Breastfeeding may lower the risk of uterine cancer: Study

Mother nursing son

A team of Australian researchers on Wednesday said that women who breastfeed their children are found to be at substantially lesser risk of developing uterine cancer. Researchers at the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute said that women who breastfed at least one child are at lower risk of contracting cancer of the uterus. The head of the Cancer Causes and Care research group at QIMR Berghofer, Susan Jordan told Xinhua: “We found that the longer women breast-fed each child, the more their risk of uterine cancer reduced, up until nine months when the reduction in risk plateaued.” For the study, the QIMR Berghofer team analysed data collected from over 26,000 Australian women, with over 9,000 of those having uterine cancer. Jordan said, “We looked at the total amount of time these women had spent breastfeeding over the course of their lives.” She said,”We found that women who had ever breastfed had an 11 per cent lower risk of developing uterine cancer than women who had never breastfed.” Within the results was also an interesting correlation between the duration of the breastfeeding and subsequent lowering of the likelihood of contracting uterine cancer. Women who breastfed for three to six months have a seven per cent less risk of the cancer, while women who breastfed for six to nine months have 11 per cent lower risk. Jordan said,”In other words, a woman who breastfed two children for nine months each had around a 22 per cent lower risk of uterine cancer than a woman who had never breastfed her children.”However, not every woman is able to breastfeed, and Jordan said there are other things that women can do to lower the risk of endometrial, or uterine cancer. Jordan added, “Having a baby reduces your risk, similarly taking the oral contraceptive pill can reduce the risk of endometrial cancer; but probably the best thing to do is make sure you have a healthy lifestyle.”

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