Did you know that 1 in 8 women will develop invasive breast cancer in her lifetime? Over the years, research has shown that there are some everyday items that could increase the risk of breast cancer. From more commonly known things like birth control to less obvious things like your vinyl shower curtain — you’ll be surprised to see what’s on this list.
1. Wax-Burning Candles
Just about everyone uses candles whether it be for mood lighting for a special occasion or just to make your house smell nice. However, did you know that some candle wax contains carcinogens such as toluene, aldehydes, ketones? Burning certain types of candles puts these things in the air you breathe.
Many mass-produced deodorants have some ingredients in them that you shouldn’t be using. You should check the labels on the products you use, specifically looking for aluminum–based compounds. Putting that under your arms can be dangerous. Not only is that area close to your breasts, but it’s also near your lymph nodes. A good alternative is an all-natural deodorant, such as Tom’s.
3. Using Chemical Sprays To Clean Your Home
You know those sprays that you use to clean your home? Some of them are so potent that your eyes water each time you squirt the bottle. It should come as no surprise that the chemicals in those products can increase your cancer risk. Your best bet is to clean with a vinegar and water solution.
4. Wearing The Wrong Bra Size
It’s true. Getting fitted for a bra isn’t just a ploy to get you to buy one. Not wearing the right bra size could increase your risk of developing cancerous lumps. A bra that is too big won’t support breast tissue properly. One that is too small could cut off drainage of your lymph fluid.
5. Air Fresheners
Who doesn’t want to be in areas that smell good? Whether it’s your home or your car, using air fresheners is really quite common. However, spraying that scented goodness may be doing you more harm than good. Air fresheners contain some chemical substances that are dangerous to breathe in and could increase your breast cancer risk.
Mothballs have a variety of uses, though they were more popular in the old days than now. But they are still around and people still use them. Mothballs are packed with chemicals that have been connected with breast cancer.
This next everyday risk factor is one that many women are familiar with.
7. Birth Control
Because birth control messes with your hormones, the body can react in an adverse way. On the contrary, women who have babies and nurse their babies have a significantly lower risk of developing breast cancer. It is believed that breast tissue matures and thus becomes more resistant to cancerous changes.
8. Your Shower Curtain
If you are using a vinyl shower curtain, you may be putting yourself at risk. Phthalates are found in vinyl products and have been linked to breast cancer. Phthalates are used to soften plastic, which makes shower curtains more flexible. Sadly, they can also make you very, very sick.
As can this next everyday item.
9. Using Plastic Containers, Eating Canned Foods
Fortunately, the United States has gotten smarter when it comes to the way that plastic is designed. However, you should still avoid using any plastic containers that contain Bisphenol A (BPA), a known breast cancer catalyst. Did you know that many canned drinks and foods still contain BPA? It’s something you should always be mindful of.
10. Alcoholic Beverages
Perhaps not an “everyday thing” in the traditional sense, but drinking more than two alcoholic beverages a week can increase your breast cancer risk. Alcohol is known to increase estrogen production, which can be risky. Several types of breast cancer are estrogen driven.
Up next, we go from drinks to food.
If you aren’t eating organic fruits and vegetables, you are in danger of consuming pesticides, even with a thorough, pre-consumtion wash. Some pesticides used to grow food are human carcinogens. That means that these agrochemicals have the ability to cause breast cancer cell growth, which is bad news.
12. Fast Food Wrapped In Paper
Have you ever ordered fast food and had your items served wrapped in paper? As you’re opening the paper and trying to get to your dinner, you’re probably not thinking about what that paper is made out of. New research shows that the paper is chemically treated and has been linked to a variety of things — and breast cancer may soon be on that list.
13. Wearing Non-Organic Makeup
Using makeup that contains parabens can be detrimental to your health. Many makeup companies pride themselves on being paraben-free and you should strive to do the same. A simple Google search of “paraben-free makeup” will yield you a list of results to choose from.
This next beauty item is also one to avoid.
14. Using Chemical Hair Dye
Sure, it’s fun to head to the store and buy a box of hair dye to cover your grays. But did you know that the chemicals in some hair dyes can put you at greater risk for developing breast cancer? If you can’t afford to get your hair dyed by a professional (or you just prefer not to), try checking out the dyes available at a health foods market.
Perhaps a no brainer here, people who smoke on a regular basis are at a greater risk of developing breast cancer (and/or other kinds of cancer, for that matter) over time. Not a smoker, but live with someone who is? Second-hand smoke can be just as dangerous and should be avoided.