October 2021 Blog
With October being called the Pink Month, we are reminded to think about how every woman’s life is important. This is the time of year to increase awareness of the disease and help raise funds to keep researching the causes and treatments. Throughout the difficult year and a half that we have all been experiencing, many women have not gotten their mammograms. It’s time to be proactive about our breast health going forward as knowledge and early detection can save lives.
One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime. Pretty scary. Most may never know the exact source of their cancer, but it is always caused by some kind of damage to the cell’s DNA. There are many risk factors, though. Some of these are avoidable risk factors (environmental and lifestyle) and the others are risk factors that cannot be changed (genetic).
Environmental and Lifestyle Risk Factors:
- Lack of physical activity
- Poor diet
- Being overweight or obese
- Chest radiation before the age of 30
- Alcohol consumption
- Combined hormone replacement therapy
- Family history
- Personal health history
- Mutations in certain genes (BRCA1 and BRCA2)
- Dense breast tissue
Per the American Cancer Society, if breast cancer is detected early and is in the localized stage, the 5-year survival rate is 99%. Early detection means women are doing monthly breast exams to identify any changes to their breasts, scheduling regular breast exams with a clinician and having a mammogram when indicated.
There are lots of pink ribbons, socks, shirts and hats to choose from for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Here is the recipe for a pink smoothie that is packed full of antioxidants, vitamin C, potassium, protein, and fairly low in calories (around 315). Combine all the ingredients in a blender until smooth and creamy and enjoy!
- 1 cup fresh or frozen mixed berries
- 1 frozen ripe banana
- ½ cup low fat plain Greek yogurt
- ¼ orange juice
- 1 teaspoon honey or maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon of peanut butter (optional)
A healthy diet that is full of fruits, vegetables, fish, poultry, low-fat dairy, and 30 minutes a day of exercise (even power walking!) can lower breast cancer risk and boost your immune system. Be proactive about your breast health during this month.