We live in an age and time when breast cancer is curable – if detected at an early stage. There is radiation, chemotherapy, hormone therapy and other different kinds of treatments to negate cancer in the body. But just because there is a cure, it doesn’t mean that cure can’t be improved.
Researchers all across the globe are continuously working towards preventing, detecting and treating cancer in new and advanced ways. It’s a fascinating time in the medical sector where each day, a new development takes place.
At Brexa, it is our mission to keep spreading awareness about breast cancer and to break any taboos or myths associated with it. Therefore, to give you an overview of the latest breast cancer-related advancements, here are three mind-blowing research pieces:
1) Highlight the cons of not examining breasts every month.
Brexa’s very own breast cancer specialist Dr Sreehari Pillai MBBS, MD, MRCP (UK) shared a dated but an interesting research piece with us the other day. It was on the effect of messages, framed on Breast Self-Exam (BSE), on females.
Conducted by Meyerowitz BE and Chaiken S in 1987, the study tested the framing hypothesis that a pamphlet focusing on the negative consequences of not performing a BSE would be more convincing than a pamphlet emphasizing on the positives.
An example of a positively-framed sentence they used is, “research shows that women who do a BSE have an increased chance of finding a tumor in the early, more treatable stages of the disease.” Its negative complement is, “research shows that women who do not do a BSE have a decreased chance of finding a tumor in the early, more treatable stages of the disease.”
Interestingly, the second sentence has a more profound effect on the readers than the first one, and that’s what the study concluded.
In a country like India where breast cancer accounts for 27% of all cancers affecting women, there is a greater need for them to be aware about the disease. The worst thing is that women are scared to undergo a screening or even do a BSE on a monthly basis. The reasons for this are many, and one of them includes “fear of the unknown” that overpowers everything else.
You can read the complete research here.
2) Increased levels of asparagine in daily diet may cause breast cancer.
A recently published study in Nature – International Journal of Science revealed that the reduction of asparagine, an amino acid produced naturally in the body, in the diet could lead to a reduced risk of breast cancer. The research was done by the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute.
The study found that this amino acid helps cancer cells to grow into secondary tumours once these spread from the breast, through the bloodstream and to other body organs. This is a breakthrough research as it offers a scientific rationale for a dietary modification that influences cancer.
This is a breakthrough research as it offers a scientific rationale for a dietary modification that influences cancer.
Foods that are rich in asparagine include beef, soy, potatoes, asparagus, eggs and fish. Learn more about this research here.
In case you are wondering, breast cancer may be prevented if certain foods rich in fibre, vitamin B, phytochemicals, allium, omega-3s, and more are included in the daily diet. Check out this infographic for further details.
3) Obesity raises the risk of many types of cancer, including breast cancer.
A paper published in Science Translational Medicine states weight may one of the major reasons for why some cancers become resistant towards drugs that are intended to slow down tumour growth. The research, which was conducted in Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, revealed the other side of anti-angiogenic therapy that is designed to prevent the growth of tumour-feeding blood vessels.
Therefore, it is necessary to cultivate healthy habits to maintain weight and indirectly keep breast cancer at bay. Always remember to exercise on a daily basis, drink green tea as it boosts metabolism and include dark green, leafy vegetables in the diet so that your body receives ample nutrition to fight bad cells.
What you should do
Our expert team at Brexa advises every woman, above 20 years of age, to conduct a monthly breast self-examination. This would help in understanding the normal nature of the breasts. In case of any unusual findings, one can seek doctor’s opinion faster and take action accordingly.
Remember: Prevention is ‘always’ better than cure. Don’t forget to download Brexa for free.
Note: In the coming weeks, we will share more such studies with you. Till then, stay tuned.