• Denine Rogers

Breast Cancer Month

I am dress in pink for church and I am proud! This past Sunday, I work as a usher with Golden Memorial Methodist Church and we prayed for members and family members who are suffering from breast cancer and other forms of cancer. This is breast cancer month and I did not know so many people who have cancer and are survivors! Did you know that among women younger than 40, black women have higher rates of breast cancer compared to white women? Also did you know that between ages 60-84, white women have higher rates of breast cancer compared to black women? .

There is some good news that the incidences of breast cancer death rates have declined 40% from 1989 to 2016 among women. The positive progress is attributed to improvements in early detection. In 2019, an estimated 268,600 new cases of invasive

breast cancer will be diagnosed among women and approximately 2,670 cases will be diagnosed in men.

Postmenopausal HR+ breast cancer risk is about 1.5-2 times higher in women who are overweight or obese. Even within the normal range of BMI (18.5-24.9), higher levels of body fat are associated with increased risk of breast cancer after menopause. This is likely due, in part, to higher estrogen levels because fat tissue is the largest source of estrogen in postmenopausal women, but may also be related to other mechanisms, including the higher levels of insulin among women with excess body weight. Weight gain also increases risk of postmenopausal breast cancer.

Women who get regular physical activity have a 10%-20% lower risk of breast cancer compared to women who are inactive, with greater risk reduction associated with

increasing levels of activity. The protective effect is independent of BMI and may be limited to women who have never used menopausal hormone therapy. The benefit may be due to the effects of physical activity on systemic inflammation, hormone levels, and energy balance.

So what is the best wellness plan for breast cancer prevention? The American Institute for Cancer Research Guidelines for Nutrition and Cancer Prevention shows that eating healthful diet, along with regular physical activity, can promote health and reduce the risk of developing cancer. Below are there some nutritional and physical activities guidelines suggestions for Cancer Prevention:

  • Be physically active for least 30 minutes every day. This consists of moderate activity which gets your heart beating a bit faster and makes you breathe more deeply- such as a brisk walk. It can also consist of vigorous activity which means raising our heart rates so that we warm up, start to seat, and feel out of breath. Be careful of not over doing with vigorous activity exercises and do check your heart rate.

  • Also include at least 15-30 minutes of relaxation –de-stressing exercises such as mediation, yoga, Qigong or Tai Chi.

  • Avoid sugary drinks such as sodas, kool aid and other high fructose corn syrup products.

  • Limit consumption of energy-dense foods (particularly processed foods high in added sugar, low in fiber, or high in fat).

  • Eat more of a variety of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and legumes such as beans.

  • Choose a diet with many types of plant-based foods. Try to substitute dried beans and peas for meat at some meals each week.

  • Try to eat at least five colorful servings a day of fruits and vegetables, including citrus fruits, dark-green and deep-yellow vegetables. Colorful vegetables and fruits contain natural health-promoting substances called phytochemicals .

  • Limit consumption of red meats and avoid processed meats. Limit high-fat foods, particularly those from animal sources.

  • Avoid beef, pork and lamb.

  • Choose lower-fat milk and dairy products.

  • Reduce the amounts of fat in your meals by choosing a lower-fat cooking method, such as baking and broiling.

  • If you consume alcoholic beverages at all please limit them. Limit drinks are 2 servings for men and 1 serving for women a day.

  • Limit consumption of salty foods and foods processed with salt (sodium). Try not to choose salt-cured, smoked and pickled foods less often.

  • Eat more high fiber foods such as whole grain breads and cereals each day!

  • Ask a registered dietitian to help you personalize a nutritious, balanced eating plan.

So please do not wait until breast cancer reaches to someone you love.  Start a positive lifestyle change today and get an early detection mammogram today.  Your health, body, mind and spirit will be glad that you did.


Breast Cancer information is taken from the American Cancer Society Breast Cancer Facts and Figures of 2019-2020.

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