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10 Lifestyle Practices to Reduce Your Risk of Breast Cancer

Remember we promised to publish on regular basis information about breast health and not only in the month of October? Please find here 10 Lifestyle Practices to Reduce Your Risk of Breast Cancer.

Daniel Kenner, Ph.D., L.Ac. expert in integrative health and wellness.

lifestyle breast

1. Maintain a healthy body weight

Obese women are up to 60% more likely to develop any cancer than normal-weight women, according to a 2006 study by British researchers. Estrogen is produced in fat tissue and estrogen is fuel for many types of cancer.

2. Make intermittent fasting part of your lifestyle

Intermittent fasting will help your body shift to burning fat instead of sugar as its primary fuel. This means eating only between the hours of 11am until 7pm, as an example. This equates to simply skipping breakfast, and making lunch your first meal of the day instead. Skipping eating for an entire day can be an eventual goal.

3. Exercise!

High-intensity bursts of activity with rest periods strengthen adaptation, get in shape and stimulate production of Growth Hormone (GH). Exercising at very high intensity with intermittent periods of moderate rest is known as high-intensity interval training (HIIT). The cancer-prevention properties of exercise are well established scientifically.

lifestyle breast

4. Radically reduce your intake of sugar/fructose and processed foods

Avoiding sugar is one of the most powerful things you can do to lower your cancer risk. Refined fructose is especially dangerous, as research shows it actually speeds up cancer growth.

5. Optimize your vitamin D level

Ideally it should be over 50 ng/ml, but levels from 70-100 ng/ml will radically reduce your cancer risk. Safe sun exposure is the most effective way to increase your vitamin D levels, followed by using a tanning bed that has electronic ballast instead of a magnetic one. Either of these methods is far better than taking a high-dose supplement, which would necessitate increasing your intake of vitamin K2 as well, either from food or a supplement.

6. Get plenty of high-quality omega-3 fats

Omega-3 deficiency is a common underlying factor for cancer. Fish, free range meat and dairy products balance Omega-3 and Omega-6, but animals fed corn and soybeans are too high in Omega-6 fats, which can promote inflammation and an overweight condition.

lifestyle breast

7. Learn to Manage Your Stress

Anxiety and depression can influence breast cancer survival. Women who manage to control depression in the first year of being diagnosed outlive by more than two years women whose depression symptoms worsened or were unchanged. Drugs aren’t the answer, though. SSRIs (a category of antidepressant drug) are associated with increased breast cancer risk.

8. Avoid drinking alcohol

Or limit your drinks to one a day for women.

9. Get proper sleep

Both in terms of enough sleep, and sleeping between certain hours. Too much light at night was found to increase breast cancer by inhibiting melatonin in a study by the American National Cancer Institute. Working against your biology by staying awake when you should ideally be sleeping or vice versa, interferes with hormone regulation.

10. Avoid electromagnetic fields as much as possible

Limit your exposure and protect yourself from radiation produced by cell phones, towers, base stations, and Wi-Fi stations, as well as minimizing your exposure from radiation-based medical scans, including dental x-rays, CT scans, and mammograms. Items such as electric blankets can be particularly troublesome and increase your cancer risk.

Other Tips

• If you have children, breastfeed exclusively for up to six months. Research shows this will reduce your breast cancer risk.
• Educate yourself about estrogen pollution. “Xenoestrogens” are increasingly present all around us. They’re in plastics, canned food and drinks, food additives, household cleaning products, flame retardant chemicals and pesticides. And estrogen levels are rising in our waterways as a result of the runoff from factory animal farms.
• Educate yourself about hormone replacement therapy. For younger women, oral contraceptives, which are also made of synthetic hormones, have been linked to cervical and breast cancers. Women who have had an abortion are up to twice as likely to develop breast cancer, according to a British study.
• For older women bio-identical hormones are a safer option.
• Educate yourself about radiation exposure, Thermography should be a part of screening. If there is already a tumor diagnosed, it is safer to monitor it using an MRI or thermography rather than expose it to more ionizing radiation.
• Avoid antiperspirants that contain toxic metals.

About Dr.Daniel Kenner

Daniel Kenner Ph.D., L.Ac. is one of Consuming Passions team members and experts in integrative health and wellness with 30 years of clinical experience in both Oriental and Naturopathic Medicine. He graduated in 1979 the Meiji College of Oriental Medicine in Japan, passed the national licensing examination and then trained in internships at Osaka Medical University Pain Clinic and Kinki University Medical Teaching Hospital. He was one of the first foreigners ever to be licensed by the Japanese government. Dan also has a Ph.D. in Naturopathic Medical Science from First National University of Naturopathic Medical Sciences and a well respected member of the Board of Governors of the National Health Federation. Since 1983 he has endeavored to integrate the naturopathic medical traditions of North America and Europe with the traditional medicine of East Asia.

In addition to authoring numerous articles, Dan is author of The Whole-Body Workbook for Cancer (New Harbinger, 2009), The Science of AHCC, Basic Health Publications, 2009, Acupuncture Core Therapy (Paradigm, 2008), AHCC – The Japanese Medicinal Mushroom Immune Enhancer (Woodland, 2001) and Botanical Medicine: A European Professional Perspective (Paradigm, 1996).

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