Mum Daily

International Women’s Day: Let’s cut female cancer rates!

This International Women’s Day is the perfect opportunity for women to prioritise their wellbeing and start thinking about healthy lifestyle behaviours that can prevent illness and disease and enrich quality of life.

Up to one third of all cancer cases are preventable with a few simple changes to lifestyle factors. At the top of our list are eating healthily and exercising regularly, avoiding alcohol, quitting smoking, and staying smart in the sun.

We’re calling on women to take action today to prevent a cancer diagnosis tomorrow.

Along with preventive measures, include early detection and screening as part of your cancer prevention plan.

Up to 90 per cent of all cervical cancers can be prevented through Pap smears, and regular mammograms can reduce a woman’s risk of breast cancer death by 25 per cent, particularly for those aged 50 to 69.

Get a prevention plan in place and ask your GP to recommend a screening protocol based on your individual risk factors and family history.

Self-checks are also essential for women. We urge all women to be aware of changes in their body, such as lumps, sores or ulcers that don’t heal, unexplained weight loss, and unusual changes in the breasts and nipples.

Symptoms of cancer can include nagging coughs, persistent changes in bowel movements, recurring abdominal pain or bloating, and moles that change shape, colour or size. Women who experience any of these symptoms should see their GP – early detection could save their life.

Cancer Council Queensland leads a range of initiatives to encourage women to adopt lifestyles that reduce their cancer risk.

More information about Cancer Council Queensland, and ways to cut your cancer risk, is available at or 13 11 20.