Fighting breast cancer is a challenge unlike any other. Preventing it can seem like an impossible task. As we all know, cancer doesn’t discriminate; anyone can be affected at any point of their life. What we do know is that research is on our side and can help us live better everyday. We have some tips to empower women to keep their health in check and reduce the risk of breast cancer. 

Exercise

There is definitely a link between exercise and breast cancer; exercising for prevention is absolutely worth it. Near the end of our last post, we explained just how exercise is beneficial to help prevent recurring cancer. It’s because exercise optimizes our bodies to work at their very best! And never put aside all the other benefits from some form of regular exercise. 

Remember that you don’t need to be an athlete, but a little bit of physical activity everyday can really add up. Try to include aerobic exercise like walking, swimming, and other activities that get your heart rate up and resistance training like lifting weights or building your muscles in other ways. Of course, always talk with your doctor if you’re unsure if certain workouts are right for you. 

Eat Well

Never underestimate the power of fruits and vegetables. Here’s a list of foods that have been proven to have cancer-fighting properties:

  • Leafy greens 
  • Citrus fruits 
  • Fatty fish 
  • Beans 
  • Fermented foods 
  • Herbs and spices 

Not only that, but eating more of these kinds of foods are sure to cut your calories from processed foods, which often are to blame for unwanted weight gain. 

Avoid Smoking and Drinking 

Everyone knows smoking is harmful and can cause a number of different complications. There are over 5,000 chemicals in cigarettes and about 70 of them have been shown to contribute to cancer risk. This is because these chemicals can damage our body’s DNA and lead to cancer growth. With drinking, though, the research is a bit fuzzy. A small amount can actually be good for your heart, but any amount of regular drinking can contribute to breast cancer risk. We’d argue in this case, unfortunately, the cons outweigh the pros. 

Change Your Birth Control 

The National Cancer Institute states there is definitely a link between breast cancer with use of oral contraceptives. With women who currently use birth control, there is a 24% increased risk. In 2017, one Danish study looked at women who had stopped using oral birth control- depending on the kind of pill, the increased risk varied from 0- 60%. Luckily, some research finds that the risk decreases as time goes on after stopping. Consider talking with your doctor about switching your pills for another that poses less risk. 

Educating yourself and other women can only mean positive change for the generations to come and the future of breast cancer research. 

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