Each year in the United States, approximately 180,000 women
will be told they have breast cancer. While there is ample information in the
public about the medical aspects of treatment, by comparison, information on
prevention is still lacking. This article will provide some current information
on how Chinese women work toward prevention of breast cancer. While this article
addresses women, breast cancer does rarely occur in men (less than 2% of the
cases each year).
Diet plays a major role in prevention of breast
cancer. Breast cancer rates among Japanese and Chinese women are approximately
one-tenth of those of American women. The typical Asian diet is lower in fat and
dairy products, and much higher in soy products, green vegetables, and whole
grains compared to Western societies. Breast cancer rates have increased for
immigrant Japanese women in California who have gradually switched to a more
western diet. This also includes descendants. This does suggest that diet
factors do play a big role especially while the body is still young and growing.
An overweight female also has higher risk. Eating more fish instead of red meat
can reduce the intake of saturated fat. Asians also tend to eat fresher foods,
which have less preservatives. Farming in Asia tends to use less chemical
fertilizers and pesticides due to the initial high cost of chemicals, though
this has been changing rapidly as farming has increasingly become "westernized".
Organic farming has become more popular of late and does provide a better source
Stress can stimulate excessive hormone secretion in the body,
which can lead to higher rate of breast cancer. Evaluate your daily life.
Busyness does not equal more stress. Worrying excessively can create tension in
the body and should be reduced if possible. Look at having a more positive
outlook in life. My mother always told me, "When you are angry, 10 million cells
in your body die or become toxic; when you are happy, all your cells are happy
Alcohol, smoking and coffee
Alcohol and coffee consumption and smoking have been directly
linked to higher cancer rates. These habits tend to develop at a young age. It's
important to teach our daughters very early on. It's also important to avoid
persistent second-hand smoke.
Meditation and energy exercises
Exercises such as Qi Gong, Tai Chi, and Yoga can be a good
benefit in reducing stress and tension in our body. Meditation can relax our
mind and bring our body to a more balanced state. These exercises are not
difficult to learn and can be incorporated into our life style relatively
easily. Since the 1970's, Chinese people have been experimenting with Qi Gong in
the treatment of breast cancer. While the medical Qi Gong treatments have shown
some effectiveness in controlling the cancer, more importantly Qi Gong does help
delay the growth and the onset of cancer.