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Topic: What supplements do you take?

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: Feb 17, 2020 08:49AM

mnsotamom74 wrote:

Good morning!

I’m wondering what vitamins and supplements everyone is using? I’m ER+ PR+ so I’m leary of what I can take that doesn’t fuel my body to create either.

What does everyone think of the Plexus products?

I’ve got five friends on Facebook that use all the products, they post every other day, it gets to be a bit much, but I have to admit, the before and after transformation is starting to kinda look good. None of them have ever had cancer and I have asked them about specific products and if it’s safe if you’ve had my kind of bc, all they tell me ( oh I’m sure it’s fine) well, that’s not good enough for me.

I’d like to know what vitamins everyone is using, does anyone use biotin and do you think it’s actually working?

I’m on arimidex and have so much joint pain in my knees, ankles, wrists, fingers, what is recommended?

Thank you to any and all that will share what they take. It would help to know and also if you feel like it’s helping. Instead of going out and spending a small fortune on stuff that doesn’t work

Dx 10/25/2018, DCIS/IDC/IDC: Cribriform, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 11/4/2018 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right Chemotherapy 1/6/2019 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 4/3/2019 Prophylactic ovary removal Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Feb 17, 2020 11:43PM - edited Feb 17, 2020 11:45PM by WC3

mnsotamom74:

At the moment I just take vitamin D3 and vitamin B12. Once in a great while I also take an iron suppliment. I do not use biotin. In high quantities it can interfere with certain blood test results.


Pathologic complete response (pCR) to chemotherapy. Dx 2018, IDC, Left, 3cm, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Chemotherapy 6/1/2018 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 11/15/2018 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) Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Surgery Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant
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Feb 18, 2020 05:15AM gb2115 wrote:

Ahh, the MLM nutritional supplements. Sigh. I'd be careful with products like plexus. They're not studied, regulated, etc. And it's disturbing that the sales reps (your FB friends) are telling you it's safe for cancer patients because they, I'm sorry, are not adequately trained to know that. They are trained to say whatever they need to say in order to line their pockets and meet their sales goals, and for all intents and purposes they are practicing nutrition without a license. Sometimes practicing medicine without a license when they tout it for diabetes management.

That said, my MO said a regular multivitamin is fine, as is D3. Biotin should be safe. I was also authorized to try magnesium for muscle cramping.

Dx IDC in October 2016, stage 2A, 1.2 cm ER/PR+ Her2-, Grade 2, 1/3 nodes. Mammaprint low risk luminal A, Lumpectomy + radiation + tamoxifen. Age 38 at diagnosis.
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Feb 18, 2020 06:44AM mnsotamom74 wrote:

thank you both! I did not know that about biotin. I wanted to try something to help strengthen my hair and nails, both are so fragile after chemo and now arimidex. I’ll ask my oncologist what a safe amount would be so it doesn’t affect blood tests.

I really am frustrated with my friends touting this plexus and making statements that this “could” prevent cancer, it makes me feel like they’re saying I could have prevented this if I used these products, I know that’s total crap, but I see all the people that are getting sucked into it, using fear that everyone has to sell a very expensive ( IMO) product.

Dx 10/25/2018, DCIS/IDC/IDC: Cribriform, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 11/4/2018 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right Chemotherapy 1/6/2019 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 4/3/2019 Prophylactic ovary removal Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Feb 18, 2020 06:55AM Palesa2018 wrote:

I am taking Vit D, B6, B12, Calcium D gluterate, Magnesium Glycinate. I used to also take Curcumin to prevent general inflammation but the good type is very costly. In my food I add flaxseed powder. I am on Tamoxifen and Zoladex. Generally feel healthy, no complaints.

Dx 6/7/2018, DCIS/IDC, Right, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 6/12/2018 Lymph node removal: Sentinel Surgery 7/9/2018 Mastectomy: Left, Right; Prophylactic mastectomy: Left; Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Surgery 8/9/2018 Hormonal Therapy 9/12/2018 Zoladex (goserelin) Radiation Therapy 9/16/2018 Whole-breast: Breast, Chest wall Hormonal Therapy 11/4/2018 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Feb 18, 2020 08:24AM - edited Feb 18, 2020 08:32AM by flashlight

Hi mnsotamom74, I was never a supplement fan, but now I take a few!! I'm on Tamoxifen and dryness was an issue. Especially dry eyes. Also with Tamoxifen your triglyceride level can go up. I take Fish Oil for both. I like the Sports Research Brand and I buy it on Amazon. I also have liver function labs every 6 months for side effects and they were all good! I like this brand because you only have to take one capsule a day. I also take their K2+D3 once a day. I learned about K2 on this site. I'm hoping my Vit D level has improved, after years of taking it my level was at the bottom!! My yearly Vit D level will be done this spring and I am hoping it has made a difference. My doctor wanted me to take B-complex, Q10, and Magnesium. My husband wants me to try Curcumin. I can't take anything with pepper added and he found one for me to try. I didn't have to have chemo. I have been adding multi collagen protein -5 types of collagen to my smoothie every morning and after 2 months the ridges in my nails are improving. It might be worth a try! Good luck to you!

Dx 11/15/2018, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Dx DCIS, Left, <1cm, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Radiation Therapy Surgery Lumpectomy: Left
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Feb 18, 2020 09:49AM gb2115 wrote:

I forgot about fish oil. My MO said that would be ok too. My eye doctor recommended it for my dry eyes, but I ended up not taking it because I found eye drops that work very well. Plus I can't stand fishy burps, lol.

Dx IDC in October 2016, stage 2A, 1.2 cm ER/PR+ Her2-, Grade 2, 1/3 nodes. Mammaprint low risk luminal A, Lumpectomy + radiation + tamoxifen. Age 38 at diagnosis.
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Feb 18, 2020 10:48AM Ingerp wrote:

Add me to the list of those who never took anything but now take a handful of pills. I started Biotin before my dx and still take it. I take D3--seems to be pretty universally recommended, even separate from BC I take Collagen--one of my kids recommended it, and it's something we lose as we age (again--not BC-related). I started taking B12 a while ago but have read some iffy research on it so will probably not continue after I finish this bottle. I take magnesium--I've always been prone to leg cramps and honestly it has helped! (<--again, not BC-related) I also take fish oil--I feel like research is up and down on that but I know it's one of the things to stop before surgery as it has a blood-thinning effect, which I think is probably good as we age. Now that I think about it, the supplements I take are just because I'm getting older, plus I don't think there's a downside to the amounts I'm taking. Just coincidental that I've started most of them since my dx.

Dx 3/11/2016, DCIS, Left, 6cm+, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER-/PR- Surgery 3/23/2016 Lumpectomy Surgery 4/20/2016 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 5/18/2016 Whole-breast: Breast Dx 3/2/2018, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Surgery 3/13/2018 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Chemotherapy 5/18/2018 Taxol (paclitaxel) Targeted Therapy 5/18/2018 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Radiation Therapy 8/20/2018 Whole-breast: Breast
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Feb 19, 2020 10:38AM - edited Feb 19, 2020 10:40AM by GoKale4320

I take Vit C, Zinc, Vit D3, and B Complex. After I switched to a plant-based Whole Foods diet, some of my muscle aches went away.

I have not heard about Plexus until now. I would probably not do this because you can choose specific vitamins to suit your needs without buying into a program.

if you research anti-inflammatory diets, you may be able to reduce your aches through diet and not need as many supplements.



Dx: January 2017, IDC, Stage IIa, 1/23 nodes, <1cm Chemo 2/16/17 Cytoxan Taxotere x4 Radiation 6/8/2017, natural alternative to tamoxifen Dx 1/2017, IDC, Right, <1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 1/23 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy Evista (raloxifene)
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Feb 19, 2020 11:30AM gb2115 wrote:

Ingerp, what kind of magnesium do you take? She suggested it to me for joint pain and cramping. The tendons in my ankles (or the muscles around them) keep cramping and then it hurts for days.

Dx IDC in October 2016, stage 2A, 1.2 cm ER/PR+ Her2-, Grade 2, 1/3 nodes. Mammaprint low risk luminal A, Lumpectomy + radiation + tamoxifen. Age 38 at diagnosis.
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Feb 19, 2020 11:40AM Ingerp wrote:

gb--after reading the link below I went with magnesium glycinate. I've had no tummy issues at all.

https://www.vitacost.com/blog/vitamins-supplements/supplements/types-of-magnesium.html

Dx 3/11/2016, DCIS, Left, 6cm+, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER-/PR- Surgery 3/23/2016 Lumpectomy Surgery 4/20/2016 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 5/18/2016 Whole-breast: Breast Dx 3/2/2018, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Surgery 3/13/2018 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Chemotherapy 5/18/2018 Taxol (paclitaxel) Targeted Therapy 5/18/2018 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Radiation Therapy 8/20/2018 Whole-breast: Breast
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Feb 19, 2020 11:58AM ctmbsikia wrote:

I too am getting old and is mostly why I take some supplements. I have not heard of Plaxus products.

I take a multi vitamin, an extra 1000mg Vit C, 1500mg. Glucosamine (just straight no other stuff in it). I'm considering Biotin because I simply cannot stand my hair. I did not have chemo but I definitely have thinned over the 2 yrs. taking the AI, and it's still going. I was hoping some Biotin hair products would help, they have only provided a better feeling and look but still coming out! I too would like to know a safe level to take.

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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Feb 19, 2020 02:21PM Rrobin0200 wrote:

I LOVE my Plexus vitamins. It's a program , but you don't have to have a monthly subscription.

Dx 3/6/2017, DCIS, Left, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/4 nodes, ER-/PR- Surgery 3/31/2017 Mastectomy: Left; Prophylactic mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant
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Feb 19, 2020 02:33PM mnsotamom74 wrote:

what brand of glucosamine is best? I take magnesium glycinate and biotin ( talked to my oncologist about the biotin yesterday, he said it’s fine but not to take excessive amounts. My hair stylist said biotin is great but taking it in too high amounts will actually cause breakage. I want to try the D3 as well, is there a certain milligram to start with? I have major sensitive stomach, so I want to start slow. I definitely need to commit to the anti inflammatory diet, my joint pain is getting so much worse. My oncologist suggested a rheumatologist, I just don’t want to be put on more prescriptions:

Dx 10/25/2018, DCIS/IDC/IDC: Cribriform, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 11/4/2018 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right Chemotherapy 1/6/2019 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 4/3/2019 Prophylactic ovary removal Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Feb 19, 2020 03:20PM - edited Feb 19, 2020 03:22PM by ctmbsikia

I just buy the store brand. usually at CVS, Acme, or Walmart. Keep in mind it takes a awhile to get into your system. I starting taking it way before BC for leg pains (may have been a menopausal thing?) I had run out once and sure enough, leg(s) starting hurting again. It was a good 2 weeks before I began to feel better.

Vit D is different for different women. I would 1st have your blood level checked if your MO isn't already doing this. If at a normal level I would still ask for a recommendation. Usually 400-1000 units per day to start with. Also if calcium should be added. That of course, can cause stomach issues. I tried taking calcium and something in it gave me a headache so when I stopped it, the headaches stopped. Tried again after a few weeks, and same thing. No calcium supplements for me! I was actually VIt D deficient before diagnosis and was taking a D2 prescription once a week of 50,000 units I think. Once my level came back up it was stopped. My Multi has the 400 IU and blood levels have been in range.

Thanks for the tips on the Biotin. Still haven't decided on that.

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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Feb 19, 2020 04:58PM MinusTwo wrote:

I'm with ctm. I asked my docs first, but for the most part I buy Costco or WalMart brands. Three exceptions - I buy Wild Salmon Oil Omega 3 capsules; I take a Centrum Silver; and I take (2) Citracal w/D - since that's what my OB/Gyn originally said 20 years would be easiest on my stomach.

I do read the articles saying vitamins are a waste of money and we should just eat a wide range of healthy foods. That said, I take a number of vitamins because I don't eat balanced meals. I eat the recommended good foods, but not specific courses every day. For example, I usually only eat one meal a day. I may eat only salad greens one day, and the next day only pork loin. Magnesium has stopped my leg cramps. I really think Vit C helps keep me from picking up colds. Vit E has been wonderful for my skin. And so on. If I'm wasting money, I feel good.

ctm - I lost my hair with chemo. Though I iced and didn't lose nails, my fingernails were horrible and my big toe nails detached. With the approval of my docs, I took one 5000 mcg capsule of Biotin for several years. My hair is really thick and my nails mostly came back to their original nice hard state.

2/15/11 BMX-DCIS 2SNB clear-TEs; 9/15/11-410gummies; 3/20/13 recurrance-5.5cm,mets to lymphs, Stage IIIB IDC ER/PRneg,HER2+; TCH/Perjeta/Neulasta x6; ALND 9/24/13 1/18 nodes 4.5cm; AC chemo 10/30/13 x3; herceptin again; Rads Feb2014
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Feb 20, 2020 05:18AM mnsotamom74 wrote:

minustwo, is magnesium glyciante the same as magnesium?

Dx 10/25/2018, DCIS/IDC/IDC: Cribriform, Right, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2- (IHC) Surgery 11/4/2018 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right Chemotherapy 1/6/2019 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 4/3/2019 Prophylactic ovary removal Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Feb 20, 2020 05:27AM Ingerp wrote:

mnsota—look at the link I posted above for info on the various formulations of magnesium.

Dx 3/11/2016, DCIS, Left, 6cm+, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER-/PR- Surgery 3/23/2016 Lumpectomy Surgery 4/20/2016 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 5/18/2016 Whole-breast: Breast Dx 3/2/2018, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Surgery 3/13/2018 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Chemotherapy 5/18/2018 Taxol (paclitaxel) Targeted Therapy 5/18/2018 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Radiation Therapy 8/20/2018 Whole-breast: Breast
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Feb 20, 2020 08:12AM gb2115 wrote:

Thanks, I will look into that type of magnesium! She said any of them were fine so I was finding it hard to pick!

Dx IDC in October 2016, stage 2A, 1.2 cm ER/PR+ Her2-, Grade 2, 1/3 nodes. Mammaprint low risk luminal A, Lumpectomy + radiation + tamoxifen. Age 38 at diagnosis.
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Feb 20, 2020 12:05PM ceanna wrote:

Daily, I take chelated magnesium (Solgar brand) which has amino acids for absorption--no digestive problems with chelated. I also take Vit D, C, and B12. I tried for years to raise my Vit D. levels but didn't until I switched to the Trader Joe brand of Vit D in the 5000IU capsules which are in a flaxseed oil base (their lower unit size is NOT in flaxseed oil). I have had problems when I try to take multi-B's--don't know what balance gets off, but my skin immediately starts to crack, and fatigue sets in when I try multis. I also take Krill Oil a few times a week instead of fish oil and do not have any burping fishy taste! Thanks for starting this topic thread!

Dx 2014, IDC, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Radiation Therapy Multi-catheter Surgery Lumpectomy: Right
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Feb 21, 2020 09:28AM kcrd4766 wrote:

Ditto for curcumin to support an overall health inflammatory response. And, forms that are hydro-soluble absorb better. For those asking, magnesium glycinate is one of the better tolerated forms of magnesium and also better absorbing forms.

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Feb 25, 2020 07:43AM - edited Feb 25, 2020 07:44AM by ctmbsikia

I purchased some Biotin. They had 5,000 and 10,000 so I thought I'd start with the 5 as I am not sure of recommended amount? I hope this helps the hair. I'm glad it's a tiny thing, some of these supplements are huge and one wouldn't want to choke to death trying to swallow them!

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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Feb 25, 2020 08:15AM DogMomRunner wrote:

Ingerp- I get really bad leg cramps and would love to take magnesium but it tends to give me a headache. Do you ever get headaches from the one you use?

You ain't run far enough to say My legs have failed You ain't gone far enough You ain't worked hard enough You ain't run far enough to say It ain't gonna get any better. Nathaniel Rateliff Dx 4/24/2019, DCIS/IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/8 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+ (FISH) Surgery 5/16/2019 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel Targeted Therapy 6/5/2019 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Chemotherapy 6/5/2019 Taxol (paclitaxel) Radiation Therapy 9/21/2019 Whole-breast: Breast
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Feb 28, 2020 10:20AM - edited Feb 28, 2020 10:21AM by wanderweg

I was having really bad leg/foot cramps that would jolt me out of sleep every night and go on for an hour or so. Six days ago I did some research on the NIH/NCBI and found a review article about L-carnitine ameliorating the side effects of tamoxifen (as well as helping to keep cancer cells from becoming tamoxifen-resistant). I ran it by my oncologist and started taking 500 mg every night last Saturday. It's been 6 nights and I have not had a single leg cramp. I'm feeling pretty encouraged by that. (the only other things I take are a multivitamin, D3, baby aspirin, and melatonin).

weakly ER+, TNBC on oncotype Dx 5/10/2018, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery 6/10/2018 Lymph node removal: Sentinel; Mastectomy: Left, Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Surgery 8/6/2018 Reconstruction (left): Silicone implant; Reconstruction (right): Silicone implant Chemotherapy 8/31/2018 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 12/1/2018 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Feb 28, 2020 10:49AM Ingerp wrote:

DogMom--I do not. I don't feel like I'm terribly prone to headaches, though. And some people have complained about AIs giving them headaches and I did experience some the first few weeks I was on it, but they went away. Maybe this is something that will pass?

FWIW, I take 10,000 mcg of Biotin.

Dx 3/11/2016, DCIS, Left, 6cm+, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER-/PR- Surgery 3/23/2016 Lumpectomy Surgery 4/20/2016 Lumpectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 5/18/2016 Whole-breast: Breast Dx 3/2/2018, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Surgery 3/13/2018 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Chemotherapy 5/18/2018 Taxol (paclitaxel) Targeted Therapy 5/18/2018 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Radiation Therapy 8/20/2018 Whole-breast: Breast
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Mar 7, 2020 05:07PM MomofGirls42 wrote:

I'm taking what a lot of others are taking: multivitamin, vitamin D3, Selenium, Collagen (for hair, skin & nails), magnesium (bisglycinate) but one thing I am also doing is taking Iodine drops (Detoxadine brand from Global Healing Center) for healthy breast tissue and to (hopefully) help prevent a recurrence. I have hypothyroid as well so I find that the iodine drops are really helping to support that, healthy hair, skin, nails, energy boost and maintaining a healthy weight as well.

“I look up to the mountains— does my help come from there? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth!” ‭‭Psalms‬ ‭121:1-2‬ ‭NLT‬‬ Dx 3/5/2019, IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 1/21 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 4/12/2019 Lumpectomy; Lymph node removal: Right Chemotherapy 6/21/2019 AC + T (Taxotere) Radiation Therapy 11/12/2019 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 11/14/2019 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Mar 16, 2020 12:33PM shcarter wrote:

I take 500 mg 'Metagenics' magnesium glycinate. Has a relaxing effect on everything, including bowels.

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Apr 15, 2020 11:44PM Daylightdancer666 wrote:

I take vitamin d but prescribed calcium top

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