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A study published in 2008, "Overweight, Insulin Resistant Women At Greater Risk Of Advanced Breast Cancer Diagnosis," indicated that the risk factors for type 2 diabetes are also risk factors for breast cancer, particularly more dangerous advanced and aggressive breast cancers.*
7 Tips for Lowering Breast Cancer Risk by Balancing Blood Sugar and Body Fat Naturally
1. Eat a Low Glycemic Diet. Low glycemic diets (diets low in sugars and sugary foods) normalize both elevated blood sugar and insulin levels reducing risk of obesity, diabetes, insulin resistance (pre diabetes), breast cancer and also cardiovascular disease. Eliminate all refined sugars and sweets. Limit fruits to 1-2 daily servings of berries and apples. Do not drink concentrated fruit juices.
2. Eat a High-Fiber Diet. Include fresh vegetables and whole grains every day. Eating fiber at every meal or snack helps you feel full and eat less. High-fiber diets lower your hunger hormone (ghrelin). If you are unable to get adequate fiber in your diet, use a high quality fiber supplement daily. Aim for 50 grams of fiber daily.
3. Eat healthy protein with every meal or snack. Healthy Protein (lean grass fed meats, hormone free poultry, wild caught fish, high omega three eggs, beans and protein supplements (from pea, rice, soy, whey) will keep your blood sugar stable and give you a feeling of satiation far more effectively than carbohydrates. A protein meal does not lead to a big spike of blood sugar after eating and thus also lowers insulin levels as well.
4. Consider Lipoic Acid. Best taken in R form rather than Alpha form, a nutrient which helps to maintain blood glucose, improve insulin resistance and promote antioxidant activity in people with diabetes.
5. Consider Gymnema sylvestre. An herb that has been shown to increase the number and the effectiveness of insulin producing cells in your pancreas, supporting normal blood sugar levels.
There are many high-quality supplements that combine these and other nutrients for managing normal blood sugar support.
6.Resistance exercise. Get the right kind of exercise. Resistance exercise will lead to lower blood sugar levels for up to 14 hours while strenuous cardiovascular exercise can actually elevate your blood sugar due to increases in cortisol levels. Resistance training also improves insulin sensitivity, increases lean muscle mass, helps you lose weight and lowers your risk for heart disease. Extended periods of resistance training can even improve your blood sugar as effectively as taking a diabetes drug, according to a study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research.
7. Manage your stress. Set aside time each day for relaxation, downtime and rest. This may include just taking a break, prayer or meditation, a quick nap, a massage or being quietly in nature, or quiet time with loved ones. High levels of stress, frequent stress and persistent stress all lead to elevations in the hormone cortisol. The presence of elevated cortisol causes increases blood sugar, which can lead to not only increased risk of breast cancer and diabetes but also to weight loss resistance, higher body fat, lower muscle mass, bone loss, depression and insomnia.
Why does this matter?
- Poor blood sugar management and high percent body fat can lead to both diabetes and cancer.
- Women with higher levels of glucose (blood sugar) and insulin will store more calories as fat, particularly around the waistline. You will not feel as satiated after a meal and will feel hungry more quickly leading to overeating.
- High body fat increases inflammation, which is present in all cancers.
- High body fat is a storehouse for many toxic, cancer-causing chemicals from the environment.
- High body fat is a factory for estrogen, which may stimulate some breast and prostate cancers.
- High blood sugar supplies fuel for cancer cells, which preferentially use sugars for energy and growth.
- High blood sugar leads to elevated insulin in the blood, a known risk factor for many cancers, including breast, pancreatic and liver cancers.
- Supporting normal blood sugar function is a key to both weight loss, fat loss and lower risk for breast cancer and diabetes.
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*University of Melbourne (2008, July 7). Overweight, Insulin Resistant Women At Greater Risk Of Advanced Breast Cancer Diagnosis, Says Study. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 27, 2011, from http://www.sciencedaily.com!/releases/2008/07/080707161416.htm
**Andersen E, Høstmark AT. Effect of a single bout of resistance exercise on postprandial glucose and insulin response the next day in healthy, strength-trained men. J Strength Cond Res. 2007 May;21(2):487-91.
Andersen E, Høstmark AT. Effect of a single bout of resistance exercise on postprandial glucose and insulin response the next day in healthy, strength-trained men. J Strength Cond Res. 2007 May;21(2):487-91.
Ansar H, Mazloom Z, Kazemi F, Hejazi N. Effect of alpha-lipoic acid on blood glucose, insulin resistance and glutathione peroxidase of type 2 diabetic patients. Saudi Med J. 2011 Jun;32(6):584-8.
Gannon MC, Nuttall FQ, Saeed A, Jordan K, Hoover H. An increase in dietary protein improves the blood glucose response in persons with type 2 diabetes. Am J Clin Nutr. 2003 Oct;78(4):734-41.
Persaud SJ, Al-Majed H, Raman A, Jones PM. Gymnema sylvestre stimulates insulin release in vitro by increased membrane permeability. J Endocrinol. 1999 Nov;163(2):207-12.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. You should always speak with your physician or other healthcare professional before taking any medication or nutritional, herbal or homeopathic supplement or adopting any treatment for a health problem.
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