Peachy the Magazine October November 2014 - Page 114

Breast Cancer Awareness…Prevention GET ADEQUATE VITAMIN D Optimal blood levels of Vitamin D allow adequate availability for its multitude of functions in the body, including its role in reducing inflammation. Most women are deficient in Vitamin D. Research suggests that if all women had normal levels, there would be 50,000 fewer breast cancer diagnoses every year. Women should try to get some sun exposure daily and should take at least 2,000–3,000 units of Vitamin D3 a day. Blood levels should be checked at yearly visits. EAT MORE FRUITS AND VEGETABLES Fruits and vegetables contain antioxidants and phytochemicals that reduce free radicals which prevent cell damage and mutation. It is important to include all the colors of the rainbow as each color represents a phytochemical that plays a different role in protection. Women should aim to get a minimum of eight and preferably 12 servings a day. Plant materials are also high in fiber and lignans that help the body excrete excess estrogens in the stool. Women should also aim to consume organic, non-GMO produce as much as possible. GET ADEQUATE OMEGA 3 FATTY ACIDS IN DIET Diets high in Omega 3 fatty acids are associated with a lower risk of developing breast cancer. Omega 3 fatty acids prevent inflammation and tumor growth throughout the body. Diets that include salmon, sardines and swordfish as well as flaxseed, hemp and chia seed are high in omega fatty acids. Dietary supplements of DHA (200–400 mg/day) or purified fish oil (1000–3000 mg/day) can also be taken. MINIMIZE ALCOHOL INTAKE Studies of alcohol consumption indicate a link to breast cancer risk. Some studies show a 60 percent increased risk in women who consume one or more drinks per day. Higher alcohol intake affects the functioning of the liver in detoxification and elimination of excess circulating estrogens. Aim to limit alcohol consumption to less than two drinks a week. Consider red wine which is high in resveratrol, a potent anti-oxidant that also reduces the action of aromatase (the enzyme that produces estrogen). 112 PEACHYTHEMAGAZINE.COM