October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Breast cancer begins when malignant cells develop in the tissue of the breast. The mere thought of breast cancer is every woman’s nightmare. It is the one area, we as women, can all come together and help each other stay informed. While there is no cure…yet. There are ways that we may be able to decrease our chances of getting breast cancer. I have tried to avoid rumors and wives tails in this breast cancer prevention article….that is why you will not see the bra, antiperspirant and other UNPROVEN rumors in this article.
Please note…we do not under ANY circumstances claim that these tips WILL prevent breast cancer. We are simply saying that these tips have been shown that they MAY help prevent breast cancer.
Tips to Avoid and/or Catch Breast Cancer Early
Early detection is key to surviving breast cancer if it is your cross to bear. So, PLEASE perform a weekly/monthly self breast exam (see directions below). Go for a yearly breast exam and regular mammograms after age 50. These simple steps can make a world of difference!
Other things that may help prevent breast cancer all together…
- limit alcohol
- exercise at least 30 minutes a day/5 days a week
- stay at a healthy wait and avoid obesity
- maintain a low fat diet
- eat more raw fruits and veggies (at least 5 a day). Especially, cruciferous veggies like; cabbage, broccoli, kale, and brussel sprouts. Studies have shown that they may help stop the growth of breast cancer cells
- eat or drink acai juice may help prevent cancer. A University of Florida Study showed that it can kill cancer cells. (see article here)
- limit red meats and processed meats in your diet
- get plenty of vitamin D (fortified milk, yogurt and cheese)
- eat more curcumin. Curcumin is found in turmeric and curry powder. It may be able to help protect against breast cancer tumor development
- limit refined sugars
- avoid using post-menopausal hormone therapy (PHT)
- drink more teas, especially green tea may decrease your risk of developing breast cancer
The above tips are all great tips to maintaining a healthy lifestyle apart from breast cancer. However, they also MAY be able to help us avoid this horrible disease all together.
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge… – Hosea 4:6a
Ladies, stay aware and be informed.
Copyright © Lara Velez, All Rights Reserved
How to examine your breasts
- Lie down and place your right arm behind your head. The exam is done while lying down, not standing up. This is because when lying down the breast tissue spreads evenly over the chest wall and is as thin as possible, making it much easier to feel all the breast tissue.
- Use the finger pads of the 3 middle fingers on your left hand to feel for lumps in the right breast. Use overlapping dime-sized circular motions of the finger pads to feel the breast tissue.
- Use 3 different levels of pressure to feel all the breast tissue. Light pressure is needed to feel the tissue closest to the skin; medium pressure to feel a little deeper; and firm pressure to feel the tissue closest to the chest and ribs. A firm ridge in the lower curve of each breast is normal. If you’re not sure how hard to press, talk with your doctor or nurse. Use each pressure level to feel the breast tissue before moving on to the next spot.
- Move around the breast in an up and down pattern starting at an imaginary line drawn straight down your side from the underarm and moving across the breast to the middle of the chest bone (sternum or breastbone). Be sure to check the entire breast area going down until you feel only ribs and up to the neck or collar bone (clavicle).
- There is some evidence to suggest that the up-and-down pattern (sometimes called the vertical pattern) is the most effective pattern for covering the entire breast, without missing any breast tissue.
- Repeat the exam on your left breast, using the finger pads of the right hand.
- While standing in front of a mirror with your hands pressing firmly down on your hips, look at your breasts for any changes of size, shape, contour, or dimpling, or redness or scaliness of the nipple or breast skin. (The pressing down on the hips position contracts the chest wall muscles and enhances any breast changes.)
- Examine each underarm while sitting up or standing and with your arm only slightly raised so you can easily feel in this area. Raising your arm straight up tightens the tissue in this area and makes it harder to examine.
This procedure for doing breast self exam is different than in previous recommendations. These changes represent an extensive review of the medical literature and input from an expert advisory group. There is evidence that this position (lying down), area felt, pattern of coverage of the breast, and use of different amounts of pressure increase a woman’s ability to find abnormal areas.