You might be able to find help fighting breast cancer and other types of cancers at your local grocery store and fitness centers, according to the research findings of Dr. Marian Neuhouser, Ph.D, RD.
Dr. Neuhouser is a nutritional epidemiologist with a background in nutritional sciences. She is an investigator at Seattle’s Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Her research is focused on lifestyle factors such as nutrition and physical activity. Some factors may prevent breast and prostate cancer and improve survivorship in those diagnosed with cancer.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each year, more than 200,000 American women are diagnosed with breast cancer and more than 40,000 American women will die from breast cancer.
Dr. Neuhouser’s research has found that for postmenopausal women in particular, being overweight or obese may increase the risk for breast cancer.
Dr. Neuhouser explains, “After menopause, estrogens are synthesized by adipose tissue—the more adipose a woman has, the more estrogen she will make. Adipose cells also synthesize inflammatory factors, which have been linked to breast cancer.”
One of the most important things a woman at risk for breast cancer can do, says Dr. Neuhouser, is to “maintain a healthy weight."
Given what the research indicates, Dr. Neuhouser says, “One of the most important things is that if a woman is overweight or obese, she should be advised to lose weight and maintain a healthy weight. Daily physical activity and following healthy eating habits with plentiful fruits and vegetables and minimal empty calories and fried foods will help achieve these goals.”
Dr. Neuhouser says while it can be challenging to lose weight, “Small changes can add up and make a big difference."
When it comes to getting active, Dr. Neuhouser says, "If someone is not used to physical activity, try a five to ten minute walk and gradually increase the time. Having physical activity partners or walking partners always helps. I know my soccer team will be waiting for me on the field, so even if I am tired or busy, I still show up."
At the YMCA East Hampton RECenter, which offers a slew of fitness classes from acquatics to spin and TRX band training, there will also be an open introduction class to Reiki practice. Martha Stotzky, a Reiki master practioner, will give this free class on Oct. 13 at 10:30 a.m.
The Wellness Foundation of East Hampton has organized several walking groups between Springs and Southampton.The schedule is as follows:
- Tuesdays, Long Beach, Sag Harbor, 7 a.m. and Southampton at 8:30 a.m. (meet at Rite Aid)
- Wednesdays, Maidstone Park, Springs, 7 a.m. and Sag Harbor at 10 a.m. (meet at the John Jermain Memorial Library on Water Street)
- Thursdays, East Hampton at 11 a.m. (meet outside YMCA East Hampton RECenter)
- Fridays, Long Beach, Sag Harbor, 7 a.m.
- Saturdays, Maidstone Park, Springs, 8 a.m.
If you know other local fitness groups, please leave a comment below.
When it comes to food, Dr. Neuhouser says, "Start with making one new food change each week. Instead of eating two cookies, eat just one.”
If you are concerned about your weight, Dr. Neuhouser suggests getting the support you need by asking your doctor for “ a referral to a reputable weight loss program.” For nutrition advice, Dr. Neuhouser recommends asking for a referral to a registered dietitian.
Locally, you can find support managing your weight through wellness foundations, registered dieticians and homeopaths.
- Dr. Russ L'HommeDieu, the founder of he founder of Lose Weight for Good, based on the North Fork, is doing a free tele-seminar series (You can check out the introductory interview here). If you chose to continue with the lectures, the next seminar is on Oct. 11 at 6:30 p.m., whcih is when the free registration expires.
- The "Beach Hypnotist," Albert R. O'Connell III, gives hypnosis weight-loss workshops at The Ed & Phyllis Davis Wellness Institute at Southampton Hospital, including one in Southampton on Oct. 23 at 6 p.m. and one in Montauk on Nov. 7 at 7 p.m. Call to register. Read his blog here.
- The Hamptons Center for Weight Loss at Southampton Hospital holds a support group monthly. The next meeting is at the Hampton Bays Library on Oct. 16 at 6:30 p.m.
- Holistic Coach Jeanette Tiomkin, Founder of Discover Your Healing Path in Hampton Bays, helps people overcome issues with their diet, including weight loss. For more information click here.
- Pati Smith, a nutritional consultant and wholistic health practitioner in Southampton, specializes in weight loss, cancer care, food allergies, heart healh, an women's health.
Weight Watchers meetings take place in several locations around the East End. They are:
- The United Methodist Church in Bridgehampton, Tuesdays at 10 a.m.
- The United Methodist Church in Southampton, Thursdays at 6 p.m. and drop-in hours are Thursdays, 9 - 11:30 a.m., and Saturdays, 9:15 - 11 a.m.
- Old Whalers Church in Sag Harbor, Fridays at 9:45 a.m.
- First Presbyterian Church of East Hampton, Tuesdays at 6 p.m.
- Amagansett Library, Thursday at 10 a.m.
- American Legion Hand Aldrich Post 924 in Hampton Bays, Wednesdays, 10:15 a.m. and 5:30 p.m.
- Riverhead Plaza Shopping Center, Mondays at 10:15 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Tuesdays at 10:15 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., Wednesdays 9:15 a.m. and 6:30 p.m., Thursdays at 10 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., Fridays at 10:15 a.m. and 12:15 p.m., Saturdays at 8:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. There are also drop-in hours on Tuesday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Wednesdays from 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Fridays from 9:45 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
- North Shore United Methodist Church in Wading River, Wednesdays at 5:45 p.m.
- Universalist Church in Southold, Tuesdays at 10:15 a.m. and Thursdays at 5:45 p.m.