Stress and Its Connection to Breast Cancer

In Breast Cancer, Recent Posts by Barbara Jacoby

Every time I turn around I find another article regarding what causes breast cancer and how to keep from getting it. There are endless programs dealing with diet and the foods that you should eat and the ones to avoid yet those lists keep changing on a regular basis. Then there are those exercise gurus who claim that if you follow their programs and keep physically fit, you are most like going to be able to avoid getting breast cancer. However, if you look around, you might just find that there are many, many people who do not eat a healthy diet and do not exercise but never get breast cancer or any other types of cancer. And there are those who have the best regimens of healthy eating and exercise and do get breast cancer. So what is the answer to give yourself the very best chance of not getting cancer? My belief is that mental health may play the largest role in keeping cancer away and that starts with at least managing if not eliminating stress.

My belief is that mental health may play the largest role in keeping cancer away and that starts with at least managing if not eliminating stress.Barbara Jacoby

Although we often come across information regarding how stress affects our lives, I don’t think that this particular topic gets enough attention. I know many women who have/had breast cancer and they have come in all shapes and sizes and have lived all different lifestyles. But, one common factor that seems to be a recurring theme in my search for a common factor that all possess is the amount of stress in their lives and how they deal with it. You might be thinking that you can judge a person’s ability to deal with stress from the outside but, trust me, that is absolutely impossible. The way in which the person actually deals with stress is often totally different than what you see on the outside. Let me explain.

We have all known people who appear so happy. They laugh a lot, are outwardly extremely friendly to everyone and regardless of what comes their way, they brush it off and just move along. However, if you ever have the chance to really get to the bottom of their feelings, you may find that they have taken all of their most stressful events and shoved them down inside to hopefully never have to deal with the pain again. Such behavior not only increases the amount of stress on the body that the original trigger has already created but also stresses the physical body because it is not designed to deal with the great chemical imbalances that this creates. Therefore, it begins to harm the body through disease that manifests itself in any number of ways including all types of cancers.

Regardless of the situation, if it creates a stress for us, we must find a way to relieve that stress. While angry outbursts have been chosen by many and that may reduce the immediate stress, it does not teach us how to deal with stress that comes our way on a long-term or repeated basis. We must find a healthy outlet for our stress and find ways to take control of lives that will produce positive results. Perhaps an immediate solution is to talk about it with someone we trust. To just get out those feelings that were created by the stress in this way is often enough when the situation is not very big. But, for issues that are larger, you may need to walk away from the situation that you find yourself in even if it is a job or a relationship. For that, you may want to seek professional help in order to manage the situation in a way that does not cause you even more stress. But, no matter your situation, learning to deal with stress in a healthy way is not only beneficial to your mental well being, it is also one of the best things that you need to do in order to maintain a healthy body. And you will be grateful for the overall peace of mind and body that result when you are able to manage whatever stress may come your way.