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Monday, October 17, 2011

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

 
Each year hundreds of thousands of women are diagnosed with breast cancer.  It is the second leading cause of death among women in the United States.  The chances of survival are steadily increasing.  The cause of this can largely be attributed to early detection, better treatment and prevention (Cancer.org).

The good news is that there are many things that you can do to help your body fight to stay healthy and cancer free:

  • Physical Activity Helps To Prevent Breast Cancer: Exercise is proven to pump up your immune system and can lower the levels of estrogen in your body.  Just a few hours of exercise each week can help - aim for 30-45min of activity each day.
  • A Healthy Diet Can Reduce Your Risk of Breast Cancer:  The key is having a nutritious, balanced, and low-fat diet including plenty of fresh fruits a veggies. High-fat diets increase the levels of estrogen in your body which can form cancerous tumors.
  • Alcohol Can Increase Chances of Cancer: The greater the level of alcohol consumed --> the greater the chances of cancer.  Smoking has not been proven to have a direct connection with breast cancer, but introducing extra and unnecessary toxins into the body doesn't help it stay stronger either and can contribute to other forms of cancer.
  • Family History Does Increase Risk:  This group needs to be especially careful and aware.  Their chances are indeed higher than the average woman.  Start getting mammograms 5 years before your family member was diagnosed or at the age of 35 - whichever is first.
  • Visits to the Doctor For Prevention: Be sure to visit the doctor yearly starting no later that age 35.
  • Breast Self-Exams: Once a month check for any changes in breast tissue.  If you discover a lump, DON'T PANIC.  8 out of 10 lumps are non-cancerous.  But it is very important to see a doctor immediately.

And men, don't think this doesn't apply to you too!  Each year around 1,700 men are diagnosed with breast cancer.  Monthly self-exams are necessary.

Look at each day as an opportunity to live a healthy life.  Make smart diet choices and STAY ACTIVE. A healthy immune system gives your body what it needs to stay strong!

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(Source: Nationalbreastcancer.org/)


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