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You Are What You Eat...

Dr. Michele Doughty, Author Brown Bag Expressions, National Breast Cancer Awareness Month – Let’s start the conversation off this week by talking about how our diet plays a very important role in the prevention of breast cancer and lowering the risk of breast cancer reoccurence. In a positive light, the dietary choices we make daily can actually improve our overall health and wellbeing lowering our risk for breast cancer and other diseases. The research is clear, genetics, hereditary or family history only plays a 5 -15% role in the occurrence of breast cancer. This means we can do something about the other 85%, which is linked to modifiable factors.

The first thing to do is to develop your own consciousness related to your diet. In terms of consciousness, discern “what foods pack on the pounds,” “what foods increases your body mass index” and "what foods make you at risk for disease". Time Magazine published an article highlighting the six persons on the TV show the Biggest Losers, sadly all but one regained all their weight back after a 6-year period. Those which gained their weight back were heavier than before. This is unfortunate, so we need to take a deep breathe, sit down and take a slower and more thorough approach to nutritional management. The importance of focusing not only on what we eat, but the aftermath of our diet is critical. In simple language, the bloating, stuffy feeling and inability to move after a heavy meal. What we eat, is weighting us down, instead of fueling our bodies which healthy energy.

Second, get in the fun habit of selecting ALTERNATIVES daily. Start, first by challenging yourself by making a daily list of food alternatives. Look into your refrigerator and cabinets, go on a scavenger hunt and identify food items which you can remove from your diet for healthier choices. For example, if you enjoy that yummy Boston Cream Donut daily, how about a nice bowl of steel cut oatmeal with cinnamon and apples topped off with a nice vanilla non-dairy creamer as a delicious alternative. What about the thick decadent Porterhouse Steak or the rich creamy Alfredo sauce, go for the light versions and smaller portion of red meat. Red meat has been declared as a risk factor for breast cancer, so check out the recent Harvard University study.

Third, do your own analysis start by think about what is lacking in your nutritional plan. Incorporate natural vitamins in your nutritional program. Learn how to plant your own vegetable garden, you can use flowerpots, window pots or a plot in your yard to grow vegetables that are organic and last longer than what we purchase in the stores. You will enjoy homegrown tomatoes, kale, basil, lettuce, squash and other veggies that you can toss in pasta, roast or steam daily. You can also freeze the vegetables you harvest and use them in the winter months. Today there are so many variation of pasta, chick pea, edamame, brown rice and other variations to enjoy.

Fourth, slowly ease the changes into your diet, when you change too drastically it doesn't last long. Do a meatless Monday, try a health recipe, eat pure chocolate instead of pack of gummy bears, add roasted veggies on a slice of pizza without cheese or vegan cheese...make small steps to get you to your journey, you be on your way in no time to better health.

If you continue to eat high calorie foods, it will eventually emerge in weigh gain and obesity, which numerous research studies have linked to breast cancer and other diseases, which are preventable. It's just like a balloon filled with water. When the balloon is too full, it will eventually expand and POP so it is when when are diet is filled with unhealthy chooses, you can change this lifelong with a few simple techniques.

Remember, “You Are What You Eat, So Go For Healthy Alternatives...You will See the Difference Life Long

During this month remember a loved one or friend and make sure you DONATE to the American Cancer Society, your tax deductible contribution will go a long way.

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