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D
r. Christine Horner's Natural Secrets for Breast Health
 


Breast Health Tip #9: Anti-Inflammatories

© Christine Horner MD, FACS

The following is one in an ongoing series of columns entitled Dr. Christine Horner's Natural Secrets for Breast Health by Christine Horner MD, FACS. View all columns in series
BREAST HEALTH TIP #9: Anti-inflammatories Taking an anti-inflammatory can lower your risk of breast cancer by as much as 50%.

The largest on-going national study of women’s health called "The Women's Health Initiative" (WHI), recently found that women who took aspirin or ibuprofen an average of 3 times week for the last 10 years had a significant lower incidence breast cancer. Those taking aspirin had a 28% lower incidence and the women who took ibuprofen had a 50% lower incidence. But aspirin and ibuprofen have potential serious side effects. For instance, 16,000 people in the US die each year from bleeding complications from these medications. So I recommend you take a safe herbal anti-inflammatory, like "Zyflamend", instead. Research shows herbal anti-inflammatories works just as well. And rather than side effects, they have a multitude of wonderful side benefits.

Inflammation is a normal and important process created naturally by our bodies and serves an important role. It helps to get rid of unwanted bacteria, and other invaders. It also assists our bodies in cleaning up dead cells from trauma or infections. When inflammation rises to assist our inner healing intelligence during these special circumstances and then quietly quells when it is no longer needed, no harm is done. But, if the inflammation remains beyond its useful purpose and becomes "chronic" -- meaning it stays as an ongoing process in our body over time -- it turns into a lethal firestorm, breaking down cells and destroying the natural architectural boundaries of the body’s tissues which makes it easier for tumors to invade and grow. Researchers have found that chronic inflammation not only plays a key role in the commencement and progression of many types of cancers, but it also fuels a wide variety of chronic disorders, including heart disease, arthritis and Alzheimer’s disease.

One main reason why chronic inflammation can be so devastating to our health is because it doesn’t act alone. It creates additional destructive ammunition: oxygen free radicals. The cells in our immune system use oxygen free radicals like cosmic ray guns to shoot bacteria and other offenders. In the presence of inflammation, these cells release showers of oxygen free radicals and excess oxygen free radicals can cause damage to DNA that can lead to cancer.

Certain foods and stress promote inflammation. Refined carbohydrates, sugar and certain fats (especially trans-fats) are some of the worst offenders. On the other hand, a diet rich in antioxidants found in fresh organically grown fruits and vegetables and omega-3 fatty acids reduces inflammation. Taking supplemental antioxidants and practicing stress reduction techniques are also very beneficial in preventing and reducing inflammation.

INFLAMMATION AND THE COX-2 ENZYME

There’s another way to reduce inflammation. It involves blocking the activity of a key enzyme essential to the process of inflammation. The enzyme is called cyclo-oxygenase 2 or COX-2. A relatively new class of pharmaceutical anti-inflammatories targets the COX-2 enzyme and blocks it or inhibits it. Celebrex and Vioxx are two examples. But pharmaceutical medications, as you are probably aware, are hard on the body and create imbalances that result in potentially serious side effects. When reaching for COX-2 anti-inflammatories, the wisest choice is to choose those made by Nature. Herbal COX-2 inhibitors not only block the "evil" enzyme with equal force, but they also import a fantastic amount of extraordinary intelligence and balance into the body.

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About The Author
Christine Horner, MD is a board certified and nationally recognized surgeon, author, professional speaker and a relentless champion for women's health. She spearheaded legislation in the 1990s that made it mandatory that insurance companies pay for breast reconstruction following mastectomy. She is the author of the new book, Waking the Warrior......more
 
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Disclaimer: The information provided on HealthWorld Online is for educational purposes only and IS NOT intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek professional medical advice from your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.