Work at Home Moms > Breast Cancer Awareness Month > Breast Cancer Prevention

Breast Cancer Prevention: Improve Your Lifestyle


Common to all women are daily lifestyle decisions that may affect breast cancer risk. These day-to-day choices involve factors such as poor diet, insufficient physical activity, alcohol use and smoking. Besides possibly reducing breast cancer risk, lifestyle improvement represent smart steps for a healthier life, since they can help prevent heart disease, diabetes and many other chronic, life-threatening conditions.

Decrease Your Daily Fat Intake: especially saturated or hydrogenated fats. Eat leaner meats and limit red meat. Reducing your fat intake helps prevent other health problems, such as heart disease and stroke and may reduce your chance of developing breast and colon cancers.

Increase Fiber in Your Diet: Fiber is found in whole grains, vegetables and fruits. This type of diet is beneficial for your heart and can help prevent other cancers, such as colon cancer.

Eat Fresh Fruits & Vegetables: In addition to their fiber content, fruits and vegetables have antioxidant properties and micronutrients that may help prevent some cancers.

Limit Alcohol: Evidence suggests that a small increase in risk exists for women who average two or more drinks per day (beer, wine and distilled liquor).

Stay Active: The U.S. Surgeon General recently reported that you can help prevent many problems by engaging in a moderate amount of phsyical activity (such as taking a brisk, 30-minute walk) on most days of the week. Strive to maintain the body weight recommended by a health professional since excess fat may stimulate estrogen production.

Don't Smoke: Although smoking doesn't cause breast cancer, it can increase the chance of blood clots, heart disease and other cancers that may spread to the breast.

For additional information on risk factors, access the American Cancer Society website,, Breast Cancer Facts & Figures 2004.

Information on this page has been, in large part, reproduced, with permission, from NBCAM (supported by an unrestricted educational grant from AstraZeneca Healthcare Foundation).





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