October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. More than 40,000 American women will die from breast cancer in 2019. How can you help minimize your chances of getting breast cancer?
Here are five things you can do to help maintain breast health:
1. Get an annual mammogram
If you don't already have an appointment, make it now. Then reach out to every woman you know and remind them, too.
2. Perform monthly self-exams to check for lumps
If you find something, don't panic, but call your doctor as soon as possible for a consultation.
3. Exercise regularly for a healthy body
Regular moderate-duration and high-duration aerobic activity can help reduce the risk of developing breast cancer, a study released in August by the the journal "Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention" found.
4. Eat a well-rounded diet of whole foods
Some researchers have suggested dietary factors could be responsible for as many as 40 percent of cancers. A recent story from Medical News Today said studies have shown foods such as dark green, leafy vegetables, fruits, beans, fish, and eggs might help prevent breast cancer.
5. Get enough sleep and reduce stress
These could be two separate items, but I believe they work together. It's easier to sleep when less stressed, and it's easier to manage stressful situations when you've had enough sleep!
Taking these five simple steps can help you reduce your chances of being the one in eight women who develop breast cancer in their lifetimes.
To read more about breast cancer, visit the National Breast Cancer Foundation.
This article originally appeared in Macaroni Kid Family Wellness. Sign up today for your free monthly Family Wellness newsletter!