Four Steps To Breast Cancer Prevention

Besides lung cancer, breast cancer has become the most commonly diagnosed cancer among American women. Though the mortality rate for breast cancer has been decreasing since the 1990’s because of advancements in treatments, early detection and increased awareness, the numbers are still jarring. Just last year, an estimated 39,970 deaths (both male and female) were recorded in the USA alone.

There are a number of preventive measures to keep ourselves and our loved ones cancer-free, and awareness is the first step. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, but while most people have already been made aware of this fatal disease, they forget to take the next steps to ensure their health and encourage or help others to do the same. Reduce the risk of having breast cancer by following these four important pieces of advice:

•  Exercise daily. Because many studies have shown that exercise is a breast-healthy habit, The American Cancer Society recommends getting at least 150 minutes of exercise per week. Your exercise routine may range from moderate to intense activity, or a combination of both. Just make sure you don’t cram it all into a day’s worth of workout or you’ll be in danger of straining yourself instead.

• Make weight-watching a habit. It’s been found out that being overweight or obese increases the risk of breast cancer, especially after menopause and for women who gain weight later in life. If you’re currently overweight, try shedding some pounds by exercising and eating a healthy, balanced diet. Meanwhile, if you’re already at a healthy weight, do your best to maintain it.

• Cut down on alcohol intake. The American Cancer Society recommends no more than one drink per day for women (and two a day for men), as studies showed that women who have two or more alcoholic drinks a day have about 1½ times the risk of having breast cancer compared to women who don’t drink at all. The next time you go on that girls’ night out, take note! It’s okay to have a little fun every now and then, but you should always be careful of your health, too.

• Avoid hormone replacement therapy. Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) might be useful to cure night sweats and hot flashes, but instead of actually helping women get through these symptoms for menopause, researchers found out that post-menopausal women who took a combination of estrogen and progestin were more likely to develop breast cancer. Before using HRT, it’s best to consult a doctor about options to control your menopause symptoms just in case they could provide you with safer alternatives.

Remember that the fight against breast cancer doesn’t stop with awareness. Take the necessary steps to keep yourself healthy, and encourage your family members as well as your friends to do it too.


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Keep Your Home & Family Safe

Fire may be one of the most significant and functional discoveries known to mankind, but it is also one of the most destructive. Just last year, the National Fire Protection Association has recorded up to 370,000 home structure fires that were responded to by various US fire departments. These fires have resulted into thousands of injuries and deaths, and billions worth of damage in property.

As we observe Fire Prevention Week, here are some reminders to help keep your home and family safe from the dangers of a possible fire breakout.

Keep an eye on your cooking. While there’s a saying that goes “If you can’t stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen,” you really shouldn’t take it literally. Kitchens are the leading area of origin for home structure fires, and cooking the leading cause. You might be juggling a couple of chores at one time, but never forget what you left simmering in the kitchen.

Use appliances wisely. When using new appliances (or even older appliances), make it a point to read the user manual and take note of their safety precautions so that you don’t end up overheating them. Never overload circuits or extension cords with a lot of plugged in appliances at one time, and remember to unplug them after use as well.

Smoke alarms can save your life. According to statistics, almost two-thirds of reported home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes that didn’t have smoke alarms, or had dysfunctional ones. Installing smoke alarms around your home might be an extra expense, but in the event of an emergency, it might save you something far more precious than the money you’ve shelled out for them.

Smoking is hazardous to your health in more ways than one. Because it has been reported that smoking is the lead cause of home fire deaths in 2011, be extra mindful of where you smoke inside your home. Stay away from sheets or curtains that might catch fire quickly, and make sure you put out your cigarette butts completely before throwing them in the trash bin.

What’s your escape plan? When living with children or elders, most especially, you should plan escape routes inside your home in case of emergency and teach every member of the family the basics on dealing with a fire emergency. Practicing a drill or two won’t hurt, either.

As it is with other natural disasters, recovering from a fire is very difficult, especially dealing with the property damage or even the loss of a loved one. One could always dodge this headache by being mindful of their surroundings, however, and like they always say ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.’


Reference: The US Fire Problem