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The Inextricable Link: Breast Health & Earth Health

As we approach another Earth Day 2020 in celebration to the countless wonder & magnificence of Mother Earth, we at You Can Thrive! asks an important question....

Is the health of the planet linked to the health of our bodies, particularly our breasts?

Well, many have referred to the breasts as the canaries in the coal mine.

The evidence cited in this NCBI review titled: State of the evidence 2017: an update on the connection between breast cancer and the environment reveals some insight on this discussion. According to this study it reinforces the conclusion that exposures to a wide variety of toxicants – many of which are found in common, everyday products and byproducts – can lead to increased risk for development of breast cancer. As concluded by the reports of the Presidential Cancer Panel [4] and the Interagency Breast Cancer and Environment Research Coordinating Committee [2], it is critical to recognize the growing literature demonstrating connections between exposures to environmental toxicants and later development of disease, including breast cancer, and to prioritize prevention both at the research and the public health levels. If you're interested in being a part of study like this check out Sisters Study

Check out the bounty of research at the MammAlive on the environmental link to Breast Health

What are some things you can do to both protect ya' chest & this beautiful planet:

1. Avoid tobacco in all its forms, including exposure to secondhand smoke.You don't have to be an international scientist to understand how you can try to protect yourself and your family.

2. Eat properly. Reduce your consumption of saturated fat and red meat, which may increase the risk of colon cancer and a more aggressive form of prostate cancer. Increase your consumption of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

3. Exercise regularly. Physical activity has been linked to a reduced risk of colon cancer. Exercise also appears to reduce a woman's risk of breast and possibly reproductive cancers. Exercise will help protect you even if you don't lose weight.

4. Stay lean. Obesity increases the risk of many forms of cancer. Calories count; if you need to slim down, take in fewer calories and burn more with exercise.

5. If you choose to drink, limit yourself to an average of one drink a day. Excess alcohol increases the risk of cancers of the mouth, larynx (voice box), esophagus (food pipe), liver, and colon; it also increases a woman's risk of breast cancer. Smoking further increases the risk of many alcohol-induced malignancies.

6. Avoid unnecessary exposure to radiation. Get medical imaging studies only when you need them. Check your home for residential radon, which increases the risk of lung cancer. Protect yourself from ultraviolet radiation in sunlight, which increases the risk of melanomas and other skin cancers.

7. Avoid exposure to industrial and environmental toxins such as asbestos fibers, benzene, aromatic amines, and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and household plastics

8. Avoid infections that contribute to cancer, including hepatitis viruses, HIV, and the human papillomavirus. Many are transmitted sexually or through contaminated needles.

9. Make quality sleep a priority. Admittedly, the evidence linking sleep to cancer is not strong. But poor and insufficient sleep increases is associated with weight gain, which is a cancer risk factor.

10. Get enough vitamin D. Many experts now recommend 800 to 1,000 IU a day, a goal that's nearly impossible to attain without taking a supplement. Although protection is far from proven, evidence suggests that vitamin D may help reduce the risk of prostate cancer, colon cancer, and other malignancies. But don't count on other supplements.

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