Taking hormone replacement therapy (HRT) increases breast cancer risk. According to the Black Women’s Health Study at Boston University, sisters taking estrogen or an estrogen/progestin combo for more than ten years saw a 50% rise in breast cancer rates (studies show similar rates in white women). Lynn Rosenberg, ScD, the study’s lead author, says, “Only 20% of women on HRT really need it.” If you’ve had a hysterectomy or severe menopausal symptoms, talk to your doctor about minimizing HRT timing and dose.