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List: Posted: 03/05/12
Reducing your risk of breast cancer is very important, yet many of us are unaware of what steps we can take to help ensure that we are doing this. Breast cancer affects 1 out of every 5 women in today’s modern world, and ensuring that we are as protected as possible is crucial.
Most people know that regular self exams and yearly mammograms can help prevent breast cancer or help facilitate early detection, but there is more that you can do. Quitting smoking significantly lower the chances of breast cancer, as can lowering stress.
Getting more exercise (five hours a week) can help lower the risk by lowering estrogen levels and helping to boost your immune system. Studies also show that maintaining a healthy weight, especially after menopause, can lower cancer risks.
Because estrogen plays such a large role in breast cancer development, it can be helpful to lower these levels in the blood. Shedding excess fat can help with this, as can limiting the use of alcohol and red meat, as well as dairy. For women who have a history of cancer or have a number of high risk factors, avoiding estrogen replacement therapy can also be beneficial. If you take the pill for birth control (which contains estrogen), talk to your doctor about an alternative such as an IUD.
Eating more fruits and veggies and choosing organic food options can also help reduce your risk of breast cancer. Antioxidant rich foods can be very beneficial. Take the time to relax and lower stress levels, as well, and you'll be well on your way to lowering your personal cancer risk.
The Seattle Breast Center offers a variety of breast health services and resources for our community, from screening and prevention to support groups and education.
The material in this article is for informational purposes only. The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Local.com. See Additional Information