25 March 2021

A new study funded by the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) examined people’s exposure to modifiable risk factors using data from the Health Surveys of England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland as well as from two other ongoing studies including the UK Biobank database and suggests that lifestyle factors are responsible for 27% of breast cancer cases in women.

Addie Mitchell, Clinical Nurse Specialist, at Breast Cancer Now, said:

“With around 55,000 women each year in the UK getting the terrible news that they have breast cancer, we urgently need to find new ways to prevent people from developing this devastating disease. While many factors can affect how likely someone is to be diagnosed, this helpful new study confirms that more than a quarter of breast cancer cases could be prevented through lifestyle changes.

“Maintaining a healthy weight over your lifetime, limiting the amount of alcohol you drink and being as physically active as you are able to, can all help reduce your risk of breast cancer. Due to current UK lockdown restrictions many more of us are working from home and less active, making it more vital than ever that we support people to start making small, healthy lifestyle changes that can positively impact their health and help lower their risk of developing breast cancer.

“Anyone seeking information and support can speak to our expert nurses by calling our free Helpline on 0808 800 6000.”