Friday, December 25, 2015

Health Update on Breast Cancer

It's been just over two years since I was first diagnosed with Breast Cancer.  I went through seven rounds of chemotherapy, five surgeries, and 22 infusions at the hospital.  I went on to turn down Radiation Therapy and a five year sentence to Tamoxifen (a hormonal treatment).  I opted instead to treat my body holistically, and I created a perfect combination of natural supplements to build my immune system.  This is what happened...

I remember a year ago, I had just finished my last infusion at the hospital, and I was starting to grow concerned about a recurrence of cancer.  I had been feeling a small lump in my armpit on the same side I had cancer.  It was just like when I first felt it the year before.  As November and December passed, the lump grew larger, almost the size of a walnut.  I asked the Oncologist about it, who also felt the lump, but he tried to ease my fears by saying it must have been from the fat grafting on the new breast (even though no fat was injected into my armpit).  He said that we would keep an eye on it though.  And by January, it had grown to the size of a golf ball and I could no longer sleep on my right side due to pain.

Of course I started to panic, and I looked back over my year of research on natural strategies to fight cancer to come up with a plan. I had already been taking probiotics and vitamins, but I hadn't really started to take the things that I found would actually kill cancer.  I guess I was just waiting to see what happened with my body first.  Well, that lump was inspiration enough to start on my list of natural supplements. 

I hadn't gotten to the point of making the blends yet, but was taking the ingredients individually.  The main one I took at the time was Mangosteen.  There was SO much evidence, and so many clinical studies on how Mangosteen kills cancer cells, that I tried it without hesitation.  I started with taking about two teaspoons a day of Organic Mangosteen powder that included the pericarp (rind).  By day four, I was in so much pain that I could barely move my arm.  I almost went to the emergency room it hurt so badly.  But I just continued taking Mangosteen and drinking lots of water.

By day nine, I was still in pain, but was shocked to feel that the lump in my armpit had shrunken by half.  It was odd shaped, not round, and was still very painful.  By day 14, it was gone completely.  NOT A TRACE.  Was it cancer?  I honestly don't know. But whatever it was was gone!

I went back to the Oncologist in March for another checkup and he asked about the lump in my armpit.  I told him that it was gone and what I had done with Mangosteen.  He scoffed at first, and then was shocked to find that I no longer had a lump in my armpit.  He looked at his notes from last time to see that he did in fact say I had a lump there in December.  But he never really acknowledged or congratulated me on fixing it myself. I suppose it doesn't matter though. I know he hates to admit natural stuff works.

Anyway, now, I am right at the time that breast cancer recurrence is at it's highest likelihood, the 1.5-2 year mark.  Many women go through all the horrible treatment, only to discover that cancer has returned and is now resistant to chemotherapy and radiation.  It's a terrifying time.  This past month, I was having some heart palpitations and new fatigue, so I ran back to the Oncologist.

First, the doctor said that my bloodwork is better than his.  That thrilled me!  Second, I had an abdominal ultrasound, which not only was normal, but the technician said, "Wow, you must really eat healthy, you have no signs of Fatty Liver!"  Apparently most of the population has that issue.  And lastly, I bit the bullet and did a PET/CT Scan to see if there was any cancer in my body.  Did I mention it's terrifying to worry about cancer?

Side note: The way the PET/CT scan works is, you are injected with a fluorescent radioactive glucose.  Once in the body, the glucose immediately heads to highly active body tissue, inflammation, and cancer cells.  Any highlighted areas on the scan are called "uptake".  The higher the uptake in non-active tissue the more likely it is to be metastatic cancer.

When I was first diagnosed with Breast Cancer in September 2013, I did a PET scan then, and it showed uptake in my left humerus.  They weren't sure at that time if that was metastatic cancer or not.  The only definitive way to know is to do a biopsy, which would have been extremely painful.  So we just left it and treated cancer as if it were Stage II, not knowing if it was IV.  Although a recent peek on my online patient access to the hospital shows my medical history as Stage 4 breast cancer.

Anyway, when I did the PET/CT a couple weeks ago, they found that I still have what they think is some kind of tumor in my left humerus/shoulder in the bone marrow (See image below).  The good news is, it has not spread further than it was two years ago, and whatever I am doing is keeping it at bay. I also have mild uptake on my right chest wall where I had cancer, but the doctor says that is most likely just inflammation from all the surgeries.  Nobody has a clue why my wrist lit up though.



But since I have palpitations and some fatigue, and we know it's not from cancer, the next step is checking my heart.  I had some serious issues with my heart during chemotherapy, so it's likely just a bit of damage from the conventional treatment.  I will know more once I do the echo-cardiogram in a couple weeks. Oh how I wish I had never done chemotherapy!

Other than that minor hiccup, life is wonderful!  This has been a very good year.  I'm working full time and loving my job (see my office below).  I'm actually really good at my job too.....and I'm modest too...

The view from my office

Where I spend my days

The children and I are catching up on our time lost during the past two years.  We are so happy to be together again!





Natalie showing off her new skills



And Tim, that amazing man I've been talking about for over a year, makes my heart so happy.  My friends are still so amazing to me.  Molly the dog is still alive, going on 4 years!  And I could not feel like a luckier person!  What a difference from two years ago.  Having it so bad for so long just makes these moments so much sweeter.  I'm beyond grateful for my life and my health this year.








Merry Christmas Everyone!!


Monday, August 17, 2015

What's the Truth? Does "Everything Cause Cancer"?

With cancer rates increasing exponentially each year, and current cancer rates of 1 in 3, the World Health Organization has declared that this is now a worldwide crisis.  But instead of panicking, we need to examine the cause. Have you ever heard the following things?

Don't use deodorant, it will cause cancer.   Don't smoke, it causes cancer.  Pesticides cause cancer.  Genetically modified foods cause cancer.  Vaccines cause cancer.  Hair dye causes cancer.  French fries cause cancer.  BPA causes cancer.  Charred meat causes cancer.  Red meat causes cancer.  Growth hormones cause cancer.  Processed foods cause cancer.  And the list is endless....

In response to that, I've heard SO many people say, "Everything causes cancer, so I'm just going to live how I want".   And I suppose I was one of those people that said that too....until I actually got cancer.  That's when I set out on a personal mission to find out what caused it.

Is it true?  Does EVERYTHING cause cancer?  The simplest answer to that is, yes and no.  There are things we eat and use in our environment that are bad for us.  We know the obvious things already. We know that we shouldn't wash our hands with gasoline. We know that cupcakes make us gain weight.  We know that eating 40 sticks of butter is going to make us sick.  And we know that, for the most part, being reasonable, prudent and moderate in our use or consumption of these bad things won't really do any measurable harm.

But then we start discussing carcinogens, those things "they" say actually cause cancer, like cigarettes.  Surprisingly, there are carcinogens all around us.  They are in fried potatoes, the char on grilled meat, cigarettes, pesticides, and thousands of other things.  So, if we are all exposed, then why do some people get cancer and some don't?  It comes down to tipping the scales on toxic overload and having an catalyst.

First, let's talk about toxic overload.  We ALL take in toxins in one form or another.....every single day. Over the years, these toxins get stored in our body, in fat cells, in our liver, in our lymph nodes, even in our bones. As a result, our body's cells get damaged.  These free radicals (damaged cells) roam through our body, gaining in number every day by what we breathe, put in our stomach or on our skin, and even stress.  They can cause inflammation, early aging, auto-immune disorders, hormonal imbalances, and often times, these cells get so damaged that their DNA is altered and they become cancer cells.  And for the most part, the body can withstand a great deal of free radicals and cancer cells.  In fact, we all have cancer cells in our body right now.  It's even said that we unknowingly deal with six bouts of serious cancer over the course of our lives before doctors diagnose the one we have to fight.

Second, we talk about the catalyst that allows these cancer cells to grow into life-threatening tumors.  It's all about the immune system, the gatekeeper.  For me, the catalyst was a taxed immune system due to a root canal that had gone bad.  My body was fighting an infection for a few years.  For others, it could be a simple cold, flu, ongoing stress, or just being run down for too long.  Anything that attacks our immune system or weakens it somehow, leaves the door wide open for cancer to grow. The longer our immune system is not running at 100%, the more likely you are going to get cancer.


Earlier and earlier, in the average person's life, we are seeing bigger health issues and the serious bouts of cancer, and it's because we are taking in so many more toxins than we ever have in history.  Just as an exercise, spend one day writing down all the chemicals you use and eat.  Write down the ingredients in your lotion, shampoo, conditioner, soap, toothpaste, make-up, deodorant, detergent, fabric softener, all the food you eat, including pesticides to treat produce, drinks, medications, cigarettes, drugs, radiation from your wifi router, laptop, ipad, phone, tv, lightbulbs, etc.   Now look at that list and multiply that times 365.  Now multiply that times 75 years (the average lifespan).  Does it seem like a lot for your body to handle?

At what age do you think the balance shifts/shifted for you personally?  I'll give you a hint, it's the exact moment when you start having health issues or become overweight.  If you currently have health issues or are overweight, it is a clear sign that you have too many toxins in your body.  You have to detoxify in order to make any progress and get healthy. No amount of diet soda will make you lose weight. No amount of lotion will make your skin glow.  No amount of conditioner will make your hair soft.  No amount of treating the individual issues will resolve your health.

You have to approach it as a whole body recovery.  When you detoxify your body on a regular basis, and build your immune system, you are creating a proper balance within.  When your body is in balance, you naturally look healthy, you lose the excess weight, you'll have energy, your skin will glow, your hair will shine, etc.  All those things happen naturally when you take a holistic approach (whole body).

Your body already knows how to do it's job in protecting you and making you healthy.  You just have to clear the path.




Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Reflection

It's hard to believe that 2 YEARS ago this week I first found those lumps in my breast and armpit, not realizing what would be in store for me.  I fought like Hell through 7 rounds of aggressive chemotherapy that knocked me out for days at a time, 5 surgeries, some with extensive recovery, and 22 infusions in the hospital.  Then I fought an expensive and stressful battle to get my children back home where they belong.  And we are all so happy to be together again.

And when I was going through all of these overwhelming moments in my life, I did something that took my vulnerability to the next level.  I started talking to a great guy who had really only seen me with a bald head.  Little did I know then he would turn out to be the man of my dreams.  And we have now been together for one year this week.  I am beyond lucky to have him.

To add to that, I am now back to building my career after 11 years of Mommyhood. And tomorrow I celebrate my 1 month workiversary as the Sales Director for one of Capital Senior Living's Assisted Living properties.  I am loving my new job and coworkers, and I am thrilled that I'm doing something right in line with the things I believe and care about.  They even appreciate and support my writing on health and wellness.  I'll be writing a few articles for the corporate newsletter and some local magazines soon!

It seems that things are falling into place after such a long and tumultuous time.  I have been doing the right things, knowing that they will pay off in the long run.  And I couldn't be happier right now.  I owe that to many, many, MANY of you that helped me along the way and taught me to keep fighting.  I can't thank you all enough for being so wonderful for so long.  I feel like the luckiest woman in the world!

If you haven't seen it, take a look at my Year of Breast Cancer...













At work....tough job

Sunday, July 19, 2015

NATURAL HORMONE BALANCE- For Men and Women Both

I've spent months deciphering the world of Endocrine disruptors and what effects they have on our immune system, hormones, weight and overall health.  Fortunately, because I developed such a strong knowledge of cancer and ways to naturally detoxify the body and boost the immune system, this next step seemed to fall right in place.  I'm so excited to share this with all of you. 

If you are not familiar with Endocrine disruptors, you may want to go back and read my earlier post  (Top 3 Things That Are Sabotaging Your Weight Loss and Health- and How to Fix it).  If you aren't interested in going back to read it, I will quickly summarize.  We eat food that has pesticides.  We use products on our bodies that contain chemicals.  We are in contact daily with environmental toxins.  Why are they bad?  They disrupt the process of our Endocrine System.  

The Endocrine System is a collection of glands that produce hormones that regulate metabolism, growth and development, tissue function, sexual function, reproduction, sleep, and mood.  If that system is not working properly, we can begin to see problems like inflammation, weight gain, arthritis, diabetes, and cancer.  And not only can the Endocrine System get disrupted by toxins we come in to contact with, but many of the foods we eat and products we use can drown our body with excess Estrogen.  This creates a hormone imbalance, which can lead to many health issues, with the biggest concern being hormone related cancers (Prostate, Breast, Ovarian, Cervical, Uterine Cancers).  And our bodies can't fix this imbalance without the proper tools. 

First, we need to detoxify our body.  Get rid of the poisons and damaged cells in the blood stream.  Then, we need to boost the immune system to help our body fight naturally.  And finally, we need to fix the hormonal imbalance and get our Endocrine system working right.  If we do those things, we will see a great shift in our body, like healthy weight, proper blood sugar regulation, decrease in inflammation, improved immune function, and so on.   That is why I took the time to research and develop what I believe to be the best combination for balancing our hormones and promoting proper Endocrine system function. 


Personal note: 

I have spent a great deal of time designing the following Natural Hormone Balance Supplement.  I've been shocked at the incredible difference I've felt.  I made mention in an earlier post about losing weight naturally by using this.  I'm down 10lbs in the past 45 days.  My hair is full, thick and soft.  (I've never had soft hair in my life).  My nails are so strong now and growing long.  My skin is getting smoother. I have energy and stamina to get through the day.  My brain feels more focused and I'm able to concentrate. 

I can say with absolute certainty that this combination was the missing piece for me.  I'm now two years out from my original cancer diagnosis, and it's like I never went through any of it.  I don't feel like I'm struggling to regain anything.  I've been taking the Gold Blend, the Silver Blend, and now the Natural Hormone Balance, and I have never felt better in my life. 


So, without further ado, here's Step Three on your path to wellness....


NATURAL HORMONE BALANCE
Please note: These supplements do not contain hormones.  
They support the body's proper hormone balance.  


MSM- (METHYLSULFONYLMETHANE) -An organic Sulphur compound found in raw fruits and vegetables.
  • Assists the body in creating Glutathione, the body's most important antioxidant
  • Reduces pain and inflammation
  • Promotes healthy endocrine function- Enzymes need MSM to metabolize and react to nutrients and hormones
  • Improves joint health
  • Promotes collagen and connective tissue formation
  • Maintains cell wall strength

Peruvian Maca Root- Cruciferous root found in the mountains of Peru.  


  • Boosts energy and endurance
  • Aids in hormonal balance
  • Filled with essential Amino acids, nutrients and minerals, including Selenium, Potassium, Calcium, Iron and Magnesium
  • May decrease physical stress, potentially having a positive effect on adrenal glands

Lutein- Carotenoid found in vegetables


  • Low Lutein levels linked to blood sugar problems
  • Helps regulate Endocrine system function
  • Antioxidant 
  • Protects against UV rays
  • Supports cardiovascular function
  • Promotes increased mental function, speech and memory
  • Promotes eye health, and protects against eye disease 

Alpha-Lipoic Acid- Form of fatty acid that naturally resides in body cells. It helps our bodies produce the energy required to support normal bodily functions. The main role of ALA is to convert blood sugar (glucose) into energy.


  • Universal antioxidant
  • Supports healthy endocrine system function
  • Facilitate transfer of glucose into energy
  • Assists process of creating energy from fats, proteins and carbs
  • Helps protect cell structure
  • Detoxifies the liver
  • Boosts immune system
  • Speeds muscle recovery and metabolism for athletes
  • Aids regulation of cholesterol levels

Co-Enzyme Q10- A substance found in the body within every cell. It's role is to help convert food into energy.  Past the age of 30- CoQ10 levels decline rapidly. 


  • Promotes and strengthens immune health 
  • Essential in providing energy to the body at a cellular level
  • Universal Antioxidant- neutralizing free radicals
  • Responsible for synthesizing Adenosine Triphosate, the molecule that acts as a major energy source for each individual cell. 

DIM- (di-indolylmethane) - compound isolated from cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli or cabbage.


  • Aids in hormonal balance
  • Promotes estrogen metabolism by helping the body remove excess estrogen from environment, chemicals and food
  • Antioxidant
  • Promotes breast and prostate health
  • Helps strengthen hair and nails
  • Reduces skin wrinkles

Zinc Gluconate- Essential for the normal function of the endocrine system.  Contains the lowest cadmium levels of all zinc compounds.



  • Regulates cell growth
  • Aids healing
  • Boosts Immune system
  • Balances Hormones
  • Protects against diabetes by regulating insulin activity
  • Blocks estrogen
  • In men, boosts Testosterone by blocking the conversion of Testosterone to Estrogen



You can buy them by clicking the ORDER HERE link to go to my health site.  

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Cancer in the Making- Find Out if You are at Risk

Hindsight Really is 20/20. The past 22 months of research have lead me to an "a Ha!" moment of epic proportions for me personally.  I love when I have those Dr. House type epiphanies.  And for me, to see it all in black and white now, is not only a relief, but may help others.  So I, like many other others with similar experience, will share this important information.  However, this is for women AND men, as it affects everyone.

I talked about Estrogen Dominance the other day, and how the Endocrine System can be disrupted by a number of factors, in turn, causing an imbalance of hormones in the body.   This imbalance of Estrogen Dominance can put those affected at direct risk for hormonal related cancers.  Remember, 1 in 2 men will develop prostate cancer.  Men, look around; if there is another man in the room with you, one of you will get prostate cancer.  Will it be you or him?  Women, your risk for breast cancer is 1 in 8, not including ovarian, cervix, uterine, ovarian cancers.  All of these are related to your hormones, and more specifically, estrogen dominance.

As a reminder, millions of people, especially in Western Civilization, are being affected by estrogen dominance.   The cause is a malfunctioning Endocrine System.  Sometimes that's due to aging, but often it is due to the toxins and hormones in our diet and environment.  For me, I don't know what made my endocrine system go wonky, but as I'm seeing now, it happened at an early age.  And putting great effort into balancing those hormones over the past month for myself, then seeing some of the results thus far, has shed serious light on why I got cancer in the first place.  Of course, this will also lead me to take all the steps possible to prevent it in the future as well.

I'll show you what I'm talking about.  When I hit puberty, I started having issues that I didn't know anything about, and I certainly didn't know to connect them to estrogen dominance.  But every single one of these symptoms was a neon sign that I had a hormone imbalance.  Repeated visits to doctors didn't solve the problems, as they only treat symptoms.  And years later, I developed breast cancer.  Could cancer have been avoided if I had fixed this years ago?  Absolutely.

So, I'm going to give you a timeline of the things I experienced over the years, and every single symptom is a result of estrogen dominance.  I went to approximately 15+ doctors, and never once were my hormones checked or addressed.  You may be able to relate to some things.


  • 15yrs old- Got depression, the start of menses, started getting grey hair and dry coarse hair, and Keratosis Pilaris  on backs of arms and thighs.  Had them for years up until last week.
  • 20yrs old- Daily tension/migraine headaches for six months, which doctors never found the cause. 
  • 22yrs old- Chronic Pelvic pain, cramps and heavy bleeding problems. Doctors put me on Depo-Provera shot.  This causes further estrogen dominance.  I only took one shot, which lasts three months, then refused any more. 
  • 23yrs old- Diagnosed with Endometriosis, subsequently had two laprascopic surgeries to clear scar tissue. 
  • 25yrs old- Had stillbirth at 8 months of first son.  
  • 26yrs old- Diagnosed Hypothyroid, started taking generic Synthroid. 
  • 27yrs old- Chronic low-grade fever for a year and a half.  
  • 28yrs old- Daily tension/migraine headaches again for six months. 
  • 32yrs old- 7 months after birth of daughter, had gallbladder attack and surgery to remove. 
  • 33yrs old- Had miscarriage at 11weeks. 
  • 35yrs old- Started having night sweats and fatigue. 
  • 39yrs old- Added problems with my toxic root canal causing heart palpitations and other problems.
  • 40yrs old- Diagnosed with Fibrocystic breast on left and IDC Breast Cancer on right.  


So, given the above information, all the puzzle pieces fit together to show that from the time I was 15yrs old, I was estrogen dominant.  One of the problems this causes, is that Estrogen Dominance causes cells to divide more rapidly than normal, leading to early aging and substantial increase in cancer risk.




Estrogen Dominance can cause a host of symptoms.  Below, is a list of symptoms and conditions that can arise from having a hormonal imbalance with estrogen dominance.   Take a look and see if you have any of the following issues.  Also, in addition to the following, Lupus and Hashimoto's Thyroiditis have also made the list of conditions resulting from estrogen dominance.

This information was provide on Dr. John Lee's website.  He is not affiliated with me in any way, but his insight is so important.

You probably have a few of the conditions or symptoms from the above list.  But what do you do about it?  It's clear you most likely have estrogen dominance, meaning, an imbalance in your hormones.  There are just a couple steps to get you on the right path back to health.

Step 1:
You HAVE to detoxify your body.  Your Endocrine System will never function correctly if you are constantly disrupting the flow of hormones with the toxins in your bloodsteam.  Strong antioxidants and natural detoxifiers will help you flush the toxins out.  Also, preventing toxins from getting in your body will help too.  Again, look at my previous post about the Dirty Dozen of Endocrine Disruptors.

Switching to organic (including meat) will reduce and/or eliminate the added hormones and pesticides in your body.  Some estrogenic foods such as soy, beer (alcohol), licorice, clover and some foods in plastic.  Using natural soaps, moisturizers, detergents, deodorants, cleaning products and cosmetics will reduce many of the chemicals and phytoestrogens in your bloodstream.

Step 2:
Focus on anti-estrogen foods and supplements.  Some of the most effective anti-estrogen foods are citrus fruits, cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage,cauliflower, avocado, nuts, eggs, organic milk products, coffee and tea.   As far as supplements, DIM, made from an extract from cruciferous vegetables is a potent way to reduce estrogen in the body.  Quercetin can also lower estrogen, as well as Dandelion Root.  There is also another option for those that have thyroid issues and cannot take DIM.  It's called Peruvian Maca Root.  This cruciferous plant, grown in the mountains of Peru, has the ability to not only reduce estrogen, but has a natural effect of balancing the body's hormones, thyroid function and iodine.  It promotes the proper balance of hormones excreted from the Endocrine System, without causing the added problem of reducing any one thing too much.  Yes, it is also for men too, and will boost energy, muscle strength, and sexual health as well.

Step 3:
BUILD YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM-  Take antioxidants.  Look into an immune booster called Transfer Factor.  Cut out sugar.  Add Vitamin C.  There are a number of ways to build up your immune system.

For me, I've detoxified my body and reduced as many toxins as possible.  I've slowly built my immune system back up with plant-based foods and supplements.   And last month I started taking DIM to reduce estrogen.  I've seen so many incredible things happen so far, like losing weight, more energy, softer hair, a LOT less grey hair, smoother skin, no more Keratosis on the back of my arms or legs, and no more cystic breast.  But, of course I worry about my thyroid being affected, since I am already Hypothyroid, and cruciferous vegetables, especially in extract form, could potentially affect that.  So, today, I started on Maca Root.  I may alternate it with DIM, since I believe in moderation of all things.  But I will let you know how it works over time.

The one thing that is the most clear, is that I obviously had Estrogen Dominance that was never diagnosed.  And I believe that condition set my body up to be highly at risk for cancer.  Add the toxic root canal, and it explains everything.  So, now that I know what the problems were, I can address them and be the healthiest person I can be.  Nothing but up from here folks!!