Free membership to help fight breast cancer
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and in observation of that event Curves fitness center, in Monett, is offering a free membership to new members who show proof of a mammogram performed within the last year or who choose to donate $25 to the American Cancer Society (ACS).
Mia Land, owner of the local Curves facility, said the effort is to raise awareness about the life-saving importance of early detection and early treatment of breast cancer.
"Our annual breast cancer awareness campaign is an important part of the Curves mission to strengthen women," Land said. "We offer a fun, supportive, non-competitive environment that encourages women to take time out from their role as caregivers to take care of themselves."
Women can help reduce their risk for breast cancer by staying in good health.
Curves takes a three-pronged approach to raising awareness.
Early detection is a key element in fighting the disease. About 93 percent of women whose breast cancer is caught in its earliest stages will be healthy and disease-free five years after their diagnosis and treatment.
In addition to self-examination, the ACS recommends at least one clinical exam each year after the age of 40. Younger women should have clinical exams about every three years.
Risk management is another important element for fighting breast cancer. Only about 5 to 10 percent of breast cancers are hereditary, so prevention is an important risk management strategy.
"We urge members to schedule annual doctor visits, perform monthly self-exams, eat a nutritious diet and make time for regular exercise to promote fitness and weight control.
Curves supports ongoing research efforts through annual fund-raising events.
"These efforts honor the memory of breast cancer victims and celebrate the current and future birthdays of breast cancer survivors," Land said.
"The ACS has credited the decline in death rates from breast cancer since 1990 to earlier detection, increased awareness and improved treatment," Land continued. "While breast cancer is still the second leading cause of death in women, there are now more than 2.6 million breast cancer survivors in the nation."
This year, Curves is offering Liv Aid, an early self-examination aide that enhances a woman's sense of touch and makes the process more effective in detecting unusual lumps or bumps.
Named for Olivia Newton-John, a breast cancer survivor, these self-exam aids are available only at Curves fitness centers at a cost of $20.
In addition to a one-time administrative fee of $99, Curves offers month-to-month memberships or annual memberships to members.
For more information, call Land at 235-1400.