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How We Care for Breast Cancer

Susan G. Komen cares!

Make Healthy Lifestyle Choices

Did you know you can do things that are good for your health that may lower your risk of getting breast cancer?

1. Maintain a healthy weight

Many studies have shown a link between body weight and weight gain and breast cancer risk. However, being overweight or obese affects the risk for pre- and postmenopausal women differently.

  • Being overweight or obese BEFORE menopause modestly decreases the risk of breast cancer.
  • Being overweight AFTER menopause increases the risk of breast cancer.
  • Gaining 20 pounds or more after the age of 18 may increase your risk of breast cancer.
  • Losing weight after menopause may lower your risk of breast cancer.

2. Add exercise to your routine

Physical activity not only burns energy (calories), but it may also help lower your risk of breast cancer. (This benefit is seen most clearly in women after menopause.) Exercise fights obesity and may lower estrogen levels. It may also boost the immune system so it can help kill or slow the growth of cancer cells.

Before you start an exercise program, see a doctor if you:

  • Have been inactive for a long time
  • Are overweight
  • Have a high risk of heart disease 
  • Have a high risk of or have other chronic health problems

If you are already physically active, keep up the good work!

3. Limit alcohol intake

The more alcohol your drink, the higher your risk of breast cancer. Studies have shown that women who had 2 – 3 alcoholic drinks per day had a 20 percent higher risk of breast cancer compared to women who didn’t drink alcohol. If you drink alcohol, have less than one drink a day.

4. Limit menopausal hormones

Menopausal hormone therapy (MHT) is approved for the short – term relief of menopausal symptoms. The main types of MHT are:

  • Estrogen plus progestin and
  • Estrogen alone.

Estrogen plus progestin increases the risk of both developing and dying from breast cancer. Once MHT is stopped, this increased risk returns to that of a woman who has never used hormones in about 5 – 10 years. Some studies have shown estrogen alone increases the risk of breast cancer. However, one large study found a decreased risk.

Talk to a doctor about the risks and benefits of MHT.

5. Breastfeeding, if you can

Breastfeeding protects against breast cancer, especially in premenopausal women.


I'm Miss. Congeniality of Broward College North Campus, Events Coordinator of the Psychology Club at Broward College North Campus, new president of Her Campus Broward, I work for Student Services at Broward College North Campus, and I just like to get involved in many great activities that benefit my personal growth.
Student at Broward College for the past five years, first enrolled on Davie's Central Campus learning Physical Therapy for two years than, transferring to Coconut Creeks North campus for the last three years, now majoring in Early Childhood / Developmental Education. Spent first year with Her campus Broward as Outreach Director, former president of self-entitled campus friendship club, Sammy's Buddy Brigade, member of the Campus Science Club, and a Broward County local student Ambassador with Best Buddies International. Winner of the Sammy's award for most charity work within the community, and now Vice President of Her Campus Broward. I hope to soon be working at Junior Achievement with the elementary and middle school children, in order to have a well rounded experience! The hope is to one day work with and teach children who have special needs such as myself! Biggest belief and philosophy of life is that, no matter what anyone says you can't accomplish in life, I am living proof that anything is possible! Having ADHD, high functioning Autism, and medical conditions such as Scoliosis, helps me to understand special needs children on a level that very few people can! It is this very knowledge that led me to choose Teaching as my chosen profession. Now at age 42, and more than 55% on the way to getting an Associate of Arts degree in Early Childhood Education, I hope to become an Assistant Teacher within the next year or so. We hope that this true life story will inspire others to never give up either, no matter what anybody says, or tells you, that you can't do, the only one who can truly hold you back is "YOU".
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