Diet Changes to Make to Prevent Breast Cancer

  • A healthy lifestyle and diet can help prevent breast cancer or any other cancer.
  • Sipping green tea or consuming leafy vegetables which contain cancer-fighting compounds are just examples of what you can incorporate to your diet.
  • Limiting fat-intake and avoiding processed foods that contain cancer-causing substances can also be adapted for breast cancer prevention.

According to the American Cancer Society, approximately 1 in 8 American women are at risk of breast cancer. The good news is, your lifestyle and diet choices can lower your chance of developing the condition. 

According to Dipali Sharma, Ph.D., professor of oncology at Johns Hopkins Medicine, diet plays a significant role in preventing breast cancer. Here are some diet changes to make to keep your breast healthy, according to doctors.

Limit fat consumption

According to the Journal of Nutrition, a study of more than 48,000 postmenopausal women found that reducing dietary fat reduces the risk of breast cancer mortality. The participants cut back on overall fat consumption and ate more fruits, veggies, and grains. 

Choose lean meat

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An extensive analysis published in the International Journal of Cancer found that women with the highest consumption of red meat were at higher risk of invasive breast cancer than those who ate the most chicken. Limit your weekly consumption of red meat to about a week, and avoid charred beef, which boosts the presence of carcinogens, says Sharma. 

Try the Mediterranean diet

The Mediterranean diet is built on fruits, veggies, and whole grains that are also the best foods for breast cancer prevention, according to a study by the International Journal of Cancer (IJC) study. The diet also recommends swapping out red meat for fish. 

Load up on leafy greens

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According to the American Institute of Cancer Research, leafy greens, like spinach, watercress, and kale, have carotenoids that fight against cancer-causing free radicals.

Drink some green tea

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Green tea contains catechins, which are compounds that provide potent antioxidants that can lower the risk of breast cancer, according to a study published in the journal Nutrients. Sharma recommends drinking a cup of green tea every day to protect yourself from developing breast cancer. 

However, more human studies are needed to prove the effectiveness of green tea in preventing the disease. 

Cut back on alcohol

A study on the Mediterranean diet by IJC found that cutting back on alcohol reduces the risk of breast cancer. Limit your consumption of alcohol to three glasses a week to reduce your breast cancer risk. According to Beth Freedman, your body feels stressed when it works to get rid of alcohol. This can disrupt your system and increase your cancer risk. 

Avoid eating processed foods

Foods that are high in sugar and salt are generally bad for overall health. According to Dr. Freedman, processed foods like pickled foods and charred meats are cancer-causing, and limiting your consumption of these foods lowers your risk of developing diseases. 

Make lifestyle choices that help manage your weight

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Obesity is directly linked to a heightened risk of developing certain types of cancer. Eating healthier foods helps you manage your weight while also lowering your risk of breast cancer. According to Sharma and Dr. Freedman, women with a healthy diet are more likely to have more energy and experience less adverse side effects of breast cancer and its treatments. Their recovery time from surgery is also faster, says Dr. Freedman. 

Source: The Healthy

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