Simple Ways to Reduce Your Breast Cancer Risk

The vast amount of literature out there in regard to breast cancer causes can be quite overwhelming. Women are on the look-out for ways that they can reduce their risk without dramatically altering their lifestyle. In reality, women can reduce their risk for breast cancer and live healthier lives at the same time by doing very simple things.

1.   Limit yourself to two or three alcoholic drinks a week—Alcohol, consumed even in small amounts, is believed to increase  the risk of breast cancer.  Most doctors recommend cutting back on wine, beer, and hard liquor.

2.   Exercise at least three times a week—When exercising, work to keep your heart rate above its baseline level for a minimum of 20 continuous minutes.  The more vigorous the exercise the better.  It only takes thirty minutes of exercise every other day to cut the risk for breast cancer by 75%.

3.  Maintain your body weight, or try to lose weight if you are overweight—-Research shows that being overweight or obese (especially if you’re past menopause) increases your risk, especially if you put on the weight as an adult.  In fact, a particular study by the researchers at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center showed that obese and overweight women also had lower breast cancer survival rates and a greater chance of more aggressive disease than average-weight or underweight women.

4.  Do a monthly breast self-exam—Be sure to get proper instruction from your doctor and have your technique reviewed regularly.  ou might catch a lump before a mammogram does, and it’s a good idea to follow changes in your body.

5.  Have a mammogram once a year after age 40—Catching a tumor early boosts the chance of survival significantly. In fact, the five-year survival rate can be as high as 98% for the earliest stage localized disease, but hovers around 27% for distant-stage, or metastatic, disease.

6.  Eat healthier—Add more vegetables to your diet and decrease your sugar intake. Studies show that drinking green tea may help prevent and possibly even reverse some forms of the disease.