An important part of preventing breast cancer lies in understanding the factors that lead to it. Researchers have found that different things can influence a woman’s likelihood of developing breast cancer, such as her genetic inclination towards it (whether or not women in her family have had it) and the foods she eats. There is also a theory that if a woman breastfeeds her children, she will be less likely to develop breast cancer later in life than a woman who has never breastfed. We are not advocating breastfeeding your child solely as a preventative method for breast cancer, but if you are trying to decide between bottle and breast for your baby, here is some info that may influence your choice.
Studies have shown…
There have been several studies carried out to try to see if breastfeeding does indeed diminish a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer. The two most talked-about were those conducted by the British medical journal The Lancet and Yale University.
The first study involved 50,302 women with breast cancer and 96,973 without it, from 30 different countries. After comparing their data, researchers found that there are less cases of breast cancer in women from developing countries because they tend to have more children and breastfeed for a longer time than women in developed countries.
The results of the latter study, conducted by Yale University, also indicated that a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer decreased if she breastfed her children. Researchers found that women who breastfed for a total of six years or more (all children combined) over the course of their lives had up to 63% less chances of developing breast cancer than women who never lactated.
Here’s another interesting fact: according to an article entitled Exposure to breast milk in infancy and the risk of breast cancer, women who were breastfed as infants (even if only for a short time) showed about 25% less chances of developing breast cancer, compared to children who were bottle-fed as infants. This would mean that breastfeeding could not only lower the mother’s risk of developing breast cancer; it could also lower the baby’s risk of having it later on in life.
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