Results from an in-depth screening of mammograms revealed frightening facts.  Women who ate a Western “American” style diet had a significantly greater risk of developing breast cancer.

Table for Two

A Western diet can be construed as a steak and potatoes-type meal, a club sandwich, a burger, and fries, or pizza with pepperoni, sausage, and extra cheese. All of these have something in common. They are especially high in fat, dairy, processed meats, and refined grains. They also lead to the development of denser breast tissue.
Denser breast tissue has been linked to increased risk of breast cancer. Sugary drinks and sweet desserts were added to the Western diet list as well. The study published this month in Obstetrics and Gynecology pointed out that overweight-obese women eating this type of diet are at great risk. Statistics point out that women eating the all-American diet as specified above have a 46 percent higher risk of developing breast cancer. Wow. That’s some information.

Making Adjustments

The study, (which consisted of data from over 3,500 women) also took into consideration other lifestyle factors. The results factored in adjustments such as age, those who smoked, drank alcohol, were in the midst of menopause, taking hormone treatments, and family history. Even yet, it still appeared that women who adhered more to a Western diet were more prone to show higher density tissue in their mammograms.
The women who adhered to a Mediterranean-type diet, however, did not show mammographic density. Less dense equals less cancer-risk. Perhaps it’s time to adjust our food choices…

What to Do

If you feel you or your family may be over-indulging in the American diet plan, and you want to make some changes, it can be done painlessly and almost invisibly. In fact, it can be surprisingly delicious and just as satisfying!
It’s just a matter of swapping out certain foods for other more healthy, fresh, unprocessed ones. Fast food (so sorry) will need to be out. But not to worry. There are other “fast” foods for you and your family that can come from a healthy place!
If foods like quinoa, chia, and kale intimidate you, that is completely understandable! But, learning how to cook them (or add them) is not a big deal, and they can taste super yummy. But this may be stepping ahead…
What to do now is eat more fish. Grill more veggies and eat more salads. (But don’t use traditional dressings!) Adding lemon, honey, and/or balsamic vinegar to your greens is a great replacement. Beans are a great side dish, too. Replace red meat with cage-free poultry, eggs, and/or plant-based proteins.
Whether you’re concerned about your risk of breast cancer or any other type of pervasive illness, certainly the best preventative advice may be to adhere to a clean, Mediterranean–style diet. To learn more about healthy foods and diets, check out