Why every dry day matters: Breast Cancer Now helped Kerry change her lifestyle

Breast Cancer Now is one of Dry January’s official charity partners for 2018. They shared Kerry’s story with us and why Dry January is so important.

Kerry’s story

Kerry Rubins aged 43 from Kent, took part in Dry January 2017.

“I started supporting Breast Cancer Now when my friend Julie was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time in 2006. Sadly, she passed away from this dreadful disease in 2010, aged just 42.

I threw my energy into organising a Crocus Walk to raise money for the charity and since then, I have a lifetime commitment to supporting the charity, doing everything I can to raise awareness and money to help fund vital, life-saving research.

My involvement in Breast Cancer Now meant that I was aware that regularly drinking alcohol was increasing my risk of breast cancer.

After seeing what Julie went through, I wanted to make some lifestyle changes so that I was and felt healthier. I know this isn’t going to take the risk of breast cancer away completely, but if there are steps I can do to reduce my risk, I think it’s worth taking them.

I decided that Dry January was the perfect way (and the perfect timing after my festive socialising) to start drinking less. I’d heard that by giving up for a month, you’re more likely to reduce the amount you drink long-term, so I thought I’d give it a go.

Before Dry January, I had (and still have) a diary full of social events and parties. Some call me a social butterfly, others say I’m a bit of a party animal. These events often had alcohol flowing freely and I found myself having a few too many on a regular basis. This inevitably meant having a sore head the next day.

I found Dry January incredibly challenging at first, as I had two hen nights, a wedding, my mum’s 65th birthday party and a few nights out with friends to contend with. But after waking up the next day with a clear head, as well as having more energy and generally feeling better in myself, it started to feel worthwhile.

And nearly a year on, my drinking habits are a lot different from what they used to be. I do still drink, but a few handy tricks have meant I limit the drink I have. When sharing a bottle of wine with friends, I drink from a much smaller wine glass and on a night out, I alternate each alcoholic drink with a soft one.

I’m looking forward to taking on the challenge of Dry January again this year. As I’ve done it once, and I drink less than I used to, it’s going to be easier but it’s a great way to have a post-Christmas detox, and a great fundraiser for a worthy cause.”

Why Breast Cancer Now is partnering with Dry January

Breast Cancer Now is partnering with Dry January to help women to cut down on alcohol and reduce their risk of breast cancer.

One in eight women are diagnosed with breast cancer, and women who regularly drink alcohol are at increased risk of getting the disease. In fact, experts estimate that 6% of breast cancers in women are linked to regularly drinking alcohol.

Breast Cancer Now is committed to encouraging women across the UK to make healthy choices to help reduce their risk of getting breast cancer. Research suggests that many who go alcohol-free for a month continue to drink less in the following six months, so taking part in Dry January is the perfect first step in living a healthier lifestyle.

Want to get involved?

Download the Dry January app and start fundraising today. Together we can reduce the harm caused by alcohol.