Breast Cancer Hastings NE
By Elizabeth Marglin
Gather your breasts, whatever their form—large, small, pointy, curvaceous, pert, or saggy—and cup them close to your heart. Cherish this part of your body, for as Psalm 139 says, “I will praise thee for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” But lately, the emphasis seems heavy on the fear, with the spotlight falling mainly on breast cancer, and light on the wonder.
“I’m amazed we have Breast Cancer Month,” says Tracy Gaudet, MD, director of the Duke Center for Integrative Medicine and author of Consciously
Female: How to Listen to Your Body and Your Soul for a Lifetime of Healthier Living (Bantam, 2004). “Why don’t we have Breast Health Month? We always are focusing on the disease state rather than on optimum health.” Why not reverse that thinking? If we reconnect ourselves with our breasts and proactively promote their health, we can better sense when we’re in balance and when something’s awry.
“Breast cancer is a concern for everyone,” Gaudet adds, “but we need to see the bigger picture.” In that picture, our breasts are a vital and sensual part of our body that deserve to be lavished with care. Nourishing them through exercise, herbs, and massage are gentle, noninvasive ways to bolster breast health and channel our nurturing energies back toward ourselves.
Get a move on
Adding exercise to your daily routine makes a huge difference for breast health. A 2003 study published in JAMA found that postmenopausal women who engaged in the equivalent of 1 1/4 to 2 1/2 hours of brisk walking each week decreased their risk of breast cancer by 18 percent. Women who exercised during their 30s benefited from a similar protective effect later in life.
The American Cancer Society suggests at least 30 minutes of moderate activity five days a week, but that doesn’t mean you have to become a gym rat. “Exercise doesn’t have to be spandex or an hour at a time,” says Susun Weed, author of Breast Cancer? Breast Health! The Wise Woman Way (Ash Tree Publishing, 1996). You can dance around a room, walk around the block, or weed your garden. Tune into the types of movement that feel right for your body.
Much ado about bras
The same principle holds for bras: Go with what feels right for you. That may mean bidding adieu to bras altogether, an act experts such as Weed recommend, since a few studies have linked bra wearing with breast cancer. In particular, two anthropologists with the Institute for the Study of Culturogenic Disease, Sydney Singer and Soma Grismaijer, studied the bra-wearing habits of 4,600 women and found that the longer a woman wore her bra, the higher her risk was for breast cancer.
While many doctors scoff at their results, it’s plausible that tight bras constrict the flow of lymph around the breast, chest wall, and surrounding
tissue. If lymph can’t circulate, the build-up of toxins could conceivably lead to cancer. Underwire bras are especially guilty of cutting off circulation, and many experts in breast healt...
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