So many issues, health-related and otherwise, have a designated Awareness Week/Month that sometimes I worry that important messages get lost amongst all the…messages. Well, October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, and if you have breast cancer or know someone who has, I think you’ll agree that one month of awareness out of 12 isn’t sufficient.
Being female, I naturally have a vested interest in breast cancer awareness, as my very gender increases my risk of developing this disease. For that same reason, having a sister, a mother, nieces and many other female family members also makes breast cancer an important issue to me.
I also care because I have several patients who are currently undergoing breast cancer treatment, or are rebuilding their life and their health post-treatment. Nutrition plays an important role in prevention, treatment support and in remaining healthy as a cancer survivor.
In addition to my gender, my personal risk is increased due to fact that I have never given birth. On the other hand, I have no immediate family history of breast cancer. While that most likely means I don’t have the BRCA gene mutations that severely increase risk, I’m certainly not off scot-free. Most women who are diagnosed with breast cancer don’t have a family history of it.
I’ve seen the difference that early detection can make in terms of choice of treatment options as well as general prognosis. For that reason, I am going to correct my procrastinating ways and call to day to schedule a badly overdue mammogram. I kind of let it slide while I was busy with grad school, but that’s a poor excuse.
I’d also like to share some breast cancer-related links I’ve been collecting the past few weeks. I hope you find them useful and informative:
- The most important breast cancer findings of 2014.
- American Institute for Cancer Research: Preventing breast cancer.
- Eight pink foods that fight breast cancer.
- Seven top cancer-fighting foods.
- Questions on soy and breast cancer answered.