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Dos and Don’ts for Lowering the Risk of Developing Breast Cancer

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Did you know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month? If you wonder why this international health campaign is important, it’s because the number of people affected by this terrible disease is worrying. This is why nonprofit organisations, governments, and medical institutes do their best to promote breast cancer awareness worldwide.

According to the World Health Organization, “In 2020, there were 2.3 million women diagnosed with breast cancer and 685,000 deaths globally. As of the end of 2020, there were 7.8 million women alive who were diagnosed with breast cancer in the past 5 years, making it the world’s most prevalent cancer.” And even though it is less common, breast cancer is not unheard of in men either. 

So what can we do about it? Unfortunately, there are many factors that can cause breast cancer, and most of them – such as genetics – are out of our control.

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October is the month dedicated to raising awareness - breast cancer risks concern both men and women, both ourselves and people dear to us

Therefore it depends on each of us to take responsible steps to a healthy lifestyle and to lower risks as much as possible. To this end, there is one factor that is crucial for the life of millions: awareness.

Breast cancer is the most prevalent cancer in the world, but early detection and treatment can help cure it.

Here is some helpful advice from the WHO to reduce the risk of breast cancer:

・Stay physically active

・Maintain a healthy weight

・Avoid harmful consumption of alcohol

・Avoid smoking and exposure to tobacco smoke

・Hormone treatments should not be used for a long period of time

・Breastfeed for as long as possible after having a baby

・Exposure to radiation should be avoided as well

It is also important not to skip regular routine medical checks. Besides this, did you know that there are 3 ways to perform a breast self-exam at home in order to detect breast cancer? On the National Breast Cancer Foundation page we found plenty of free educational guides, as well as easy – but crucial – control steps that every woman (and man!) can do at home.

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Studies show that regular physical activity may increase the chances of survival in breast cancer patients
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Mental strength is crucial for patients fighting cancer - don't hesitate to seek support from family and friends

Besides early detection, diet is also an important factor in staying healthy and maintaining a strong immunity – and therefore decreasing the chances of developing this disease.

According to different studies conducted by the The National Center for Biotechnology Information, there are specific foods – also recommended by the Medical Medium – with a high content of micro-nutrients that can help to prevent breast cancer:

・Cherries – loaded with fibres, minerals, vitamins, and other nutrients

・Grapes – rich in antioxidants, they may help fight off free radicals and lower the risk of cancer

Melons – magnesium, potassium, and vitamins A, B6, and C

・Asparagus – high content of nutrients 

Radishes – high content of antioxidants and minerals like calcium and potassium

・Onions – good source of  folic acid, which helps the body to make healthy, new cells

・Garlic – potent immunity booster 

・Cruciferous greens like cabbage, collard greens, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels 

sprouts, kale, and arugula help protect cells from DNA damage and inactivate carcinogens

・Potatoes – when cooked in a healthy way (baked or boiled), they work to prevent diseases and contain vitamins that help your body to function properly. Potatoes become dangerous for health when fried in oil, eaten with artificial sauces, or when mashed with added cheese, butter, or milk and cream

・Sweet potatoes – protect your body from free radical damage thanks to antioxidants, and are rich in beta-carotene which supports the immune system

Chaga mushrooms – can stimulate the body’s reaction to traditional cancer treatments, such as radiation and chemotherapy

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Reduce oxidative stress and the risk of cancer with fresh fruit and vegetables that are rich in antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins

A healthy diet in busy times

For the last two years, doing the groceries was a challenge for anyone – especially so for those who were ill or taking care of someone. Luckily, everyone has since begun to gradually deal better with Covid-19, thanks to the innovative technologies in healthcare. However, now, the world seems to be catching up with lost time and everything is happening at a pace that seems twice as fast.

This also means that there is less time for groceries and slow cooking. So how do you make sure you maintain a healthy diet with fresh fruits and vegetables – perishables that go bad quickly?

Harvard professor and nutritionist Walter Willett tells us in an interview for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation which healthy foods don’t spoil so easily:

・Whole grains, for example brown (wild) rice, quinoa

・Whole grain pasta

・Beans and lentils

・Nuts

・Healthy oils (like olive oil)

・Carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkins and squash, and even broccoli

・Greens like spinach, kale, and collards, which normally spoil fast, can be frozen

・Orange juice, fruits, and vegetables can also be frozen

・Canned tomatoes are high in vitamins and nutrients that are more easily absorbable than those from raw tomatoes

A healthy mind in a healthy body

Stress is a well-known factor that increases the risk of developing cancer. This is why in a modern, stressful life, self-care, relaxation, and meditation are not considered a luxury anymore – they are a necessity. 

Check out our Mental Balance sanctuary for tips and methods to bring more wellness into your life.

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