My mother has been urging me to go get a test that will tell me I carry a gene that puts me at risk for developing breast cancer. As I’ve written, I’m hesitant to find out if I have this breast cancer gene. What will it mean if I do? I play an anxiety-ridden waiting game until the disease develops? No thanks. I’m too much of a control freak for that. I don’t like the idea that I can’t actively do anything to protect my health.
As it turns out, a group of cancer researchers have stated that one in three breast cancer cases can be prevented by better diet and more exercise. The experts, who gathered this week at a conference in Barcelona this week, announced figures that show that an estimated 25 to 30 per cent of breast cancer cases could be prevented if women were thinner and exercised more, reports the Associated Press.
Cancer researcher Dr. Michelle Holmes from Harvard University told the Associated Press that people may be focusing too much on the role genetics play in cancer risk. Here’s what she said in the article:
“The genes have been there for thousands of years, but if cancer rates are changing in a lifetime, that doesn’t have much to do with genes.’
The message: We do have some control over our own health. That’s empowering, but the trick here is to balance this information while being careful not to blame or selves or feel guilty if we do get sick. Women already suffer enough guilt when it comes to our bodies, wouldn’t you agree?
So how can you start making healthier choices in order to prevent your breast cancer risk? By making small changes to our diets and activity levels every day. Here are some easy-to-follow tips to get you started: