Once you’ve been diagnosed with breast cancer then another whole series of other questions arise about plotting your path to health apart from the usual surgery, chemo, radiation and possible hormone treatment. And of course there are so many things to consider about diet and lifestyle that it becomes a mine field of should I shouldn’t I questions! You could end up pulling out your last remaining hair with the stress of it all …
SHOULD I or SHOULD’NT I eat soya. Someone please help me!
When I was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2003 it seemed that perhaps one of the possible reasons for my breast cancer was due to eating dairy as a child which had significant amount of hormones in. Of course terrified of the oestrogen in milk, cheese and meat at that moment I gave them up and started using soya milk instead of ordinary milk. I believed at that time that I was making a sensible choice which would help protect my future health.
And then I was told that soya is the enemy! Full of natural plant estrogens and therefore feeding my hormone based cancer. But I never actually stopped to read what was really being said about soya and take a more measured, knowledgeable view. So today I thought I would do just that and here it is. Finally 15 years later some real information, it seems that soya can be consumed as part of a balanced diet.
And what about alcohol and breast cancer. Did I get it because I sometimes had a bit of a binge on a Friday night in my teens? It does seem that there is a link that can be made between the two but what are the actual figures? However by stopping drinking or reducing intake you may be able to lower the risk of getting breast cancer or having a reoccurrence. Good to know!
And what about weight, fat, cholesterol … have I got breast cancer because my weight went up and down in correlation with my love life. Is it because I’m fat? I once dieted in 1987, is that the reason? Stop tearing your hair out and have a read. The truth of the matter is that when we feed our bodies we can also unknowingly also be feeding certain types of breast cancer.
Ok so white sugar that’s the culprit … SUGAR! I must immediately eradicate it from my diet and eat only raw, vegan, green spinach based cakes and drink things made of kale … YUCK! Let’s see what some of the experts think about this before we lose all pleasure in life. Sugar and weight both increase the risk of many types of disease and breast cancer is one of them so yes we should try to limit our sugar intake.
So it must be because I ate meat, I still eat meat but only organic, and fed in the purest of pure grasses and shrubs above 500 meters. But maybe I need to be vegan and cut out all meat and dairy. Or perhaps just go the whole hog and be Jain and not eat things from the earth too … or perhaps I should just read the facts. Please note this graphic refers to all cancers and is not specific to breast cancer.
I smoked for years and still do have the odd one with a glass of wine … I’m now filled with guilt, the spread to the bones, those tumors in my liver must be due to this continued bad behavior. So what is the link between smoking and breast cancer? I have no idea … smoking is bad but is that why I have breast cancer? According to my research there is no definitive link between smoking and breast cancer. We know we know, smoking is generally bad for you.
And on and on it goes! Should I? Shouldn’t I?
More turmeric, less salt, the bicarbonate diet and make myself alkaline free, low, high, dark chocolate, eat raw, only organic, coffee kills, red wine is good, pomegranates save lives, I have absolutely no idea. I’m exhausted just contemplating all of the things which I have done and consumed or should consume or do which have given me this cancer or continue to put me at risk or will save me.
I sit here in blissful ignorance believing that having survived since 2003 with breast cancer that I must be doing something right. I put my longevity down to my attitude and although it isn’t a definitive finding there does seem to be a link between survival and happiness. I’m a naturally positive person, lots of people tell me that I have an energy, I’m not religious, or spiritual however evidence suggests that all kinds of belief offer a sense of fulfillment and that these people cope better with cancer, its treatment and the road on.
I am who I am, cancer has shaped and formed me as we’ve gone on our road together for the last 15 years but I have never let it dominate me. I choose to live, eat and drink what my body tells me it wants and sometimes that’s a huge steak not only is it barbecued but it is still bloody inside, washed down with a large glass of red wine. I live my life and will continue to do so for as long as I can refusing to be limited or defined by rules and regulations. I will not be tearing my hair out wondering whether I should or shouldn’t do or have done something.
Just listen to your body, it will tell you what it needs; pineapple, a huge bowl of pasta, a slab of chocolate cake, a smoothie, a beer, a walk, a swim, a bubble bath, dry toast and a cuppa tea … listen and you’ll find the answers yourself.
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