CONCISE CANCER ADVICE…

I just pulled this page out of my files, wanted to share with a friend whose mom is fighting cancer; in fact, I have shared this page with a few friends, unfortunately! Anyway, I was thinking everyone should have access to my cancer fighting highlights. I I I am also celebrating my latest blood test results and I am doing extremely well; ALL my levels are back to normal finally and my tumor marker is well below the normal range. So, two years down and three more to go!!!

Hope these notes can help someone fight their own good fight:

Life is awfully overwhelming and moves in slow-mo for a while; it’s impossible to know it all right away but you WILL HAVE plenty of time to learn what you need to, so don’t put overdue stress on yourself.

BOOKS:

  • ANTI-CANCER
  • CRAZY SEXY CANCER

VIDEO:

  • THETRUTHABOUTCANCER.COM (I watched it for free)

DETOX:

  • STAY TUNED FOR MY E-BOOK COMING OUT SOON… A BOOK FULL OF EVERYTHING I HAVE LEARNED DURING MY CANCER BATTLE

 

It is very important that everyone around you stays healthy so your immune system isn’t compromised.

Get a theme/fight song!

You need humor, especially during treatments!

Sleep a minimum of eight hours a day.

Organic food is very important and eating a wide range of fruits and vegetables is ideal… juicing is super powerful & highly recommended. I love my juicer and it is easy to clean — Omega J8006 Nutrition Center Juicer.

Grass fed beef and pasture raised poultry is also important; I happen to be gluten free and try for vegan living (I splurge on good cheese and sushi).

Filtered water is good (I use a Zero Water system and the Berkey). No plastic bottled water!!

Green tea with hibiscus flowers, shitake mushrooms, cruciferous vegetables, nuts, flax seed oil (add to cottage cheese with fruit), turmeric, kale

No grilled foods

No sugar… use honey, agave or brown sugar if needed.

This list could go forever… and you will learn more from the books I suggested.

You can also check out the nutrition section on my website TahoeBoHo.com; there are some great food lists under the nutrition page to help at the grocery store, and I am always adding more stuff!!

Glass and stainless steel for food/beverage storage and cooking..

Oxygen kills cancer… daily walks really helped me fight my tumor and my sadness!

POSITIVITY SAVES LIVES, you must believe he will get better… with all you’ve gotJ

I love yoga & meditation, but visualization might be better for kids – video games in your head killing cancer cells is supposed to be great!

I took a homeopathic route during treatment (lifestyle & diet changes), but went full eastern once chemo ended to cleanse and clear. Some of the things I did during this stage:

  • no chicken (makes things grow fast)
  • no shellfish (toxins)
  • only hot liquids & foods (keeps your body from focusing on your core temperature & can just fight cancer)
  • a lot of rice & beans
  • acupuncture
  • herbs & other random things that don’t often get explained well – eastern medicine requires the same blind acceptance as western.

It’s important to mention that such a strict diet is really hard and chemo should just be enough… so  I allowed myself guilt-free cheating every day during treatment and that did make life a bit more fun. I got my chocolate bite at the end of a lot of nights – shenanigans are good!!

IMMUNOTHERAPY IS ALL THE RAGE, so ask… but I didn’t get it, so don’t have experience to share.

Learn to love the lifestyle that loves you back!!!

PeaceLove&EtnernalGroovinessB&W TahoeBoHo.com

NOURISHMENT for body & soul…

The battle we all face is labor vs. time… and it’s even more daunting for those on the battleground making meals for a growing family. It truly takes two to four hours a day to make dinner from scratch and I don’t know many people who can offer that much time to food. Shortcuts became my new way of life when I had my second child, poor little guy! Regardless, I did reawaken to the importance of organics and eating whole foods not cans or frozen produce; getting cancer is a great motivator for shedding bad habits of all kinds and I am most appreciative of the changes I made!

I now get joy from cooking with new eyes, meaning I love to integrate all I am learning and putting it into our dinners. It’s amazing how much pride I get in grating my own turmeric root or creating a salad solely from our small but functional organic garden. I have determined that my kids will remember my enthusiasm for healthy food far more than the stale memory of a frozen dinner. Simplicity is the key in our house and it works well, I make simple components and have easy substitutions for my picky eaters (i.e. carrots sub for broccoli, plain noodles sub for many things); I don’t fight it, I just substitute with a smile.

I found that the more I learned about the life I was blindly living, the easier it became to make the smarter choices about what I allow into my home and body. The circle of life from the ground through our hands and out into the air has a purpose and the artificial additives our society likes to keep adding into what should be an impervious circle is hurting us. We have all we need naturally occurring on this gorgeous planet of ours, we just need to remember how to keep life simple… this pure fate will heal us from the inside out.

We also need to care for our surroundings which includes both the structure, and the environment, which is mostly self-created. Did we choose a stressful life-style or have we given up on life and never see the sun, do we thrive in our choices or do we create chaos?

GROW WHERE YOU ARE PLANTED

& GROW AS YOU ARE NOURISHED

This quote is a fabulous example of simple living; one where both planting and nourishment are our measuring scales and balance creates optimal growth. To grow where we are planted speaks to our environment, the path our feet walk and the soul our life creates. What we choose to put in our mouths, clean our bodies with and dab on our beautiful skin is how we are nourished. I think there is no better way to honor yourself and others than feasting on an amazing display of food that was created with love and from scratch. This sounds like Thanksgiving but it can truly be created with much less structure and still generate amazing warmth and love for whomever is enjoying the meal…. and those meals nourish more than our bodies, they feed our souls!

 

PeaceLove&EtnernalGroovinessB&W TahoeBoHo.com

question everything…

Was overhearing a conversation at Starbucks the other day, my daughter and I were killing a few minutes together while she sipped on her lemonade; it was actually a nice moment until the police officer starting smoking a couple cars away.  But that’s not supposed to be part of the story, the interesting part was the conservation between two colleagues that ran into each on the sidewalk. One guy was particularly intrigued by the idea that our society takes too much for granted and accepts too much at face value; he thought we need to start questioning everything in our culture. Of course I was riveted, was hoping the conversation would never end and that some miracle bomb would be released.  Or better still, that I would join in on the conversation in some brilliant way, regardless of how annoyed my daughter would be at the mere thought of speaking with strangers… what?!! Then the conversation ended, they said good-bye and I was left with a few thoughts to ponder.

I had a boyfriend in my mid-twenties that used to love calling people “sheep”; referring to how people just like to stay in packs, move in herds, head up, butts down, as we navigate around our circles. Sadly funny, oddly truthful and yes, I reference sheep often, but mostly to my teenage daughter regarding her growing list of teenage rules against humanity (aka my parents suck!)

Truth is I think that life has too many demands to be met, especially as we run around competing for our value in life. Living in the Silicon Valley, I notice the effects of living a highly competitive life, and the life-style becomes one of perfection where everyone seems to be an alpha-type. Much of our competing occurs in our own minds, almost at a cellular level, imperceptible to the untrained eye. You know that moment, the quick head-to-toe glance, the kid-count drop into the conversation, how you can go to a high-level job, make the kids’ carpool, games, and did she mention she has four kids and will put together a fabulous organic, vegan dinner that all her kids will enjoy immensely? Even her hubby likes her cooking, but mostly he likes her in bed, at least twice a week; that tight ass, perfect hair and fantastic wardrobe only make her more desirable… that and the fact that she actually wants to have sex in hot places – she’s awesome!!

However, everyone has their weak spots and everyone has their strengths; yet we still keep trying to be the best at everything while simultaneously creating a world of frustrations. I found parenthood and running a business to be so overwhelming that I took almost every short-cut I could to get my chores done as fast as possible; packaged seasonings, bottled dressings, canned soups, purchasing school hot lunches for the kids and skipping meals for me; coffee in the morning, wine at night and that in a nutshell is why we get cancer.

We are so busy creating this image of ourselves that we have overlooked the image our large corporations have created about themselves. A fabulous example is how we chased MSG out of most of our foods, but the corporations found ways to get the dangerous ingredient back into their products while placing a big label on their package advertising NO MSG; they simply created new names or exchanged for other ingredients that contain glutamate, such as: yeast extract, torula yeast, yeast nutrient or autolyzed yeast.

A few good videos to see regarding nutrition and cancer are:

  1. Food, Inc.
  2. http://nutritionfacts.org/video/food-as-medicine/
  3. The Truth About Cancer

One would be hard pressed to not make some serious nutritional changes after viewing these videos, and I do have to warn you, as you will lose faith in our government and big business will give you nightmares.

Then there’s the up-side to losing naivete and gaining  the ability to TRULY live free, and I believe our society will not be the walking dead for long, I believe we are waking up and will reach critical mass soon. In fact a friend just shared a Facebook page, Preston Smiles, who put out a short video on just this subject, “QUESTION EVERYTHING” (guess that’s video #4 worth viewing:-)

Yogi Bhajan gave a lecture back in 2000, he described the coming of the Aquarian Age, a new self-sensory system that people will come to perfect over the next fifty years. As we phase out the old Piscean Age of seeking satisfaction outside of ourselves, in physical beauty and creative legacy… WE WELCOME IN THE NEW SYSTEM whereby the individual finds him or herself complete. In my own words, equal access to resources & information will breed satisfaction, turning competition into cooperation. We will be quite literally, choosing joy!

To quote Yogi Bhajan:

“Men and women are going to reach out with such dignity, such devotion, such an elevated loftiness of self, and the beauty of the human character will be so bewitching, that not only will the ones who are willing be enjoying and realizing, but also their realization will be so profound that no destructive temptation by another person will work. The Age of Aquarius will be the Age of Experience, in which people of experience will be liked, respected, worshipped, talked to, and understood. It’s not a matter of how old you are or how young you are, or how white you are or how black you are. We can help and deal with each other as equals… there’s no beautiful, no ugly.”

Personally, I cannot wait for a time when our business models capitalize on ethics and not on our health… so go out there and use your power to make a difference as a consumer, those purchases feel even better when a baby seal isn’t clubbed (you get my drift)!!

PeaceLove&EtnernalGroovinessB&W www.TahoeBoHo.com

hormonally speaking…

Life has a lot of twists, both up and down… it is important to become very familiar with how you feel/react when your hormones are going crazy.  For me, it feels like something is either closing me in or wants to explode out; regardless, it is some unknown pressure that suddenly builds to the point that breathing becomes forced and my body wants to shake, but I don’t scream, I refrain.  Why?  Because I am familiar with this feeling and I know that there is nothing to be this upset about.  It’s PMS and my hormones are raging… uh oh, here come the tears, I mean “why is it, I have to suffer through so much injustice?”  Why?  And “NO, I do not want to talk!”

Maybe some hot tea would be good… and a tissue, and maybe a few Cadbury Chocolate Eggs I got early for Easter.  That’s good, but I think I would be better on the couch with that blanket around me.  Big breath… and another big breath; I am so broken, “NO,” I won’t go there!  I just need love… “doggy, come here”!

A little while later, after much dog loving and tears, I slowly unfurl on the couch and seem to have survived another hormonal storm; a little worn-out from the ride, but ready for human interaction again… if I can find my family, I think they’re hiding!!

We all have our own stories regarding PMS and puberty, and my best advice is to give yourself the respect you deserve when going through the heavy times.  Understand your cycle, know your timing, get at least eight hours sleep and eat nutritiously to help off-set some of the symptoms.  It is also my opinion that we are given the gift of menopause to have something to look forward to in old age; so you’ve got that to look forward to!!!

Until then, we can rest in the fact that we now know far more about the affects of hormones than we did just a few decades ago, and I wanted to share a blurb from Michael Gurian’s , The Wonder of Girls:

“Thirty years of human biochemical research has taught us that in order to accomplish the completed adolescent-to-adult transformation of the female body and sex organs, estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and other lesser hormones must also direct emotional, psychological, and mental transformation; they take primary control of these human functions for a period of a few years of a girl’s life, while she (especially her brain system) gets accustomed to their effect on her, and learns to manage the self.  We know also that, even as she grows accustomed to these hormones and learns to work with them, they still play a large part in her adult story, in a monthly cycle, until menopause (and even, in some ways, beyond). In other words, hormones change everything, not just a few things, and they don’t just change a girl into a woman, they are, to a great extent, the woman herself.”

We all know the basics but I found that blurb captivating; especially the idea that our hormones control our emotional, psychological and mental functions for about three of our teen years.  Gurian further explains how this translates to our girls having little control over the following areas:

  • her mood
  • words she uses, speed of conversation, need for conversation
  • how she’ll do on tests at a given time of the month
  • how much she’ll eat
  • how she’ll relate to people nonverbally
  • how she’ll feel about the people she loves
  • how she’ll see herself fitting in
  • her self-esteem
  • her level of competitiveness
  • her social ambition
  • her aggression
  • her primary emotions – like anger, joy, grief

It isn’t easy accepting this long list but I can’t argue having experienced the teen years myself and now watching it first-hand.  I suppose if it weren’t hormones it would be something else controlling us… and maybe that’s the hidden acceptance of abuse.  Since we are controlled anyway, why not do some of it on our own, with alcohol, drug & food addictions!!

Enough of the dark-side, instead, let’s look at the control we can have to brighten our down-days; starting with the obvious, get out and move daily!  People who regularly get exercise are more likely to maintain a healthy weight, less likely to develop certain diseases and more likely to feel good in mind and body. I don’t like to label what you do for exercise or for how long, I just think it best to get up and move, preferably in the great outdoors and somewhere beautiful (but walking my neighborhood is often my choice).

Getting a good night’s sleep is important for everyone; eight hours for adults and nine for teenagers.  Too little sleep can lead to mood swings and behavioral problems.

Avoid caffeine, alcohol and refined sugar… eat whole foods with lots of vegetables, beans & seeds.  Besides helping to regulate weight, healthy eating helps to regulate your moods (by maintaining stable blood sugar). It is no secret that foods rich in vitamins and minerals have been associated with an overall lower risk of depression, as have foods rich in omega-3 fats, such as nuts, salmon and other fatty fish.

Hard to argue against living a healthy life-style when combating hormones, you don’t have to be a teenager to appreciate increased energy, more stable moods, better sleep, and greater ability to focus thoughts.  And don’t forget the most important part of any day… go ahead and cheat a little, it boosts your mood and makes you smile – that’s healthy too!!

PeaceLove&EtnernalGroovinessB&W www.TahoeBoHo.com

that girl…

It is actually a magnificent view from this side of cancer… the side that fought a hard six months getting rid of stage IIIC ovarian cancer, then fought again when told I had an 80% chance of getting my cancer back. I went to my Onc-Doc for what I thought would be our last visit, but our visit didn’t end in a “good bye”; it most certainly felt like a “see ya soon,” and that sucked!!

AH! — Still shaking my head while writing this!!

With a little distance between that appointment and today, about 9 months, I now find it easier (and life affirming) to focus on the amazing news my Doctor gave me after my full-hysterectomy, on New Year’s Eve no less. The first three months of chemo actually rid my body of a grapefruit size tumor with octopus legs that spread throughout my abdomen; Doc-Onc literally said there was no cancer to remove! So, my scars healed and one month later I began a 3-month run of intra-peritoneal chemo that kicked my butt, literally!

My Doctor now tells MY story to his patients… SO, I CHOOSE to focus on getting to be “that girl” he talks about, because surely, THAT GIRL, falls within the 20% that doesn’t get a repeat cancer!!

So, BAM… “I got that going for me!!”

At the risk of repeating myself, I want to revisit the very raw, very beaten, and very scared little girl that walked out of that office feeling like I had been given a death sentence. 24 hours of freak out, lots of tears and alone time later, I made an appointment with who I would later refer to as Yoda. I knew it was time to engage with some eastern medicine, and I turned to Yoda for healing, cleansing and strengthening. I was such a stubborn little patient, and thought myself quite strong simply because I could stand tall and walk down any frightening hallway I could find. And boy did I find a very strange, long, hallway to walk down for two months.

It all began with my mother-in-law, she is a trained shaman among other fabulous things, and her wholistic healer/chiropractor trained with an eastern medicine Doc near me, who had successfully cured many people from cancer. I found my perfect plan and I set out on my first voyage south, about a 30 minute commute without traffic. I was a bit nervous but I thought my only refuge from crazy-town was going to be found in Yoda’s 2-story building filled with cobwebs, plants, jars, candles, cinnamon burning, stacks of boxes, leaning pillars & planks, peeling paint and a single piece of paper with a note to head upstairs for the healing center. The second floor had more boxes, many doors and holes in the ceiling… my mouth must’ve hit the floor when a little man with a big grin came into the hall and waved me through, “yes, yes… very messy; please come sit inside.” He had me at “yes”… well, not really!! Truth told, I went home after that meeting and cried, called a couple people to discuss my new-found friend. Went back two more times, and then finally rolled over and let him rule my world…

  • No chicken, no shellfish
  • Hot liquids/food only
  • Lots of rice and beans
  • Eat random herbs/concoctions daily… still taking the main one
  • Qi Gong 4 days a week, “bone marrow” qi gong – and I researched the “bone marrow” aspect, there doesn’t seem to be any written example or teaching of this particular qi gong; but experts agree if you have studied the teachings, you, of course, understand what to do.

By following Yoda’s guidelines, I slowly came back to life & after 3 months of working hard, I took the summer off to enjoy life again… by my rules!!

PeaceLove&EtnernalGroovinessB&W www.TahoeBoHo.com

little cheats…

This blog is in honor of my AWESOME cancer blood check result this month, it came in perfectly low & I actually handled this blood draw better than my previous emotional melt-downs. I believe the benefits of yoga and mindful living are manifesting in my life, in particular, how I easily controlled my emotions while waiting the 24 hours for the results. It helped that I feel good, better than I have in over a year; so good, in fact, I can now honestly say that I am doing well, prognosis is good, very good. I credit my health to hard work and implementing the teachings of both western and eastern medicine and practice. I also credit my hard-line admission of cheating… I eat dark chocolate almost every day, but not much, a few bites. I will grab a handful of homemade potato chips at least twice a week, I drink a glass of wine almost every day and I eat out at restaurants once a week (limiting my menu options). I think moderation is the key to my sanity with all the lifestyle changes I have had to make and I truly feel satisfied because of these little cheats.

What does my diet consist of, one might wonder, when fighting cancer? There are many diet plans and even more opinions, but here is the plan I have culled over the past 8 months and it is really working well for me:

at the core of everything… I eat and drink only WARM food and beverages. If not warm, then definitely room temp; this saves your body from having to fight to keep your core temperature at 98.6. No processed or packaged foods, no hormones, chemicals or preservatives… keeping all food & beverages as close to nature as possible.

hot water and green tea… all filtered water & heated in a stainless steel container; I drink as much of these as possible & then drink some more!!

vegetables and fruits… I keep it all organic, and if I dip into the pesticide world, I never touch the “dirty dozen” (2015’s list from the EWG:  apples, peaches, nectarines, strawberries, grapes, celery, spinach, sweet bell peppers, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, imported snap peas and potatoes…. and a bonus addition this year, leafy greens & hot peppers).

meat… I stay clear from chicken because it makes things grow faster (according to my eastern medicine doctor – good for kids but not for cancer) and shellfish (toxin issue).  All other meats are good if following these guidelines; free-range, pasture fed & organic.

cooking vs raw food… raw is just better and is something I am struggling with because I used to love grilling (& still do cheat with this option) but have to go with roasting or searing instead.  Sushi is lovely, but I don’t like other meats raw; which brings me to dehydrating foods, something I am going to play with and report back.

sugar is just not a good idea… but dark chocolate is ok in small amounts, according to me!

shakes/smoothies… I drink one small protein drink a day, Biopharma Scientific makes a variety of great products that my body has really responded well to in my recovery (two thumbs up for the “nanogreens”).

sprouted beans are one of my favorite things… I add them to salads, sautéed vegetables, soups, and even eat them alone!!

nuts… are my all-day snacks; all kinds, unsalted, mostly raw & mixed with (unsweetened) sundried cranberries.

one shot a day… a combination of fresh squeezed ginger juice & 1 teaspoon ground turmeric (if I can find the turmeric root, I juice it along with the ginger).

apple-cider vinegar… I like to integrate this as often as possible, but mostly rely on using it to make my favorite vinaigrette, toss a bowl of arugula & eat with my sautéed vegetables for dinner that night.

NO PLASTIC… ANYWHERE!!

After reading this list, I’m quite certain many of you have placed me in the clinically insane category of your blogs… I would like to emphasize one last time… it is imperative that I CHEAT EVERYDAY.  It may be something small, like a cold glass of water on a hot day or as large as eating a piece of cake with ice cream.  It is important to remember that this is YOUR LIFE and only you know how hard you can push yourself without cracking!!  I think Jocelyn Weiss, PhD MPH, said it best, “to outsiders, eating unprocessed and healthy foods is a form of deprivation and punishment.  But in actuality, once you start eating clean your taste buds come alive, ‘boring’ foods take on new life and you start to feel how your body responds to what you eat.  The key is to figure out what foods work for you and to eat them in the forms closest to how they are found in nature.”  And for me, the most important thing to remember is that a lifestyle change happens over time until it is something you become, it doesn’t happen overnight!!

Which brings me to yoga!!!  Just because I cannot do a free-handstand or other advanced yoga moves doesn’t make me less of a yogi, I practice every day and each day brings me closer to my goal of doing that hand-stand. I credit so much of who I am now, to the practice of yoga & proper breathing; I am a better person, both physically and emotionally from this daily practice.  I now dabble with meditation but haven’t gotten past 10 minutes… something to work on.

I wish this peace of mind & body to all who desire, and it’s not a destination, it is a path… each new morning I awaken to a fun journey with my body.  I see the true beauty of life staring back at me and I just want more light in my life… this is not a lifestyle of deprivation, quite the opposite, it is one of deep love for yourself and the world!!

PeaceLove&EtnernalGroovinessB&W www.TahoeBoHo.com