A Mother’s Checklist: Breast Cancer and the Environment Research

This is a sponsored post in partnership with Breast Cancer and the Environment Research Program.

Raising children, we always discuss the whole nature/nurture debate. Were they born with this trait? Was it learned? It’s really fascinating to watch them grow up and develop into these little humans. But the one thing that we may not add into the equation is environment.

As parents, we try to help our children grow up healthy. We buy healthy food. We wipe down shopping carts before they get in. The environment plays an important role in our children’s lives, especially young girls.

The environment around a young girl may change the way her body develops. It is too soon to say for sure that avoiding certain chemicals or foods lowers the risk of breast cancer. Still, to help protect daughters from developing breast cancer later in life, it is never too early to begin taking steps.

I don’t know a woman who doesn’t have breast cancer sitting in the back of her mind. I think we all hold our breaths during our annual exams hoping that nothing is found. And, if something is found, we continue to hold our breaths until we get the mammogram results.

I have been lucky. I haven’t had a scare…yet. But there have been plenty of women around me that have. My mother. My sister. My cousin. My aunt. My friends.  And not only do I worry about myself. I worry about my young nieces. Will breast cancer be something that they soon have in the back of their minds?

But what if we could reduce some of these risks? What if we really took a look at our environment and took away some of these risk factors that may lead to breast cancer? We would do it, right?

has a number of resources for parents and families on how to reduce risk. Scientists, physicians, and community partners in the Breast Cancer and the Environment Research Program (BCERP), which is supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), study the effects of environmental exposures on breast cancer risk later in life. They created a  mothers can use to talk to daughters about steps to take together to reduce risk.

How can you help? Take a few minutes to complete this survey to help with the important work the researchers are doing!

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