From the Magazine

5 Simple Ways to Reduce Your Risk of Breast Cancer

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Great news: According to a recent American Cancer Society report, our risk of breast cancer has dropped by 40 percent in the past 25 years. Now, thanks to earlier detection, better treatment options, and all of our positive lifestyle changes, breakthrough research at the Mayo Clinic proves preventing breast cancer is easier than ever.

Try this extract.

Curcumin is the pigment that gives turmeric its yellow hue — and studies suggest that supplementing with 400 mg. daily could cut your breast cancer risk in half. Pathologist Nor Othman, MD, says when curcumin soaks into a cancerous breast cell, it forces the cell to self-destruct without harming healthy tissues around it. Try: Life Extension Super Bio- Curcumin® Turmeric Extract (LEF.com/ww). Note: Ask a doctor before supplementing.

Seek out smiles.

Sneaking moments of happy into every day could cut your breast cancer risk by 25 percent, suggest three studies. That, say French researchers, is because bursts of happiness tamp down the production of tissue-damaging stress hormones and activate genes that keep your immune system vigilant so it can destroy cancerous growths.

Do a little weeding.

Spending three hours every week in motion will cut your breast cancer risk by 35 percent — and gardening can give you just as much protection as jogging, Harvard University researchers say. Moving your large muscles switches on enzymes that energize cancer-fighting immune cells, helping them quickly find and destroy breast cancer cells.

Snack early.

Finishing snacks by 9 p.m. could cut your breast cancer risk by 20 percent, Spanish research shows. Explains oncologist Victor Moreno, MD, your digestive tract releases cancer-fighting immune cells at night, most effectively when your stomach isn’t full.

Try this nighttime fix.

Melatonin not only helps you sleep, it can kill cancer cells, cutting your breast cancer risk by 31 percent, Cornell University researchers say. To double your nightly melatonin release, don a sleep mask, as your brain’s melatonin production peaks in darkness.

This story originally appeared in our print magazine.

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