By Julie Snelgrove, Nursery Nurse, Somerset, UK
A little while ago on my facebook newsfeed there was an article titled:
“Alcohol is a direct cause of seven forms of cancer, finds study” The Guardian. 22 July, 20161
“There is now enough credible evidence to say conclusively that drinking is a direct cause of the disease…”
One of the cancers mentioned was Breast Cancer. I was interested in what was being said as a few years ago I was diagnosed with Ductal Carcinoma in Situ (DCIS), which is a pre-breast cancer condition that is treated in the same way as breast cancer. The question that came to mind was “Ok it’s good these links are being made as we need to know this, but isn’t the next and real question: ‘Why do we choose to drink alcohol in the first place’?” Are we not short changing ourselves when we simply read and take on only what these studies say, rather than coming back to what our bodies have been telling us for a long time?
So ok, I can be responsible, and listen to what the research tells us and choose to not drink alcohol, but does this mean I change any other behaviours in my life?
Do I look at my stress levels?
My emotional state?
The quality of my relationships?
Does it mean I will then deeply care for myself?
It might be we then actually eat more to numb ourselves, drink other stimulating drinks or eat more sugar. I know when I stopped alcohol I found other ways to bring stimulation and numbness to my body just as alcohol used to. There was no self-responsibility present in my life to look any deeper.
These questions then led me to remember something in regards to myself when diagnosed with breast cancer but till now have not looked up on the internet. That is the link between breast feeding and the likelihood of developing breast cancer. I had breast fed two children for nine years. So I googled ‘Does breast feeding reduce cancer?’ and I was faced with many of the cancer websites claiming this to be so and there had in fact been a report published just that day in the Mail online:
“Breast-feeding reduces cancer risk” Mail Online, 25 July, 20162
“Sir Richard and his team at the Imperial Cancer Research Fund Studies Unit, at the Radcliffe Infirmary in Oxford, discovered that ‘the relative risk of breast cancer decreased by 4.1 per cent for every 12 months of breastfeeding.’
The study also confirmed earlier reports that women who have children have a lower risk of developing breast cancer, which claims 13,000 lives in Britain every year.
A woman’s risk of developing the disease fell by just over 8 per cent for every birth.
Last night Dr Richard Sullivan, of the Cancer Research Campaign, said: ‘We know breastfeeding is good for babies, but this important piece of research shows just how good it is for women too.’ “
This is not new information, as similar findings from previous studies are published in The Lancet in 20023 and other reputable sources since, so it is a report of confirmation.
This new report is claiming that for every year of breast feeding the risk of breast cancer is decreased by 4.1% (in 2002 the Lancet used the figures 4.3%) and the Lancet also claimed for each child born the risk is lowered by a further 7%, though this one claims 8%.
So I have given birth to two children and breastfed for nine years, so this should mean the risk of developing this disease is lowered by 35-48%. AND I had stopped drinking alcohol 2 years before being diagnosed with breast cancer. If I bought into what this research is claiming, I could be left feeling quite bitter and cross, thinking I had breastfed for that long to reduce my risk (this was never my reason but if it had been) and ‘given up’ alcohol, as well as having a gluten and dairy free diet so was also food aware, yet still I developed the disease. There is the potential here to feel more of a victim to this disease that’s ‘happened to me’ and to not look any further into myself to feel what is really going on, as according to research I was not so likely to develop cancer. Could there more at play than all this research is showing us?
In hindsight and with all I have learnt and connected to within myself through the work and support of Esoteric Medicine from Universal Medicine, I would say continuing to breast feed was actually contributory to developing the disease, not because of the breast feeding itself but because of my reason driving me to continue. I consistently put my children’s needs (and anyone else’s) before my own, as I was so set on the picture I was holding of being a perfect mother to breast feed which led at times to me compromising my own health and well being.
As a woman, before I had children I had very little, if any, connection with my body, let alone my breasts, other than for sexual pleasure and then once I became a mother my breasts had a purpose to feed, nurture and nourish my babies. However, I was absolutely absorbed in this role and paid no attention to my own well being through the process nor had any relationship with myself as a woman. I continuously suffered with mastitis (at the time I could feel this was telling me something, yet I overrode it and still continued). Interestingly the mastitis flared up most in the breast with DCIS.
In regards to alcohol I drank very, very little, if any, up to becoming pregnant and none throughout my pregnancy or after my first child. It was only after the birth of my second child that I started drinking occasionally and this slowly increased to the point that five years later I was drinking every day. By now my second child was reaching five, my first was aged eight and I was exhausted, emotional, and run down in my health, yet I was still breast feeding and continued this until my second child was just over five.
Was I really helping to reduce the risk of breast cancer?
It is not that women should or should not breast feed, but rather that the consideration is what is true and supportive for them and their own self care and nurturing, not just their babies. I came to see after the diagnosis how I had to be nurturing and caring towards myself before I can truly nurture another, and it became clear to see this pattern had been running way before I had children.
So what is the purpose of all this research? Is it just buying time away from Truth? And if we keep believing and accepting the latest research this and research that, is it possible that all we are doing is delaying finding the truth of why breast cancer, or any other disease, is on the increase?
Our lifestyle choices do make a huge difference to our health and wellbeing, but these have to come from the place of choosing to self-love and self-care rather than because I am living in fear of developing a terminal illness or disease. This is what matters. When self-love and self-care are in place, we feel worthy of caring for our bodies and the knowing to not drink alcohol, or eat this or that, whether to breast feed or not, or for how long, is naturally there. Our choice to love, nourish and cherish ourselves and our bodies first, takes care of the answers.
I have come to learn how breast cancer was a gift. Through seeking healing with various Universal Medicine Therapies, which supported me to develop a reconnection to myself and my body, I could look at why I was choosing to not nurture myself first before any other. I came to see I was being offered an opportunity to look at ALL aspects of my life not just lifestyle choices, so I could make caring and nurturing choices in regard of my body, thus affecting the health of my breasts.
Research has its place and it is certainly raising our awareness, like showing the links between alcohol and cancer, however, there is more which needs to be considered and we have a body that is giving us feedback all the time.
It is time to question and become our own researchers with our body.
The ‘Why or What?’ of our choices is what counts.
Would some true research be, to look at the lifestyles of the women who have had breast cancer as well as those who have not, but may have other women’s health issues, and ask questions regarding:
- What does nurturing mean?
- What does breast care mean?
- Have they had children and how many?
- Did/do they breastfeed? How was this experience?
- How is their self worth on a day-to-day basis?
- Are they driven in their career/ being a mother or both?
- Their menstruation history and other health issues pre-diagnosis?
- Their relationships, and quality of, with themselves, with their breasts, with their bodies, with others?
- Their connection with themselves as a woman?
- The quality of their thoughts?
Breast Cancer does not ‘just happen’ – it has a history and additional research and discovering the possible similarities in women’s behaviours may start to unravel what is really going on and be the beginning of then living in a way that reduces the incidence of the disease. And even if it is not prevented and we are diagnosed, we are more likely to understand what is happening and feel equipped to heal ourselves in full.
We all have a body, which very clearly shows us the result of what we choose.
We do not have to wait for scientists to confirm what we can feel in our own bodies.
By living in a True Way, we are our own research and every day can be an experiment.
1) The Guardian 22 July 2016
2) The Mail online. 25 July 2016
3) The Lancet 20 July 2002
- Superb site on breast care and the esoteric breast massage – foundational breast care.
- Breast cancer awareness month: is there more to current breast awareness?
- What do you mean – do I have a relationship with my breasts?
682 thoughts on “Breast cancer: does medical research really bring us the truth or just a part of it?”
To truly nurture others we need to know how to nurture ourselves first. It can’t be any other way.
Ariana, you make a great statement, ‘we do not need scientists to confirm what we can feel in our bodies’. We are own walking, talking living science, let’s live it from that source that’s within us all.
Julie, you have posed so many questions, just like the three year old who constantly asks the ‘why’ questions and rightly so. I cannot fathom how scientists link diseases to a particular thing, when each person’s lifestyle is different.
Another interesting question about breast feeding and whether it prevents breast cancer or not, is not a question that fits all women. How does this affect men getting breast cancer then?
There is a deeper cause to any disease or illness and one thing researchers are not fully willing to explore, are our lifestyle choices. This is no different to how we care for our cars. Trash it, put the cheapest petrol, forget about the oil and water, or wash it, it eventually will give – our bodies are no different.
It’s about time for the real research, researching the people who have made lifestyle choices, and live in such a way, that everything is everything, nothing is a miss.
Agreed. It is not enough to address the symptoms, we need to be getting underneath to the kernel of the behaviours that lead to the symptoms. Currently the norm is to live in a very functional way in denial of the body, its processes and its communications, but if we start to acknowledge that there is much more to life that we can access through the body, which offers a richness that function misses completely, we can begin to acknowledge just how very precious and sensitive we are. In doing so we begin to make choices that honour this and so our journey of awareness deepens and our lives grow. The improvement of our health is simply a by product of this, which in truth is our natural state and birth right. The current physical and mental ill health is just an indication of how far from this precociousness and sensitivity we are living.
So true – if we look at the research results that link certain lifestyle choices to certain disease and decide to let go of the choice but without looking at why we were making that choice in the first place, we are most likely to develop another behaviour choice still coming from the same root cause, and our list of things to avoid will keep growing.
Thank you Julie, you raise many great points here including the broader realities of the impact of how we are living on our health, alongside established research linked to illness. Without a relationship to the body that listens to and respects how the body feels as a result of our choices it may be that we hold a mental idea that illness is random, genetic or simply bad luck. I also appreciated your focus on self nurturing as a woman as we know how much nurturing of those around us can support their bodies to thrive, yet we may not allow this same nurturing for ourselves.
Great sharing Julie, that deeper level of responsibility where we look at our honest reasons as to why we are not loving ourselves and living in a way that is honouring this, every second of every day. The quality we live in determines the quality of our body and what it represents and then this is what we take around with us to every relationship. A bigger responsibility than just being honest with ourselves and acting on it for sure.
Our bodies are highly tuned instruments that can detect the slightest disharmony if we are careful to not numb or bludgeon them in any way. If we develop a way to listen to them we can avoid much of the illness and disease we are plagued with.
Medical research either ignores the role of the doctor in healing or reduces its measurements to the management capabilities of a doctor. The healing ability of a doctor (a big part of the placebo effect?) is simply not part of medical research.
‘True Julie ‘It is time to question and become our own researchers with our body. The ‘Why or What?’ of our choices is what counts.’ We can do research about all aspects of life but when we don’t have an honest look at the quality we choose in the first place research will only add to better our life, to try to make it work.
Research in to medicine and medical practice is so important, and so vital. And There is a lot of potential I am sure for great people to make real change in this field of work.
“Breast Cancer does not ‘just happen’” With the understanding of the Ageless Wisdom when we take an honest and deep look at the way we are living we become aware of the cause and effect of what our physical body is revealing to us.
Yes it is the reason driving us to do something that needs attention not so much the behaviour itself for when we get to the why we can choose to continue, knowing the consequences, or not. We can also see how the why works in other areas of our lives and allowing ourselves this awareness we can clock what we are doing to our body. We begin to realise we actually do have an inner wisdom and the body communicates that to us. We can heed the little nudges or wait till they become roaringly obvious in symptoms that we would rather not have and that, in effect, bring us to our knees.
What if we embraced medicine, living science and our own choices and responsibilities towards our healthcare as one and the same? Perhaps then we would be living the answers to all our problems.
I’ve only known Universal Medicine to bring in the whole picture of a person rather than blaming the things around them that are out of a persons control for the source of illness or disease. It is very empowering (if at first confronting) to know that the way I live, the energy I live in, is the source of my state of health in my body, my mind and my relationships. Because then I have a say in what happens.
Yes this is true Leigh Matson how it is empowering to know we are responsible for our all that occurs in our lives, and even though this is the case my own default is usually to find a reason outside of myself why my health is like it is. More and more though through Universal Medicine and applying the principles of The Way of The Livingness to myself I have to look at my choices and how I am living and the source of energy I am choosing first. This so much more supportive for my body in clearing the illness than blaming or settling for an explanation away from me in the outside environment, which only fuels the issue, and keeps me stuck.
I agree Leigh, I feel that the self responsibility is very empowering and yes, confronting at times, but we always have the option to make more caring choices for ourselves.
“Our lifestyle choices do make a huge difference to our health and wellbeing, but these have to come from the place of choosing to self-love and self-care rather than because I am living in fear of developing a terminal illness or disease” – such a great point. We could be doing all the ‘right’ things but still become ill. I agree – there’s lot to gain from looking beneath our lifestyle choices and asking why questions. It’s a process of deepening honesty, and that in itself is a way of loving ourselves.
This is taking research to the next level, one that asks us to consider more than what we do, but in fact how we do it, our quality in it and how we stay connected to that quality and feel any changes that are required … it’s so much more than just doing things or not, but how our bodies speak ever and always and how in that we are offered a constant feedback loop which supports us to live more true to us and our bodies.
It is making research about people, rather than about the intervention.
It’s very beautiful what you have brought to the table here Julie. It is not necessarily what we do but why we are doing it, what is motivating us? In the case of breast feeding I have known women who have breast fed their children because it gave them a feeling of comfort and security when the relationship with their husbands/partners was not going well. Women can use this activity for all sorts of ‘reasons’ that can lace the true nurturing of their babies/children.
Science doesn’t have all the answers, they can be quick to label a discovery without taking account of the deeper human factors, the emotion or stress that we live with, yes we can say alcohol is a factor yet science doesn’t get into the detail as to why people live certain life styles and maybe it is in the detail of what is behind the choices that the answers lie.
I love this powerful statement: ‘Our lifestyle choices do make a huge difference to our health and wellbeing, but these have to come from the place of choosing to self-love and self-care rather than because I am living in fear of developing a terminal illness or disease.’ The quality of making the decision from fear is a different one than the choice to self-nurture and not only say NO to things that aren’t loving, but be very precise in what our body does need at that specific point in time.
I understand going through the motions of self care is very different from estsblishing a relationship of self love that truly cares about our bodies, and so our experience of life. We need to build a relationship of understanding and responsiveness with our bodies.
It is so true, how there is often the celebration of one destructive behaviour, which only creates a blindness to what all else there is which is the same behaviour just going unnoticed because perhaps it is not as extreme.
The statistics on illness and disease are telling us that despite more research and more health information being available than ever before people are still making lifestyle choices that are harming their health (even when they know they are not good for them), so there must be something else going on here and Julie you make a great point that we need to look deeper into why we are making these choices not just restrict and reduce it to a list of dos and don’ts.
Medical research brings us part of the truth. It has a very incomplete understanding of the causes of breast cancer, apart from the genetic aspects.
What an amazing and life-changing revelation this must have been for you Julie. “I have come to learn how breast cancer was a gift”. It is in total contrast to what we hear from most women who, when they are diagnosed with this disease, talk about fighting and beating it. It almost feels like this aggressive way of facing breast cancer would bring even more tension and stress into a body which is already struggling to heal itself, but accepting the gift as you have feels like the first important step in the healing process.
‘We don’t have to wait for scientists to confirm what we know in our own bodies’ – yes, and we don’t have to wait until we get a deadly disease or illness before we start making the lifestyle changes and choices that we know our bodies are asking us to make. Sometimes, even after having made those choices, we still get a disease because of our past choices – but if that’s the case, we still have a choice: to beat ourselves up for our own choices and their consequences, or see it as a moment to stop, to clear and heal: the body’s natural process of discarding an energy that we took on or lived in that was against our natural way of being,
A very powerfull piece of writing you put here Julie.
It is so logical what you write. You bring us simply back to open our mind to have a more logical view on why illnesses appear like they do on which parts of the body.
We can follow all the rules of a healthy lifestyle, diet and exercise and what they can offer us and yet still become sick or ill. So it would make sense that we go further and consider aspects such as stress and emotional levels and the quality of our relationships and movements through life
True, we often live with a level of stress and exhaustion that we call normal while not considering the debilitating impact it has on the body long term.
We need to get out of that way of thinking that disease and illness simply just happen out of no-where and we are just victims of it. Illness and disease are there to teach us something about the way that we are living and should we dare to listen there is a huge amount that we can learn.
I know from when I have had any illness and particularly getting my breasts checked that the result that we are given is of value and something we can work with. There has always been an underlying understanding that this is never it, that there is more the whole understanding of what is going on. Thanks to Serge Benhayon I have been able to truly understand the underlying core issues on an energetic level and have been able to make changes by the choices I make to live my life and the quality of what I am living to heal my body.
Becoming aware of the energetic levels of healing through the teaching of the Ageless Wisdom is the missing ingredient that has us questioning why is this happening and why can’t it be fixed.
‘So what is the purpose of all this research? Is it just buying time away from Truth? And if we keep believing and accepting the latest research this and research that, is it possible that all we are doing is delaying finding the truth of why breast cancer, or any other disease, is on the increase?’ I am with you Julie, it takes us away from truly looking at how we are living and have been living and to take responsibility and change our ways from inside out and not because such and so did research and all of sudden we follow the last results and think we have found it. All part of the illusion of research as it is practised at the moment.
I love how you have taken the time to take this to the next step that it needed to go to.
It would be ‘encouraging’ to know that the scientists would read this article and stop to take a deeper look at the understanding of a woman who is presenting her own case study.
“I have come to learn how breast cancer was a gift.” Amazing statement one that is super super inspiring. I would love your experience here to be shared around the world so everyone learn from your inspiration and feel the gift of true healing that cancer can bring.
Self nurturing and self care are the foundation for living the truth of who we are, allowing us to express the sacredness within.
There is so much that we have to learn about nurturing, and how profoundly it affects us.
There’s so much information out there telling us what is good/bad for whatever. I agree – research raises our awareness, but in letting it take the place of our self-responsibility, we lose our power.
” So what is the purpose of all this research? Is it just buying time away from Truth? And if we keep believing and accepting the latest research this and research that, is it possible that all we are doing is delaying finding the truth of why breast cancer, or any other disease, is on the increase? ”
The thing about research its that it wants answers but truly the research is not looking for truth.
I agree John, wanting answers is not the same as looking for the truth, wanting to find out about the root cause and our own part in it all.
Lifestyle choices definitely play a huge part in our health, yet often we fail to take responsibility for our choices, or see the damage that we do to ourselves.
I am sure if you were to analyse research papers on Breast Cancer over a 20 year span I would expect we would find that many of the papers contradicted each other as they decide what the causes are. What you showed about your own experience made sense Julie, and that statistics don’t look at the whole picture, they take one aspect such as alcohol and say you shouldn’t drink when you are pregnant but this is only a small part of the equation and is mis-leading to anyone hoping to avoid getting Breast Cancer. For us to truly heal any illness we have to be willing to look at every aspect of how we are living and listen to our body, for it really is our best guide to all our sickness and illnesses.
Such a great point you make here that intention behind our lifestyle choices is key – if we are making changes to our lifestyle based on fear or anxiety around possibly becoming another statistic are we not just adding to the stress, tension and unease in our bodies which may be contributing to illness and disease in the first place! If we do this we are also forever at the mercy of the latest research findings or information from outside of us to give us the latest solutions. However if we come from a place where we connect to our preciousness and fragility as human beings first and can really appreciate our divine qualities then we will naturally know what to do to deeply care and nurture ourselves and each other.