‘Tis the season for resolutions. Of course, Cameron Diaz had a great resolution – she says she’s going to start wearing a bra! (Can you imagine the run on whatever style of bra she decides to wear?)
However, it’s not just about how we look on the outside. It’s also important that we do as much as possible to ensure those breasts are healthy on the inside too.
While there is a lot of information out there that talks about the benefits of a lower fat diet and exercise, we forget that some fats are actually very healthy for us and our breasts. Dr Christine Horner, a surgeon and advocate for women’s health says that her top tip for breast health is to make sure you are getting Omega-3 fatty acids in your diet.
According to Horner, Omega-3’s have four significant benefits for breast health:
- They decrease the strength of estrogen in the breast tissue. Since many cancers of the breast can be worsened by estrogen in the breast tissue, this is a real protective benefit.
- They quell the cancer-promoting fires of chronic inflammation. While that inflammation may not be in the breasts per se, it can be the trigger for cancer to start in the body.
- They cause breast tumors to shrink in size. So, Omega-3’s continue to help even if you are already dealing with cancer.
- They prevent existing tumors from metastasizing or spreading.
Your best bet for plant-based source of these healthy fatty acids are flax seeds. These little beauties can be added to salads or sprinkled on yogurt for both a satisfying crunch and a boost of Omega-3’s. Walnuts are another handy source of this breast-healthy nutrient: add them to your morning cereal or carry a handful for a snack. There are other advantages to walnuts as a snack, not the least of which is that you won’t get hungry again right away. Walnuts are a compact package of healthy fats combined with protein to make them an ideal addition to a fast-paced life. Just pop a 1/4 cup into a bag and put them in your purse or lunch. Your body will thank you.
The best dietary source of Omega-3’s is wild salmon or herring. I make salmon a regular part of our family dinners – we usually eat it at least once a week. If you can handle the taste and don’t want to eat fish all the time, consider a good quality fish oil that is certified free of contaminants. You won’t just help to keep your breasts healthy, but the rest of your body too.