Pink October – Breast Cancer Awareness


Breast cancer is a disease in which cells in the breast grow out of control. While this isn’t a cancer type unique to women, with men, especially older men, also being diagnosed with breast cancer, breast cancer is the most common cancer type among women, with over 3000 women receiving the diagnosis every year in Sri Lanka. For a cancer such as breast cancer, early detection is indeed the best way to get oneself treated.

How does one recognize a possible symptom of breast cancer?

Different people show different symptoms for breast cancer; this could include one or multiple of the below:

  • A new lump in the breast or under arms
  • Thickening or swelling of parts of the breast
  • Irritations or dumplings of the breast skin
  • Redness or flaky skin in the nipple or pain in the nipple area
  • Pulling in of the nipple or pain in the nipple area
  • Nipple discharge other than breast milk, including blood
  • Any change in the size or shape of the breast
  • Pain in any area of the breast

However, these symptoms can appear in various conditions other than breast cancer. Approximately a week before the menstruation, most of the women experience pain in the breasts, breast swellings, and rarely lumps in the armpits. These conditions disappear almost immediately when the menstrual bleeding starts. During pregnancy, there might appear to be tiny, painless bumps on the areola. This is a normal condition that will help to lubricate and protect the area. During menopause, there can be a discharge, and your nipples can start to invert.

How can one prevent the onset of breast cancer?

According to Globocan 2020, 25.7% of women of all ages are diagnosed with breast cancer in Sri Lanka. Research shows that lifestyle changes can minimize the risk of breast cancer in women, like limiting alcohol consumption. Research recommends that one limit themselves to no more than one drink a day. Further, it is important to maintain a healthy weight. If you have a healthy weight, it is important to maintain it through regular exercise and a healthy diet. If you need to lose weight, ask your doctor about healthy strategies. Breastfeeding plays a main role in minimizing the risk of breast cancer in women. It is stated that women who are physically active for at least 30 minutes a day have a lower risk of breast cancer.Plant foods are rich sources of fiber, antioxidants, and chemicals, which have been shown to reduce the risk of cancer. The oncology-certified registered dietitians at Stanford Cancer Center show that eating grains and legumes, as well as at least 69 servings of a variety of brightly colored fruits and vegetables, daily can prevent breast cancer. Limiting dietary fats in diets such as butter, full-fat dairy, fatty meat, and some margarine and including healthy fats such as olive oil, avocado, nuts, and fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines, etc.) in the daily diet are also recommended. Moreover, green tea is known to be a beverage with strong anticancer properties. Therefore, consuming 1-4 cups of green tea daily can minimize the risk of breast cancer in women.

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Chiranjeewa Desanduni

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One of the best articles!


Informative 🙌🏻