With breast cancer being the number 1 cancer killer of women in Singapore, it is safe to say that most women are very well aware of the risk they face. Most of my clients are well aware of this threat to either themselves or their spouses and usually are keen to ensure they have covered themselves or their spouses against the financial threat of such a disease. New York Times recently published an article on how to lower the probability of having to deal with this scary issue, which I believe is very important that women know about. In summary, the 5 rules given in this article are as follows.
1. Not smoking.
Simple statistics show that those who smoke have about a 30% higher chance of contracting invasive breast cancer. While those who start smoking before the age 15 are 50% more likely to develop the disease. So do yourself and your loved ones a mega favour and quit this disgusting habit.
2. Weight control.
The risk of a women developing breast cancer is directly correlated to her body-mass index. This is particularly true if excess weight is found around her waist as abdominal fat is typically more active metabolically. So abdominal fat produces more hormones and other growth factors which can stimulate the growth of breast cancer cells. A professor of epidemiology and nutrition at the Harvard Chan School of Public Health, Dr Walter Willett, went so far as to say, “Probably the single most important thing women can do to reduce their risk of breast cancer is to avoid weight gain in adult life.”
3. Limit alcohol consumption.
This is bad news to many women these days, but alcohol changes the amount of sex hormones in your body which can increase the risk of cancer. Studies show that probability of recurrence of breast cancer is heightened for women who consume at least 3-4 drinks a week.
Analysis of diet indicates that women with the highest consumption of fruit and vegetables have the lowest risk of breast cancer. This is particularly true for vegetables and fruits rich in carotenoids. Examples of such foods are carrots, squash, sweet potatoes, dark green leafy vegetables like kale and spinach, tomatoes and cantaloupes. Another dietary advise is to limit the consumption of red meats to two meals a week and to avoid processed meats like bacon, sausage, luncheon meat, hot dogs whenever possible.
Active women have a lower risk of developing breast cancer and higher chances of recovery if they do get it. Don’t think there is a need to elaborate further on the importance of exercise.
So there you go, a short summary of essential rules to lowering your chances of having to fight this dreaded monster called breast cancer. You can read the full article republished on CNA here: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/health/how-to-lower-breast-cancer-risk-8831420?cid=fbcna