Better Body Clinical Nutrition


10 Ways to Slash Your Risk of Breast Cancer

Thursday, February 9, 2023 10:27 AM

Excerpt from
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#1 - Balance Your Blood Sugar: One of the most important elements in preventing cancer is keeping your blood sugar stable and in a healthy range. High-glycemic foods fuel cancer by elevating insulin - a cancer-promoting hormone. Cancer cells also metabolize glucose at a much faster rate compared to other cells, and the presence of excess glucose in the blood accelerates their growth. And that's not all. Sugar also depresses your immune system, giving cancer cells a dangerous window of opportunity to multiply and divide while the body's defenses are down. Protect yourself by only enjoying low glycemic foods.

#2 - Boost Omega-3 Fats: In the U.S. 80 percent of the fats we consume are omega-6's. And that's a dangerous thing because omega-6 fats (like those found in corn and soybean oil) promote inflammation and turn on genes that fuel cancer. On the other hand, omega-3s (like those found in wild salmon, sardines and grass-fed beef) provide potent anti-inflammatory action. They also up-regulate the genes that guard against cancer. Aim for at least 1 gram of omega-3s daily, from a high quality fish oil supplement (like Carlson's) or a serving of wild salmon or foods rich in this healthy fat.

#3 - Increase Antioxidants: It is estimated that every day each cell in your body is attacked an average of 10,000 times by free radicals. These rogue molecules damage DNA and can set the cancer process in motion. That's why it's important to enjoy foods that are naturally rich in antioxidants.

# 4 - Avoid Toxins: Rachel Carson pioneered the awareness of how environmental toxins promote breast cancer in her award-winning book, Silent Spring. We now know that there are a myriad of substances that hamper our hormonal harmony including PCBs in farmed fish and conventional meats, bisphenol-a (BPA) and other hormone-like substances in plastic bottles, can liners and food wraps, pesticides on conventionally-grown produce and even food additives and artificial sweeteners

#5 - Enjoy Some Sun: The sunshine vitamin is finally getting the credit it is due. When sunlight hits your skin, it produces vitamin D - a powerful hormone that has been found to halt the growth of a wide range of cancers. Numerous researchers have also found an inverse relationship between levels of vitamin D and breast cancer. Get more vitamin D by exposing your body to sunlight for 30 minutes of sunlight daily as often as possible. When this is not possible due to weather or season, consider taking a high-quality vitamin D supplement (like Carlson's). Either way, because vitamin D is such a strong predictor of overall health, it is advisable to have your vitamin D levels tested.

#6 - Get Enough Rest: When you sleep, your body produces an important cancer-fighting substance called melatonin, which triggers a reduction in the production of estrogen. Melatonin is secreted in response to darkness. So it is important to sleep in a dark room and rest soundly through the night. If melatonin production is low, estrogen levels will rise and could promote the growth of breast cancer. So power down the TV and computer at least an hour before bed and get your zzz's.

# 7 - Slim Down: Fat cells don't just sit there. They release inflammatory compounds called cytokines that can boost cancer risk. Get your weight under control with regular, vigorous exercise and nutrient-rich, low-glycemic, whole foods.

# 8 - Beware of Booze: Excess alcohol consumption sharply raises your risk of breast cancer. But recent research shows that taking 800 mcg of folate daily negated the increased risk associated with alcohol. If you choose to drink, do so only in moderation (this means 1 drink/day for women) and make sure you're getting enough folate through a high-quality whole-foods vitamin and folate-rich foods like lentils, asparagus, chickpeas and dark leafy greens.

# 9 - Enjoy Cancer-Fighting Food Families: A number of foods, herbs and spices have been shown to provide powerful cancer-fighting activity. Some of the most potent include the cruciferous vegetables (like broccoli and cauliflower providing important glucosinolates), leafy greens (offering lutein), tomatoes (bursting with lycopene), turmeric (rich in curcumin), onions and garlic (fragrant with sulfur compounds). And remember, it's best to get these nutrients from whole foods, rather than supplements, because these compounds work synergistically to produce their beneficial effects.

#10 - Cook to Fight Cancer: While many nutrients get a boost from heat (including those in tomatoes, for example), cooking at high temperatures can cause carcinogenic compounds to form. Opt to cook your pasture-raised, grass-fed meats and wild fish at lower temperatures to prevent the formation of heterocyclic amines (HCAs). You should also avoid carb-rich foods cooked at high temperatures (like chips, crackers, cereals), which can produce a cancer-causing compound called acrylamide