3 Ways to Decrease your Risk for Breast Cancer NOT Related to Food

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When most of us think about our risk for breast cancer, genetics is a common factor being discussed and often given the majority of the credit for your risk.  Clean eating is typically next on the list. 

But what if there were other lifestyle factors within your control that could lower your risk for breast cancer no matter what your age or genetic background? 

Factors that you could incorporate into your daily and weekly life that wouldn't take a huge effort or a lot of time in your schedule? 

Breast cancer is affecting more and more women on a daily basis and if there are more ways we can decrease our risk, wouldn't we want to listen? Cancer doesn't just happen suddenly. It's years of lifestyle choices or exposure to environmental toxins that we have neglected to address or simply didn't even know existed.

Below are 3 Ways you can decrease your risk for breast cancer that don't have anything to do with food. 

Exercise - Specifically Strength Training

In 2015, 2 new studies were introduced at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. 

One French study concluded that "overall, a sedentary woman who began engaging in four to seven hours a week of mainly vigorous physical activity seemed to reduce her risk of breast cancer by 31 percent." I don't know about you but 4-7 hours does not seem like much for the benefits of a 31% reduction. 

Exercise, particularly strength training like squats, chest presses, and bicep curls also helps burn fat more effectively than cardio. And the less fat we have on our body, the less estrogen we are likely producing. Estrogen is a hormone that, in excess, has been proven to fuel breast cancer.  Unfortunately, this did not apply to women taking hormone replacement therapy.

The exercise and strength training was helping to lower the estrogen levels and burn the fat cells that produce the estrogen, but those women taking HRT, were adding it right back in with the artificial replacement. 

In addition, a Harvard study in 2012 published in the journal Nature discovered that when exercising muscle, a hormone called irisin is released.  This study was only done in mice, but can well be applied to humans. The irisin travels through the body and changes the way fat is stored. Irisin increased the amount of fat cells that BURN fat instead of STORE it. 

Overall, exercising up to 4-7 times per week incorporating weights more then consistent low aerobic cardio was most effective.

In the FASTer Way to Fat Loss® 6 week program, we do just this. Most women find they are exercising less and getting better results within the first 2 weeks. 

Intermittent Fasting

If you have not heard of Intermittent Fasting, yet, you soon will. It is gaining a lot of momentum in the science and research sector of health. And it's an intregal part of the FASTer Way to Fat Loss® Program and why so many women have fast and long term results. 

Intermittent Fasting or IF has nothing to do with starving yourself. It's just about shortening the window of time in which you are eating. So instead of eating all day or from when you wake up till when you go to bed, we choose to consume the same amount of calories within an 8-10 hour eating window instead. For example, 10 am- 6 pm daily. That way your body is allowed to rest from digestion and focus more on healing parts of our body that need to be addressed. 

This process is called Autophagy- a process in which your healthy cells begin to "eat up" or consume unhealthy cells like cancer cells

IF can also help regulate your hormones. The less we are constantly feeding ourselves (especially refined carbohydrates), the less our body needs to produce insulin to regulate our blood sugar. 

Hormones play a huge part in helping our body stay cancer free. So the more we can have normal functioning hormones, the less our chances for breast cancer. 

Personal Care Products

The third way you can lower your risk for breast cancer may be something you've heard of already, experimenting with, or a completely new piece of shocking information. 

Decades of studies indicate that serious health issues (including but not limited to asthma, cancer, and infertility) are on the rise and are due in some part to our ongoing exposure to toxic chemicals—whether it's in the shower, on our commute, while we eat lunch at a local restaurant, or when we clean our kitchens at home.

There are more than 80,000 chemicals on the market today. Many don't have any safety data. This is particularly true of those used in the skin care and beauty industry.

What's worse is that the Food and Drug Administration (the agency that regulates cosmetics in the United States) does not have the authority to remove harmful ingredients from the products we put on our bodies and on our kids' bodies every single day, day after day.

The United States has not passed a major federal law to regulate the safety of ingredients used in personal care products since 1938. Wowzers! 

Over the past two decades, the European Union has banned close to 1,400 chemicals in the product formulas of personal care products and restricted the levels of over 250 more in such products. The United States has only partially banned 30 to date.

When speaking of breast cancer in particular, only around 2% of cases have been attributed to genetics. The rest have been environmental exposure. And when examining breast cancer tissue from mastectomies, phthalates show up over and over again. The good news is that this is a lifestyle factor and something within our control. We can control what we choose to put on our skin and in our homes. 

Phthalates are endocrine and hormone disruptors and are often found in products that contain the word "fragrance" or "parfum." You can read more about them here

I would say if you are already exercising and have a personal workout plan in place, your next step is to switch your personal care products and cleaning products.  If you are wanting to implement both, join our next 6 week FASTer Way program and receive a free travel size product from me. 

For personal care products, I use a company called Beautycounter and for cleaning, I use Young Living Theives cleaner and Branch Basics concentration liquids. 

Beautycounter has chosen to eliminate over 1,500 ingredients from their formulations, including fragrance, and is leading the way for the clean beauty movement. They are committed to making products safer without losing the performance that we all want and love. 

In fact, from now until August 13th, you can get 20% off your first Beautycounter order (excluding a couple items). This is a one time sale and they do not run sales often. Use PROMO Code: LOVE

If you are just making the switch, here are the packages I recommend: 

Skin care: CounterMatch Collection and  Anti-aging Collection

Make up: Flawless in Five (excluded in the 20% off because it's already discounted)

Kids: Kids Collection

Make you sure you open a client account for a free gift from me directly. That way, I will get the email. 

Branch Basics has an amazing story of healing and recovery when they began switching to cleaner food and products.

For the month of August, use code Thrive15 for 15% off your order.

You can minimize your risk for any cancer with better lifestyle choices. There are obviously no guarantees with anything, but these 3 things along with a great plant based, whole food eating plan, you'll be well on your way to a long and fulfilling life.