Did you know October is Breast Cancer Prevention month? Today, about 1 in 8 women will get breast cancer in their lifetime.
We know this statistic is pretty Dang alarming and we wanted to find a way to educate our Dangster community on best practices. So, we phoned up our dear friend Shaney Jo from The Keep A Breast Foundation to ask her for her top tips on caring for your coconuts.
SJ: We know the thought of finding a lump can be scary, that’s why we emphasize that checking yourself is not checking for cancer, but knowing your “normal.” You know you have a cold because you know how your head and sinuses are supposed to feel, this is the same relationship we want people to have with their breasts. If you know what is normal for you, then you know when something is wrong and you can catch it early. Check your breasts from a place of love and empowerment.
Check your breasts from a place of love and empowerment.
SJ: Around the time of a young women’s first period is the best time to start a positive relationship with their breasts. Again, not to check for cancer, but to establish a routine and what is normal for you. It’s a great conversation to have with the young ladies in our life about health and wellness with an emphasis on self love.
SJ: We do! Our Check Yourself! App is available in seven languages, and gives you a monthly reminder and a step-by-step guide (with gifs) on checking yourself. The best time to do your self-check is about a week after your period and with our app you’ll never forget! Download it and share it with your breasties!
Download it and share it with your breasties!
SJ: The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends starting mammograms at 50, at the earliest 40, but this is really up to the individual based on the potential harm versus benefit. There are over 38,000 breast cancer diagnosis in women under 45, and with 40% of diagnosed breast cancers being self-detected (according to the John Hopkins Medical Center), we emphasize the self-check as a routine years before mammograms are recommended. Thermography is more available now as well when a woman decides more testing is something she wants to do. We have options, and we want to empower everyone to be their own health advocates, ask the questions, get multiple opinions, and demand the care you deserve when you know something isn’t normal with your breasts.
SJ: I can’t tell you how many times I have heard women say. “Breast cancer is not in my family, it won’t happen to me”. One of the biggest myths around breast cancer is the emphasis on family history. Yes, if you know your family has a history you should keep a closer eye on your breast health, but only 10-15% of breast cancer diagnosis are contributed to family history. The remaining 85-90% of diagnosis are attributed to environmental exposures. We can all take measures in our lives to be our own health advocates and commit to prevention and early detection!
SJ: Prevention can really be described as serious self-care. Whether it’s exercise, eating a balanced diet, using non toxic personal care products, getting enough sleep, or doing something you love to de-stress. Our program Non Toxic Revolution gives tips on how to practice prevention at home through all aspects of our life, from checking your labels for harmful ingredients to eating your medicine to keeping your indoor air quality as non toxic as possible. Prevention is a lifestyle and a journey, the information can be overwhelming, but it’s important to remember that you can take steps in your life lower your risk, like exercise! Just 30 minutes of exercise 3-4 times a week can lower your risk of breast cancer by 30-50%.
Prevention is a lifestyle and a journey.
SJ: Research has been crucial to know what is actually contributing to breast cancer. We partner with research organizations such as Breast Cancer Prevention Partners, the Environmental Working Group, and Women’s Voices for the Earth to make sure our education is scientifically backed and gives people founded ways to be preventative. We know that they have that covered, so we focus on education and meeting young people where they are to start their prevention journey.
Do you have advice on how to take care of your coconuts? Comment below!