This time of year is bustling with activity as we gear up for the upcoming holidays. However, it's essential to take a break from the excitement and pay attention to what your body is telling you. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and National Diabetes Month, a perfect opportunity to re-educate ourselves on the significance of these two diseases. Read on for helpful tips and preventative measures.
Breast cancer is one of the most common types of cancer among women in the United States. It reaches women of all races. However, there are preventative measures you can take to reduce your risk of breast cancer. The Mayo Clinic recommends the following adjustments to your lifestyle to reduce the risk of breast cancer:
- Put down the cigarettes. Smoking has been linked to breast cancer, as well as other cancers, such as lung cancer. Furthermore, living in a smoke-free environment is beneficial to your overall well-being.
- Limit alcohol intake. Drinking alcohol in excess increases your risk of developing breast cancer. Consume no more than one alcoholic beverage per day.
- Keep your weight in check. Obesity also increases the risk of developing breast cancer. Eat a healthy diet and stay active. It's important to participate in aerobic activity such as walking, jogging, or taking an aerobics or spin class. Strength training twice a week also contributes to this effort.
- Schedule a mammogram. Mammograms are key to early breast cancer detection. Talk with your doctor to determine the appropriate mammogram schedule for you.
Diabetes is a serious condition where there is too much glucose in the blood, causing serious health problems. The Mayo Clinic lists the following symptoms for Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes:
- Increased thirst
- Frequent urination
- Extreme hunger
- Unexplained weight loss
- Presence of ketones in the urine (ketones are a byproduct of the breakdown of muscle and fat that happens when there's not enough insulin)
- Blurred vision
- Slow-healing sores
- High blood pressure
- Frequent infections, such as gums or skin infections and vaginal or bladder infections
If you notice any of these symptoms, contact your doctor. Early detection is crucial.
Again, a healthy lifestyle can prevent or delay the onset of diabetes. The American Diabetes Association recommends a healthy diet and increased physical activity to reduce your chances of developing diabetes.
Both breast cancer and diabetes are serious illnesses. While there is currently no cure for these ailments, you can take steps to reduce your chances of acquiring them. Live a healthy lifestyle. Eat healthy, stay active and stay away from alcohol and cigarettes. You deserve to feel your best!!