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Topic: Changes you made after diagnosis?

Forum: Complementary and Holistic Medicine and Treatment — Complementary medicine refers to treatments that are used WITH standard treatment. Holistic medicine is a term used to describe therapies that attempt to treat the patient as a whole person.

Posted on: Jan 6, 2018 09:40PM

Axolotl wrote:


I'm curious what lifestyle changes you made after your cancer diagnosis in hopes of protecting/improving your health and long-term outcome. Could include anything: exercise, diet, use of supplements, essential oils, etc. Or things that you stopped using or doing. Not to replace treatment, just to be as healthy as you can with things you can control.

I was just diagnosed, and was really surprised as I am 37, active and eat a plant-based diet. I was on Zoloft (an antidepressant) for several years and can only wonder if that played a role in the breast cancer. I've recently stopped taking it.

Diagnosed at 37. Extensive DCIS (7cm) with scattered multifocal IDC. Oncotype 12. Dx 12/18/2017, DCIS/IDC, Right, Grade 3, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (FISH) Surgery 12/26/2017 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant
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Posts 61 - 90 (103 total)

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May 30, 2018 01:46AM Momine wrote:

Redgirl, there are studies to back your intuition: "I think if you can let go, it is more healthy." I have a feeling that the impact of stressful and/or sad events has a lot to do with how we process and deal with it. Which would logically mean that it is more important to adjust coping skills than it is to avoid stress/trauma.

Dx 6/1/2011, ILC, 5cm, Stage IIIB, Grade 2, 7/23 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 6/20/2011 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Ellence (epirubicin), Fluorouracil (5-fluorouracil, 5-FU, Adrucil), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 9/13/2011 Mastectomy: Left, Right Radiation Therapy 1/9/2012 Surgery 3/8/2012 Prophylactic ovary removal Hormonal Therapy 4/1/2012 Femara (letrozole)
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May 30, 2018 06:33AM Amelia01 wrote:

The first thing I was asked by the holistic oncologist (who is also by training a radiologist and a breast surgeon) was if I had any personal losses in the past few years. She (and others) absolutely believe that profound grief can alter the body. Have a look at Dr. Bernie Siegel. I was also directed to Alejandro Jodorowsky (book "Metagenealogy") by another specialist.

Dx 10/17/2017, ILC/IDC, Left, 6cm+, 17/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/7/2017 Chemotherapy Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Ellence (epirubicin), Taxol (paclitaxel)
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May 30, 2018 06:05PM 1redgirl wrote:

I envy people that can grieve, but move on. I never move on. I just silently grieve. I am the great pretender. While I sometimes can speak or write about my loses, it generally triggers a flood of tears. After my horse was killed, I had a working student opportunity to train under a fabulous rider. I took it. I needed to stay really busy. I was only in my early 40s and still looked forward to new experiences. I met my best friend that had advanced breast cancer. We both knew she would die. However those many months were very upbeat. She was so strong, I stayed strong. We share our crazy love of horses. She wanted to stay alive long enough to see her granddaughter born. She did. Amazing woman. Funny. Upbeat. Just a trooper. The chemo absolutely ravaged her plus the radiation. She was a stunning woman prior to getting sick. I wish she was here now to give me a pep talk.

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May 30, 2018 07:24PM nonomimi5 wrote:

I changed my life drastically since the DX. I read the book "Breast" by Dr. Kristi Funk (Dr. to Angelina Jolie, Sheryl Crow) and follow the mostly plant base diet and do light exercises everyday. Her method is complementary. My joint pain in hands got better since I started eating anti-inflammatory foods. I am 54 and estrogen positive. I think it's important to be at a good weight, and try not to be stressed out...easier said than done! But you can do this.

Dx 3/23/2018, DCIS/IDC/IDC: Tubular, Right, 2cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 4/30/2018 Lumpectomy; Lymph node removal Radiation Therapy 5/28/2018 Breast Hormonal Therapy 7/1/2018 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Aug 1, 2018 09:54PM WestOxford wrote:

Thank you momine very interesting post

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Aug 1, 2018 10:25PM WestOxford wrote:

Wow thanks for posting fantastic.

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Aug 2, 2018 04:58PM ctmbsikia wrote:

Scaled way back on the wine, and trying not to smoke.  I am interested in the stress factor, however, I believe it's a combination of everything that no one can explain.

 My Short story:   Dad died Jan 2014, Mom had dementia and diabetes we couldn't leave her alone at all.  I took leave from work, younger sister and brother worked on finding a good facility, we moved our mother and made settlement on the house to pay for her care by the 1st of June.  Oct 2014 my sister was diagnosed with BC, we never did tell Mom, she was declining and died the following Feb. 2015. Sister and mother were in same hospital at same time for a couple of days.  Sister is doing well.  In late 2016 my husband moves his mother and step father off a 2nd story apt. house to a ranch house.  Mother in law then became delusional, I took her to Dr's and she was diagnosed with dementia.  My BC diagnosis Dec 2017  and I had been under a lot of stress with the caregiving.   Could be connected?

Also, my sister is a leftie and her cancer was on the right.  I'm a righty and my cancer was on the left.  Pretty weird.

Dx 12/14/2017, DCIS/IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 1/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 1/16/2018, LCIS, Right Surgery 1/31/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 4/11/2018 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 6/25/2018 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Aug 2, 2018 08:15PM edwards750 wrote:

Bless your heart you have had so many illnesses to deal with. So sorry.

Stress is s contributor but don’t you find it almost comical that doctors advise us to avoid stress. Just exactly how do we do that? It’s not like we ask for it. I do take Prozac now because my internist said I need to take my anxiety down a notch. It does help and no side effects.

My mother had BC and now both my sister and I have it. I’m 7 years out this month. My sister had a local recurrence 2 years ago. She was 4 years out at the time. She’s doing fine so far. At least it wasn’t metastatic.

What I have learned from this insidious disease is I am stronger than I thought. Bet you are too.

Keep the faith and keep us posted.


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Aug 3, 2018 03:00AM JaBoo wrote:

The stress was a contributor in my case, I believe... father was dying at hospital, after a surprise accident, I was visiting every day between caring for two small kids... after father died mother declined and spent 3 months in hospital with very bad prospects, then was released and we took care for her with my sister. Work, mother, small kids... I really felt it was too much for me. when mother started to get a bit better in our care, this cancer happened. I think, if the stress didn't cause it, it certainly was a big contributor.

dx at 38 Dx 5/22/2018, IDC, Left, 2cm, Grade 3, 1/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Surgery 6/14/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Surgery 6/19/2018 Lumpectomy: Left Hormonal Therapy 7/16/2018 Zoladex (goserelin) Chemotherapy 7/16/2018 AC + T (Taxol) Targeted Therapy 9/13/2018 Herceptin (trastuzumab)
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Aug 6, 2018 12:36AM Erinashley19 wrote:

something to consider when when dealing with stress is low vitamin B. It’s often referred to as the “stress and duress” vitamin and low levels of it can wreak absolute havoc on a body like you wouldn’t believe. A close friend of mine was having terrible heath problems and was diagnosed with MS. for whatever reason she just didn’t feel that was right and kept pushing for more testing. Come to find out her body was completely depleted of B and she wasn’t absorbing it via vitamins. She now hasn’t to take injections and ALL of her symptoms have for gone as well as her MS diagnosis. My husbands grandmother lost her daughter in a paddle boating accident and within 2 months was in terrible health due to the stress of it all. My MIL pushed to get her b levels checked and she was completely depleted. 2 days later she suffered n episode of Bell’s palsy and began b vitamin injections. She was nearly recovered in a matter of weeks. Stress is a killer in so many ways. Don’t underestimate the power of b vitamins in the body

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Aug 7, 2018 09:55PM 1redgirl wrote:

Well I gave up sweets, which for me is a very big deal as I baked everyday. I gave up soda, cookies, cakes, rolls, breads, fried foods, to name a few things. Really, I can breeze through the super market since most is off limits. I honestly do not crave sweets anymore.

Since I no longer ride horses, I ride my bike everywhere. I did 30 miles the other day. No biggie. Lots of hills. I am much stronger than ever. I ride everyday. I have dropped 26 lbs. I still have some muffin around my belly to get rid of. It is slowly coming off. I am determined to get rid of that fat.

I also fast everyday usually around 14 hrs, but often much longer. When I began doing this, I was fearful my migraines would pop up which was always the case in the past if I did not eat upon rising. Not anymore. No headaches since ditching sugar. I sleep well. Never have in the past. No more joint pain. I have not taken Advil in months. I honestly feel great.

With respect to stress and in my case sadness, I allow myself a few minutes each day to think of those I miss. I often do cry. I live in an Amish community and often see their buggies on my bike rides. That of course makes me miss my horses. I then tell myself to let it go. Take a deep breath and think happy thoughts. Our summer here has been beautiful and for that I am grateful.
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Aug 8, 2018 11:34AM Amica wrote:


Is there some association between sugar and breast cancer? I was unaware of anything like that.



1998 at 39 Stage 2 IDC, 1/16 nodes, ER/PR +, HER2-,Gr 3, surgery, AC + Taxol, rads, oopher/hysterectomy, Tamoxifen, Aromasin completed 2010 - Aug 2018 metastatic recurrence Stage IV, ER+ PR- HER2-, Gr 3, Sept 2018 Letrozole/Ibrance, Prolia
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Aug 8, 2018 11:53AM MelissaDallas wrote:

There is an association of maintaining a healthy weight and blood glucose level. You will hear all the time that "sugar causes cancer", but that is vast oversimplification of carbohydrate metabolism and blood glucose levels.

LCIS, extensive sclerosing adenosis, TAH/BSO & partial omentectomy for mucinous borderline ovarian tumor.
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Aug 8, 2018 03:09PM 1redgirl wrote:

Amica - I am 66. Estrogen, my problem, lives happily in those rolls of fat around most women. Those rolls of fat come from a high sugar/fat diet. There are loads of articles explaining better than I can about sugar and estrogen. I no longer have rolls. Now I have little waves. It needs to go.



Equally important is fasting.


I have saved many articles about nutrition, fasting and estrogen. I am sure others have good ones as well.

I am doing all I can without taking toxic drugs that could injure me further. We shall see.

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Aug 8, 2018 04:42PM Amica wrote:


thanks for the info and links. I'll read up on it. Like my doc always said, "Estrogen is your enemy."

1998 at 39 Stage 2 IDC, 1/16 nodes, ER/PR +, HER2-,Gr 3, surgery, AC + Taxol, rads, oopher/hysterectomy, Tamoxifen, Aromasin completed 2010 - Aug 2018 metastatic recurrence Stage IV, ER+ PR- HER2-, Gr 3, Sept 2018 Letrozole/Ibrance, Prolia
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Aug 18, 2018 11:09AM WC3 wrote:

I cut back on my sugar and carbs, dairy, peanuts, and things with a lot of palmitic acid in it. I had a little over a month to observe the tumor with these changes in effect before chemo started and it just kept growing until the first round of chemo. But I didn't expect to see a profound change from my dietary changes and was really just hoping to not help it along, and minimize the chance of it spreading as best I could do if it hasn't already.

But during chemotherapy the low carb/ sugar thing has gone out the window a bit because I've had difficulty eating so if all I get down is white bread and a popsicle then that is what it has to be.

Dx 2018, IDC, Left, 3cm, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Chemotherapy 5/31/2018 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 11/14/2018 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Targeted Therapy Perjeta (pertuzumab) Targeted Therapy Herceptin (trastuzumab)
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Aug 18, 2018 01:25PM santabarbarian wrote:

Hi everyone.

This is my first post. Good topic!!

I was diagnosed in July with TNBC. I am being very proactive with diet and lifestyle elements. I am an athletic person and pretty fit but have put on more belly fat since aging (57). My main risk factor is DES (I am a DES daughter). I have gone off carbs (except healthy complex carbs, like quinoa, sweet potato). No sugar, no flour, no alcohol. I am juicing veggies every day. Trying to make every bite I put in my body a nutrient dense bite. And I am taking a lot of supplements recommended by an integrative medicine cancer doctor I had a consult with. He also suggests a lot of physical activity including interval training (30 secs high intensity (jogging), 30 secs low intensity (brisk walking), x3... then a three min rest... & repeat for a total of 3 times.) Says it's very important to retaining muscle and keeping strength.

Supplements recommended to me: B-6, Alphalipoic acid, Omega 3 fish oils, whey protein isolate, green powder (turbo greens), Quercetin, curcumin, D3, and L Glutamine started day before chemo for 3 days. Having read about Metformin correlating w better outcomes I started on Metformin w my Oncologist's agreement.

I basically trust my body and my immune system, despite this cancer, because I actually found the cancer due to an inflammatory response... my body as trying to fight it... a pink spot on my breast appeared, which induced me to poke around and find the lump. I am the sort of person who had a baby w no drugs, so sitting here w a port in my chest feels surreal.....

There is some evidence in support of a ketogenic diet for TNBC and also for fasting prior to chemo. I did a "fasting mimicking diet" for four days before my chemo, with day five being the day of the chemo (fasting mimicking = 800 veggie based calories: ~15% protein, ~43% fat, ~43% carbs). The fasting tells your healthy cells to protect themselves, but it makes flawed cells weaker. So a brief fast prior to chemo made sense to me. I will do that each time, I think.

Also, as my tumor is easily palpable, maybe 1/3" below the skin, I put a lot of heat on it. I had read about Hyperthermia (heat) for tumors -- (they use it at the Cleveland Clinic and elsewhere). One of the links I found talked about how vets use hyperthermia to shrink animal tumors, to allow them to be removed. And though most places heat the tumor with ultrasound, the vets often use a plain old re-circulating hot water bottle device. I figured the heat would not hurt me and might help so the day prior to chemo I put a hot water bottle on my tumor for a few hours, very hot, just shy of burning myself. Again, the healthy cells tolerate the heat but the cancer cells go into a heat shock and give off heat shock protein, allowing immune system to recognize them. And during the infusion I had heat on it, and intermittently for the next day or so while the meds were in my blood. At the very least, heat brings blood to the area of the body where it is applied.

I have had one chemo treatment so far, 6 days ago (Taxotere/Carboplatin) and came through it very well. Fatigue, constipation but no nausea. And was elated to feel my tumor shrink -- a lot! It went from a walnut to an almond!

It makes me feel better to "do what I can" and try to give my body (and the chemo) an assist

Dx 7/13/2018, IDC, Left, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 3, ER-/PR-, HER2- (FISH) Chemotherapy 8/13/2018 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 12/20/2018 Lumpectomy: Left
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Aug 18, 2018 04:57PM - edited Aug 18, 2018 04:58PM by Amica


That's impressive. You are being very proactive, good for you. Can you eat bread? Just wondering.

I have a juicer. I think I will start juicing.

1998 at 39 Stage 2 IDC, 1/16 nodes, ER/PR +, HER2-,Gr 3, surgery, AC + Taxol, rads, oopher/hysterectomy, Tamoxifen, Aromasin completed 2010 - Aug 2018 metastatic recurrence Stage IV, ER+ PR- HER2-, Gr 3, Sept 2018 Letrozole/Ibrance, Prolia
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Aug 18, 2018 06:09PM JaBoo wrote:

I personally don't believe in juicing... at all. Removing one of the most important ingredients of veggies/fruit (fiber)... making a smoothie is simething totally different. IMHO

dx at 38 Dx 5/22/2018, IDC, Left, 2cm, Grade 3, 1/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Surgery 6/14/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Surgery 6/19/2018 Lumpectomy: Left Hormonal Therapy 7/16/2018 Zoladex (goserelin) Chemotherapy 7/16/2018 AC + T (Taxol) Targeted Therapy 9/13/2018 Herceptin (trastuzumab)
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Aug 18, 2018 06:11PM Amica wrote:


That's a good point. I guess one could do both. I have to admit, I bought a juicer and have never used it :)

1998 at 39 Stage 2 IDC, 1/16 nodes, ER/PR +, HER2-,Gr 3, surgery, AC + Taxol, rads, oopher/hysterectomy, Tamoxifen, Aromasin completed 2010 - Aug 2018 metastatic recurrence Stage IV, ER+ PR- HER2-, Gr 3, Sept 2018 Letrozole/Ibrance, Prolia
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Aug 18, 2018 06:18PM JaBoo wrote:

Amica, think about the huge sugar load the body receives in 30 seconds, when you drink a glass of juiced fruit (say 3apples+2 oranges) and you are still hungry, because you just had a drink... whereas when you eat the whole fruit, it takes like 30 minutes and from 3 apples and 2 oranges you are very full. thanks to the fibre (and the munching, too) , the sugar gets digested very differently and slowly. (personally I wouldn't even be able to eat so much fruit in one sitting, 1 apple is enough)

dx at 38 Dx 5/22/2018, IDC, Left, 2cm, Grade 3, 1/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Surgery 6/14/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Surgery 6/19/2018 Lumpectomy: Left Hormonal Therapy 7/16/2018 Zoladex (goserelin) Chemotherapy 7/16/2018 AC + T (Taxol) Targeted Therapy 9/13/2018 Herceptin (trastuzumab)
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Aug 18, 2018 07:18PM - edited Aug 18, 2018 07:19PM by Amica


Yeah, I see what you mean. Something to think about. thanks.

1998 at 39 Stage 2 IDC, 1/16 nodes, ER/PR +, HER2-,Gr 3, surgery, AC + Taxol, rads, oopher/hysterectomy, Tamoxifen, Aromasin completed 2010 - Aug 2018 metastatic recurrence Stage IV, ER+ PR- HER2-, Gr 3, Sept 2018 Letrozole/Ibrance, Prolia
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Aug 20, 2018 11:45AM 1redgirl wrote:

The issue with fruits is the natural sugars. So when you read the labels of fruit drinks with no sugar added, a cup is still a lot of sugar. The point made above that it takes many pieces of fruit to get the juice. All summer I grew strawberries and raspberries. I eat a handful during the day when I am working in the yard. It is very filling. Also I eat grapes that also is quite filling. I drink V8 as well. Also put a lot of lemon in my tea. I drink green tea and ginger tea with lemon.

I fast. I stop eating around 7 pm or before. I do not eat again till late morning or noon. I swear I am not hungry. I bike every am around 15 miles now before eating. I do rise and drink a glass or two of water before biking.

I grew up in a farming community. Most farmers rose very early to milk. They eventually came in for breakfast after chores. They ate well. They then proceeded back out to work off that breakfast. Back in at noon for lunch. Back outside again to work off lunch. Back in for an early dinner. Back out to the barn for night chores. Back to get ready for sleep. Before my time, it was an even earlier bedtime based on lack of light. My ancestors were farmers. I read a fabulous diary of their lives. Tons of food, work and rest. Today most people eat all day and night and exercise very little.

The fasting has cured my awful headaches. It cured my joint pain. It cured my inability to sleep. I slept so poorly most of my life that I feared waking up. I may have gotten 4 hrs a night. Now I easily fall asleep, and frankly sleep so well I cannot remember much. I use to dream a lot. Now very rarely.

I have lost 30 lbs. I can bike some pretty big hills. I bike about 30 miles a day.

Just to be clear, I have refused treatment because I consider quality of life the most important issue, not length of life. My oncologist does not understand that sentiment. He wants me to get to age 85. I just rolled my eyes. He apparently has not spent time in nursing homes. I have. Took care of both my parents. It is dismal beyond belief. Those lucky old people rarely get visitors. My sis and I stopped our life to take care of mommy. I did the same for my daddy. It was very, very hard. It changed me forever. I am glad for the journey.

My best friend died of bc. I was with her nearly everyday the last year. It is very hard to see somebody suffering due to treatment that was never going to cure her. It may have lengthened her life, who knows. She was so strong. I supported her decision, never questioning it. She knew I had refused bc treatment when I was 40. Now another friend is dying of bc. Both stage 4.

Lastly, I do think stress contributes to cancer. So I have chosen to do all I can to remove stress, or at least react to it better. I think I did a poor job of this during my lifetime. So fill your life with fun, love, curiosity, and let go of the negative. Ask for God’s help. Learn to accept things that you wish you could change.
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Aug 20, 2018 11:47AM JoE777 wrote:

Wondering how many of us took birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy or limiting our families to 0-2 children. I did. I had a total of 12 aunts born before and during the Great Depression. One on each side of the family died at 2 yrs of age. Stress consisted of would there be a meal tonight, no meat on the table, no doctors for serious illness, giving birth at home, dreading the flu season, watch childhood disease blind, polio cripple, etc. stress will always be present. I have 3 surviving aunts in there nineties. One aunt had breast cancer in the sixties. Radical mastectomy and no treatment. Died at 94 with Alzheimer's. my mom died with lung caner from smoking all her life. She had a breakdown from being separated from an identical twin in 8th grade. Prescribed cigarettes to calm and releave stress. Her sister is 88. I totally believe stress can be one factor, maybe even the tipping point for some of us. My life's stress reads like a novel starting at birth, but we live so long and so many variables can shade our health. We even stress out if we miss a workout session or don't eat right. I had been practicing yoga for 10 years when I was DX at 62. Found the lump during a pose. I continued after surgery and radiation. Kept me sane and flexible. No cording. I know this sounds like a rant but so many suffer about the IFs and we visit the dark reality that can't be explained to those around us. So if I have a point, don't add stress to the things you can't mediate. We're all unique, human beings with weaknesses and strengths. I will continue to try to not stress about the things I can't control and fail regularly. Bless the young women with young families and bright futures except for cancer. Bless those of us who raised our families and who were to enjoy the golden years. Hugs and peace flow over you like warm honey. :-)

Dx 2/2012, IDC, Left, 2cm, Stage IIA, metastasized to bone, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 4/3/2012 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Dx 2/2018, IDC, Stage IV, metastasized to bone/lungs, Grade 1, ER+/PR+, HER2- Targeted Therapy Kisqali Hormonal Therapy Femara (letrozole) Chemotherapy Other Radiation Therapy External: Bone Hormonal Therapy Aromasin (exemestane), Femara (letrozole) Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes
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Aug 20, 2018 01:18PM Meow13 wrote:

I am positive stress was a key element in my cancer. I was so upset and unhappy every single day for years. I should have done more to break out of it.

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Aug 20, 2018 03:43PM 1redgirl wrote:

Maybe stress is the wrong word for some of us. I think my grieving started very young. A brother I never knew was killed when he was 5. My parents and sister barely survived the accident. My parents started their family again in their 40s. I accidently found a box of my brother’s belongings when I was 5. I was a tomgirl. There was a gun and holster set in that box that I adored. I still have his clothes. My parents eventually told me I had a brother. Their pain was so horrific that it overwhelmed me. My parents were so so sad of people. No happiness in my family. They were pre depression people. My search for my brother’s death certificate, burial, was brutal because it exposed some unforgivable decisions. It took me decades to find,the truth.

My ancestors for the most part lived a very long time. Many had a dozen children or more. Some were separated during the civil war. Some lost their children when they crossed from Ireland to the US. I loved the research and it help explain a lot. I realize these folks had real stress as noted by another poster above. My stress was emotional stemming from a family grieving. BTW, my mother carried a bible with her at all times. It was small and tucked in her purse. My dad was mostly nuts by the time he was 50. I never had a sane dad. As a little girl. I felt enormous pain for their grief. That I think is why I am so attached to my animals. They are like family, and their deaths hit me hard.

Does anybody remember when Christopher Reed was permanently injured when he fell off his horse? His wife tended to him for several years and then after his death succumbed to lung cancer at an early age. Stress. Grief. It took its toll on her.

Any woman diagnosed with bc, is then immediately under permanent stress as bc is not curable. It is always looking over one’s shoulder, wondering when it will pop up again. So therefore it is imperative to find peace and as noted above, let go of the stuff you cannot fix.
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Aug 20, 2018 06:05PM Dhanno wrote:

I agree with Meow .I have no family history of BC still I got BC. When I look back and think of one thing that I could change about my life was - Stress .I was super sensitive and had allowed my self to be under pressure about half of the things that were senseless .My problem is that moment when I sense danger my whole body goes in survival mode .

I do not want my kids to become like their mother . They are practical and not emotional like me . I want them to remain like this .

Dx 5/20/2018, IDC, Left, 2cm, Grade 1, 0/5 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Aug 21, 2018 06:03AM Newnorm wrote:

Meow, I too believe my cancer came about due to stress and as a result of that stress I drank too much alcohol. Those two factors were a big part of it, from my perspective

Dx 12/23/2016, IDC, Left, 6cm+, Stage IIIB, Grade 2, 6/17 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 1/6/2017 AC + T (Taxol) Hormonal Therapy 7/27/2017 Femara (letrozole), Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Surgery 7/28/2017 Lymph node removal: Left; Mastectomy Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes, Chest wall
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Aug 21, 2018 06:46PM Meow13 wrote:

Newnorm, at the time of my diagnosis I was drinking no alcohol and eating very healthy. I was exercising 1hr treadmill 3.5 miles every single day. I was at 123lbs for more than one year and very motivated to stay that weight so no alcohol because of the calories. But my husband was putting me through stress every single day. The put downs the stupid comments and behavior. My oldest was just starting college. The diagnosis deeply affected me. My radiologist, surgeon and oncologist told me it was nothing I was doing that caused the cancer. It happens to the healthiest of us.

I don't know what I really would have done differently maybe distance myself from my husband. I was getting amazing support from my coworkers who know I was dedicated to my health. Everyone was floored when I told them of my cancer. But you did everything right and you got it. Scared the hell out of them, me too. Scared my husband as well.

Well things are ok, but don't let anyone tell you hormone therapy will not have permanent side effects. It is not true but there are lucky people out there.

I am retired and so is my husband. Most of the stress from him is gone. His job really was taking a toll and I felt his frustration for years.

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Aug 21, 2018 07:04PM Lefty55 wrote:

I was diagnosed via screening mammography just about 2 months after my daddy died. I was in hard-core grieving mode and minimally attentive to my own health other than getting the "have tos" out of the way. Then..."you have DCIS of the left breast". After I stopped bawling, I called the nurse navigator at the cancer center and she gave me a list of all the practitioners available to me and my wife during this process. This is my journey to date:

I met with an oncologic naturopath. She spent almost 2 hours with me/us, providing insight into ER+ CA and what foods/supplements/practices can be so helpful during treatment and, really, the rest of my life. She also had to deliver the bad news that my very most favorite beverage, craft beer, is on the no-no list. Alcohol consumption has now become celebratory rather than a habit. Dairy and gluten are estrogen triggers as well, so...a plant-based, organic, seasonal, hydrating diet is what I'm embracing. When I do eat meat it's grass-fed/wild caught, etc. although I'm not yet in love with sardines. I've been taking every supplement she recommended (that I wasn't already taking) plus eating a ton of mushrooms and getting a daily dose of Vit D, au natural

Find a massage therapist with a medical background and get scheduled...very important for healing

Accept walking/strolling/light hiking/spinning as workouts. Tried a HIIT workout just once and ended up flat on the floor on my back...my cat then sat on me since she's apparently quite smart.

I try to wake with the sun, and wind down in the evening with music and/or a good book. I aim for TV time more in the middle of the day or during another chore.

I drink a lot more tea and bone broth. And water!

My to-do lists are short and achievable rather than an all-day slog like before

One of the hardest things I've had to do is to say "no" to commitments that I know are stressful or wearing. I have even played the "cancer" card which feels really weird but is also empowering.

Gotta get silly

I also try to conserve my energy and make fewer "trips" since naps really don't cut the fatigue.

I'm almost done with radiation, my BMI is normal for the first time in several years, I can nearly tolerate Ripple creamer in my coffee and I've discovered HopWater at Whole Foods. And it's Hatch Chile season...vegan Chile verde here we come!

You can do it!

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