Breast cancer is frightening. Discover 5 easy to do tips to help you reduce your risk for this disease.
It almost seems like an epidemic. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some time in her life. While it may not be preventable, here are 5 things you can do to lower breast cancer risk or ensure early detection.
1. Eat more vegetables. Vegetables are a simple and easy way to lower your risk. Spinach, kale, broccoli, tomatoes and carrots have all been found to bolster breast health. To get the most benefit, try eating them raw to avoid destroying their anti-cancer phytochemicals. Flaxseed, garlic, ginger, tumeric, walnuts and green tea also contain nutrients thought to lower breast cancer risk.
2. Exercise regularly. It’s good for your breasts and your heart. Ideally, try to get in 30 minutes 5 times per week. But even a brisk 11-minute walk daily can lower your risk by 18%.
3. Consume less alcohol. Increasing number of studies associate alcohol intake with an increased risk of breast cancer. One drink daily increases risk by 10%, two cocktails daily has been shown to increase breast cancer risk by 30%.
4. Control Your Weight. According to the National Cancer Institute, after menopause obesity increases your risk of breast cancer. This risk is higher in women who have never used hormone therapy.
5. Increase healthy fats. Limit unhealthy saturated fats found in margarine or lard as can trans-fats. Replace those with healthy vegetable oils or olive oils and include omega-3 fatty acids. Avocados and coconut oil and organic eggs from pastured hens are another good source of healthy oils.
And though this isn’t a prevention tip, getting an annual mammogram after age 40 or sooner if you have a strong family history of breast cancer, will give you the best chance of early detection.