In the past, October has been about the Susan G. Komen breast cancer awareness products that range from ribbons to wrist bands, from bras to tee-shirts–all in an effort to promote the prevention and treatment of one of the most deadly illnesses to ever face women. We use a lot of cute words to describe our breasts when it comes to creating awareness, but the truth of the matter is much darker.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, breast cancer is the most common cancer among American women (2014). Breast cancer is not a one-size-fits all illness. In fact, some women experience pain in areas around the breast while others report no symptoms prior to diagnosis (CDC, 2014). The medical community has discovered several ways to avoid a diagnosis of breast cancer. Individuals at a healthy weight, who exercise regularly, get plenty of sleep, those who limit or avoid alcohol, avoid carcinogens, breastfeed, and avoid stress (CDC, 2014) are at a decreased risk of being diagnosed with breast cancer. Many individuals, especially as of late, are struggling over the decision to participate in a genetic screening. Some women choose to remove their breasts preventively when they become aware of their heightened risk. General surgeon, Dr. Beth Baughman DuPree suggests the integration of complementary therapies into one’s care which may include “lifestyle modification, nutritional counseling, massage therapy, or grief counseling.” You can listen to the podcast here.
It’s important to note that a healthy lifestyle and balance can help to prevent the onset of cancer. When/if you decide to (and you should…particularly if you’re over 40 or have a family history of breast cancer) get a mammogram, consider initiating a “life detox” for yourself. This may mean buying a new recipe book or new exercise clothes that inspire you to get to the gym in the morning. You may also consider seeking emotional balance in your life. This may involve spiritual balance—achieved by sitting down with a spiritual leader, or scheduling an appointment with a mental health professional. Consider this: downsizing the drama in your life today may not only prolong your life but increase your quality of life tomorrow.
If you would like to purchase merchandise to promote the Pink Movement and #PinkPower, click http://www.choosehope.com
CDC (2014). Cancer Prevention & Control: Breast Cancer Awareness. Retrieved from:http://www.cdc.gov/cancer/dcpc/resources/features/BreastCancerAwareness/
Breast Cancer (2014) Integrating Complementary Therapies Into Your Care by Dr. Beth Baughman Dupree. Retrieved from: http://www.breastcancer.org/community/podcasts/complementary-therapies-20140922