The two main risk factors for getting breast cancer are being born a woman and getting older. You can't change those risks—or some others, like a family history of the disease. But you may be able to lower your risk with these lifestyle choices.
4 ways to help head off breast cancer
- Think before you drink. The more alcohol you drink, the greater your risk of breast cancer.
- Get moving. Regular exercise is breast-friendly. Aim to get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, such as brisk walking, a week. Or go for 75 minutes of more vigorous exercise like running. It’s also good to do some strength training too.
- Keep an eye on the scale. A healthy weight—particularly after menopause—is important.
- Know the pros and cons of combined hormone therapy. Using estrogen and progesterone together to treat menopause symptoms for even a few years raises the risk of breast cancer.
Sources: American Cancer Society; National Cancer Institute
Take this quiz to see if you can separate the myths from the facts about breast cancer.