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Protect Your Breasts

Protect Your Breasts

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Ten Really Simple Things You Can Do Today Stop eating red meat? Remove all plastic from your life? C’mon, how about some tips to protect your breasts that you can live with! Here are 10 things you may not know you can do to help protect your breasts and improve your overall immunity. Increase Your Vitamin D Intake.  Yup, you need to spend your lunch hour languishing in the sun (okay, at least 15 minutes worth, anyway!)  – doctor’s orders!  Emerging evidence suggests vitamin D deficiency may be linked to development of various forms of cancer, including breast cancer. One recent study involving over 1000 postmenopausal women found that supplementing with calcium and vitamin D  for 4 years significantly raised vitamin D status and reduced all-cancer risk.†  Optimize your vitamin D status by either getting more sun, drinking fortified milk or orange juice, eating sockeye salmon, or taking vitamin D supplements. Sleep More.  Yup, in addition to more beach time, sleeping more is a great way to protect your overall immune system and allow for normal hormonal fluctuations. Revisit Your childhood.   Remember how much you loved jumping on a trampoline in gym class?  Turns out that the gentle up-and-down bouncing of a mini-trampoline can provide stimulation for your lymph nodes, increasing the amount of toxins they can drain out. Get Out And Play.  No room to store a mini-trampoline?  Consider adding other forms of exercise to your daily routine.  Regular exercise cuts your risk of cancer, heart disease and much more.  If the thought of joining Jane Fonda in legwarmers makes you  pull the covers up over your head, find sports you actually enjoy doing – you’ll stick with them longer.  As long as you’re moving, you’re moving in the right direction. Get a massage.  Find a licensed massage therapist and get or learn how to give yourself a proper breast massage.  Preliminary research suggests that then physical pressure of massaging your breasts helps regulate the cells back to a normal growth pattern. It may also help release toxins  (yes again). Massaging your breasts can also help with early detection of changes. If you can’t find the time to go see a masseuse, try to take a steam bath or massage your own breasts for a few minutes each day to increase blood flow.  (Or hey, ask a friend to help out!) Get your I3C on.  I3C, or Indole-3-carbinol, is being researched for its beneficial effects on estrogen metabolism.  In a randomized controlled trial, a supplement combination of indole-3-carbinol, calcium glucarate, milk thistle, Schisandra chinesis and stinging nettle was shown to significantly increase  urinary concentration of 2-hydroxy estrogen in pre- and post-menopausal women. This is important because studies have shown that as levels of 2-hydroxyestrogen increase and levels of 16-hydroxyestrogen decrease, the risk for breast cancer decreases.This unique blend of natural ingredients helps protect breast tissue by aiding detoxification, helping the body eliminate harmful estrogens and promoting a healthy estrogen balance. You can get a small amount...

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Breast Healthy Living

Breast Healthy Living

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How lifestyle choices can help shape your risk of breast cancer. It’s never too early to be proactive. Breast cancer ranks as the top health concern for women young and old. In Canada, 1 in 8 women will develop invasive breast cancer in her lifetime. Despite this staggering statistic, we have made little progress in advancing our understanding of how to treat never mind prevent breast cancer. “An ounce of prevention, is worth a pound of cure”. The lack of progress is in part due to our underestimating the important role that lifestyle plays in shaping a woman’s risk. Eight of every ten women diagnosed with breast cancer have no family history. Women living in the US have a greater risk of dying from breast cancer than do women living in Thailand. These facts underscore the important role lifestyle plays in shaping our risk. “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”. It is never too early to adopt a breast healthy lifestyle. What we choose to eat, drink, and apply to our skin are choices we make everyday. The following guide will help you to take proactive measures to reduce your risk through the decades: In your Twenties It’s easier to never start than to stop smoking. Most smokers pick up the habit before their 21st birthday. Starting early and smoking longer are linked with an increased risk of breast cancer. Instead, young women can adopt breast healthy diets adding cruciferous vegetables (i.e. broccoli, bok choy and kale) that enhance estrogen metabolism and reduce health problems caused by hormone imbalance. When we are young it is crucial to limit exposure to environmental hazards such as dioxins in pesticides and mercury in contaminated fish as maturing breast tissue is more vulnerable. We can do this by selecting organic produce (check out the dirty dozen list for the most heavily sprayed crops) and limiting fish intake to three servings a week. While a good diet should be the foundation of health, it may not be enough. From birth, it is recommended that we take the sunshine vitamin (D3) as a supplement as inadequate stores are linked with risk of breast cancer later on. In your Thirties Pregnancy and breastfeeding are protective to the breast. Becoming pregnant, especially having a baby before the age of 30 years, and breastfeeding are associated with a lower risk of acquiring breast cancer later in life. Skin and hair care products begin to be used and we must do so wisely. Carefully check labels and avoid those products that contain harmful ingredients such as parabens, hormone disruptors that may be linked to breast cancer. In your Forties Body shape changes commonly start at midlife. Being overweight is one of the most important predictors of breast cancer. The diagnosis of breast cancer often follows a stressful life event. In our forties, we face the...

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How Exercise Can Lower Your Breast Cancer Risk

How Exercise Can Lower Your Breast Cancer Risk

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Regular exercise is known to lower a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer. This has been well documented in a number of studies, but the way in which exercise provides protection has not been clearly understood. Exciting new research released recently has revealed how exercise can guard against breast cancer: vigorous exercise has a positive effect on how estrogen is broken down (metabolized) in the body. It is estimated that about 80 percent of breast cancer tumours are estrogen-dependent, meaning they require estrogen to grow. Certain estrogen metabolites, or breakdown products, can speed tumour growth, while others are relatively benign and possibly protective. In this new study, researchers recruited more than 300 healthy, yet sedentary (in active), women from 18 to 35 years old. Roughly half of them were randomly assigned to a vigorous exercise program of 30 minutes a day for five days a week. The remaining women served as a control group and continued with their sedentary lifestyle. Urine samples were collected from the participants so researchers could measure levels of estrogen and estrogen metabolites. The researchers looked at the ratio of two specific metabolites: 2-hydroxyestrone (2-OHE1) and 16 alpha-hydroxyestrone (16-alpha-OHE1). The metabolite 2-OHE1 is relatively benign with a weak estrogen effect while 16-alpha-OHE1 is considered potentially carcinogenic. Several previous studies have found that as urinary levels of 2-OHE1 increase and levels of 16-alpha-OHE1 decrease, the risk for breast cancer decreases. The ratio of these metabolites, 2OHE1 to 16-alpha-OHE1, is known as the estrogen metabolite ratio (EMR). After four months, the women in the vigorous exercise group had a much more favourable ratio of these two metabolites than the sedentary participants, according to the study published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention. This study adds to the body of evidence supporting the value of strategies that can improve a woman’s EMR. A previous study conducted on femMED’s Breast Health formula found that use of this supplement for a month period of time had a positive effect on EMR. This was the first time a supplement had been studied for its potential protective effects against the biomarkers associated with breast cancer.   Sherry Torkos Sherry Torkos is a pharmacist, author, certified fitness instructor, and health enthusiast who enjoys sharing her passion with others. Sherry graduated with honors from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science in 1992. Since that time she has been practicing holistic pharmacy in the Niagara area. Her philosophy of practice is to integrate conventional and complementary therapies to optimize health and prevent disease. Sherry has won several national pharmacy awards for providing excellence in patient care. As a leading health expert, Sherry has delivered hundreds of lectures to medical professionals and the public. She is frequently interviewed on radio and TV talk shows throughout North America and abroad. Sherry has authored fourteen books & booklets, including The Glycemic Index Made Simple and...

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Breast Health Education

Breast Health Education

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Facts About Breast Cancer Breast cancer is the most common cancer among Canadian women. Around 80% of breast cancers are diagnosed in women who are 50 and over. 1 in 9 women is expected to develop breast cancer during her lifetime. 1 in 28 will die from it. Background: What do Women Need to Know About Estrogen For most women, breast cancer concerns rise as they get older and their natural supply of estrogens begins to diminish. Should they replenish estrogens through hormonal therapy? Estrogens are not something to always be feared. Throughout our lives they play important roles in the health of our bones, heart, brain, hair, skin and other organs including the prostate gland in men. What determines if estrogens will help or hurt your health? Some medical researchers are following a promising “fork in the road” hypothesis: examining the path estrogens take as they are metabolized by different organs in our bodies (liver, kidneys, and even the breast). They believe that whether or not estrogens are healthful or harmful depends on the number of oxygen/hydrogen (OH) molecules that are attached to the estrogens in your body, through a ‘routine’ metabolic process called hydroxylation. Recently published clinical study shows how femMED Breast health may help maintain healthy breast tissue The researchers tested femMED Breast Health on 47 pre-menopausal women and 49 post-menopausal women for 28 days. On day one and 28, they analyzed blood and urine samples. Researchers were pleasantly surprised to discover consumption of the femMED supplement significantly increased the mean urinary concentration of 2- OHE in pre- and post-menopausal women (by 110% and 88%, respectively), suggesting a risk- reducing effect. The Breast Health supplement was well-tolerated, and displayed no adverse side effects. Key Ingredients Indole-3-carbinol is a nutrient found in cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli. It aids in the detoxification of estrogen, has anti-cancer properties and fights free radical damage. Milk thistle supports liver function and aids in detoxification. Calcium-D-glucarate helps the liver detoxify and eliminate estrogen. Studies have shown that Vitamin D3 may help reduce breast cancer development and growth. All other ingredients in this formulation work together to support optimal Breast Health.   “Given that greater than 90% of breast cancer cases are estrogen dominant, and therefore have nothing to do with hereditary factors, the very nature of the formulation, and our subsequent findings, addresses this alarming statistic,” With breast cancer affecting one in nine women, and nothing in the marketplace available to address prevention, we were excited by the ground-breaking potential of such a unique and essential formula for women, as well as the potential benefits for women, so we were pleased to take this on. Our carcinogenic ratio was a novel biomarker we devised in order to fully assess the relative amounts of pro-carcinogenic and anti-carcinogenic estrogens/estrogen metabolites,” she continued. “Although our sample size was relatively small, we were amazed to...

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Breast Health Ingredients

Breast Health Ingredients

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femMED Breast Health is a source of nine ingredients for the provision of breast health support. These nutrients are delivered in an easy to swallow, vegetarian capsule. The ingredients include: Indole-3- Carbinol, Milk Thistle [Silybum marianum], Calcium D-Glucarate, Vitamin D, Stinging Nettle [Urtica dioica], Hydroxymatairesinol and Schisandra chinensis. Indole-3-Carbinol Indole-3 carbinol is a nutrient found in cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, and kale. It has anti-cancer properties, aids in detoxification of estrogen, reduces the levels of free radicals, and protects liver function. It has been shown in preliminary research that it helps support breast health. There are no known side effects. Milk Thistle [Silybum marianum] Milk thistle, an herb with a long history of use for liver and spleen disorders, contains a flavonoid complex called silymarin, which is responsible for its antioxidant, detoxifying, and liver health benefits. Research supports its use for the treatment of viral and alcoholic hepatitis, and liver cirrhosis. Preliminary research suggests that it might protect the liver against drug-induced toxicity caused by acetaminophen (Tylenol) and phenytoin (Dilantin). It is generally well tolerated; there are no known drug interactions. Calcium D-Glucarate A supplemental form of glucaric acid, which is a phytonutrient found in fruits and vegetables (apples, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and cabbage), D-glucarate helps the liver detoxify and eliminate excess hormones (particularly estrogen); it is used for the treatment of PMS, fibrocystic breast disease, uterine fibroids, and other conditions of estrogen excess. There are no known side effects; there are no known drug interactions. However, many drugs are metabolized in the liver and D-glucarate may enhance the elimination of certain drugs, requiring dosage adjustments. Vitamin D Vitamin D is most potent in its vitamin D3 form. Evidence from in vitro studies demonstrates that vitamin D3 can downregulate estrogen receptors as a mechanism of reducing cancerous cell growth. Vitamin D3 also plays an essential role in thyroid function and can help reduce muscle cramping. Stinging Nettle Stinging Nettle contains active ingredients which can decrease internal exposure to estrogens. This reduction in internal exposure to estrogens can promote healthy hormonal cell division and has been associated with maintaining healthy breasts. Hydroxymatairesinol Hydroxymatairesinol is composed of lignans from the heartwood of the Norway spruce, Picea abies. These lignans can inhibit or delay the growth of estrogen-dependent cancer cells. Overall, hydroxymatiresinol lignans may support breast health and buffer hormone fluctuations. Schisandra chinensis Schisandra chinensis contains lignans, which are a type of phytoestrogen. These phytoestrogens may have a protective effect on the initial development or growth of cancerous by blocking the binding of estrogen to its receptor or inhibiting the local production of estrogens from circulating in breast tissue. Image courtesy: Coyau / Wikimedia Commons / CC-BY-SA-3.0, via Wikimedia...

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Take Control Of Your Breast Health With Breast Thermography

Take Control Of Your Breast Health With Breast Thermography

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The following post was kindly submitted by Mary Kubisewsky, a breast cancer survivor and Clinic Director ofThermography Clinic Kitchener.   Breast Thermography is a well known safe, radiation and compression free method of assessing a woman’s risk for breast cancer offering the earliest possible warning that problems may be developing in her breasts. Thermography using an infrared camera and high tech computer software, takes images of the temperature and vascular supply in the breasts, based on the scientific principle that chemical and blood vessel activity in both pre-cancerous tissue and the area surrounding a developing breast cancer is almost always higher than in a normal breast. The base-line examination will be rated as low, medium, or high risk. Once that is established, thermography is an objective way to evaluate if therapies or life style changes are working to reduce risk of breast cancer. It takes 8-9 years of growth on average for a tumour to be detected by a mammogram, so don’t “wait for the lump”. Be proactive and in addition to your regular medical breast examinations, consider regular breast screening with thermography; the results could save your life! Thermography is not meant to replace standard detection methods, but when used as a multi- model approach (clinical examinations, thermography, mammography), peer reviewed studies have shown that 95% of early stage breast cancers can be detected! Mary Kubisewsky is a breast cancer survivor and Clinic Director of Thermography Clinic Kitchener at 9 Cameron St. N. In Kitchener Ontario. (website: www.thermographyclinic-kw.com), with mobile clinics in Goderich, Listowel and Milton. To find a Thermography Clinic in your area visit: www.thermographyclinic.com and click on “Locations”. Thermography is not currently covered by OHIP. The cost is $250 plus HST which includes two appointments: one for imaging and the second for a consultation to discuss your report with you. Shawna Page Shawna Page is the founder and CEO of femMED. Following a 20-year career in the investment banking industry, Shawna was ready to settle down and take on a new challenge: early retirement and being a full-time mother to her three children. Little did she realize she would be back in the saddle after only 3 weeks. Living a healthy lifestyle has always been a top priority, and over the years Shawna had gained a tremendous amount of knowledge in the natural health world, but more importantly, she became very aware of the consumer pitfalls as well. Searching the store aisles for the right supplement was frustrating and confusing. There was no trusted brand just for women. That, combined with the lack of natural options available to women, gave birth to her desire to simplify things and she created femMED, the first ever consumer friendly all-natural solution to women’s most common health...

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