Though breast cancer continues to be the second leading cause of cancer death for women in the U.S., the mortality rate for the disease has dropped by 40% over the last three decades. By some estimates, nearly 400,000 additional lives have been saved as a result of increased access to breast health care services and education. The National Breast Cancer Foundation has made it its mission to provide both so that more women can detect their breast cancer in its earliest stage when it’s more treatable. During Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Gold’s Gym SoCal is raising funds to support NBCF’s work during our annual Press for the Chest event.
Since there is currently no known cure for breast cancer, early diagnosis is critical to survival. Poverty, less education, and a lack of health insurance are associated with lower breast cancer survival rates. NBCF was founded to fill the gaps in breast cancer care so that every woman has the access, information, and support she needs to keep up the fight through every step of her breast cancer journey. Over the last 10 years, NBCF has provided over 192,000 mammograms, over 858,000 patient navigation services, and over 240,000 breast health education services to women in need.
PRESS FOR THE CHEST
Everyone, regardless of their biological sex, has breast tissue and can be affected by this disease. Each year in the U.S., about 264,000 cases of breast cancer are diagnosed in women and about 2,400 in men, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That's why we're raising $25,000 to help NBCF prevent and stop breast cancer in its early stages. Here's how you can join us:
BUY A T-SHIRT: All this month, stop by your local Gold’s Gym SoCal to purchase a Press for the Chest t-shirt for $10.
DONATE AND HAVE IT MATCHED IN PUSH-UPS: Donate $1 per push-up and nominate your favorite personal trainers or group exercise instructors to match it in push-ups. Join us on Oct. 29 at 10 a.m. to make sure they do them all. Visit the front desk for more information and to make your donation.
DONATE ONLINE: You can also make a donation by clicking here.
REDUCING HEALTH DISPARITIES IN BREAST CANCER OUTCOMES
While breast cancer mortality rates have dropped, it’s important to note that the decline in deaths hasn’t been equal for everyone. According to a study published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, black women are dying of breast cancer at twice the rate of white women and it’s been that way for decades. And while Hispanic and Latina women have a lower overall incidence rate of breast cancer, they also have a higher risk of dying of the disease than white women. The NBCF is committed to reducing health disparities in breast cancer outcomes by expanding education and outreach, increasing access to screening, and providing patient navigation for all.
BREAST CANCER AND EXERCISE
While there is no magic number of hours that women can exercise to prevent breast cancer or lower their risk, studies conducted over the last 20 years show that some exercise is better than none, and more is better than less. A recent study suggests that remains true even for women who are at higher risk for the disease because of family history.
The American Cancer Society recommends all adults engage in at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise a week. It’s not entirely understood why exercising lowers breast cancer risk, but researchers believe physical activity regulates hormones like estrogen and insulin, which can fuel breast cancer growth. Regular exercise also plays a role in maintaining a healthy weight, which regulates hormones and boosts immune system function.
Physical activity is also crucial to staying healthy following a breast cancer diagnosis. Research has shown that women who exercise have fewer side effects during and following treatment. It can also improve mood, reduce fatigue, and increase stamina. Some research even suggests that regular physical activity may help reduce the chances of breast cancer recurrence and increase survival.