Experts say about 20,000 cases of breast cancer could be avoided each year in Britain with a few lifestyle changes.
If women exercised more regularly, drank less and changed their diets, two in five of the cases might be prevented, according to the World Cancer Research Fund. Obesity was identified as a major trigger, making women 50% more likely to develop breast cancer, although the reason behind this statistic is unknown. The same experts have also identified drinking “one large glass of wine daily” as a possible cancer trigger, upping chances by one fifth.
Deputy head of science at the WCRF Dr. Rachel Thompson indicated that while many cancers could be avoided by lifestyle change, breast cancer in particular was preventable:
‘It is very worrying that in the UK there are tens of thousands of cases of breast cancer which could be prevented every year. People can do a lot to reduce their chances of developing cancer.
‘Overall, we estimate about a third of the most common cancers could be prevented through a healthy diet, being physically active and maintaining a healthy weight.’
Age and family history remain as larger risk factors for breast cancer than lifestyle, however.