Christina Applegate Shares Uncommon Breast Cancer Prevention Advice All Women Should Hear

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christina applegateThe fact that, this morning, Christina Applegate sat down with Good Morning America to talk Breast Cancer Awareness Month is really no big surprise. The actress's battle with the disease -- which she was diagnosed with in 2008 at only 36 years old -- is pretty well-known, and ever since, she's been a vocal advocate for breast cancer education and early detection, particularly for high risk women. But the new info she spilled on what she wants women to know about breast cancer prevention was somewhat unconventional -- a bit revolutionary, in fact!

For example, she discussed how although we spend all of October encouraging women to get screened, the message often fails to strike the right tone and may even backfire ...

Christina elaborated:

When you sit there and tell women to get screened, I almost feel like I’m being a fearmonger, and I don’t want to be a fearmonger. I think that being proactive with your health and with your body is the key to staying alive for you, for your family.

Sounds to me like the celeb cancer survivor is familiar the sort of science being discussed by doctors like Lissa Rankin, M.D., author of Mind Over Medicine, which says negative stress responses set off a chain reaction in our bodies that promote disease. In other words, instead of living in fear, we need to just do the best job we can to lead a healthy lifestyle -- which includes getting screened regularly, but also managing stress in our lives and eating right, etc. 

More from The Stir: 6 Reasons Having My First Mammogram Terrifies Me

Christina -- who started her own charity, Right Action for Women, to encourage proactive, early screening and provide aid to individuals who are at a higher risk for the disease but can't cover screening costs -- elaborated:

There is a way with diet and exercise, meditation and all the things we all try to do and don’t. I wasn’t doing my best that I could up until the time I had cancer. Life can get really hard out there and we all have a tendency to break down or hold it in, especially women. It’s finding ways to outlet your stress and eat right. Eat a lot of leafy greens. There’s a lot of things you can do you take care of yourself.

SO TRUE. Love love love that she's talking about this! Unfortunately, our lifestyles and stress levels are something we rarely discuss in relation to disease prevention, but it's likely one of the biggest risk factors. And it NEEDS to be a part of the discussion -- just as much as family history and early, frequent screening.

What do you think about Christina's uncommon prevention advice?

 

Image via LG/Wikimedia

breast cancer, celeb moms, cancer, emotional health, eating healthy, general health

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Kate Cooley

There's stress inherent in the whole "mammography" process. I had my first one this year and I'd listened to how many years of my mother complaining about having to get them because they're so uncomfortable and embarrassing. Then I do it and I'm waiting there for pain and...

Of course, she did the same thing about the gyno, so I should have known better.

ktobin2 ktobin2

The government is now telling women that have no history of breast cancer to wait till they're 50 to get screened. I know six women who had no history in their family get breast cancer at age 40 and under. I think screening should really start at 35, and if doctors don't find anything, thenwait till they're forty to get their second and screening should happen once a year. Thanks to obamacare though, screening will start too late.

nonmember avatar BRCA1 Carrier

Ktobin2, it has absolutely nothing to do with Obamacare. Breast cancer screening has been a contentious topic for decades, and it's less a conservative vs. liberal issue than a holistic vs. conventional medicine debate. I've been familiar with these issues long before most people even knew who Obama was due to my own family history as well as my employment in the health industry so stop spewing political BS about a broader, more complex issue. That said, I have less worries about being denied coverage. In any case, don't spew misinformation because you care more about pushing someone's political agenda than supporting women's health issues. I wouldn't get screened if I wasn't high risk and I'm still debating it, not because I don't think it's important and life saving but because existing state of the industry is bleeding my finances dry in the meantime, as it did my relatives before me. That's the other concern, that companies are profiting from excessive screening practices. And you want to extend screening even more?

nonmember avatar J. J.

Where's the advice?...

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