Breast cancer prevention is important for all women and especially for women who have already had breast cancer and are concerned about recurrence. It is not about doing just one thing. It’s about doing a lot of little things that add up to a great preventative plan to keep our bodies in a mode where it has the immune defences to prevent the disease.
When I got breast cancer, I was already living a health life-style, eating a very clean diet and had a considerable knowledge of herbal remedies and dietary practices that I used to promote my health. So, in my mind, it made no sense at all why I would get this scary disease.
What I hadn’t considered was the buried, emotional pain that I was carrying around in my body. I also didn’t realize that the high estrogen birth control pill I was on for many years had thrown my hormonal system completely out of whack. I wasn’t doing as well as I thought I was. I looked good on the outside, but inside my body was telling a different story. My body was in distress and I needed a plan to help it heal.
There are many alternative ways to work on our mental and physical health to help prevent the disease but I am going to cover just a few of the things that I think are important that I did during and after I had breast cancer.
1. Medicinal mushroom tea to the rescue
Lately, there is nothing more intriguing and exciting than the evidence that is accumulating surrounding the medicinal benefits of mushrooms. They are natural and they are potent when used for healing purposes.
Certain mushrooms, such as lions mane, maitake, reishi and turkey tail are known for their powerful anti-tumor compounds and their ability to help strengthen the body’s natural defences.
Not to mention — mushrooms are cool!
The mushrooms with proven anticancer activity include:
Lions mane mushroom and breast cancer
Studies are coming in on the benefits on using lions mane mushroom extract or powder that you can make into a delicious tea for the use in prevention of breast cancer. In a 2021 in vitro study, lions mane was examined for it’s potent effects against estrogen receptor-positive (ER+) cancer cells. ER+ cancers grow in response to estrogen in the bodily system and make up approximately 80 percent of all breast cancers.
There are some really great mushroom extract formulas that you can make into tea that actually taste good. Make sure you get a higher grade, organic mixture with good reviews to assure the best quality.
2. Load up on green food and juice
It is important to be aware of what you’re eating to help prevent breast cancer. We all have an idea of what a healthy diet is — plenty of vegetables and fruit, whole grains, nuts and seeds, etc. It is also pretty clear in most research that eating processed foods, or eating too many simple carbohydrates such as pasta or white bread is not a good idea. Sugary foods and drinks and alcohol are also not recommended if we are serious about preventing the disease.
One of the fastest ways to boost our immune system is to eat raw and lightly steamed vegetables, specifically cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and brussels sprouts because of their anti-cancer compounds.
Research suggests that the compounds in cruciferous vegetables have the ability to turn on genes that inhibit or suppress tumors, naturally slowing down the growth of the tumor and stimulating the self-destruction of cancer cells, known as apoptosis. Also, the glucosinolates found in cruciferous vegetables have the power to stimulate enzymes that put the brakes on carcinogens and inhibit the ability for the cancer cell to spread.
More broccoli please!
Dark green, leafy vegetables are also important. The carotenoids found in leafy vegetables such as kale have powerful antioxidants and boost the body’s own antioxidant defences and also remove free radicals from the body.
Some of these include:
Another great way to get greens in us quickly is to drink green vegetable juice — such as a combination of spinach, kale, cucumber, celery, etc. It is fast and effective and gets into our system in a much more concentrated fashion.
I drink a lot of freshly squeezed, green juices on a regular basis to prevent breast cancer. Sometimes I make it fresh but when I’m in a hurry, I stop and get it at my nearest health food store. It’s a great idea to invest in a juicer so you can experiment with all sorts of delicious combinations.
3. Do the forgiveness work
More research is coming out suggesting that intense and persistent anger that is suppressed can lead to breast cancer. The research states that fifty-nine percent of women with difficult to treat breast cancer has been linked to unforgiveness. That is a staggering statistic!
Is it really worth holding onto our pain and suffering? Wouldn’t now be a good time to let go of the anger against the people or situations that have so deeply hurt you?
It may not be easy to forgive, but it is possible. We don’t need to confront the person who hurt us, this may just be too difficult and painful to consider. The good news is we can forgive them all on our own without ever seeing them.
Often there is childhood trauma such as abuse, neglect or abandonment that is in need of addressing. Or, maybe it’s a spouse who cheated on you or left you. There are many situations that can cause pain. The deeply rooted emotional pain that goes along with these stories is stored inside our bodily systems, in what Eckhart Tolle, the author of The Power of Now, refers to as, ‘the emotional pain body.’
The emotional pain body lives inside us, sometimes completely oblivious to our conscious mind. However, our bodies hold it like a fragile tea cup that could chip or break at any moment. This deep pain and anger affects our daily lives, relationships and health and it is absolutely vital that we take a good look, or as Tolle says, “witness the pain body.” in order to release it.
We must do the forgiveness work.
As powerful and beautiful women, we have the right to live free, without the burdens of our past. We deserve a beautiful life full of happiness, free from the emotional luggage that we so bravely and often obliviously carry with us. It’s time to put the heavy suitcases down.
I suggest short term therapy to release the traumas of our past. I also recommend writing a letter to the person who hurt you and then burning it after. This can be very cathartic. I did this exercise when releasing the pain that I felt from having a father who I felt abandoned me.
Forgive and move on and watch your health and your life improve!
4. Meditate for 20 minutes a day
Meditation has been around for thousands of years. It is a practice that has tremendous benefits for our mental and physical health, as the two work in perfect tandem. Mindfulness meditation can help us to become aware of what is happening in the present moment, relaxing our minds and bringing it out of past and future and ‘reaction mode.’
When we have cancer, or are trying to prevent it, keeping our stress levels down and becoming more present in our lives is important. Meditation helps with this process by helping our minds stop obsessing about the past, which could include a former breast cancer experience, and also thinking about the future and making up fearful scenarios of how the cancer could return.
Let’s face it, our thoughts go crazy when thinking about cancer. I know, because mine did! The simplest way to control and tame those scary thoughts is to meditate.
Meditation is about rediscovering the ‘now’ and creating space to become more in touch with ourselves and more connected to our soulful nature. It allows us to accept where we are in life right now, helping us to just ‘be’ instead of falling prey to the crazy making thoughts that we tend to create out of fear based thinking. (Fear — False Evidence Appearing Real)
Basic instruction for meditation:
5. Do exercises that move and stretch the breast area
We can’t sit on the couch and eat snacks all day if we want to avoid breast cancer! It is important to get up, out of the house and move our bodies. All forms of exercise are great and highly recommended for prevention.
While studies show that thirty minutes of brisk exercise a day is good, sixty minutes is even better when it comes to reducing breast cancer risk. Also, moving the breast area is important because it stimulates the lymph glands — and it just feels good!
Sometimes we carry negative thoughts about our breasts when thinking about breast cancer so it is helpful to move the breast area and even repeat a healing statement, such as — thank you for my healthy breasts!
If you are not sure which exercise is best for you, here are a few I recommend that move and stretch the breast area:
While there are many ways to help prevent breast cancer, I have included five of the methods that work well for me. These methods include — using the potent cancer inhibiting compounds of medical mushrooms, the cleansing benefits of dark green vegetables that rejuvenate the system and remove free radicals from the body, the forgiveness work that releases emotional trauma from the past in order to truly heal, meditation to calm the mind and body and become more present and the exercises that help move and stretch the breast area to stimulate the lymph glands and increase blood flow and help us feel better about our breasts overall.
I created a book with bits of advice and info that worked for me on my breast cancer journey.