Most people who watch the NFL or pay attention to the news know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. The proceeds from that month can help at-risk women identify and promote healthy habits. However, it certainly isn’t the only time you should be taking steps to monitor your health. Here are a few things that individuals can do outside of October to improve their breast health and make sure that they monitor the risk of potential health complications.
Get a Mammogram If You Haven’t Gotten One
The best way to monitor your health and maintain good breast cancer awareness is to have an annual breast exam and mammogram as your doctor recommends. In 2015, the American Cancer Society released new recommendations for mammography. For women at average risk for breast cancer, meaning they don’t have a personal history of breast cancer, a strong family history of breast cancer, or a genetic mutation known to increase risk of breast cancer (such as in a BRCA gene), and have not had chest radiation therapy before the age of 30, the following screening is recommended:
Women between 40 and 44 have the option to start screening with a mammogram every year; women 45 to 54 should get mammograms every year; women 55 and older can switch to a mammogram every other year or they can choose to continue yearly mammograms. Screening should continue as long as a woman is in good health and is expected to live 10 more years or longer.
Early detection saves lives. As many survivors will say, practicing good breast cancer awareness is a great way to stay ahead of the curve. This gives yourself the best chances of staying healthy.
Hit the Gym
Studies have shown that one of the most effective things you can do to help prevent cancer or keep it from spreading is to visit the gym. While it can feel like a chore to drag yourself out of bed and get a workout in, it’s also a great way for your body to eliminate free radicals and toxins that can precipitate the formation of cancer. A healthy exercise regimen is just one step you can take to improve your overall health. It can also prevent any potential cancer development.
There are plenty of foods that claim the ability to beat cancer. However there likely isn’t one single food that’s going to keep you healthy. Maintaining a healthy diet rich in plant-based foods, low in saturated fats and low in carcinogens is one of the most helpful ways to keep your body well-fueled and healthy. If you’re looking to avoid potential health problems, even those other than breast cancer, a good diet is one of the best things you can do for your body.
Another great way to stay engaged and maintain breast cancer awareness throughout the year is to practice routine breast self-examinations. It’s an easy and inexpensive thing that you can do at home to monitor your health. It can also help alert you for a potential need to visit a doctor.
Avoid Tobacco and Alcohol
While it’s fine to have a drink every now and then, it’s best to avoid smoking and consuming excessive amounts of alcohol, as both have been linked to an increased risk of breast cancer. It can be difficult to quit, but the health benefits are tremendous.
The Pink Plumber donates a part of the proceeds of every job to breast cancer research. Keep yourself healthy and join us in supporting breast cancer awareness all year long.