If you thought your breasts’ size, shape, sagginess and texture are immune to your daily lifestyle habits, we’ve got some shocking news for you – they’re not! You probably already know that certain health choices can contribute to a higher risk of breast cancer, but some common habits that affect your breasts appearance and comfort might be surprising.
Learn more about common habits that affect your breasts:
Weight Gain or Loss: You may have noticed the correlation between weight gain or weight loss and your breast size. Many women are sad to see their full breasts shrink when they drop a few pounds, while others are excited by their new curves when they gain some weight.
Breasts are comprised of breast tissue and fat tissue and each woman has a unique composition of both. Breasts that are more dense – meaning they have more breast tissue – are less likely to change in size based on weight gain or weigh loss. Fattier breasts are more susceptible to fluctuations based on weight.
Always measure yourself after weight gain or weight loss to determine your new bra size. Your full figure bras should compliment your new size and shape.
Exercise: It would be amazing if a few simple daily exercises could perk up your breasts but unfortunately that’s not the way it works. Even the pectoral muscles that lie beneath your breasts cannot pump up your breasts in any significant way.
But there is one way exercise does affect your breasts – bounce! One study showed that breasts can bounce as much as 8 inches during exercise. Ouch! Wearing a full figure sports bra can reduce bounce by up to 78% for a much more comfortable workout.
Caffeine: That lovely cup of coffee you have every morning and stimulating chocolate you snack on in the afternoons might be making your breasts hurt. Caffeine can cause breast lumpiness and tenderness, especially when you are nearing your period. If you think caffeine may be causing you breast pain, cut it out for a few weeks to see if that is the culprit.
Medications: For better or for worse medications can affect your breasts. Certain drugs used to treat mental conditions are particularly notorious for their impact on breasts. But in other ways, medications can be helpful, such as treating tenderness, swelling and fluid retention during your period.
Sex: Sexual stimulation increases your blood flow and causes your breasts to swell and nipples to become erect. Your areola may even darken and expand during sex. These reactions are temporary, however, and should serve to increase your experience, never cause pain.
Contributors to Sag: Like the rest of your skin, breast tissue begins to sag with age. Boosting your collagen through your diet is a great way to help reduce sag. Also, avoid smoking, alcohol abuse, bad posture, overexposure to the sun and extreme and continual weight fluctuations.
Of course one of the best ways to reduce risk of and to combat the appearance of sagginess is to wear a properly fitting full figure bra. It’s always important to wear an appropriate bra for your level of movement and activity and full figure women often benefit from wearing sleep bras at night.
Sources: Shape Magazine, Positive Med and Everyday Health