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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 06:40PM

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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May 29, 2018 10:46PM 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 03:33AM 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 03:05PM 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 04:24PM 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 5/29/2018 Breast Hormonal Therapy 7/2/2018 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Aug 1, 2018 06:54PM WestOxford wrote:

Thank you momine very interesting post

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Aug 1, 2018 07:25PM WestOxford wrote:

Wow thanks for posting fantastic.

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Aug 2, 2018 01:58PM 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 05:15PM 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 12:00AM 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 Chemotherapy 7/15/2018 AC + T (Taxol) Hormonal Therapy 7/16/2018 Zoladex (goserelin)
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Aug 5, 2018 09:36PM 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 06:55PM 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 08:34AM Amica wrote:


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



1998 age 39 Stage 2 IDC, 1/16 nodes, ER/PR +, Grade 3, surgery, AC + Taxol, radiation, oopherectomy/hysterectomy, Tamoxifen, Aromasin, finished treatments 2010 - July 2018 metastatic recurrence
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Aug 8, 2018 08:53AM 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 12:09PM 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 01:42PM Amica wrote:


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

1998 age 39 Stage 2 IDC, 1/16 nodes, ER/PR +, Grade 3, surgery, AC + Taxol, radiation, oopherectomy/hysterectomy, Tamoxifen, Aromasin, finished treatments 2010 - July 2018 metastatic recurrence

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