Experts Reveal 10 Major Breast Cancer Risk Factors Women Should Know

LifeStyle & Health

As the human race continues the fight to completely be rid of cancer, experts are always on hand to give us more information.

Graham A. Colditz, DrPH, MD, MPH  Breast Cancer Research Foundation Investigator and associate director of Prevention and Control at the Alvin J. Siteman Cancer Center at Washington University, shared some risk factors for breast cancer that we should know.

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1. Weight plays a role

According to Dr Colditz, weight gain increases the risk of breast cancer after menopause. He added that since the majority of breast cancers are diagnosed in postmenopausal women, maintaining a healthy weight is very important.

2. Get moving

When it comes to being healthy, exercise and eating right go hand in hand. The same can be said for the prevention of breast cancer. Dr Coltiz said that while it is not very clear how vigorous physical activities reduce the chances of developing cancer, it does help regulating some breast cancer-related hormones.

READ ALSO: 2-Year-Old Boy Survives Stage 4 Cancer Thanks To New Clinical Trial

3. Your diet

Fruits and veggies can help keep breast cancer at bay according to a new study. Dr Colditz advised eating a diet based on grains and minimal animal protein.

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4. Alcohol

Recent studies have also shown that alcohol can have a negative effect on the body especially the breasts. Dr Colditz says consuming alcohol can increase the hormone levels. "Circulating hormone levels are directly related to breast cancer risk as they increase cell proliferation and tumour growth," the doctor explained.

5. The pill

The risk of getting breast cancer increases slightly when a woman is on pills. It was discovered that the risk goes away within five years of stopping.

6. Breastfeeding may be a blessing

Breastfeeding lowers the risk of breast cancer. Women who nursed may have lower levels of the hormone called prolactin and a high prolactin level is a risk factor for breast cancer,

7.  Family history

Your chances of having breast cancer increases if you have a lot of family members with cancer, one family member with different types of cancer, and breast cancer in the male members of your family. Dr Colditz says if this is the case, you may need to go for genetic testing or counselling for more info.

READ ALSO: Woman Who Has Been Battling Cancer Since She Was 18 Weeks Pregnant Is Relieved When Her Baby Is Born Healthy

8. Your period

The more cycles you have over the course of your life, the greater your risk, Colditz says. He explained that the age at which you started your period and the age you stopped matters.

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9. Pregnancy

When it comes to cancer, being pregnant is a benefit. Colditz explained, "after having a first baby, hormone levels are slightly modified, cells divide more slowly and have more time for repair of DNA damage."

10. Breast density

Women with high breast density are more likely to have a higher risk of breast cancer compared to those with lower density. This is not just because it makes it harder for mammograms to detect. Colditz said, "It is a measure of how much breast tissue and connective tissue are in the breast compared to how much fat tissue."

If any of the above points are a concern to you, it's important that you see your doctor for more information.


This post is solely for informational purposes. It is not intended to provide medical advice. Mambee doesn’t take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading or following the information contained in this post. Before undertaking any course of treatment, the readers should consult with their physician or other healthcare providers.

Source: AhaParenting