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As moms, we often put the needs of our families in front of our own. As breast cancer awareness month comes to an end we want to share an important reminder… to care for our family, WE need to be healthy! Being healthy also includes protective measures, not only for ourselves but for our growing daughters, to guard against cancer.
We do all that we can to ensure that out their children grow up healthy. We know that the environment around our children may change the way their body develops, especially young girls. It is too soon to say for sure that avoiding certain chemicals or foods lowers the risk of breast cancer. Still, to help protect daughters from developing breast cancer later in life, it is never too early to begin taking steps.
Four Steps Mothers & Daughters Can Take Together to Reduce Breast Cancer Risk
Scientists, physicians, and community partners in the Breast Cancer and the Environment Research Program (BCERP), which is supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), study the effects of environmental exposures on breast cancer risk later in life. They created a mother-daughter toolkit (http://bit.ly/BCERPtoolkit) mothers can use to talk to daughters about steps to take together to reduce risk.
Two years ago, I was diagnosed with atypical ductal hyperplasia, also known as ADH. Atypical ductal hyperplasia causes abnormal cells that appear similar to the cells of the breast ducts. Women with atypical hyperplasia have a lifetime risk of breast cancer that is about four times higher than that of women who don’t have atypical hyperplasia. My breast specialist’s advice was to maintain my general health with regular exercise, eating a healthy diet and getting enough sleep. On the top of her list was exercise. Frequent exercise control as many health benefits for mothers and daughters alike. Now there may be one more, recent research shows that maintaining a healthy weight before puberty and throughout life may help girls reduce the risk of breast cancer. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is a gift we give to our daughters that will last them a lifetime, hopefully, a long beautiful life.
Breast cancer awareness, education, and research are crucial. The work that the Breast Cancer and the Environment Research Program (BCERP) is doing could potentially save lives. Please take a few minutes to complete this important survey to help with the important work the researchers are doing: Fill out survey HERE.
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