Breast cancer- awareness and prevention
We all know at least one person who has been affected by breast cancer. Women who have a family history of breast cancer should be aware of the indications of the disease, get regular medical examinations done, and follow a certain lifestyle to keep the risks of the disease at bay.
Some factors that increase the risk of breast cancer are:
- Aging (60 years and above).
- Family history of breast cancer
- No children
- Onset of menstrual cycle before the age of 12
- Tall height( 5’8”+)
- Dense breasts
Let us discuss some tips to reduce their chances of breast cancer:
- Be physically active and maintain optimum weight
Women must undertake at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity/75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity weekly, with some strength training at least two times a week- The Department of Health and Human Services
Being overweight increases the risk of certain cancers; breast cancer is one of them. The best way of keeping the weight in check is by following a regular exercise routine, especially after menopause. Increase your intake of fresh fruits and vegetables.
Studies have shown that women who breastfeed are at a lower risk of breast cancer.
- Alcohol and smoking
As per studies, women should reduce their alcohol intake to less than one drink a day, are at a lesser risk of breast cancer. In addition, smoking is said to increase breast cancer risks in women, particularly after menopause.
- Hormone therapy
Women, who undergo hormone therapy for more than 3-5 years, are at higher risks of breast cancer. If you are taking hormone therapy for menopausal symptoms or other disorders, speak to your healthcare experts for other alternate forms of therapy.
Radiation and medical-imaging methods have been linked to an increased risk of breast cancer. Get such tests done only when absolutely necessary.
While tests medical screening like mammography cannot prevent breast cancer, it can definitely initiate treatment at early stages. Do consult your healthcare provider on the pros and cons of mammograms and get regular check-ups done after the age of 40.