Athena® bottled water was created for the cause. Athena is proud to support the American Cancer Society® and other organizations who share our mission. We want to encourage everyone to learn about cancer and lead a healthy lifestyle because everyone can make a difference in this fight.

Learn About Cancer

Breast cancer, like other cancers, begins when abnormal cells begin to grow out of control.1 Although men can develop the disease, it is primarily a women's cancer.2 Breast cancer is the most common cancer among U.S. women other than some kinds of skin cancer,3 and it is the second leading cause of cancer death in women after lung cancer.4 The chance of a woman having invasive breast cancer some time during her life is about 1 in 84 and the chance of dying from the disease is about 1 in 36.4 The good news is that breast cancer statistics show death rates have been declining, probably because of earlier detection and better treatment.4 Currently there are more than 2.8 million breast cancer survivors in the United States.

American Cancer Society®

For More Information:
1Learn About Cancer, Find information and resources for a specific cancer topic,
2What is breast cancer?,
3Breast Cancer Statistics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,
4What are the key statistics about breast cancer?,

Stay Healthy

While the exact causes of breast cancer are unknown, there are certain risk factors that may increase your chance of developing the disease.1 Some, such as age or family history, are unalterable, but many lifestyle-related risk factors can be changed.1 Of course, some women with risk factors never develop the disease, and most women who do get breast cancer don't have any risk factors other than being a woman and getting older.1 To help reduce your breast cancer risk, the American Cancer Society® recommends you:

  • Get at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity activity each week (or a combination of these), preferably spread throughout the week.2

  • Maintain a healthy weight throughout your life by balancing your calories with physical activity. Avoid excessive weight gain.2

  • Limit your intake of alcoholic beverages to no more than 1 a day, if you drink at all. (2 drinks for men)2, 5

For more tips, see the American Cancer Society® Guidelines on Nutrition and Physical Activity.3

Women without symptoms of breast cancer should follow the American Cancer Society's recommendations for early breast cancer detection, which include women ages 45 to 54 having a screening mammogram every year as long as they are in good health4 and a yearly MRI screening and mammogram for women at high risk of developing breast cancer. Talk to your doctor about whether you may be at high risk.4

American Cancer Society®

For More Information:
1Breast Cancer Overview,
2Lifestyle-related factors,
3ACS Guidelines on Nutrition and Physical Activity for Cancer Prevention,
4American Cancer Society recommendations for early breast cancer detection in women without breast symptoms,
5The Link Between Alcohol and Cancer.

Find Support and Treatment

If you or someone you love has breast cancer, you probably feel a bit overwhelmed. You are struggling to understand your diagnosis, as well as searching for the best breast cancer treatment options. The American Cancer Society's website offers detailed suggestions and resources for choosing a doctor and a hospital, as well as managing financial and insurance issues.1 You can learn more about different treatment options, including surgery, chemotherapy and radiation and prepare for possible side effects.2

And, remember, you don't have to travel this journey alone. You may find comfort from a breast cancer survivors network or support group. The American Cancer Society® Reach To Recovery® program matches newly diagnosed breast cancer patients with trained breast cancer survivors who provide one-on-one emotional support and information.3 The American Cancer Society® provides additional resources such as rides to treatment, a free place to stay when treatment is far from home, and online communities and support. You'll find these and other programs and services available in your area on the American Cancer Society® website.3

American Cancer Society®

For More Information:
1Finding and Paying for Treatment,
2Treatments and Side Effects,
3Find Support Programs and Services in Your Area,

Explore Research

Great strides are being made in breast cancer research every day. The American Cancer Society® is the nation's largest private, not-for-profit source of funds for scientists studying cancer.1 Society-funded researchers are working relentlessly on some of the world's most promising cancer research in order to save more lives. The American Cancer Society® also compiles a detailed summary about breast cancer in the United States each year, including incidence and mortality trends, as well as information on known factors that influence risk and survival, early detection, treatment and current research. You can download a PDF version of the most recent Breast Cancer Facts & Figures on the website.2

American Cancer Society®

For More Information:
1Research Programs and Funding,
2Breast Cancer Facts & Figures (Download)

Get Involved

Whether you're interested in volunteering, participating in an event or donating money to the American Cancer Society®, you can make a difference in the fight against cancer.1 Wear a pink breast cancer ribbon in October during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, or join an American Cancer Society® Making Strides Against Breast Cancer® walk,1 which honors cancer survivors, raises awareness and helps save lives. Volunteer with the American Cancer Society® by offering direct assistance to patients and their families or by helping with administrative duties.2 Share the message about the importance of women's cancer prevention and early detection with your local community, and tell your lawmakers that cancer research funding is important to you.2 One simple step is to drink Athena® bottled water, since a portion of the proceeds from every purchase supports breast cancer awareness, care, education and research.

American Cancer Society®

For More Information:
1Get Involved,
2Volunteer to Help,

Created for the Cause

Athena® Water – Created for the Cause

Founded by a breast cancer survivor, Athena® was created to help fund the battle against breast cancer.

Breast Cancer


Breast Cancer Prevention

Breast Cancer


Breast Cancer Treatment

Breast Cancer


Breast Cancer Research

Breast Cancer Prevention

Breast Cancer Prevention

Lifestyle Changes

Do you worry about getting breast cancer? You're not alone. Most women think about breast cancer at least once in a while and wonder what they can do to prevent it. While there are some factors you can't control,1 we at Athena® water want to help you make healthy changes to reduce your risk. Here are some breast cancer prevention strategies proven by scientific research:

  • Get moving. Studies show that exercise reduces breast cancer risk.2 Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity activity each week (or a combination of these), preferably spread throughout the week.2 If you're new to exercise, start slowly and build gradually.
  • Control your weight. Being overweight after menopause, or because of weight gain that took place as an adult, is linked to a higher risk of breast cancer.2 Although the relationship between diet and breast cancer prevention is unclear, it is clear that a healthy diet helps you maintain a healthy weight and has other health benefits, as well.3
  • Limit alcohol. Drinking alcohol, including beer, wine or liquor, is now clearly linked to an increased risk of breast cancer.2,3 Women who have one drink a day have a small increased risk, while those who consume 2 to 5 drinks daily have about 1½ times the risk of women who drink no alcohol.2 If you drink alcohol, limit yourself to no more than 1 drink per day.

For More Information:
1Breast cancer risk factors you cannot change,
2Lifestyle-related risk factors,
3Breast cancer prevention: How to reduce your risk, Mayo Clinic,

Breast Cancer Prevention

Breast Cancer Prevention

Screening Guidelines

Know your body and be alert to any breast cancer symptoms or changes. Report any lump, mass or breast change to your doctor. But don't wait until you have a symptom to be checked. Screening tests can help find breast cancer before any symptoms appear.2 Screening mammograms have increased the number of breast cancers found early.1 Here are some screening guidelines from the American Cancer Society®:

  • Get a mammogram. Women ages 45 to 54 should have a screening mammogram every year as long as they are in good health.1 If you are at high risk of developing breast cancer, ask your doctor whether you should begin MRIs and mammograms earlier.1
  • Know breast cancer symptoms, and be aware of what your breasts normally look and feel like. The most common symptom is a new lump or mass.2 Other possible signs include breast swelling, skin irritation or dimpling, breast or nipple pain, a nipple turned inward, redness, scaliness or thickening of the nipple or breast skin, nipple discharge other than breast milk, or a swollen lymph node.2 Have a healthcare professional check any of these symptoms immediately, regardless of whether your most recent screening test was clear.
  • Get an MRI if you are at high risk. Women who have a 20% or greater lifetime risk of breast cancer should get magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and a mammogram every year. Discuss with your healthcare provider the best age at which to begin screening.1 A yearly MRI is not recommended if your lifetime risk of breast cancer is less than 15%.1 To find out more about what makes a woman high risk, see the American Cancer Society document, Breast Cancer.1,3

For More Information:
1American Cancer Society recommendations for early breast cancer detection in women without breast symptoms,
2Signs and symptoms of breast cancer,
3What are the risk factors for breast cancer?,

Breast Cancer Prevention

Breast Cancer Prevention

Pregnancy and Hormones

Did you know that use of hormone therapy or birth control pills may affect your chances of developing breast cancer?1 Athena, the goddess of wisdom, armed herself with knowledge. As an Athena® warrior, we hope you'll do the same. Here are a few things to think about:

  • Know your risk. If you have never had children or you had your first child after age 30, you have a slightly higher breast cancer risk overall. However, the effect of pregnancy is different for different types of breast cancer. For one type, known as triple-negative, pregnancy seems to increase risk.1
  • Talk to your doctor about birth control pills. Some studies have shown that women using oral contraceptives have a slightly greater risk of breast cancer than women who have never used them.1 However, the risk seems to go back to normal over time once the pills are stopped.1 Before starting or stopping birth control pills, talk to your doctor about your individual situation.1
  • Learn about the potential risks and benefits of hormone replacement therapy. Some types of post-menopausal hormone therapy, also known as hormone replacement therapy, increase the risk of breast cancer.1 Combined hormone therapy, which includes both estrogen and progesterone, has been linked to a higher risk of getting breast cancer and perhaps even a greater risk of dying from it.1 The good news is that three years after stopping hormone therapy, the risk seems to return to normal.2 The use of estrogen alone, which is sometimes prescribed to women after a hysterectomy, does not seem to significantly increase the risk of developing breast cancer; however, it may carry other risks.1, 2 Talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of hormone therapy in your particular situation.

1What are the risk factors for breast cancer?,
2Menopausal Hormone Replacement Therapy and Cancer Risk,

Breast Cancer Treatement

Breast Cancer Treatment

Medical Treatment

Millions of women are surviving breast cancer today because of early detection and new groundbreaking women's cancer treatment. If you have been recently diagnosed with breast cancer, ask your doctor about the best treatments for your particular situation. Treatments fall into several categories, depending on how they work and when they are used. Local therapy, such as surgery and radiation, treats the tumor at the site without affecting the rest of the body.1 Systemic therapy, such as chemotherapy, hormone therapy and targeted therapy, fights cancer cells throughout the body.1 Here is an overview of treatment options you may encounter and wish to discuss with your healthcare provider:

  • Surgery: In most cases, surgery is recommended to remove as much of the cancer as possible.2 Surgery also may be done to discover whether cancer has spread to the lymph nodes.2 Breast-conserving surgery (BCS), also known as partial mastectomy or lumpectomy, removes only part of the breast, depending on the size and placement of the tumor as well as other factors.2 Mastectomy is surgery that removes the entire breast and sometimes the lymph nodes under the arm.2 After having a mastectomy (or some breast-conserving surgeries), some women choose to have reconstructive surgery to restore the way the breast looks.2 If you're considering breast reconstruction, talk to a plastic surgeon about options before your surgery.2
  • Radiation: Radiation therapy uses high-energy rays or particles to kill cancer cells.3 Radiation therapy may be used to kill any remaining cancer cells after surgery or, less often, to shrink a tumor before surgery.3 The method most often used is external beam radiation, which is similar to getting a regular X-ray, but the radiation is more intense.3 Another type of radiation, brachytherapy, involves placing radioactive pellets into the breast tissue next to the cancer; it may be given along with external beam radiation or on its own.3
  • Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy (cancer-killing drugs) may be put into a vein, given as a shot or taken orally.4 These drugs, which enter the bloodstream, are useful for treating cancer that may have spread to distant organs.4 Some patients receive chemo after surgery, even if there is no sign that the cancer has spread, to prevent the cancer from coming back.4 Other patients receive chemo before surgery, to first shrink large tumors or to see how the cancer responds.4 If you are undergoing chemotherapy, you may experience side effects, since the drugs that kill cancer cells also damage some normal cells.4
  • Hormone Therapy: Hormone therapy is most often used to reduce the risk of cancer coming back after surgery, but it may also be used for breast cancer that has spread or come back after treatment.5 Hormone therapy most often involves drugs that block estrogen or change hormone levels.5 In some cases, hormone therapy includes removing or shutting down the ovaries.5
  • Targeted Therapy: Often used alongside chemotherapy, targeted therapy involves newer drugs that are aimed at cancer-causing gene changes.6 They work differently than standard chemo drugs, often causing less severe side effects.6
  • Clinical Trials: Clinical trials, carefully controlled research studies with patient volunteers, test promising new treatments and procedures.7 If you're interested in learning about clinical trials, visit the American Cancer Society® website at or the National Cancer Institute website at and discuss options with your doctor.7

For More Information:
1General types of treatment,
2Surgery for breast cancer,
3Radiation therapy,
5Hormone therapy,
6Targeted therapy,
7Clinical Trials,

Breast Cancer Treatement

Breast Cancer Treatment

Non-Medical Therapies

If you have breast cancer, chances are you've heard about non-medical ways to treat your cancer or symptoms. Well-meaning friends and family may suggest vitamins, herbs, special diets or other treatments.1 While the decision is ultimately yours, it's important to talk with your doctor and thoroughly research any non-standard treatment you are considering. Here are a few points to consider:

  • Complementary or Alternative? Complementary therapies refer to methods used along with your regular medical care.1 Alternative therapies are used instead of medical treatment.1 It can be confusing, as not everyone uses these terms the same way.1 Make sure you know the difference. Most complementary therapies are used to help you feel better.1 Examples include acupuncture to reduce pain or peppermint tea to relieve nausea.1 Alternative therapies, which have not been proven safe or effective in clinical trials, may be offered as cures and are used instead of standard medical treatments.1
  • What's safe? Many complementary methods are helpful, while some are harmless but haven't been proven effective.1 Others may be harmful or interfere with your medical treatment, so be sure to check with your medical team before beginning complementary therapy.1 Alternative treatments, however, are often downright dangerous. Some have life-threatening side effects or delay you from getting crucial medical treatments.1
  • How do I learn more? The best sources of information, along with your doctor, are reputable organizations, such as the American Cancer Society® and the National Cancer Institute. Avoid unproven websites, and use internet groups for support rather than specific medical advice. Beware of anyone who promises to cure your cancer, suggests you forgo regular medical treatment or asks you to travel to another country.1 Don't be afraid to discuss non-medical treatments with your medical team. Your doctors are there to help you and can advise you about safely using some nontraditional methods.1

1Complementary and Alternative Medicine,

Breast Cancer Treatement

Breast Cancer Treatment

Treatment Support

Athena's founder, a breast cancer survivor, understands the importance of support. Along with a compassionate medical team, she had a wide network of personal support when she battled breast cancer. She is paying that support forward, not only through Athena® but also through advocacy and involvement with several organizations. Whether you need support as a patient, as a caregiver or as a mom, Athena wants to help you find it.

  • Support for Patients: When you're battling breast cancer, it's easy to get caught up in a whirlwind of tests, treatments and procedures. But it's also important to focus on your emotional and psychological well-being. You may find comfort through your family, friends, house of worship or spiritual group. You may benefit from a breast cancer support group, an online community or an individual counselor. Choose whatever combination works best for you. The American Cancer Society® is a great resource. Check out Reach To Recovery®, which pairs breast cancer patients with breast cancer survivors. Or try one of the Society's online communities, such as Cancer Survivors Network or I Can Cope® online cancer education classes.1 We at Athena want to provide personal support, as well. Become a fan of the Athena Facebook page, read the survivors' stories on this website or follow our blog to connect with others on your journey.
  • Support for Caregivers: It's a job you hope you never have – caring for a spouse, partner, family member or close friend who has breast cancer. Chances are, when your loved one's world was turned upside-down, so was yours. In addition to feelings of fear, worry and sadness, you may be facing overwhelming responsibilities.2 The American Cancer Society® provides wonderful resources for caregivers on topics including communication, understanding the healthcare system, legal concerns, caring for a cancer patient at home and long-distance caregiving among others.2,3 Just remember, caring for your loved one also means taking care of yourself. Lean on friends and family, seek out caregiver support groups in your area or join an online community.4 Most important, ask for help when you need it.
  • Support for Children: If you're a mom with children still at home, hearing that you have breast cancer is particularly scary. If they are very young, you may wonder how you're going to take care of them. If they're older, you may worry about how they are going to handle your diagnosis. Regardless, there are plenty of resources to help both you and your children.5 The American Cancer Society® offers tips to help children understand the disease and treatment, as well as cope with fears they may have.5 Your healthcare team is also a good source of information. Many cancer treatment centers offer programs and support groups specifically for children.

1Find Support Programs and Services in Your Area,
2Being a Caregiver,
3What You Need to Know as a Cancer Caregiver,
4Coping as a Caregiver,
5Helping Children When a Family Member Has Cancer,

Breast Cancer Treatement

Breast Cancer Research

Researching Causes, Risk Factors and Treatments

Researchers throughout the world are studying the causes of breast cancer and new methods of women's cancer treatment.1 Ongoing studies focus on lifestyle factors and habits, such as diet and exercise, that affect breast cancer risk.1 Other research is exploring how genes influence breast cancer.1 An early yet active area of research focuses on potential causes of breast cancer in the environment.2

Research is underway to study several drugs that may reduce the risk of developing breast cancer. Other studies focus on new drugs used to treat the disease.2 Among many promising studies, several drugs that strengthen and reduce the risk of fractures in bones weakened by metastatic breast cancer are being tested to determine whether they enhance or hinder other systemic treatments.2

Studies of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), which is considered non-invasive or pre-invasive, may someday help women with DCIS make treatment decisions. Researchers are studying the use of computers and statistical methods to estimate the odds that a woman's DCIS will become invasive.2,3 In other studies, researchers have found that in many women with breast cancer, cells may break away from the tumor and enter the blood. These circulating tumor cells can be detected with sensitive lab tests. Although these tests can help predict which patients may have their cancer come back, it isn't clear whether using them will help patients live longer. They potentially may be useful in patients with advanced breast cancer to help tell if treatments are working.2

For More Information:
1What's new in breast cancer research?,
2What's new in breast cancer research and treatment,
3Types of breast cancers,

Breast Cancer Treatement

Breast Cancer Research

Developing Better Screening Methods

We already know that early breast cancer detection saves lives. Mammography continues to be the standard screening test, with an MRI in addition to a mammogram recommended for some women in high-risk categories.2

Researchers also are looking at other imaging methods, including ductogram (galactogram), PET (positron emission tomography) scan, nuclear medicine studies, scintimammography (molecular breast imaging), electrical impedance imaging (T-scan™), thermography (thermal imaging) and other experimental imaging tests.1

1Experimental and other breast imaging methods,
2Mammograms and Other Breast Imaging Tests,

Breast Cancer Treatement

Breast Cancer Research

Funding Breast Cancer Research

In partnership with the American Cancer Society®, Athena® is helping fund vital research that may one day lead to a cure. From 1971 to 2010, the Society awarded about $450.7 million in breast cancer research and training grants.1 American Cancer Society-funded research has led to the development of life-saving drugs, as well as to the discovery of genes linked to breast cancer.1 Since 2011, the Society has awarded $46.4 million in breast cancer research and training grants. Currently, it is funding $86 million through 220 grants in areas including genetics, etiology, diagnostics and drug development, as well as studies in prevention, diagnosis, treatment and quality of life.1

1Breast Cancer Facts and Figures 2013-2014 (Download),

Prevention, the best defense against breast cancer.

The goddess Athena cut an impressive figure with her spear and golden helmet, but it's worth noting that she always looked for a peaceful resolution first. The best battle against breast cancer is the one that doesn't have to be fought. Taking steps to reduce your risk is one of the best weapons in the war against breast cancer.

Did You Know?*

  • Breast cancer death rates have been declining since about 1990, especially among women younger than 50.1 These decreases are thought to be a result of earlier detection through screening and increased awareness, as well as improved treatment.2
  • While overall death rates are declining, not all women have benefited equally. Poor women now have the highest rates of death from breast cancer, probably because of less access to screening and treatments.1
  • Currently, there are more than 2.8 million breast cancer survivors in the United States, including women still being treated and those who have completed treatment.5
  • Women age 40 and older should have a mammogram every year and continue as long as they are in good health.3
  • Women in their 20s and 30s should have a clinical breast exam at least every three years. After age 40, women should have an exam every year.3
  • Women who have a 20% or greater lifetime risk of breast cancer should get magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and a mammogram every year. Discuss with your healthcare provider the best age at which to begin screening.3
  • Studies show that exercise reduces breast cancer risk, as does maintaining a healthy weight.4
  • Drinking alcohol is linked to an increased risk of breast cancer.4
  • Some types of hormone therapy increase the risk of breast cancer.4
  • Breast-feeding your children may slightly decrease your risk of breast cancer.4

*For More Information:
1Report: Breast Cancer Death Rates Decline, but More Slowly Among Poor,
2Cancer Prevention & Early Detection Facts & Figures 2010, (Download)
3American Cancer Society recommendations for early breast cancer detection in women without breast symptoms,
4Lifestyle-related risk factors for breast cancer,
5What are the key statistics about breast cancer?,

Information is powerful.

Just as Athena used strategy and wisdom as her main defense, we believe information is the first step in winning the war against breast cancer. Become your own goddess of wisdom. Empower yourself with these helpful resources.

Athena® bottled water helps make a difference.

Purchases of Athena® bottled water have raised $3 million to fight breast cancer.

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