Cancer Schmancer: As Long As You Are Healthy

On July 25, 2012, in dietfoodmeditationtake chargewellness, by Helene Leonetti MD

Cancer is a manifestation of imbalance in our lives: physically, emotionally, spiritually, environmentally, and nutritionally.

Recently dozens of my beloved patients are coming for cancer-related counsel: “Do I have the surgery, chemotherapy, radiation as suggested? Or, do I bag it all, sell my first-born, fly to some alternative cancer therapy center and change my life?”

Here are my thoughts:

  • Keep It Real
    A month-long stay at a Shangri-La-like healing center is great if you have the financial resources. However, when you return to your family unit, you can find it difficult to integrate back into their more relaxed lifestyle choices and you might alienate them as you try fixing them;
  • Slow It Down
    Changing habits and beliefs slowly over time works best.  You can incorporate them into who you truly are;
  • Keep It Local
    If you live in the suburbs of a city, seeking the local specialists makes sense to me. You get the blessing of staying in the arms of loved ones.  The key is that you trust these healers.  They listen to you and give you hope rather than scare you literally to death.  The one exception, of course, is you have such a rare cancer that there are only a few skilled physicians in the world that you need to pursue;
  • Change Within Reason
    Save your money and do what centers all over the world are doing.  “Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food.”  (Hippocrates, 460 BC)  Get informed about your food choices.  Tune into Dr. Oz and his no-nonsense approach.  Listen to Jamie Oliver, a chef who hails from England and engages middle schools in teaching children what vegetables are.  Get back to basics with your food;
  • No Extremes
    To me, a vegan raw diet is extreme.  You need a full time cook and many cannot afford that. However, if you can afford such luxury and you hate to cook, hire an unemployed cook to help you while you spend time healing emotionally;
  • The Essentials:  Meditation, Yoga, and Massage
    Healing treatment centers have the essentials: meditation, yoga, and massage.  If a treatment center near you doesn’t have these services, seek them out in your area;
  • Cook In The Name Of Love
    My best friend, Thalia, reminds us to cook with love.  If you eat food cooked by someone who is angry or pissed off, you will get indigestion and you will not heal nearly as well!
  • Bridge The Gap
    Having been sobered into receiving a new hip last year, I am much more willing to encourage my patients to undergo the treatment laid out within reason, and incorporate healing modalities as long as they do not interfere with the intention.  For example, we know we cannot use herbal immune boosters when we are blitzing the cancer cells with chemo and radiation.  However, we can safely use immune modulators, such as mushrooms, to protect the good cells while we obliterate the cancer cells;
  • Swap It Out
    Environmental toxins are all around.  We would have to live in a bubble to avoid them!  Rather, take one step at a time to heal your body.  Starting with water instead of sodas and other beverages.  Unless, of course, you juice organic vegetables and fruit;
  • Make It Meatless
    Avoid animal protein while in the active healing phase because it takes the body longer to metabolize animal protein.  It is better and easier to digest and assimilate vegetables.

I listened to and watched the life story of Joseph Campbell, the great mythologist, (“Finding Joe,” The Spiritual Cinema) speak to the circle of life: separation, initiation, return. He speaks to what we came here as we incarnated: LOVE; and what we learn: fear (False Evidence Appearing Real) which, by the way, is the genesis of most dis-ease.

So I suggest letting go of fear by walking into it.  I am reminded of a patient of mine recently who was shocked when I told her to go into Philadelphia and visit museums and galleries while her mate works.  I suggested this as an alternative to staying home alone in her empty nest.  “By myself?!” she asked in disbelief.  Of course!  How can we break out of the illusion of separation if we do not walk into the fire?  The Dalai Lama reminds us that a stranger is simply a friend we have not yet made.  (I also love that he says “approach love and cooking with reckless abandon”!)

She also pondered, “What if my husband gets ill and leaves me, and I am all alone?”  This is where the teaching of the Buddha says it so well: “All suffering comes from living in the past, or in the future.”  ‘What ifs’ and ‘if only’ represent the phantom future and the dead past.  Thus, the only place to be peaceful and content is right now—in the present.  

So beloveds: the lesson here:

  • Balance in your lifestyle
  • Learn and practice MEDITATION—a key to managing stress
  • Make changes slowly so you can own them and when your loved ones see you thriving, they may get it and want some of what you have
  • Remember, we are made of love (hence, my shameless pitch for my book, HARDWIRED FOR LOVE) and we learn fear: the good news is that when we are ready, we can UNLEARN it, and thrive with a new awareness.
  • And as Joe says, FOLLOW YOUR BLISS


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Source: HeleneLeonetti


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