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10 Ways to Reduce Your Risk of Breast Cancer

Reduce Risk of Breast Cancer

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and here on Long Island, this hits home hard. After losing her sister Virginia to cancer, Teresa Ward, owner of Teresa’s Family Cleaning, formed the charity, Cleaning Angels USA. This volunteer organization provides free cleaning services to Long Island women who are overwhelmed with the pain and stress of cancer treatment.

While there is no sure fire way to prevent breast cancer or any other cancer, you can reduce your risk, and help increase the odds that if cancer does occur, it is found at an early, more treatable stage.

Reduce Your Risk of Breast Cancer with these tips

Get a routine mammogram. Mammograms play a critical role in early detection – which means finding breast cancer at a curable stage. In fact, stages 0 and 1 have 98% cure rates. Studies show that, on average, mammograms decrease the death rates on breast cancer by about 30%.

Get your routine clinical breast exams by a health expert such as a doctor, nurse practitioner, nurse, or physician assistant. The area under both arms will also be checked.

Perform regular breast self-exams. Be aware of how your breasts normally look and feel and report any changes to your doctor right away.

Lose that excess weight. Being overweight or obese increases breast cancer risk, especially after menopause. This is because the major source of estrogen for postmenopausal women is found in mainly in fat tissue.

Know your family history. Women whose close relatives (parents, brothers, sisters, children) have had breast cancer (especially at an early age) are more likely to get breast cancer. If this is true for you, talk to your doctor about further testing.

Exercise regularly. Exercise is a considered a breast-healthy habit and you don’t even have to join a gym!  Walking briskly for 75 to 150 minutes each week has been shown to lower risk. Consider ramping up your exercise routine even more to lower your breast cancer risk further.

Limit your alcohol intake. Women who consume 2 or more alcoholic drinks a day have about 1½ times the risk of breast cancer compared to women who don’t drink at all. The American Cancer Society’s recommends limiting alcohol to no more than 1 drink per day for women and 2 drinks per day for men. 

Don’t smoke. Studies have suggested a link between smoking and breast cancer risk, particularly in premenopausal women. Not smoking and avoiding secondhand smoke not only lowers your risk for breast and other cancers, it is better for your overall health in general.

Don’t assume the breast cancer discriminates.  Men are diagnosed with breast cancer at less than 1% the rate women are diagnosed with breast cancer and primarily affects men 60 years of age and over; however, it can occur much earlier in some men due to variables such as environmental and/or genetic factors.

Avoid environmental pollution and toxic chemicals. Current research also suggests a link between breast cancer and exposure to the chemicals found in our homes, workplaces, gasoline fumes and vehicle exhaust. An easy way to avoid these toxic chemicals in your home by creating a chemical free cleaning kit. Making your own non toxic cleaners is not only good for your health, it is better for the environment and easier on your wallet.

Let us give your home a Non-Toxic Green Clean so you don't have to! Call Teresa's Family Cleaning for an estimate today!

Steam Cleaners May Help Prevent Breast Cancer

Breast cancer awarenessAn effort has been launched by 1-800-GO-VAPOR, a nationwide marketer of vapor steam cleaners to decrease the cost of their home steamer units in the hopes of helping to limit women’s exposure to the toxic chemicals that may, in part, be causing rates of breast cancer to increase.

“Chemicals found in traditional household cleaning products may be contributing to the rise in breast cancer according to doctors and environmental scientists,” says V. K. Dunlop, a vice president at 1-800-GO-VAPOR.com. “In 2009, The New York Times reported in ‘Cancer From the Kitchen?’ that ‘the chances that a 50 year-old white woman will develop breast cancer has increased from 1% in 1975 to 12% today.’”

One of the possible reasons for this increase is the prevalence of harsh cleaning chemicals found in use on a daily basis by homeowners, and by the companies they hire to clean their homes. While homeowners are encouraged to purchase and utilize their own steam cleaning equipment, sometimes the next best thing is to ensure that the company you hire to clean your home is using green seal, or chemical free products. For several years, Teresa’s Family Cleaning has been making the effort to spread the word of the safety benefits, and cleaning efficacy, of their green and chemical free services, and the word is starting to spread.

“A lot of our customers have been requesting our green cleaning services. Cancer patients, people that have athsma and those that are sensitive to other volatile organic compounds can have issues with standard cleaning products,” Teresa Ward, owner of Teresa’s Family Cleaning explains. “By offering green, and chemical free cleaning, which uses no other cleaning agents except water in different forms, we give people the opportunity to have a deeply cleaned home, without putting their health at risk.”

So, will chemical free cleaning catch on? The method is certainly safe, utilizing only water in various forms,  and has been proven effective, killing more than 99.9% of E. Coli, listeria, MRSA, Salmonella, Staph, and several other harmful viruses and bacteria.  For families concerned about the long term effects of the chemicals in their environment, and women looking to decrease their risk for breast cancer, switching to steam units and chemical free services may be the first step on the road to better health.