Thursday, October 4, 2012

October: "Breast Cancer Prevention Month"

"The National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM) is a collaboration of national public service organizations, professional medical associations, and government agencies working together to promote breast cancer awareness, share information on the disease, and provide greater access to services.
Since its inception more than 25 years ago, NBCAM has been at the forefront of promoting awareness of breast cancer issues and has evolved along with the national dialogue on breast cancer. NBCAM recognizes that, although many great strides have been made in breast cancer awareness and treatment, there remains much to be accomplished. Today, we remain dedicated to educating and empowering women to take charge of their own breast health."

Although I agree that awareness on the subject of breast cancer is great, what we really need is for October to be “Breast Cancer Prevention Month.” Breast cancer affects so many lives that I think it is important to look at some statistics about breast cancer:
  • Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the world.
  • It is estimated that in 2012 in the United States, there will be:
    • 226,870 new cases of invasive breast cancer
    • 63,300 new cases of in situ breast cancer. This is cancer that stays within the milk ducts or lobules in the breast and does not spread to normal tissue.
    • 39,510 breast cancer death
    • For men there will be 2,190 new cases of breast cancer and 410 deaths due to breast cancer.
  • Women in developed countries have a higher rate of breast cancer than women in underdeveloped countries.
  • White women have the highest incidence of breast cancer and Asian Americans have the lowest incidence.  
  • Based on current rates, 12.4 percent of women born in the US will develop breast cancer at some time during their life time about 1 out of 8 people.
There is so much publicity about breast cancer that I feel the intention of these huge organizations needs to be shifted toward the prevention side of things. Even the companies that are focused of “finding a cure” aren’t spending a whole lot of money in that area. For example, in 2011, Susan G. Komen for the Cure spent only 15% of its donations on research. This does equate to $63 million, which seems like a lot but, in all honesty, it’s just too little to fund the research that needs to be done, and the research that the money is going too isn’t a guarantee that it’s focused on finding a cure. 43% of the 2011 donations were spent on “education” which is a better way of saying publicity and marketing. I don't want to bad mouth Susan G. Komen, I just want to make my point that the focus needs to be shifted away from “awareness” and moved more toward prevention.
I’ve searched many of the big cancer “research” websites and the most prominent source of information regarding prevention they offer is to make sure you get screened regularly. They say that early detection gives you the best chance of survival, but I say preventing breast cancer is your best chance of survival.
So all this month I’d like to talk about topics relating to breast cancer including (but not limited to) estrogen dominance, xenoestrogens, phytoestrogens, vitex, soy, and deodorant. I hope to shed light on the fact you don’t have to wait around until your mammogram comes back positive to deal with breast cancer. There are so many things you can do right now to decrease your risk and even prevent from getting breast cancer. So join The Verbal Herbal for “Breast Cancer Prevention Month!”


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