Breast cancer awareness and prevention are areas I pay a lot of attention to. Right now, all we have are mammograms for screening. I would love it if we could focus more on PREVENTION. So, here are my tips to decrease your risk of breast cancer:
1. Know Your Risks
Most cases of breast cancer are not familial, but if you have any immediate family relatives with breast cancer, you should ask if they have been tested for the BRAC gene, which is a tumor suppression gene. Aside from family history, there are other warning signs I tell my patients about. Any condition with high estrogen, such as fibroid tumors, heavy periods or endometriosis suggests that your body does not get rid of estrogen effectively. If you have a lot of estrogen hanging around, that is more estrogen that can stimulate growth in the breast!
We do a urine test call the DUTCH test, which can assess how your body gets rid of estrogen.
2. Do Your Breast Self-Exams Every Month
Most lumps are felt by patients long before they would be detected on mammograms. We recommend choosing a certain day of the month (usually after your period) to do your breast self-exam.
3. Avoid ThingS that Feed Cancer
There are many environmental factors that can increase your risk, but the two biggest risks for cancer are SUGAR and STRESS. One leading researcher discovered that many breast cancer patients had significant stress about two years prior to their diagnosis. So be mindful of your stress and don’t wait to employ stress reduction techniques such as yoga, meditation or Heart Math. Sugar (and insulin) has been shown to accelerate the growth of cancer cells in the lab. So, avoid processed food, high fructose corn syrup, and artificial sweeteners.
We offer a complimentary discovery call to discuss your health issues so you can see if functional medicine is for you!