A holistic approach to breast cancer not only assesses and minimises the risk before cancer has a chance to develop, but also uses simple changes to promote good health for the long term.
In the realms of breast cancer prevention, diet is a huge topic. Modern food practices strip our food of nutrients, replacing them with synthetic additives. Cancer is a modern disease, and if we want to beat it, it’s important to get back to the basics of good health. But don’t worry, eating healthy doesn’t mean you have to go out and buy the latest blender, juicer and the rest.
Diet changes are a very effective management strategy. Out of 200 women diagnosed with breast cancer, 87% of those who made major changes to their diet experienced spontaneous regression.
Stay away from processed food.
Anything packaged, wrapped, tinned or fried will be full of toxins. Generally, these products have lots of things added to them to make them more appealing including “natural colors and flavours”, trans fats and tons of salt and sugar.
Wholefoods are best.
Aim for green leafy vegetables, (particularly broccoli), nuts, berries, fish, and lean meat . If possible, source organic products as these contain far fewer toxins.
Avoid low fat or no fat products.
While these foods may seem great from a weight-loss or health perspective, they are usually topped up with artificial sugars and sweeteners, all of which promote hormonal imbalances and weight gain!
More than 1 drink per day is associated with increased breast cancer risk. Women who have more than 3 drinks/day increase their risk by 30%, the same as if they smoked a packet of cigarettes day.
Sedentary lifestyle is strongly associated with increased breast cancer risk. Studies show that exercise doesn’t just prevent development of tumours, but also increases the rate of survival for those recovering from cancer:
- Exercise can reduce the risk of breast cancer by 40%.
- Walking briskly for 2-3 hours/week reduces the risk of death from all causes by 67%.
- Women who were inactive when diagnosed with breast cancer, then became active following diagnosis reduced their risk of death by 45%.
- Those who decreased activity after diagnosis had a four-fold risk of death.
It’s a great combination
Diet and exercise are most effective when used together. The best thing about great diet and decent exercise is that they offer protection on multiple levels, and not just from breast cancer. A healthy lifestyle will protect from diabetes, dementia, depression, anxiety, sleep disorders, cardiovascular disease and much more. A few changes here and there are a small price to pay for a lifetime of good health!
 Traub, M. Cancer care plans and fundamental principles. Powerpoint presentation, 2014.
 Romieu, I et al. Alcohol intake and breast cancer. Int J Cancer. 2015 Feb 9
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