A Pink October
Dr. Sandy Goldberg
Pink may not be the color of fall, but to commemorate breast cancer awareness, pink is the color of October. Yet as the leaves begin to turn color and fall from the trees, A Silver Lining Foundation encourages you to realize that breast health education and regular testing is a year-round issue and an essential component of lowering your risk factors.
Too often the word prevent is used in conjunction with breast cancer yet unfortunately that is not the case. Instead, it is imperative to focus on breast health education, what we can impact positively and what absolutes relating to the disease are a fact of life:
- Your gender – in 2011 over 206,000 women will be diagnosed, and so will 2,300 men
- Your age – the older you are, the more likely to develop breast cancer.
- Your family history – you’re more likely to develop breast cancer if a first-degree relative has been diagnosed (mother, sister, etc.)
What can be altered and significantly lower your risk factors (not prevent the disease) are lifestyle adjustments:
- Keep your weight under control
- Eat a balanced diet including deeply hued fruits and vegetables
- Moderate your alcohol intake – women who have more than 1-2 servings of alcohol weekly are at higher risk
- Don’t smoke – think it doesn’t have an impact? You’re wrong
- A significant awareness tool – breast self-examination and learning the correct way of performing one.
While pink may be the color of October, breast cancer awareness and breast health education need to be considered all year long. As the search for a cure continues, awareness and education are key to lowering the risks of being diagnosed, as well as ensuring better lives for all those affected by breast cancer.
A Silver Lining stresses the above in our outreach programs and strives to provide information and access to free mammography to uninsured and underinsured. For additional information please log on to www.asilverliningfoundation.org.