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.

Update on the above fatigue:  I was low on Potassium, and Maca Root was affecting my thyroid.  A month later and I am back to normal.

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 food, 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 changed in two years, and whatever I am doing is keeping it completely under control. 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.



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!  (Update:  It was low Potassium causing the palpitations)

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!

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 seeing 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


Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The Age of Resistance- Saying No to Chemotherapy and Radiation

I get emails every day from people asking me advice about cancer, treatment, and getting healthy.  And much to the shock of many, I have mentioned that I would not have the same cancer treatment if I were to go back in time and do it all again.  With what I know now, I would not have done chemotherapy or surgery to combat breast cancer. And I'm thrilled that I turned down radiation when presented with that option.  What I would have done instead is, have my toxic root canal removed, switch to a more plant-based, organic diet, and start taking the supplements I now take in order to balance my body's chemistry.

I can already feel a lot of people say, "Oh my God!  That's a terrible idea!  Doctors know what they're doing; you have to trust them!"  And here is my explanation of why I feel the way I do.

Let's start with another example currently happening in the world, Super Weeds.  According to the University of Nebraska Agriculture Biosafety Weed Science Department, "A super weed, as it has been suggested by the popular press, is a weed that has become resistant to a particular herbicide...Weeds have developed resistance to herbicides as early as the 1950s, long before herbicide-resistant biotech crops were on the market. It is possible that the application of herbicides to biotech crops could increase populations of herbicide-resistant weeds." 

What that is saying, and what we are now hearing in the news is, we are creating weeds that resist chemicals designed to kill them.  Instead of dying, they are becoming Super Weeds.  It is not a sustainable way to control weeds in food crops.

Here is another example, Super Bugs.  You've heard of that right?  According to the National Institute of Health, "In recent decades, antibiotics have been losing their punch against some types of bacteria. In fact, certain bacteria are now unbeatable with today’s medicines. Sadly, the way we’ve been using antibiotics is helping to create new drug-resistant “superbugs.”Superbugs are strains of bacteria that are resistant to several types of antibiotics. Each year these drug-resistant bacteria infect more than 2 million people nationwide and kill at least 23,000, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Drug-resistant forms of tuberculosis, gonorrhea, and staph infections are just a few of the dangers we now face."

What this is saying, and what we are now hearing in the news is, we are creating bacteria that resist chemicals designed to kill them.  Instead of dying, they are becoming Super Bugs.  It is not a sustainable way to control bacteria in the body.

So, now we discuss cancer.  Science has always focused on killing cancer by force, just like killing weeds and bacteria.  We are prescribed poison to kill fast growing cancer cells, and then we burn the cells with radiation.   Does it kill them?  Yes, most of the time.  But there are more than one type of cancer cell in a tumor, and process does not stop when the fast cells are killed.

Cancer patients do their treatment, think they are done, and they return to their regularly scheduled programming (assuming they survive the treatment).   In the background, unbeknownst to the cancer patient, two things are happening.  One, those slow-growing Cancer Stem Cells that weren't targeted with Chemotherapy or Radiation are still hanging around.  They are smart and cunning, and have the ability to self-renew and alter their DNA to be resistant to the chemicals and radiation thrown at it.





Second, the cancer patient's body is now in a weakened condition, with a compromised immune system.  If their body chemistry was inadequately balanced prior to treatment, allowing cancer to grow in the first place, then that has worsened the condition by poisoning and burning their body.  It is even harder now for the body to fight off any recurrence of cancer, especially the now resistant tumors.

And consider this.  If a person is treated with chemotherapy and radiation for cancer, then that means the doctor is throwing the best thing he has in his arsenal at cancer.  Let's say it kills all the fast growing cells and life returns to normal.  When the Cancer Stem Cells that remain start creating their resistant tumor, and the cancer patient returns a year later with resistant cancer that has now spread, the doctor no longer has the best thing in his arsenal to use anymore.  The cancer is now resistant to that treatment.  So what's next?... the second best treatment he has to give.  And the cycle continues, with cancer eventually winning, because they are more resistant, and the treatments are less and less effective.  It's a death spiral.

So how do we combat the Super Weeds, the Super Bugs,  and the Super Tumors?  We do it with what Nature gave us.  Everything we have to win is already all around us.  Organic farmers do not have resistant weeds.  And doctors are learning natural ways to combat resistant bacteria.  For example, they have already found that Cannabis oil successfully treats and cures MRSA.  And scientists are currently trying to find ways to combat Cancer Stem Cells.  But there is nothing yet.  Doctors don't have the best treatments to address cancer.  Science doesn't have the answer.

Not only that, but there are natural ways to gently heal from cancer.  There are ways to rid the body of the toxins that began cancer, and ways to build the immune system to fight it naturally.  If history has shown us anything, it's that the more we try to control and force something, the harder and stronger it will fight back.  Eventually, the scale tips and we will lose the fight.  The only way to succeed is through understanding how and why things happen, and finding a way to peacefully solve the problems.




Sunday, June 21, 2015

Top 3 Things That Are Sabotaging Your Weight Loss and Health- and What You Can Do To Fix It

Do you wonder why you're not losing weight, even though you are eating right and exercising?  Do you feel tired and fatigued all the time?  Do you have Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, Type 2 Diabetes, or other health condition?  Then this article may be for you.

In this article, I'm going to discuss a process in our body that determines whether we will be fit and healthy or overweight and/or sick.  And I will show you how you can flip the switch to change the path your body may be taking.  This process takes time, some effort, and understanding how your body works. But what is more important than where you spend all of your time?

Let's get started.

Number 1:
AMPK-  Say What?  I know, it sounds weird, but it's important so pay attention.

AMPK (also known as AMP-activated protein kinase) is the master regulator for all of our cellular energy.  It's the body's fuel gauge.  AMPK can determine how much energy we are going to have, and plays an important role in metabolism of the skeletal muscle, liver, fat, and other tissues.  When AMPK is activated, this key player is responsible for deciding our metabolic activity, like how proteins and carbohydrates are distributed, how much glucose gets fed to our cells, how fatty acid and cholesterol are used, and it is also responsible for our cravings.

When AMPK is activated properly, you will create cellular homeostasis, allowing your body to use nutrition to increase energy and metabolic activity.  On the other hand, when AMPK is inhibited, we start storing fat, blood sugar becomes erratic, and we lose muscle.  Our metabolism slows and we start seeing health issues like Type 2 Diabetes or Rheumatoid Arthritis. Low levels of this AMPK enzyme have now been linked to the growth of cancer.

As we age and our activity level decreases, AMPK gradually declines, which is why you see weight gain, muscle loss and an increase in health conditions relating to inflammation and blood sugar levels.  Stress and other nutritional or environmental factors can also inhibit your AMPK.  If your AMPK is inhibited, there is no amount of dieting or exercise that will get the weight off and get you healthy.  

Here are some ways you can activate the right AMPK response in your body.

Exercise- naturally activates AMPK
Stress Relief- Yoga is great for this, since it incorporates
exercise and meditation
Proper Sleep Pattern- Consistently getting the right amount each night will
help balance your AMPK levels 
Dietary Supplements- I'll go over which ones at the end



Number 2:
Endocrine Disruptors

Okay, so let's say you're doing all the right things to get your AMPK enzyme properly activated, but you're still having health issues or trouble losing weight.  What happened?  I thought you said it was in charge of everything?  Let me explain what happened.  When AMPK is inhibited, it starts a chain reaction within your body, starting with the Endocrine System.

The Endocrine system directly affects the regulation of our hormones.  And hormones control many things, like organs and even sending the signals to our body, coordinating our activities.  The Endocrine System excretes hormones to control fluid volume, levels of sodium and glucose in our blood, and is responsible for the development and function of our immune system.

For the average healthy person, if the AMPK is activated properly and the Endocrine System functions normally, they have energy, a healthy weight, and a functioning immune system protecting them from disease.  But this combination is becoming more and more rare, and we see cancer and other disease rates rising at an alarming rate.  What is going on?

Not only does an inhibited AMPK affect the Endocrine System, there are MANY culprits in our diet and environment that disrupt the Endocrine's process.  Endocrine disruptors are all around us.  Aging, stress and disease can disrupt the the Endocrine system function, but also pesticides, herbicides, and a number of chemicals found all around us, like BPA (found on thermal receipts and the lining of canned goods).

 The Environmental Working Group, also known as EWG, has listed the Dirty Dozen of Endocrine disruptors on their site here.  They also have detailed information about where you can find these chemicals in your foods and products used daily.  It's frightening how much these things affect your body!

The Dirty Dozen of Endocrine Disruptors

Bisphenol-A (BPA)

Dioxin

Atrazine

Phthalates

Perchlorate

Fire retardants

Lead

Mercury

Arsenic

Perfluorinated chemicals(PFCs)

Organophosphate pesticides

Glycol ethers



In addition, there are Endocrine disruptors like sugar, High-Fructose Corn Syrup, and fake sweeteners like Splenda, Aspartame and Saccarin.  Try doing a quick Google search for Endocrine Disruptors, and see what you come up with.  It's a wonder how we're still functioning at all.


Number 3:
Hormone Imbalance

This is the third step in the chain reaction, and is one of the main reasons we are getting fatter and sicker.  Our hormones get out of balance.  What does that mean and how does that happen?

Ideally, our body self-regulates our hormones by means of the Endocrine System.  But when our AMPK becomes inhibited, and our Endocrine System has been disrupted, either by age, lack of activity, or through ingestion or exposure to chemicals in our diet or environment, it throws a wrench in this "self-regulation" machine. We start circulating the wrong hormones in our body.

When the hormones are imbalanced, it is typically due to Estrogen dominance in men and women both.  This may not necessarily mean you have too much estrogen, but it may mean that your other hormones (ie Testosterone or Progesterone) are not functioning to balance the scale. You must have a balance for your body to function properly.  Even Testosterone in men can be converted to estrogen if the Endocrine system is not functioning properly.

If you have estrogen dominance, meaning an imbalance, you will see weight gain in the stomach, hips, and thighs.  Estrogen dominance is now believed to be the main factor in hormone related cancers like, breast, prostrate, uterine, ovarian, endometrial and cervix cancers.  Even women that were given HRT Hormone Replacement Therapy and estrogen are now developing hormone related cancers.  You can look here for signs and symptoms of having too much estrogen in your body.

Did you know that 1 in 2 men will get prostate cancer and 1 in 8 women will get breast cancer?   What does that tell you about estrogen dominance? It means that we, as a generation, obviously have a hormone imbalance.  But what's causing it?

Not just AMPK inhibitors, and not just Endocrine disruptors, but an excess of estrogens and xenoextrogens are being introduced into our bodies EVERY SINGLE DAY.   Even in the environment, we are seeing the effects of too much estrogen on wildlife.  Farmed fish are starting to change sex from male to female due to the amount of estrogen in their food.  And it is getting worse.  We are getting added xenoestrogen from animals that were given hormones, pesticides sprayed on the crops we eat, from flouride in our water and toothpaste, birth control pills, plastics, detergents and even perfume.  It's everywhere!  And it's not just going in you, it's going in our children's bodies.

Fixing this balance, by lowering or blocking estrogen in the body and/or increasing the progesterone to balance the hormones, should alleviate the estrogen dominance problem.  However, unless you also address the Endocrine System disruptors and the AMPK inhibitors, then you will continue to have trouble losing weight, maintaining a proper immune system and blood sugar levels, among other things.


How to Fix it:  

1.  Start with activating your AMPK 

Exercise- at least 30 minutes combined each day
Lower Stress- Remove stressors and meditate
Get Proper Sleep- Get consistent and adequate hours a night
Specific Dietary Supplements that activate the right AMPK enzymes (See below)

2.  Detoxify the body of Endocrine Disruptors

Switch to Organic
Lymphatic Massage
Lower Stress
Get Proper Sleep
Increase Antioxidant intake (specific list below)

3.  Balance Hormones

Switch to Organic
Use natural detergents, cosmetics, and sweeteners like honey or agave
Take estrogen blockers and avoid estrogenic foods
Take Dietary Supplements (see below)


The reasons why I chose the following supplements are as follows.  Not only have I found in my research that the following natural herbs and plants can activate the right AMPK, help to detoxify the body with antioxidants, allowing the Endrocrine System to function properly, and help to balance hormones, but... they also help rid the body of cancer cells and cancer stem cells.  I talk more about these supplements and their relation to cancer prevention in this article.  (See my personal experience at the bottom)


Ideal Dietary Supplements to Activate AMPK, Detoxify the body of Endocrine Disruptors, and Balance Hormones:

Lutein- Endocrine System

Black Seed Oil - AMPK, Endocrine System

Mangosteen - AMPK, Endocrine System

Curcumin - AMPK, Endocrine System

Probiotics- AMPK, Endocrine System and Hormonal balance

Bitter Melon- AMPK

Taurine- AMPK, Endocrine System and Hormonal balance

Indian Long Pepper - AMPK, Endocrine System

Resveratrol  - AMPK, Endocrine System   

Ashwaganda- Indian Ginseng - AMPK, Endocrine System

Green Tea - AMPK, Endocrine System

Rhodiola Rosea - AMPK, Endocrine System

Gotu Kola - AMPK, Endocrine System

Quercetin- AMPK, Endocrine System, and lowers estrogen levels

DIM- Estrogen Blocker (read about this in my personal experience at the bottom)

If you do these things, within a month, you will begin to see a major shift in your body chemistry.  You will feel better and have more energy, you will lose weight, and will reduce your risk for hormonal related cancers, Type 2 Diabetes, Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Rheumatoid Arthritis, and numerous other ailments.   I'd also love to hear about your experience if you have chosen to adopt these methods for yourself.


My personal experience:  

As a breast cancer survivor, I had estrogen dominant cancer and an imbalance in my body.  I turned down half of my conventional treatment and went the natural route to build my immune system and get a proper balance of hormones and metabolic regulation.  In doing so, I have been taking all of the above listed supplements for several months, with exception of DIM.  I started that a month ago, and here's what happened when I added that final piece of the puzzle.

First, I had successfully activated AMPK, and the Endocrine System was working much better once I removed a number of toxins, free radicals and even my old root canal.  I had energy, and could tell that I no longer had inflammation in my body.  My immune system has been working like a champ.  I even lost about five of the ten pounds that I had gained through chemotherapy and steroids.

But my weight wouldn't budge past that, even though I was eating right and exercising.  I still had bigger thighs and hips, and I started to get the dreaded cellulite on my thighs.  Then it hit me, I still had Estrogen Dominance.  So, I started taking DIM last month.  DIM is an extract made from cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli and cauliflower, and it acts as an estrogen blocker.  It shoves the bad estrogen, that we get from diet and environment, out of the cells and takes it's place.  The excess estrogen then gets dumped from the body and you are a HUGE step closer to hormonal balance.

This was the key to changing the chain reactions set in place years ago.  Not only will my body be able to self-regulate now, but I get the added bonus of losing another seven pounds in the past month without trying.  The cellulite is starting to fade, and my thighs and hips are now smaller.  I even have more energy, and I'm taking the cancer recurrence risk even lower.  



Sources:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3512901

http://www.supersmart.com/en--Endocrine-system--DIM-(di-indolylmethane)--0476

https://www.womentowomen.com/hormonal-health/estrogen-dominance/

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22801104

http://jme.endocrinology-journals.org/content/44/2/87.full

http://www.alternet.org/food/4-surprising-foods-packed-estrogen-chemical-linked-obesity-and-sexual-dysfunction

http://www.chatelaine.com/health/diet/how-having-too-much-estrogen-can-make-you-gain-weight/

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10188197

https://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/endocrine-disruptors-the-one-true-cause/

http://www.drlam.com/opinion/cancer_and_hormonal_balance.asp

http://www.livestrong.com/article/16099-foods-reduce-estrogen-dominance/

https://www.merckmanuals.com/home/hormonal-and-metabolic-disorders/biology-of-the-endocrine-system/endocrine-function

http://www.greenfacts.org/en/endocrine-disruptors/endocrine-disruptors.htm


Wednesday, June 10, 2015

How was Breast Cancer Staged? II or IV?


Over the past year and half, not only have I fought for my life, but I was also involved in a rather heated custody battle.  Both of those are resolved now.  However, during the process, a question of whether I had Stage II or Stage IV Breast Cancer came to light.  Does it matter what it was?  Not really.  But that burning question remains for a few, so I will address it now.

Here is confirmation from the medical chart with the hospital system that I was Stage IV.  So there, it's settled.  





Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Custody Battle

Court is done!  Joint custody!  

We anticipated spending five days in court showing the worst of each other.  Instead, we took a lot of time in negotiations and came up with a workable solution for us as parents.  We are moving forward from this with positive attitudes for the good of the children.  The children are happy, and that's all that matters.  As far as time with the children, it's all I wanted.  I'm thrilled to have them home for more than a day or two at a time.  I feel like I can actually be their mom again!   I'm relieved and so grateful for this outcome. 

Thank you everybody for all the support, love, prayers, donations, and help. I couldn't have done it without all of you! I am forever grateful.  

So relieved to be back

Eliah has slept like a rock

Natalie helping Eliah bowl

Mother's Day love

Family outing


I couldn't be happier

My girl is growing up so fast


My heart is so happy!!  And I can finally exhale....

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Why Chemotherapy and Radiation are Outdated Treatments for Cancer

For decades, the strategy against cancer has been cut, poison, burn.  Although surgery is precise, cancer cells can still remain in the body.  Even if chemotherapy and radiation shrink tumors, they can create resistant cells that become immune to any further treatments.  The initial success of treatments can often times be overshadowed by recurrent, fast growing metastatic tumors.

Science and the medical community have focused on this treatment method, with a 5yr survival rate of less than 30% overall for cancer patients, for the past 30 years.  That rate is no more than the rate of a placebo.  And cancer patients are lead down this path trusting that they are doing everything possible to kill cancer.

But there is a growing shift in cancer research in the past couple years.  As we learn more about cancer, we find that despite using our current methods to kill fast growing cancer cells (and any other ones by side effect, like bone marrow and white blood cells), we are leaving behind the master cancer stem cells and a destroyed immune system.  These slow growing CSCs are the queens of the cancer bee hive.  They make the rules, and they create the worker bees (fast growing tumor cells).

The cancer stem cells are often times not killed by chemotherapy because they are slow growing, and they quickly develop a resistance to future treatments by changing their DNA and getting to work on a new super tumor.  This is why you may see an initial remission in cancer, followed by an aggressive, invincible recurrence. They can even lay dormant for years before resurfacing.  And please remember, the treatment for cancer recurrence is the second best treatment.  The best treatment was used on the initial cancer and didn't work.



Medical science is now starting to recognize these cancer stem cells, and the cancer research is now focusing on killing them or changing their DNA.   They are finally starting to focus on using the body's immune system to fight cancer (Immunotherapy). But until they come up with the solution, if they ever do, we are left with our current treatments, which again, are no better than a placebo.  Or, we can treat cancer gently with what nature gave us.   With my research, I've been able to focus on using sources found in nature to not only kill cancer cells, but kill cancer stem cells, and build the immune system all at the same time.

The way that cancer stem cells create resistance is similar to infections becoming antibiotic resistant.  The stronger the antibiotics we use, the stronger bacteria becomes.  There have already been great strides in using natural resources to treat antibiotic resistant infections.  And the medical community is beginning to accept that.  In the same way, we will soon all learn that cancer can be cured by using natural and gentle sources.

The fight against cancer doesn't have to be a war.  We can utilize nature to enhance our body's immune system to kill cancer gently and safely.  We don't have to torture ourselves to get the results we want.

Some of the main sources for killing cancer cells and CSCs are:

Nigella Sative- Black Seed

Indian Long Pepper

Mangosteen

Curcumin

Dandelion Root

Resveratrol


Sources:

http://med.stanford.edu/ludwigcenter/overview/theory.html

http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/health/shock-study-chemotherapy-backfire-cancer-worse-triggering-tumor-growth-article-1.1129897

http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/study-radiation-therapy-can-make-cancers-30x-more-malignant

http://stemcells.nih.gov/info/Regenerative_Medicine/pages/2006chapter9.aspx



Monday, March 30, 2015

Oh, How I Love Proof....

When I was diagnosed with cancer in Sept 2013, my CA15-3 tumor marker number was 29, still within normal (under 30), but we know I had lots of cancer.  It has gotten lower every month, with it at 15 at the end of chemo in Jan 2014, when we know the cancer was gone. I started natural treatments then to build my immune system. I still had surgery and a year of Herceptin (a protein blocker). In November, while taking my last dose of Herceptin, the tumor marker number was 11.9.  I have only done natural treatments since then.  I turned down radiation and Tamoxifen (hormonal treatment for 5 years).

Most of the time, the doctor says the number goes up because this is a highly recurring cancer.  He was concerned, since I haven't had any treatment, and told me that he would call me if it was back up to 22.  If that were the case, he would get me in to do all kinds of scans and testing.

I just got the call from the nurse.  My CA15-3 number Friday, four months after my last "official" treatment ended and only natural treatments since is 11.1.  I'm so excited that all I'm doing is showing up as proof in the bloodwork and numbers!!!

Also, I've had a number of Naturopathic doctors* give me really positive feedback on my Killing Cancer Naturally article.  Even the Medical Director at Vitarock is interested in selling my supplements.  In addition, the Weston A Price Foundation took great interest in my root canal post and featured it on their Facebook page this past week.  I know I'm on the right path, and there's proof and validation in the feedback and in the results.  The number of people using my natural approach is growing, and I am starting to see all the wonderful results happening in them.  It's all going up from here!!!



* (Dr. Syliva Cimoch, Stamford Naturopathic, Dr. Karol, Alternative Medicine expert, Michael Redman, CEO, Oncolix, John Greene, Owner Mind Body Institute of America)

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Getting Healthy Takes Time

I never thought I would be one of those health wackos

A year ago, I was stripped down to a shell of a person.  I was weak, bald, full of toxins from chemotherapy drugs and recovering from major surgery.  I would lay in bed at night and wonder how I would ever get my health and my life back.  And then I said to myself, "Make the best of what you have, and do as much as you can every day".  

I read as much as I could about how to get my body healthy and recover.  Much to my dismay, nothing happens overnight.  More importantly, nothing meaningful happens without effort.  And I was so broken down, I didn't know if I had the strength to do anything.  But one thing I have in abundance is determination.  I had an obligation to my children and to myself to be better than I was before cancer.  I deserve to be healthy.

Exercise

What the experts say is true; it takes exercise, diet and time.  I'm going to be brutally honest, I have never been a fan of exercise.  I don't like how exercise feels when I'm doing it.  I don't like the muscle burn or the soreness days later.  And after 25+ years of actually doing exercise on a somewhat regular basis, I still feel that way.   The only exception is swimming.  I could do that for days at a time.  The only problem is, I don't have a pool.

Anyway, I know exercise is crucial, so I do it begrudgingly.  I started with a 10 minute walk on the treadmill every day.  Some days I walked 30 minutes or more, and some days I didn't walk at all. I tried not to get discouraged, and I would always try harder the next time.  I even bought .30 cent vhs tapes of exercise routines at the thrift store and I did those.

Now that I have a Roku, I get free exercise routines to my heart's content.  About five days a week I am doing Yoga for 30 minutes in the mornings.  It's extremely hard, but I love that I can pause and take a break whenever I need. More so, I love that I can see progress every single day.  Even my daughter loves to do Yoga with me.   I try to add Pilates when I can, and I have this awesome "Home Gym" that attaches to the door for resistance and strength training.  Worth every bit of the $25 it costs.


Diet

 The next vital step to getting healthy is diet.  Here again, I was in a situation I didn't want to be in.  I've never been a fan of "diet" food.  Sure, I loved some vegetables, like lettuce and green beans, but to be honest, vegetables played a VERY small role in my diet.  There were many days I didn't even eat a vegetable and saw nothing wrong with it.  I wasn't overweight, and I wasn't eating fast food or insanely calorie-rich foods from restaurants.  My meals were maybe a Ham and Cheese sandwich and some chips for lunch, and Pizza or Pasta for dinner.  What's so bad about that?

Well, the problem was my body wasn't getting what it needed to survive and protect me from illness.  I loved homemade breads and desserts, but those left me hungry within an hour of eating them because they didn't serve a purpose in my body.  It was easy to eat several times a day and still be hungry.  And the thought of cutting off my favorite things when I was so miserable was not a plan I felt I could stick with.  So, I started to change a little at a time.

I made only one rule for myself AND my children.  "Eat whatever you want, but add a vegetable to every meal".  I wasn't depriving myself of anything, so it wasn't a big deal.  And I found that I started feeling better every day, and I had more energy for exercise.  I started to crave vegetables more often.  Adding the organic garden in the back yard helped with this even more, because I wanted to eat what I had worked so hard to grow.

I was becoming more adventurous with vegetables, trying new things and making old favorites a little fancier.  The kids were craving vegetables more often too.  It was like a whole new world of food opened up for us.  And the more plant-based food we ate, the more we wanted.

As the shift in my diet has happened, and it was VERY gradual, I also started to incorporate more of a meatless diet.  I still eat meat, but where I was eating red meat at least 4 or 5 times a week, I am down to once every two weeks.  And where I was eating some kind of meat, like pork or chicken, at least 2 times a day, I'm am down to once every two days.  I have also switched from cow's milk to Almond milk, which my daughter loves.

Now, as far as sweets, I recall when I was first diagnosed with cancer, I was craving sugar like crazy.  I was buying candy bars at the store, which was not something I did often in years past, and they would be gone by the time I got to the car.  And I've heard many others with similar stories prior to their cancer diagnosis.   The tumors I felt were forming overnight, and all I wanted was to eat a bag of Milky Ways.  My body was definitely telling me something.  More sugar = more cancer growth.

 I already know the effect of sugar on the immune system, not just the effect of how sugar feeds cancer cells, so I have reduced my intake by about 75%, possibly more.  I still indulge on a homemade cookie, but I don't crave sugar anymore.  I don't sit around saying, "I really need something sweet".  Mostly I just want to drink tea.

The Point....

It's a bunch of little changes over a long period of time that make the biggest difference.  For instance, when I make bread or pasta, I try my best to use wheat flour instead of white.  I use brown whole grain rice instead of white.  I snack on carrots and celery instead of chips.  Many times, I will have a cup of Green Tea instead of a snack.  And all these things add up.

I don't "fall off the wagon", because I've made most of these things habit.  Even if I don't exercise today, I know I've done a year of it.  I know that adds up.  And when I exercise tomorrow, it won't be as hard as the first time, because I have stamina now.  If I eat a piece of pizza, no big deal, because most likely, I have a big salad along side it.  If I eat a cookie, it's okay, I know I'll just eat better tomorrow.

The biggest thing, and what I love above all, is proof.  I am not even close to the person I was a year ago.  I feel like a new person.  God knows I look like a new person.  I know I'm doing the best things for my body and my health.  I'm building a strong immune system.  And I'm creating an environment stronger than cancer.
 If I can do it, anyone can.  



Food Pictures

Here are some pics of the types of food I've eaten over the past year.  Keep in mind that my transition to mostly meatless is recent, and I still love cheese, eggs and butter.  Although, if I had more money, I would get those organically and locally.  That's just not an option yet.

Spaghetti Squash with Homemade Sauce

Shrimp Stir Fry with Garden Veggies

Fried Chicken Salad

Garden Veggies

This is a typical lunch for the kids when they are here

Natalie made this Whole Wheat Ravioli

I dry Kale for chips and for powder to add to meals

The kids eat this stuff like crazy!

My daughter Natalie rolling out Whole Wheat Lasagna Noodles

Typical haul from the grocery store

Spaghetti Squash with Parmesan Crusted Zucchini



And yes, I still make my Honey Wheat Bread


This is not a competition to be better than anyone else.  This is a competition to be better than I was.   I know I'm getting there a little at a time. You can do it too.