Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women – it is estimated that one in 8 women will be affected by this type of disease over the course of their lives, with trends increasing. Although there has been considerable progress in the field of treatment, it should be emphasized that prevention is a particularly effective weapon in the fight to reduce mortality from the disease. In addition, while not all risk factors can be controlled, adopting a healthy lifestyle can significantly reduce the risk.
- Do not neglect prevention
Breast cancer is not spreading soon. This means that a timely diagnosis and initiation of treatment while the disease is still at an early stage can be life-saving for the patient. The chapter “prevention” includes clinical examination at an early age, ultrasound examination at the age of 30 and thereafter annually, mammography performed at the age of 35 and repeated at the age of 40. Since then, mammography is a good thing to do every year, unless your doctor thinks it should be done sooner. His assessment will be based on your individual and family history, as well as the clinical examination findings.
The above does not negate the importance of breast self-examination, which every woman must put into her monthly routine so that she is familiar with her breast and can identify a potential anomaly that will send her to the doctor.
Women who abide by the rules of prevention are much more likely to beat breast cancer, as early diagnosis greatly increases the chances of successful treatment of the disease.
- Check your weight
Excess weight increases the risk, especially after menopause, as estrogens are then mainly derived from adipose tissue. The higher the fat content in the body, the higher the estrogen production. Long-term breast exposure to these hormones is linked to increased chances of developing breast cancer
- Exercise your body
As many studies have shown, exercise protects the chest. By “exercise” we mean not only exercise, but any, albeit mild, physical activity is done on a regular basis. In fact, it seems that low intensity activity many times a week is more beneficial than strenuous exercise once a week.
- Avoid sedentary life
The sedentary life is being blamed for the development of various forms of cancer, especially in women. In addition, the link between time spent sitting and the possibility of being ill seems to be independent of whether or not the person exercises. Specifically, for breast cancer, a multi-year study in a large population sample showed that women who sit for 6 hours or more a day in their spare time are 10% more likely to be infected than those who do not sit for more than 3 hours.
- Limit alcohol
Although the link between alcohol consumption and breast cancer is not as strong, several studies have shown that it does exist. Restricting alcohol consumption is mainly recommended for women who have other risk factors, such as family history.