Thursday, October 17, 2013

Cloth diapers and breast cancer!! What do they have in common?? {Guest post by Michelle Hill}

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in females. One out of eight women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime. There is no cure for breast cancer and no exact known cause. It seems as if everyone has either personally or knows someone who has been affected by this disease. For me it was my mother and 2 paternal aunts who had breast cancer. Thankfully all are in remission and currently living health lives with minimal side effects from the surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation.


Each person has some chance of developing the disease, but some are more predisposed based on genetics, excess estrogen, and lifestyle choices. Someone is considered at highest risk for breast cancer if there are multiple family members with the disease, especially mothers or sisters under the age of 50, indicating some form of genetic involvement. Despite the fact that there is no way to fully reduce your risk of developing breast cancer it is important to consider some form of prevention and develop a personal plan. 


Here are some helpful tips that I tell my patients when counseling about breast cancer prevention:


1)      Be physically active- exercise has been scientifically proven to lower your cancer risk

2)      Avoid smoking  as it creates free radicals which damage tissue

3)      Limit alcohol <1 drink/day, especially in young adulthood.

4)      Avoid excess weight gain, especially after reaching menopause, as fat tissue contains more estrogen.

5)      Breastfeed >1 year as it possibly produces protective hormonal changes in breast tissue.

6)      Eat a diet rich in cruciferous vegetables, ie. Kale, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, turnips. Although not fully proven, new research has indicated that these vegetables help defend the body against cancer.

7)      Avoid hormone replacement as extra estrogen may stimulate abnormal cells if you are at higher risk.  After stopping hormones your risk will return to normal after 5 years.

8)      Get to know your breasts!  Perform your monthly breast self-exam. The best time is after your menstrual cycle as breast tissue is less tender and nodular. Remember to examine your armpits and outer edges of your breasts because breast lymph nodes are also located in those areas.  If you find an area of concern, check out your other breast. Breasts are the mirror image of each other and often lumps are located in the same area on the other side.

9)      Be faithful to have your yearly mammogram starting at the age of 40. If you are at higher risk due to a family history of primary relatives with breast cancer start at the age of 35.

10)   Make sure to have a yearly clinical breast exam with your provider which includes palpation and visual inspection.

  There are many helpful tips available to lower your chances of breast cancer. This list is not conclusive and it is important to do your homework and talk to your provider if you are concerned. For me, the risk will always be present due to my family history, but I have chosen to protect myself as best as possible. In addition, I have had to let go of the fear of cancer is inevitable and lean on my faith in God as ultimate healer and protector.

Michelle Hill is a family nurse practitioner, working part time in a family practice ranging from pediatrics to geriatrics. She has a bachelor’s degree from SUNY Brockport and a master’s in nursing from St. John Fisher College, Rochester New York. She currently resides in Dallas, Texas with her husband and son and their 2 dogs. And yes, she is building her own cloth diaper stash, for future children. In her spare time, Michelle is also a Babykicks Brand Ambassador who helps to educate parents on the many benefits of using cloth diapers.

I {Angela} am so excited to be able to share with you an awesome promotion put on by Babykicks!

Babykicks has an awesome promo going on right now in order to help bring awareness about breast cancer and to raise funds to donate to two awesome foundations. For each pink diaper purchased during the month of October, Babykicks will donate $2 per purchase evenly between the Breast Cancer Research Foundation and Women Supporting Women! So not only are you able to purchase these awesome pink diapers:




But a percentage of your payment will actually go towards breast cancer research and provide awareness, education and support to the many women that are impacted by breast cancer daily!

For more information on how to buy your diapers, check out their 'notes' section of the Babykicks Facebook page!

I'm also excited to be able to tell you of the Babykicks twitter party coming up on the 22nd of October. For more information on that, click here!

~Mama of the Littles~

Disclaimer, I am a Babykicks ambassador and was compensated for this post!

1 comment:

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