Dispatch: Breast Cancer, Diet, and Chemoprevention

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Spanish scientists suggest that one third of breast cancer cases are preventable based on diet and exercise habits.

“We have to acknowledge that it is true that being overweight during and after middle age is a risk factor for breast cancer,” says ACSH’s Dr. Elizabeth Whelan. “Still, claiming that one third of cases are preventable by lifestyle choices is probably an overstatement.”

ACSH’s Jeff Stier adds, “It’s definitely good advice to maintain a healthy weight and keep consumption of alcohol moderate, but everyone knows those things. These experts failed to give the full picture, since high-risk women can significantly reduce their risk of breast cancer by using chemoprevention drugs like tamoxifen and raloxifene.”

ACSH’s Dr. Gilbert Ross agrees: “A discussion about reducing breast cancer risk without mentioning chemoprevention is incomplete. We do have to give them credit for not making any unfounded claims about environmental chemicals, though.”