Self-care plays a very important role in the prevention and treatment of diseases. And this is especially so when it comes to breast health. During every October, the National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we see pink ribbons everywhere. This serves as a good reminder for us to improve or maintain our breast health with a healthy lifestyle. For many of us, starting with some simple lifestyle changes would make a great difference.
We may not be able to control where we live or our genetic risk factors- it’s true. However, a growing body of research is showing us that women really can make a difference in their breast health through diet, exercise, and weight management.
These simple steps can help optimize your body’s hormonal balance and reduce the risk of developing breast cancer, and provide additional health, anti-aging, and disease-prevention benefits.
So we need to emphasize that everyone should be focusing on what we can control, not what we can’t.
Our hormone levels
We can evaluate our hormone levels with a saliva test. The best way for premenopausal and postmenopausal women to know if their bodies have an imbalance of estrogen, progesterone and testosterone is to do a saliva test. Saliva Testing is the most accurate and easy way to this.
We can use bio-identical hormones if we need hormone supplementation. Bio Identical means that the molecular structure of the hormones identically match the hormones made by our body as opposed to Pregnant Mare’s Urine which is natural to horses not humans.
We can eat a balanced diet choosing Eat organic to avoid pesticides, herbicides, and estrogens in meat and dairy products. Include one to three servings of cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, bok choy, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, and cabbage in your diet each day. Studies show that Indole 3 Carbinol the active ingredient helps balance estrogen levels.
We can supplement wisely with EFA’s, essential fatty acids and use a fruit and vegetable concentrate if you do not eat 5 – 8 servings of fruits and vegetables daily.
Breast self exams
We can do BSE’s – breast self exams becoming more familiar with our own body.
We can manage our weight and exercise daily. Studies show that maintaining a healthy, average weight is an important factor that will influence the estrogen/progesterone ratio favorably. Additionally, regular exercise is equally important. On the other hand, obesity, high insulin levels, alcohol intake, smoking, oral contraceptives, hormones from meat and meat products, pesticides, and herbicides can swing this ratio in the wrong direction.
We can change our habits, such as reduce alcohol consumption and quit smoking.
We can become better informed – read Dr. John Lee’s “What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Breast Cancer” as a start.