How Do I Reduce My Risk For Breast Cancer?

While there is no way that you can prevent breast cancer, there are habits, lifestyle choices, and optional preventative measures you can choose to reduce your risk.

  • Maintain a healthy weight: According to the National Cancer Institute, being overweight or obese after menopause increases a woman's risk of breast cancer and increased weight can worsen patient outcomes after a diagnosis.

  • Red meat: Consume less red meat as red meat is related to a greater risk of developing breast and other cancers.

  • Eat more fruits and vegetables: A lower intake of fruits and vegetables is associated with breast cancer, particularly estrogen receptor–negative breast cancer.

  • Limit alcohol: Even moderate alcohol consumption, defined as up to one drink per day for women and up to two drinks a day for men, is associated with a higher risk of breast cancer. Women who have between two and three alcoholic drinks per day have a 20% higher risk of the disease compared to those who do not drink alcohol. 

  • Quit smoking: Several studies have demonstrated a link between smoking and an increased risk of developing breast cancer.

It is recommended that you speak with your doctor, review your medical history, and determine if you should receive more frequent exams/screenings.