With breast cancer cases rising, various awareness programs and medications have started getting popular among women all over the world. Breast cancer is deadly and can leave a woman depressed for life, even if it gets treated. Women who have suffered from this disease often lose their lives, and even if they get treated, they often end up losing their self confidence. While diseases are something you cannot predict entirely, taking precautions mean no harm.
Breast cancer often attacks older women more than younger women. But when cancer strikes, it can get very aggressive. This is the reason a healthy lifestyle is important to protect the breasts. Also, early detection is always necessary. A healthy way of life and early detection protect your breasts from a lot of harm. There are certain life facts and lifestyle changes you must incorporate to prevent breast cancer. Following these tips can help you lower your chances of getting breast cancer to a great extent.
1. Maintain A Healthy Weight
Being obese not only increases the chances of breast cancer, but also, increases the chances of developing many other diseases. When you are overweight, you also reduce the risk of surviving a breast cancer, if you suffer from this deadly disease. So, make the necessary changes in your life and eat healthy. Start exercising well and maintain a workout schedule.
2. Break A Sweat Daily
You must always aim to exercise for at least 45 minutes to 1 hour on a daily basis. If you cannot make it every day, exercise at least five days a week. It is very important to carry out regular fitness schedules. This will help you boost your immune system, ward off obesity, lower the levels of estrogen and insulin, and as a result, prevent breast cancer as well.
3. Lower Your Alcohol Consumption
It has been found that even two drinks a day can easily increase the risk of getting breast cancer by 21 percent. If you drink wine, swap it with a bunch of fresh grapes instead. The skin of grapes contain resveratrol, a compound that helps in reducing your estrogen levels, and this in turn, reduces the risk of breast cancer.
4. Increase Your Vegetable Consumption
Vegetables, rich in vitamins and minerals, keep the body very healthy. When you consume a low-fat diet, you do a lot to reduce your risk of getting breast cancer. However, if you add cruciferous vegetables to your diet, such as broccoli and kale, the sulforaphane content in them prevents the cancer cells from multiplying. Eat them raw to get an extra dose of cancer-fighting power.
5. Learn More About Your Family
Medical reports worldwide have proved that almost 15 percent of the breast cancer cases have a family history of the same disease. This means that if you have one first-degree relative who had suffered from breast cancer, the risk of you getting it in your lifetime doubles. If you have had two relatives who suffered from breast cancer, the risk increases by five-fold. So, it is very important for you to know your family history and if anyone in your family had ever suffered from the disease.
6. Check Yourself Regularly
Once you reach 40 years of age, you must get more cautious about breast cancer. It is recommended to get a clinical breast exam done at least every three years and annual breast exams and annual mammograms done. Women who have had a family history of breast cancer should start getting their screenings done 10 years prior to the age when the relative was diagnosed of breast cancer. Also, rely on digital mammography as it allows adjustments to be done in contrast so that the image is easier to see. Young women who are at an increased risk of breast cancer must also ask for an MRI or a sonogram in addition to the mammogram.
7. Get A Genetic Testing Done
When breast cancer strikes young women, it is more likely to be connected to a BRCA mutation (breast cancer gene). There are two red flags for being a BRCA carrier: the first is being of Ashkenazi (Eastern European) Jewish descent and the second being of a family who have had a history of both breast and ovarian cancer. If you have any of these factors, visit a genetic counselor and talk about getting a genetic test done to check if you are a BRCA carrier. If yes, follow necessary preventive measures to keep breast cancer away.