Busy ladies, what’s your excuse for not taking those extra measures to kick breast cancer in the butt? Is it not having enough time? Is it not having enough money? Is it that “it won’t happen to me?” Whatever your reason/excuse…IT’S NOT GOOD ENOUGH!!! In the African American community, our women are more likely to die from breast cancer than other races of women. So, we have to keep our heads in the game.

On Sunday, I ran into a good friend of mine, Kim Roxie. Not only is she the founder/owner of LAMIK Beauty, but she is also a strong supporter and advocate for an organization called “The Rose.” When I crossed her path, she was on her journey going around spreading the word about services offered by this non-profit organization. Amongst other services, The Rose offers FREE mammograms to uninsured women and ladies … free is always good. So, busy ladies, we have NO excuse but to take good care of our breast health.

On October 8, 2017, Kim and other sponsors hosted a fundraising event for THE ROSE so that women in our community could afford the opportunity to have much needed annual mammograms. The 4th Annual Rose At the Ensemble was held at 1:30 pm. Check out Kim’s Facebook page for more information.

So, ladies, what can we do besides getting our mammogram at The Rose to help us kick breast cancer’s butt? Short of taking the drastic step of a voluntary mastectomy, the best way a woman can protect herself against breast cancer is by practicing early detection methods and by reducing known risk factors. If breast cancer is found and treated early—before it has spread beyond the breast—the five-year survival rate is greater than 95 percent.

Are You at Risk?

Over 200,000 women in the United States are diagnosed with breast cancer each year. Here are the common risk factors associated with the disease:

  • Heavy drinking – While the occasional alcoholic drink is okay, consuming more than two drinks per day increases your chances of developing breast cancer. Women who consume two to five drinks each day are about 1-1/2 times more likely to develop breast cancer than women who don’t drink.
  • Smoking, especially at a young age – Studies have suggested that smoking at an early age can increase your risk of breast cancer. The risk may be lower after childbearing because by then, breast cells have finished developing and are less vulnerable to carcinogens.
  • Being overweight – General obesity has been associated with increased breast cancer risk in post-menopausal women. Researchers found that women who gained more than 60 pounds between age 20 and menopause had roughly 70 percent higher risk of breast cancer, compared with women who gained fewer than 20 pounds.
  • Eating a high-fat diet – In the largest study of its kind, researchers from the National Cancer Institute found that women who consumed the most fat—regardless of what type—were more likely to develop breast cancer than women who ate the least fat.
  • Hormone replacement therapy – Studies have shown a strong link between post-menopausal hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and breast cancer. If you need HRT, talk to your doctor to determine your personal risk level.

Ladies, I’m sure most, if not all of us, have experienced at least one of the above listed risks. So, let’s be proactive in seeking early detection for breast cancer and remember, when you get your mammogram… make it a girlfriend’s day out and TAKE A FRIEND!