Resources to Fight Cancer

Ever since Brad’s cancer diagnosis, I’ve been constantly consuming information. There’s a sense of helplessness and fear that come with not knowing what will happen. Instead of allowing myself to be totally consumed by that fear, I’ve decided to control what we can control.

In order to do that, I need information, and I’ve been choosing to get it from lots of different resources. So I thought I would share some of those with you, in case you need the empowerment, too.

Resource No. 1: People

You need to find other people who have been through what you are going through. Maybe it’s not the same cancer or symptoms or whatever, but walking the journey is easier with other people.

Finding people who have faced the fear of doctors, follow-ups, surgery, chemo, radiation and all the things in-between gives you an advantage on what questions to ask, doctors to find (or avoid), clinic etiquette, parking and where to find coffee or snacks.

Lean on those people. Let them help you and comfort you in your time of need. Then, pay it forward. Because I promise you, you will learn lots of tips and tricks that will help someone else in the future.

Resource No. 2: Books

This has been my sweet spot. I’ve got books upon books upon books. I’m reading anything I can get my hands on about nutrition. Some books are competing theories on nutrition. Some are diet-specific. Some are cookbooks. Some are personal stories of cancer survivors.

I can tell you a couple key things I’ve learned from all the reading.

  • Added sugars and artificial sugars are MEGA bad for you, as in they ping the same place in the brain as heroine and cocaine.
  • Processed foods are linked to all kinds of health issues i.e. cancer, heart disease, autoimmune disease, diabetes, autism, etc.
  • Dark leafy greens are the superheros of the vegetable world.
  • Berries are the best fruits because they are high in antioxidants and have a lower glycemic index than other fruits.
  • Fats are not the enemy. Your brain runs on good fats like avocado, coconut oil, MTC oil, olive oil.
  • What you eat affects the microorganisms that live in your digestive tract. This is part of emerging science, but studying the gut will become mainstream in the very near future because gut health is linked to your immune system.
  • Knowing where your food comes from let’s you have more control over what goes into it.
  • Diet is a loaded word, in my opinion. Keto, paleo, vegetarian, whatever. It’s about how you feel. Once you’ve done your research and gain some understand of how food is sourced, processed, etc., you should use different diets as guidelines, not the word. Each body is different. It needs different things based on each person’s genetic makeup, microbiome, stressors and disease. Experiment until you find what works for you.

Books I’ve loved so far:

Books in the queue:

It’s not a fine science. It’s just research. What makes sense to us might not make sense to you. It may not be for you, and that’s ok. You can find what is for you.

Resource No. 3: Weekly Grocery Shopping

“Let food be thy medicine.”

It’s an ancient proverb. Food is powerful. It can build you up or tear you down. What you put in is a direct reflection of what you get out. So I challenge you to make good choices each week.

Cook at home.

Eat those veggies.

Cut back on the starch.

Please, please limit your added sugar intake. It really is in everything so read your labels. Check those ingredient lists.

Be an advocate for yourself. Vote with your dollars on the products that fuel your health. On the brands that are transparent.

Companies and brands I trust as of right now:

Resource No. 4: Overhaul Your Products

I wrote about this once before, but it’s just so important I had to say it again. What you put on your body is just as important as what you put in your body. There is very little regulation on what chemicals can be used in the products you use every day.

Go watch Stink! on Netflix. Then, let’s talk. Because, girl, I’ll tell you what is happening ain’t right. No, ma’am.

Companies and Brands I trust with what I know/research/info available right now:

Note: None of these companies, brands, authors, etc. asked me to endorse their products or work. I did not get compensated for this post. These are the things that have worked for us so far, and I hope you find it helpful.

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Do No Harm

2018 was a tough year for me. I lost my favorite kid in the entire world to Ewing’s Sarcoma, a rare type of bone cancer, and my boyfriend was diagnosed with a malignant neuroendocrine tumor (NET) in his small intestine, which thankfully they removed right before Christmas.

I can’t help but think that these life-shaping moments mean something more, and I personally have felt very called, convicted to share my knowledge on how to help people make safer, better choices.

The mantra “Do No Harm” comes into play here. We are hardwired to go with the flow, the masses. Society can make choices that we automatically deem ok because “other people are doing it.” I remember in elementary school getting in trouble for doing something against the rules, and my teacher saying something like if everyone jumped off the roof, would you do it, too?

We have to stop “jumping off the roof” when it comes to our health and wellbeing. Just because everyone else is doing it doesn’t make it the best choice for each of us.

I love the idea of exploring this whole idea of don’t just go with the flow when it comes to your health. It’s a loaded topic. And I know people will get testy on the subject because we want to believe that we are doing the right thing. Health and wellness is just a touchy topic because everyone choices to live differently.

But let’s unpack this idea. For fun. Particularly for the endocrine system.

I found this article from Dr. Axe, and it totally hit home for me.

With Brad’s cancer specifically affecting hormone cells in his small intestine, changing his diet won’t be enough on the preventative side we can control. There are so many things that we use on our bodies, breathe in through the air and eat that can effect our endocrine system. So diet is only one of many things.

Well, you can’t control what chemical makeup of the air we breathe.

But you can get a home air filtration system or diffuse clarifying essential oils or use safer cleaning products. I started looking into household cleaners once I signed on with Beautycounter and started learning about all the ways our endocrine system can be affected by what we put on our bodies. That translated quickly into changing our everyday cleaners and detergents.

Brands I use include Seventh Generation, Better Life and Doterra. Better Life is a new one for me, but proving to be a good one. I get mine through Thrive Market or on Amazon.

I use EWG’s Skin Deep Site or app to check out beauty and skin care products that fall outside of Beautycounter‘s current product offerings. Finding Beautycounter was a total game changer for me and my skin care. I’ve always suffered with oily, acne-prone skin, but now I believe that was totally because the products I was using were full of harmful chemicals, additives and questionable ingredients. Beautycounter has a list of over 1,500 ingredients they never use in any of their products. It’s a company I’m proud to support because we are collectively changing the beauty industry for the better.

I realize this is a heavy subject, but we need to be talking about it as consumers. We need to be voting with our dollars for company’s that put people first, instead of profit. This is something I’m deeply passionate about, and it is so very important as we move forward.

The goal is not to have everyone I know using Beautycounter or brands I love (though I would love it if you found Beautycounter to be your thing that works for you).

The goal is to get you thinking about things in a new way.

To question.

To not jump off a roof just because everyone else is doing it.

To take your health and wellness seriously.

Because, y’all, we only get this one life.

What do you want to do this year to take control of your health and wellness? What small changes can you make? What things can you get rid of? How can I help you? Because I truly feel called to help you take the steps to make a choice.