While there is no sure-fire way to prevent breast cancer, there are several things a woman can do to reduce her risk including exercise, limiting alcohol, and even avoiding certain beauty products.
Lifestyle Choices to Help with Prevention of Breast Cancer
According to the American Cancer Society, here are some tips to lower the chances of developing breast cancer:
- Maintain a healthy weight – Breast cancer after menopause has been associated with increasing weight or gaining weight.
- Stay physically active – Studies show being active can lower the risk of breast cancer. Women should aim to get 150-to-300 minutes of moderate physical activity or 75-to-150 minutes of vigorous activity a week.
- Limit Alcohol – There is a link between alcohol and breast cancer. So, avoid it or limit to no more than one drink per day.
- Watch your diet – The link between diet and breast cancer is not confirmed. But there are some studies that suggest eating a diet with fruits and vegetables as well as calcium-rich dairy products but avoiding red and processed meats can reduce the risk of breast cancer.
- Talk to your doctor about hormone therapy – Birth control as well as hormone replacement therapy after menopause has been linked to breast cancer. So, make informed choices as you consider these treatments.
- Breastfeeding – Breastfeeding after childbirth may reduce your breast cancer risk.
Women already at an increased risk for breast cancer should talk to their doctors. There are some proactive things you can do including genetic counseling, medications, careful observation, and even preventative surgery.
Link Between Antiperspirants and Products with Paraben
According to the American Cancer Society, there are no strong studies supporting the claim that aluminum from antiperspirants can increase the risk of breast cancer.
However, products with paraben, chemicals used as preservatives and food additives, may be a different story. Parabens are found in some make-up like mascara, lipstick and foundation. They’re also found in shampoos, lotions, shaving creams and sunscreen. They can be absorbed through the skin and have weak qualities similar to estrogen, the female hormone that can cause breast cancer cells and regular breast cells to grow and divide. Estrogen has been linked to a higher risk of breast cancer.
Keep in mind, most of us are exposed to parabens and one study showed 99-percent of people have paraben in their urine. So, while there could be a link, it’s weak. Still, if you are concerned, use paraben-free products.
Benzene and Cancer Risk
Benzene, one of the most widely used chemicals in the United States, is known to be a cancer-causing agent. Benzene can be found in plastics, lubricants, rubber, some dyes, pesticides and even detergent. Its cancer link is mostly associated to blood cancers like Leukemia.
However, just last month Procter and Gamble issued a recall of certain dry shampoos because of traces of benzene. The products were sold under popular names like Pantene, Aussie, Old Spice and Herbal Essences.
“While benzene is not an ingredient in any of our products, our review showed that unexpected levels of benzene came from the propellant that sprays the product out of the can. We detected benzene in aerosol dry shampoo spray products and aerosol dry conditioner spray products. Nothing is more important to us than the safety of the consumers who use our products and the quality of the products we ship,” the company said in a statement.
Breast Cancer Detection
Women should do monthly breast self-exams, see their doctor regularly and get routine mammograms. Regular screenings may help detect breast cancer in its early stage when treatment is most likely to cure the cancer.
If you find a suspicious lump or spot, call your doctor immediately and get it checked.
If a mammogram and a subsequent biopsy confirm breast cancer, know your treatment options.
The experts at the CyberKnife Center of Miami can help.
Breast Cancer Treatment Miami
CyberKnife has been used to treat early-stage breast cancers for 10+years with very high success rates, according to Dr. Mark Pomper, board-certified radiation oncologist and medical director of CyberKnife Miami.
“It’s especially useful in ladies who have left-sided cancers, which is close to the heart or with small breasts where you really want to be super precise,” he says.
Stage one and stage two breast cancer patients as well as metastatic breast cancer patients may be candidates for CyberKnife.
“The CyberKnife advantage is that even if an area has been treated with radiation before, we can treat the same area because the technology is so precise. We treat a lot of lymph nodes at CyberKnife. And we treat them very successfully,” Dr. Pomper says. “Some doctors mistakenly tell patients the area can’t be treated if it’s been treated before with other types of radiation. That’s not always true. Those patients should get a second opinion at the CyberKnife Center of Miami.”
CyberKnife is a safer way to treat breast cancer. Its advantages are outstanding tumor control, better cosmetic results, and less radiation exposure to the surrounding vital organs – like the heart and the lungs. There is no cutting, no surgery, and no risk of infection. Plus, there are only five treatments with CyberKnife as opposed to 35 with traditional radiation. For metastatic cancer, because CyberKnife is so precise it can be used even in areas treated before with other types of radiation.
If you are interested in learning more about CyberKnife Miami and our breast cancer treatment, call us now at 305-279-2900 or go to our website www.cyberknifemiami.com.