Breast cancer myths debunked

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Indy Lifestyle Online

US-based Prevention magazine published an article on October 12 on the top ten myths about breast cancer, and why to ignore them.

What causes breast cancer and what prevents it is a source of endless debate. But Prevention, a consumer health magazine founded in 1950, and US-based breast cancer awareness organization Love/Avon Army of Women issued a report on the facts and fictions of the second biggest killer of women behind heart disease.

Top Ten Breast Cancer Rumors to Ignore:

1. Breast cancer is largely genetic: Only five to ten percent of breast cancer cases are due to the breast cancer gene BRCA 1 and BRCA 2.

2. Small-chested women have a lower risk: From A to DD, experts say cup size doesn't matter.

3. Breast cancer always appears as a lump: About 10 percent of breast cancers are diagnosed with no lumps or pain.

4. Mammograms prevent or reduce your risk: The ever-controversial screening test only detects breast cancer that already exists.

5. Mammograms cause breast cancer: Health experts say the miniscule radiation from mammograms doesn't outweigh the benefits.

6. Birth control pills cause breast cancer: Pills from the mid-1990s were shown to increase the risk slightly, but doctors say today's versions don't.

7. Young women don't get breast cancer: While most breast cancer cases are found in postmenopausal women, young women are still at risk.

8. Deodorant and antiperspirants cause breast cancer: Rumors about antiperspirants preventing women from "sweating out" toxins and deodorants containing cancer-causing chemicals go unfounded by top scientists.

9. Wearing a bra increases your cancer risk: Tight underwire bras retricting your lymphatic fluid? Scientists say this doesn't cause cancer.

10. Drinking from a plastic water bottle left in a hot car can cause cancer: Dioxins leached from heated plastic into the water doesn't pose a risk, say researchers from major medical institutions.

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To read about lifestyle choices that can lower your risk: