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Monday, December 14, 2015

Breast Density Can Be Decreased With Exercise

  Breast cancer prevention has been widely promoted for many years, yet too few women are taking advantage of this. Breast cancer occurs in 1/8 women, and about 1% of women with prior breast cancer are diagnosed with a breast cancer in the opposite breast each year. Mostly breast cancer prevention strategies look at risk factors such as smoking and alcohol, and asking women to avoid these things.There has never been a safe level of alcohol established with respect to breast cancer.  But knowing that in reality getting breast cancer is a combination of genetics, exposure, diet, childbearing factors, and hormones that ultimately causes breast cancer. Delaying when you have children, not breastfeeding, being obese after menopause, and excessively drinking alcohol all increases your breast cancer risk. It may not be blood levels of estrogen, progesterone or testosterone, but the local levels of estrogen in the breast tissue itself. Regardless of whether its the blood levels or the local levels, it is the hormone estrogen that is the root cause of most cancers. Progesterone has been linked with cause as well. We can reduce the rate of breast cancer in an individual if we reduce her estrogen exposure. For some women this means avoiding hormone treatments, for others it means using medication to lower those hormone levels. Breast density is known as a risk factor for breast cancer. You can lower your breast's density and decrease body estrogen levels thereby reducing your breast cancer risk by taking medications such as tamoxifen or raloxifene that might reduce a high risk woman's chance of ever getting a breast cancer by over 50%. Aromatase inhibitors will lower systemic estrogen even further. However, it is actually possible to both lower breast density and lower breast cancer risk just by increasing exercise as reported by Dr. Mirette Hana and her coworkers in Quebec City, Canada. Exercise will lower circulating levels of estrogen and growth factors that cause breast cells to grow. This is the first time a study has actually explained why women who exercise the most have the least amount of breast cancer.If you are diagnosed with breast cancer then survival is very good, if found localized 99% of women diagnosed will survive breast cancer, which is significant progress compared to the 72% who survived local breast cancer in the 1940s!

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