While watching the Jets game last week I was reminded by all the big brawly football players in hot pink sneakers, gloves and socks that October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
I lost two of my aunts due to the disease and pray for anyone who has also been touched by breast cancer. Both my Aunt Ruby and Aunt Betty were taken from us much to soon due to the ravages the disease had on their bodies. They were both beautiful, vivacious women who contributed positively to the Bennett family. Everyday that I look in the mirror I see their smiles in mine. I miss them more and more each day and honor their lives by making sure I keep mine.
It is important that we educate ourselves about Breast Cancer and the risk factors involved. My friends over at HelloBeautiful have posted a great list of tips that I'm going to borrow and share with you.
Early puberty (before 12 years old) or Late menopause (after 55 years old)
Not having children or Having children after 30 years old
Obesity and high-fat diets
2 to 5 alcoholic drinks daily
Reduce the Risk:
Exercise or being physically active
Eat Soy, Broccoli, Red Apples, Red Cabbage or Red Grapes
Drink green tea
Regular screening tests
Avoid hormone replacement therapy if possible
Self Examination (from the National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc):
Breast cancer self-examinations should be done monthly at the same time of the month, and right after your period ends.
In the Shower
Fingers flat, move gently over every part of each breast. Use your right hand to examine the left breast, left hand for the right breast. Check for any lump, hard knot, or thickening. Carefully observe any changes in your breasts.
Before a Mirror
Inspect your breasts with your arms at your sides. Next, raise your arms high overhead. Look for any changes in the contour of each breast, a swelling, a dimpling of the skin, or changes in the nipples. Then rest your palms on your hips and press firmly to flex your chest muscles. Left and right breasts will not exactly match—few women’s breasts do.
Place a pillow under your right shoulder and put your right arm behind your head. With the fingers of your left hand flat, press your right breast gently in small circular motions, moving vertically or in a circular pattern covering the entire breast. Use light, medium, and firm pressure. Squeeze the nipple; check for discharge and lumps. Repeat these steps for your left breast.
Fight Breast Cancer:
Donate, fund raise and/or volunteer. You can also shop at selected stores where the proceeds are donated to the fight. Check out these sites for various ways on how you can help fight breast cancer.
* National Breast Cancer Foundation, Inc.
* Susan G. Komen for the Cure
* AVON Walk for Breast Cancer
Are you or a loved one a survivor of Breast Cancer? If so please share your story in the comments section.
Until next time...