Stress Linked to Breast Cancer

Psychological stress may be involved in the causation of breast cancer aggressiveness, researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago explained at the Fourth AACR Conference on The Science of Cancer and Health Disparities, held in Washington D.C. recently. 

Garth H. Rauscher, Ph.D., associate professor of epidemiology in the division of epidemiology and biostatistics at the School of Public Health, University of Illinois in Chicago found in the study: "Those who reported higher levels of stress tended to have more aggressive tumors."

I hope more information like this gets out to help men and women understand that their lifestyle and their reaction to events can make a difference in their health. It's always best when we can take charge of our health by eliminating things that cause us stress and learning more about healthy practices which can help us stay strong, emotionally and physically.

With the rampant increase in diseases like cancer, its no wonder so many of us feel like it's all up to the luck of the draw whether we will get sick or not. However, critical aspects of our life like exercise, diet, the environment we live in and how we express our emotions and feelings can make a difference in whether we contract a disease or aggravate or heal it.

Since it's becoming more apparent that stress adds to the risk of many diseases, I recommend assessing how much stress you encounter on a daily basis and look at what you can do to change that.

Here's some ways to become more aware of your stress levels and how you can lower them

  • Do an assessment of how much stress you encounter on a daily basis. Be honest about it to yourself. Awareness is the first step.
  • Identify stressors in your life. Make a list of what or who activates stress for you.
  • Take a deep breath and scan your body to identify how much muscle tension you have that may be caused by stress.
  • Notice your posture throughout the day. If you are slumping over or straining your back for instance that can cause more stress on your body.
  • Find activities to release stress, increase energy and boost your immune system, throughout the day. (Yoga, Sports, Swimming, Dancing, Running, Meditation).
  • Reflect on any negative belief that can be causing stress. ("I'm a failure, I'm destined to suffer", "I have no purpose in life").
  • Create affirmations that can change those beliefs and repeat them. (I'm valuable", "I'm destined for success", I have a purpose").
  • Learn healthy breathing exercises to bring in healthy oxygen, relax your mind and body and decrease stress levels.
  • List any unresolved communications or issues that "stress" you out regularly. If possible clear them up and "get them off your chest"