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Most of us may already know for a fact that, making a healthy diet a part of our daily routine can help us remain healthy for a longer time. Consequently, many people try to make a conscious effort to eat healthy, by cooking their own meals at home, trying to avoid certain "unhealthy" foods and so on. This is because we would have experienced the ill-effects of eating unhealthy foods and faced issues, such as indigestion, mouth and stomach ulcers, constipation, etc.
While the above-mentioned ailments could seem minor, eating unhealthy foods can also lead to serious conditions as well. So, what we eat and how we eat, play a major role when it comes to our health.
It has been proven by scientific research studies and even by personal experiences, that eating healthy can make a tremendous difference in our health. Many people associate a healthy diet with just weight loss; however, the health benefits of eating healthy are way beyond just weight loss.
As we know, cancer is a major disease which manifests in many forms. Although the causes of cancer may be numerous and in many instances cannot be determined, experts have opined that there are many types of cancers which can be caused by our lifestyle habits, such as our diet and exercise routines.
Breast cancer is one of the most common types of cancers that affect women and a study has recently found a link between diet and breast cancer.
Learn how an unhealthy diet can put us at a higher risk of breast cancer, here.
What Is Breast Cancer?
When there is an abnormal multiplication of cancerous cells in the tissues and cells of the breasts of a woman, it leads to breast cancer.
The symptoms of breast cancer are the formation of lumps inside the breasts, inverted nipples, pain and discomfort in the breast, abnormal or bloody discharge from the nipples, redness of the skin, etc.
Can Diet Habits Be The Cause For Breast Cancer?
Research studies have shown that an unhealthy diet contributes to about 30%-40% of the breast cancer cases per year, globally. In a study published by the American Cancer Society, it was stated that women whose diet includes a lot of saturated fats or trans fats are more prone to breast cancer.
The reason being, saturated fats and trans fats are very high in caloric and "unhealthy" fat content, which have no nutritional value but can increase your weight by accumulating in the body.
When the number of fat cells in the body is very high and the body weight and BMI (Body Mass Index) are also high, it could trigger breast cancer.
The breast tissues are mainly made of fat, so if the unhealthy fats being consumed get accumulated in the tissues of the breast and their number is high, it could trigger the growth and multiplication of cancerous cells in the breast or breasts, causing breast cancer.
Furthermore, many research studies have also found that consuming foods high in salt content, on a regular basis, such as chips, processed foods, fast food, pickles, etc. can also be one of the dietary causes for breast cancer in women.
This is because foods high in salt contain a high amount of nitrates and this could also trigger the growth of cancerous cells in the breasts.
Consuming foods low in fibre could also be one of the causes for breast cancer, as fibre has the ability to flush out the toxins from our body, which could trigger many types of cancers, including breast cancer.
So, in fact, out diet habits can indeed be one of the major causes for the development of breast cancer.
Dietary Changes To Be Made In Order To Prevent Breast Cancer
Previously, we learnt that following certain unhealthy diets can trigger breast cancer in women. So in order to prevent breast cancer, along with following other healthy lifestyle habits such as exercising on a daily basis to maintaining a healthy body weight, quitting smoking and excessive drinking, etc., it is also important to follow a healthy diet.
These are some of the dietary changes one must make in order to prevent breast cancer:
- Consume at least 2 cups of fruit and vegetables juice every day
- Adding vegetables like tomatoes, mushroom, broccoli, carrot, celery, etc., to your daily diet is also known to prevent breast cancer, as they are rich in vitamins and antioxidants.
- Avoid foods which are high in salt content and consciously make an effort to add lesser salt to your homecooked meals.
- Consciously limit your fat intake every day, even if it is healthy fats, the amount of fat you consume must not be more than 30 g, per day.
- Completely avoid foods that contain trans-fats.
- Consume lean meat like chicken and fish, instead of high-fat meats like pork and beef.
- Ensure that your meals contain protein, every day, such as lean meat, egg whites, lentils, beans, chickpeas, spinach, etc., as protein can also kill cancerous cells.
- Avoid white bread and opt for whole grain bread, as white bread is known to have carcinogens.
- Consume fibre-rich foods such as leafy greens, whole grains, nuts, berries, apples, etc.
- If possible, buy organic ingredients to prepare your meals with as organic vegetables, fruit and meat do not contain artificial hormones, antibiotics and chemicals in them that most of the inorganic produces contain.