Eating certain fish linked with lower breast cancer risk - study


Getting regular check-ups is part of Lynda Lumaya's care after being diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer a year and a half ago. Now she's very diligent about pursuing a healthier lifestyle.

"I drive my family crazy reading labels," she said.

One thing that's not on her to do list is eat more fish. She said she's never liked eating it.

A review of 21 different studies finds eating fatty acids found in fish was linked to a lower risk of breast cancer. Dr. Deanna Attai, a breast surgeon, says while the study does not show cause and effect, it does make sense.

"We do know that the factors that help reduce the risk of heart disease are the same ones that help reduce the risk of developing the risk of cancer," said Attai.

In the study, researchers found eating one to two servings per week of oily fish, such as tuna, salmon and sardines, was associated a 14 percent reduction of breast cancer. No significant association was observed between overall fish intake and breast cancer.

"My advice is generally to get as much of your nutrition from real food sources as possible. But if that's not possible, supplements may be a reasonable option," said Attai. "Get a reasonable amount of exercise, maintain a healthy body weight, reduce your stress levels, don't drink too much alcohol. All the things that we already know to improve general health will help your breast health as well."

Lumaya is already doing many of the right things and now she's planning on adding fish to her routine.

"Now that I hear that, I certainly would reconsider doing it," said Lumaya.

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