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Can You Reduce Your Risk of Breast Cancer?
We hear it all the time?lose weight for your health. Few people however, realize the extent to which this is critical to their physical well-being and ultimately their life expectancy.
In January 2003, the Journal of the American Medical Association featured a study finding that obesity appears to lessen life expectancy, especially among young adults. The researchers compared Body-Mass Index (BMI) to longevity and found a correlation between premature death and higher BMIs. For example, a 20-year-old white male, 5'10" weighing 288 pounds with a BMI of greater than 40 was estimated to lose 13 years of his life as a result of obesity.Jamie McManus, M.D., F.A.A.F.P. and author of "Your Personal Guide to Wellness" notes that while this study referenced extreme levels of obesity, there are still millions of overweight people in developed countries with a life expectancy rate that is three to five years less than their healthy-weight counterparts. She also estimates that there are 600,000 obesity related deaths each year in America.
Just how does obesity shorten our lifespan? The answer to this question is complex, yet there is a clear link between obesity and the development of cancer. An extensive study conducted by the American Cancer Institute involving 750,000 people showed that obesity significantly increased the risk of cancer developing in the following organs: breast, colon, ovaries, uterus, pancreas, kidneys and gallbladder.
Michael Thun, MD, vice-president of epidemiology and surveillance research for the American Cancer Society (ACS) says one reason obesity may raise cancer risk is because fat cells produce a form of estrogen called estradiol that promotes rapid division of cells, increasing chances of a random genetic error while cells are replicating, which can lead to cancer. In addition, fat centered around the abdomen may increase insulin and insulin-like growth factors in the blood, which may increase cancer risk.
"Women who are obese after menopause have a 50% higher relative risk of breast cancer," notes Thun, "and obese men have a 40% higher relative risk of colon cancer?. Gallbladder and endometrial cancer risks are five times higher for obese individuals".There is evidence that cancer rates in developed countries are increasing at 5 to 15 times faster than developing countries. A major contributor to this alarming reality has proven to be diet. In populations where the diet consists mostly of fresh fruit and vegetables and whole grains - in contrast to the typical Western diet of fatty meats, refined flours, oils and sugars - the risk of cancer is much lower.
The interaction of diet and the development of cancer is an active field of research and Dr David Heber, M.D., Ph.D. and author of "What Color is Your Diet", says "It appears that diet has its most significant effects after the cancer has already formed, acting to inhibit or stimulate the growth of that cancer". At the risk of oversimplifying a complex set of interactions, the typical Western diet that leads to obesity may actually act to stimulate the growth of cancer cells.It is never too late to improve your health through healthful eating and adopting a more health-giving lifestyle. Here are simple steps to follow which can make an immediate improvement to your health and vitality.
1. Check your Body Mass Index (BMI) to determine if weight has become health risk. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 60% of Americans are overweight, defined as having a BMI (a ratio of height to weight) over 25. Of those, nearly half (27%) qualify as obese, with a body mass index of 30 or more. In 1980, just 15% of Americans were considered obese. You can check your BMI at the website below.
2. Match your diet to your body's requirements. If you eat and drink more calories than your body requires you will put on weight. Learn to control calories and portion sizes, make recipes leaner, and eat infrequently from fast food restaurants. Also learn how to snack with healthful choices.
3. Color your diet with a large variety of colorful, cancer-fighting fruit and vegetables. There are seven different color ranges of both fruit and vegetables and by choosing between 5 to 9 daily serves from a wide range of fruit and vegetables, we are extending our consumption of cancer (and other disease) fighting nutrients.
4. Eat lean protein with every meal. Protein provides a powerful signal to the brain providing a longer sense of fullness. The right source of protein is essential to controlling your hunger with fewer calories and necessary to maintain your lean muscle mass. Choices of protein should be flavored soy shakes with fruit; the white meat of chicken and turkey, seafood such as shrimps, prawns scallops and lobster and ocean fish or vegetarians may prefer soy based meat substitutes.
5. Rev up your metabolism with activity. If you want to enjoy a lifetime of well-being, exercise is a key ingredient. Colleen Doyle, MS, RD, director of nutrition and physical activity for the American Cancer Society (ACS), says adults should do something for 30 minutes each day that takes as much effort as a brisk walk. Children should be active for an hour each day. We are more likely to develop habits around things we enjoy, so seek activities which you enjoy doing. It is also helpful to build physical activity into your daily routine: use the stairs instead of the escalator or lift at work, park your car in the parking bay furthest from the super marketing and don't use the remote control to change TV channels.
6. Get support to ensure you develop a healthful eating plan and reach your goal weight. Whilst a small percentage of people possess the discipline to lose weight, many obese people have developed strong thoughts and habits concerning the food they eat. In order to establish new habits, most people respond well to some form of consistent encouragement and coaching. A study, "Effects of Internet Behavioral Counseling on Weight Loss in Adults at Risk of Type 2 Diabetes" shows that participants who had the support of weight loss coaching lost more weight than those who didn't. The study concluded that the support of a weight loss coach can significantly improve weight loss results.
Being overweight or obese has been identified next to smoking, as the most preventable major risk to developing cancer. Even small weight losses have been shown to have beneficial health effects. So it's never to late to start and you can never be too young or too old to be concerned about your health and do something about achieving a more healthy weight.
(c) Copyright by Kim Beardsmore
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New Advances In Early Breast Cancer Detection
In November 2003, the American Cancer Society stated that breast cancer is the leading cause of death in women between the ages of 40 and 44. In the United States, there are approximately 200,000 new cases of breast cancer and more than 40,000 deaths; making the U.
The News You Dont Want To Hear: Youve Got Breast Cancer
For many people being told that they have cancer is one of the most stressful times in their lives. Just as we think we have everything under control, something comes along that can shatter even the strongest of wills.
Breast Cancer Detection Unit for the Home
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Lets Start Screening For Breast Health
In the United States, American women are told to begin annual mammographic screening for breast cancer at the age of 40. Long before we've reached this age, we are advised to perform a monthly breast exam and see our doctors for a clinical breast exam (CBE) annually as well.
My First Thermographic Experience
I had been a bit nervous all day wondering what my thermogram procedure would entail. Would I need to undress completely? Would I be given one of those paper gowns that opens in the front and barely covers me? Would there be any heat coming out of the camera? I had been avoiding a mammogram after reading the latest information about the risks associated with X-ray; knowing that I was potentially putting myself at greater risk by not taking charge of my health.
Emotional Responses to Breast Cancer - Understanding the One You Love
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Breast Cancer Statistics - How Breast Cancer Survival Rates Increased 50%
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The Insidiousness of Breast Cancer and Its Current Treatment
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Gift Giving for Breast Cancer Patients and Their Families
Did you know that each year, 182,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer and 43,300 die? One woman in eight either has or will develop breast cancer in her lifetime. In addition, 1,600 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer and 400 will die this year.
Breast Cancer for Beginners
Introduction Because of the social changes, which has brought increased number of workingwoman and hence delayed childbearing, there has been a steep rise in the number of breast cancer patients in the last few decades. But as the incidence of the patients has risen so has raised the modality of treatments and the success rates.
Passive Smokers Can Get Breast Cancer! Learn How?
US scientists have claimed that secondhand smokers are at higher risk of Breast Cancer. Earlier, their research also led to them to the conclusion that young women smokers are more likely to get addicted to smoking than young men.
Breast Cancer The Cure
You have my permission to publish this article electronically or in print, free of charge, as long as the bylines are included. A courtesy copy of your publication would be appreciated.
Mammogram and Breast Cancer Screening
Cancer screening The term screening is commonly used for a test that is used for evaluation of a person for possible disease without the person ever having any symptoms or signs of the disease. Screening tests are usually undertaken in a target population, which has significantly high risk of developing the disease.
Do You Know Some Nutrients Help Prevent Breast Cancer?
Breast cancer today is one of the most threatening conditions that a woman might have. A woman's breast undergoes a lot of changes during her lifetime.
In December of 2001, breast cancer was the furthest thing from my mind. I was busy.
New Hope to Prevent Breast Cancer: What Every Woman Needs to Know
In March, 2005, a major nutritional breakthrough in the fight against breast cancer was announced by U.S.
A Tool for Early Breast Cancer Screening
Who isn't familiar with the expression, "early detection is the best prevention?" We hear this term throughout the year and most everyone is familiar with this "catch phrase" as it relates to breast cancer. Obviously, a woman's chance for survival improves when a cancer is found early.
Are Obese Women Getting Short-Changed By Chemotherapy Treatments?
How much chemotherapy does an obese woman need? Typically an obese woman with breast cancer would receive reduced doses of chemotherapy as they battle breast cancer.Back in June of 2005, a study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine concluded that obese women should receive chemotherapy based on their actual weight, and not in reduced as amounts as it the standard practice.
Finding the Spirit - Identifying the Enemy
In the daily fight for survival our vision is blurred because our health is compromised. This is when the enemy attacks- we lose focus and become vulnerable.
Screening For Breast Cancer With No Compression And No Radiation
Who would have thought that a technology for detecting breast cancer used today actually had its' roots dating back to 480 B.C.
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