reduce your risk of getting breast cancer.