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  Category: Articles » Health & Fitness » Cancer » Article

Breast Cancer Prevention

By Chris Chenoweth

Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death, second only to lung cancer. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer during her lifetime. Fortunately, there are measures you can take to help reduce your risk of developing breast cancer.

Factors that can affect your risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer are called risk factors. Risk factors can be broken down into two categories, those that can be controlled and those that cannot be controlled.


The risk factors you have no control over are gender, hormones, age, genetic makeup and certain environmental exposures.

GENDER: Women are much more inclined to develop breast cancer than men. This is primarily due to the estrogen and progesterone in a woman's body. These hormones stimulate cell growth in the breast, both normal and abnormal.

HORMONES: Estrogen, a hormone that is produced by the ovaries, increases a woman's risk for developing breast cancer. A woman's exposure to estrogen can increase her risk by:

+using Oral Contraceptives.

+using Hormone Replacement Therapy.

+never being pregnant or having first child after the age of 35.

+early onset of menstruation and late onset of menopause.

AGE: Aging is one of the biggest risk factors for breast cancer. After a woman passes the age of 50, the likelihood of developing breast cancer increases significantly.

GENETIC MAKEUP: There is a significantly higher risk of developing breast cancer for women who have already had breast cancer and for women who have had many family members diagnosed with cancer (regardless of the type).

ENVIRONMENT: The air we breathe and the water we drink are full of toxins (poisons) that were not present 100 years ago. Many of these toxins are known to increase the risk of or directly cause cancer.


Lifestyle changes like altering your diet, starting an exercise program and losing weight, are the easiest factors to control. Following the tips below may help you decrease your risk of breast cancer:

LOSE WEIGHT: There is a clear link between excess weight and breast cancer, especially if the weight gain is after menopause. The extra fatty tissue is a source of circulating estrogen in your body. As stated above in the GENDER risk factor, estrogen stimulates cell growth in the breast.

EAT THE RIGHT FOODS: A low-fat high-fiber diet can help reduce your risk of breast cancer and other diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. Try to eat at least 5 servings of fruit and vegetables every day.

There are also some specific foods and supplements that can be very effective in your efforts to reduce the risk of breast cancer:

+FLAXSEED: Flaxseed is a supplement comprised of phytoestrogens, naturally occurring compounds that decrease estrogen production in your body, hindering the growth of breast cancer.

+OLIVE OIL: Olive oil contains oleic acid that is effective in destroying a protein that causes the growth of breast cancer tumors.

+FISH OIL: A diet rich in fish oils can be effective in preventing the development of breast tumors. Fish oil supplements are just as effective as eating the fish. Fish oil, like flaxseed, contains healthy OMEGA-3 fatty acids.

+CARROTS: Consuming foods rich in beta-carotene, such as carrots, protects the body from damaging molecules called free radicals. Free radicals cause damage to cells through oxidation that can lead to a variety of chronic illnesses such as cancer.

+FOLIC ACID: (folate) is highly effective in preventing breast cancer in both pre- and post-menopausal women. Foods high in folic acid are green, leafy vegetables, whole wheat bread, oranges, poultry, and fortified cereals.

LIMIT ALCOHOL: The more alcohol a woman drinks, the higher the risk of developing breast cancer. If you must drink, limit your intake to one small drink a day.

EXERCISE: Regular exercise provides a multitude of health benefits for your body including protection against many chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Exercising at least 30 minutes every day can decrease your hormone levels, lowering your risk of breast cancer.

There is nothing you can do that will guarantee a cancer-free life. All women are at risk for getting breast cancer. However, lifestyle changes, eating a healthy diet, regular exercise, and regular breast cancer screening can significantly reduce your risk of developing breast cancer.
About the Author
Chris Chenoweth is the author of the DO-IT-YOURSELF HOME, HEALTH & MONEY GUIDE, 500 pages of household tips, home remedies, diet and nutrition information, health issues and thousands of recipes!

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