Breast Cancer Prevention Starts in Childhood
According to a recent interview with Dr. Graham Colditz published by Medscape in December 2014, at least 1/2 of breast cancer cases can be prevented, largely by promoting a healthy lifestyle in girls at a young age. In fact, Dr. Colditz has challenged us to start prevention by age 2 years old! I recently wrote about this topic in an October 2014 article, Breast Cancer Prevention Begins in Childhood?, but it’s worth revisiting based on the sheer magnitude of impact that a few simple preventive strategies can yield.
“Cancer risk is accumulating from before the time a girl hits menarche,” says Dr. Colditz. Menarche is the onset of menstrual periods, which occurs at an average age of 12 years old in the US. Therefore, clearly the emphasis on early detection and screening for breast cancer is incomplete. Instead, our focus should be on educating parents and young women about the steps that they can take to eliminate their controllable risk factors.
Lifestyle Factors Play a Role in Cancer