Breast cancer is a type of cancer that originates in the breast tissue. According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer is the second most common type of cancer diagnosed in women in the world (after skin cancer). In fact, it is the second leading cancer causing death in women. In 2019, an estimated 268,600 new cases of invasive breast cancer were diagnosed in women in the world as well as 62,930 new cases of non-invasive (in situ) breast cancer.
There are several risk factors for developing breast cancer, including family history, age, dense breasts, alcohol consumption, and obesity. However, most women who develop breast cancer have no known risk factors. There are two main types of breast cancer: hormone receptor-positive and triple-negative. Hormone receptor-positive breast cancers are driven by hormones such as estrogen and progesterone, while triple-negative breast cancers are not.
The most common symptom of breast cancer is a new lump or mass in the breast. Other symptoms may include changes in the size or shape of the breast, dimpling of the skin, nipple discharge or pain, and redness or thickening of the skin on the breast or nipple. These symptoms may be caused by benign conditions such as infection or cysts; however, it is important to see a doctor if you experience any of them so that a diagnosis can be made.
If you have any symptoms that could indicate breast cancer, your doctor will likely order a mammogram: an x-ray of the breasts, to look for signs of tumors. If anything suspicious is found on a mammogram, your doctor may order additional tests such as an ultrasound or MRI to get a better look at the area in question. A biopsy: a small sample of tissue taken from the suspicious area, will then be performed to determine whether or not you have cancer.
The prognosis for people with breast cancer varies depending on several factors such as stage at diagnosis, type of tumor, grade of tumor, how well the tumor responds to treatment, age, overall health status, etc. In general, however, survival rates have been increasing over time due to earlier detection through screening tests and advances in treatment options. According to the American Cancer Society’s most recent estimates for 2021:
- The 5-year relative survival rate for women with Stage 0 or Stage I breast cancers is 99%.
- The 5-year relative survival rate for women with Stage II or Stage III cancers is 86%.
- The 5-year relative survival rate for women with Stage IV cancers is 27%.
- For men diagnosed with Stage IV prostate cancers at any age group. The 5-year relative survival rate is 29%.
If you are diagnosed with breast cancer, there are several treatment options available depending on the stage and type of cancer as well as personal preferences. Treatment options include surgery (e.g., lumpectomy or mastectomy), radiation therapy, chemotherapy, targeted therapy, and hormone therapy.
But that there are things you can do to help prevent breast cancer naturally.
Eat a healthy diet.
One of the best ways to prevent breast cancer is to eat a healthy diet. A healthy diet includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. It is also important to limit your intake of processed foods, red meat, and alcohol. Eating a healthy diet can lower your risk of developing breast cancer by up to 30%. A healthy diet is important for overall health, but it can also help reduce your risk for breast cancer. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, and limit your intake of processed foods and red meat.
Regular exercise is another great way to prevent breast cancer. Exercise helps to keep your weight down, and it also helps to regulate your hormones. Women who exercise for at least 30 minutes per day have a lower risk of developing breast cancer than women who do not exercise regularly.
Avoid exposure to toxins.
It is important to avoid exposure to toxins that can increase your risk of developing breast cancer. Some toxins that you should avoid include: pesticides, herbicides, chemicals in cosmetics and personal care products, and industrial chemicals. Try to buy organic produce whenever possible, and choose natural personal care products whenever possible.
Limit your alcohol intake
Alcohol consumption is linked to an increased risk of developing breast cancer. If you choose to drink alcohol, limit yourself to one drink per day.
Breastfeed your baby
Breastfeeding has been shown to reduce the risk of developing breast cancer later in life. If you are able to breastfeed your baby, do so for as long as possible (ideally for at least six months).
Exercise has many benefits, including reducing your risk for breast cancer. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise each day. This could include walking, jogging, biking, or swimming.
Maintain vigilance in the identification of breast cancer. Consult your doctor if you detect any changes in your breasts, such as a new lump or skin changes. In addition, according on your personal history, consult your doctor about when to begin mammograms and other tests.
Most women are unaware that they are at risk of breast cancer. In fact, each year, thousands of women are diagnosed with this disease. Early detection is key to increasing the chances of survival.
Hashi GoC is committed to spreading awareness about breast cancer and its risks and launched a campaign to educate female starting from our organization and using our all social media platforms about the disease and the importance of early detection. As together, we can make a difference and save lives.