The threat of breast cancer seems to loom over every woman’s head, although men can get it too. If you have a family history of this disease, then you need to be particularly diligent about reducing your risk. Here are some ways that you fight off some of the risk factors of developing breast cancer.
Limit Drugs and Alcohol
Tobacco has been shown to increase a woman’s risk of breast cancer, so if you’re a smoker, start making moves to kick the habit. Also, tobacco products, in general, such as e-cigarettes, are just as addictive as regular cigarettes so steer clear of these as well. In terms of alcohol, you don’t need to be a teetotaler, but you will probably want to rethink your nightly glass of wine or mixed drink. Ideally, you should only have a couple of drinks a week as the more alcohol a woman drinks, the higher her risk of developing breast cancer.
Watch Your Weight
Try to maintain a healthy weight by staying active and eating a varied, balanced diet. Being overweight and obesity increases your breast cancer risk, but an active lifestyle can reduce your risk. A combination of aerobic activity and weight-bearing exercises will keep your bones and joints strong and your weight in check.
Be Aware of Environmental Factors
It’s not only what happens on the inside of your body that counts. Pay attention to environmental pollution and your exposure to radiation. Be particularly diligent during x-rays and any medical imaging tests that you need to undergo. That being said, it is crucial that you continue your routine mammograms. The current guidelines state that women should start getting mammograms every two years beginning at age 50. However, those who exhibit risk factors or a family history of breast cancer should begin getting screened at age 40.