It’s no surprise that smoking and drinking impact our breast and overall health. But you may be surprised to learn why.
Cancer Causing Compounds
Commercial cigarettes, grown with chemical fertilizers, can contain not only organochlorines, but also two radioactive elements, lead and polonium, which can contribute significantly to breast and lung cancers. Combustion of chlorine-bleached cigarette paper is also cancer-causing.
Smoking and Breast Cancer
Studies suggest that breast cancer risk increases with the number of years and the number of cigarettes smoked, with risk increases varying from .04 times to 4 times. Active smokers typically heal more slowly following surgery, experience more side effects from chemotherapy, and are more likely to die from breast cancer than non-smoking women.
Second Hand Smoke
Sufficient second hand smoke is also known to cause cancer, but is not linked to an increased risk for breast cancer.
E-Cigarettes and Vaping
According to the Surgeon General, e-cigarettes contain ultrafine particles that can be inhaled deep into the lungs, flavorants such as diacetyl, a chemical linked to serious lung disease, volatile organic compounds, and heavy metals, such as nickel, tin, and lead. Experts believe that exposure to inhaled vapors contribute to chemical irritation, allergic or immune reactions and potentially worse conditions with chronic exposure.
Alcohol and the Risk for Breast Cancer
Alcohol in the blood results in less melatonin production and more cancer-promoting estrogen metabolites out of the liver, especially in premenopausal and pre-first full-term pregnancy women.
Prolonged exposure to estrogen is the greatest risk factor for developing breast cancer.
Studies vary on the increase in risk associated with varying levels of drinking, from increased risk at four alcoholic drinks a week to a 2.5 times increase at two drinks daily.
Drinking and Breast Health
For breast health, consider eliminating or limiting alcohol consumption, drinking in moderation, drinking with food to reduce the impact on blood sugar, and drinking organic wines and beers. If you do choose to drink, consider consulting with a specialist to design a liver-supporting nutritional regimen specific to your needs.
Alcohol and Overall Health
In addition to its impact on blood sugar, alcohol is acidifying to the body and typically avoided in an anti-cancer diet. It can affect the liver’s ability to metabolize estrogens, reduce the body’s ability to eliminate undesirable compounds, and compromise the immune system.
There are at least 23 Effects of Alcohol on Your Body. While “just one drink a day can drastically increase your risk of cancer”, light to moderate consumption can contribute to conditions that consumers may not recognize: agitation, anxiety, arthritis, cancer, diarrhea, dementia, disturbed sleep, feelings of stress, gut dysbiosis, memory loss, organ diseases, including heart and liver, osteoporosis, pancreatitis, skin conditions, stomach problems, sleep issues, stroke, sweating, weight gain and more.
Learn why alcohol is much more than just “empty calories” at: DrinkAware.