Paying attention to your nutrition, exercise, stress reductions, and avoiding environmental toxins is the only successful preventative measure against breast cancer. But, the myth keeps on that mammogram is the ultimate way to prevent breast cancer.
However, it turns out that the radiation emitted from a mammogram may actually trigger the onset of breast cancer. Instead of prolonging lives, mammograms may result in over-diagnosis and over-treatment.
As for your diet and breast cancer prevention, iodine is the best nutrient you could be ingesting. Although this nutrient is typically associated with the thyroid, iodine stores in women are higher in their breast than the thyroid. Therefore, iodine is essential to the health of women`s breasts.
Being vital for brain development in infants, iodine is nature`s ways of protecting babies. Iodine stores in the body ensure that the baby gets solid amount of iodine. Apart from being bad for babies, iodine deficiency is bad for women too, as it increases the risk for breast cancer.
Low Iodine and Breast Cancer
Low iodine levels in the body cause the body to produce more estrogen, which in turn increases the risk for reproductive cancers like breast cancer. What`s more, low iodine levels also increase estrogen sensitivity in the breasts, making them more prone to breast cancer.
According to Dr. Bernard Eskin, a pioneer in iodine research, iodine deficient breast tissue was more likely to undergo pre-cancerous alternations and iodine could reverse them. As shown by lab studies, iodine led to cellular death of cancer and tumor growth reduction, without affecting healthy cells.
Women In America Today
The breast cancer rates in Japan are 66 percent less when compared to those in America and iodine is the one making the difference. The U.S. Dietary Reference Intake for iodine is 150 micrograms daily while in Japanese women are getting almost 25 times that.
The Western diet, which is iodine deficient, is yet another contributor to this difference. Most Americans get their iodine from salt, due to the government push to add iodine to salt to prevent goiter. However, women have begun avoiding salt due to the lack of iodine in their diet, which led to an increase in iodine deficiency rates.
Another factor which contributed to iodine deficiency is the increase in environmental toxins. They tend to attach to receptors in the cells meant for iodine, shutting them out and preventing the body from absorbing it.
Natural Sources of Iodine
Although the body is not capable of producing iodine, there are some excellent sources we can consume to get it. Some of the best sources include cranberries, navy beans, unpeeled potatoes, eggs, and seafood like tuna, shrimp, salmon, and lobster.
Seaweed, which is key ingredient in Japanese diet, is the best source of iodine. You can get dried seaweed at most Asian supermarkets and larger chains. Dried seaweed can be added to cooked soups, stews, beans, and many more.
According to a Japanese study, seaweed has ten times more iodine and is even more effective against breast cancer when compared to fluorouracil, a widely used chemo drug.