What Black Women Need to Know About Breast Cancer

Although heart disease is the leading cause of death in American women, the Centers for Disease Control reports that breast cancer is the most common cancer in women.  According to the American Cancer Society, 1 in 8 American women have a chance of developing breast cancer and in 2017 about 252,710 new cases of invasive breast cancer were diagnosed. 

While black women have historically had lower incidence rates than white women, statistics show that death rates among black women are higher, and that disparity continues to widen. Black women are also more likely than other racial/ethnic groups to be diagnosed at later stages and have the lowest survival at each state of diagnosis. They are also more likely to be diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer, an aggressive subtype that is linked to poorer survival.

Here’s what you can do to lower your risk:

Control your weight: Because obesity and excess weight increase the risk of developing breast cancer, the American Cancer Society recommends that women maintain a healthy weight throughout their life. Dropping even a few pounds has health benefits and is a good place to start.

Stay active: Growing evidence suggests that women who get regular physical activity have a 10%-25% lower risk of breast cancer compared to women who get no exercise. Doing even a little physical activity beyond your regular daily routine can have many health benefits.

Limit alcohol: Many studies have confirmed that drinking alcohol increases the risk of breast cancer in women by about 7% to 10% for each drink per day. For women who drink alcohol, the American Cancer Society recommends they limit themselves to no more than 1 drink per day.

Stop smoking: Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death among black women. And there is some scientific evidence that smoking increases the risk of breast cancer slightly, especially among heavy, long-term smokers and women who begin smoking before their first pregnancy. A recent study by American Cancer Society researchers found that women who begin smoking before they give birth to their first child had a 21% higher risk of breast cancer than did women who never smoked. Quitting has numerous health benefits.

Get an annual mammogram: To find breast cancer early, when treatments are more likely to be successful, the American Cancer Society recommends women should begin having yearly mammograms by age 45, and can change to having mammograms every other year beginning at age 55. Women should have the choice to start screening with yearly mammograms as early as age 40 if they want to.

Facebook Comments

Tags:

  • Show Comments

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

You May Also Like

Cam Newton at the Intersection of Race and Sex

Quarterback Cam Newton has been in hot water lately. His response to reporter Jourdan ...

Colin Kaepernick Signs $1 Million Book Deal

Nobody can tell your story. Rumor has it NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick is ready ...

Which Romantic Comedy Do You Relate To The Most?

Black love is a common theme in romantic comedies. We rounded up 8 classic ...

Swizz Beatz Helps Curate New Caribbean Art Exhibit for Art Basel Miami Beach

The hottest invite in the art world is the international art show, Art Basel, ...

Atlanta-Based Visual Artist Tamara Natalie Madden Suddenly Passes Away

Named one of the Grio’s 40 amazing Black artists to watch in 2014, Tamara Natalie ...

Erica Ash To Star In BET Legal Drama ‘In Contempt’

With the end of Being Mary Jane (2018) BET is looking to add more BET-owned ...

Serena Williams Set to Return to Tennis for First Time Since Birth of Her Daughter

This post was originally published on this site The G.O.A.T., a.k.a. Serena Williams, is ...

‘Black Panther’ Is Shaping Up To Have A $100 Million Opening

This post was originally published on this site Marvel Black Panther, being part of ...

You Can Only Pick 1 Album To Listen To For The Rest Of Your Life, Which Will You Choose?

Most would agree that the following albums are considered hip-hop classics. If for some ...