Breast Cancer and Forgiveness

The other day, I was talking with a girlfriend who is in a process of getting divorced from her husband after 30 years of marriage. After listening to her complaints for 30 minutes, she declared, “I will never forgive him” for this, “I will never forgive him” for that.
 
Now, I could totally understand her frustration. However, what I could not understand was: What is she trying to accomplish, by declaring, “I will never forgive him. Is she trying to punish him by holding grudges forever? If she wants to hold grudges and not forgive him, whom is she hurting? She is definitely not hurting him because he does not know anything about it.
 
So, who is really getting hurt if she does not forgive him? Yes, you are right. She is hurting herself and only herself. If I did not forgive my doctors for their misconduct during my breast cancer and mastectomy who would suffer the doctors or me.
Many people think that to forgive someone is to say, “What you did to me is OK”. When we choose to forgive, we are simply letting go of our end of the chain that keeps us enslaved to the past and bound to that person and whatever happened. By forgiving, we are taking our focus off a crippling vision, in my case my breast cancer, and replacing it with what we desire to create.
 
Breast cancer doctors admit that some cancer patient could get well on a physical level and survive, but they die anyway because they have unresolved forgiveness issues in their lives.
By choosing to forgive and respond with love rather than fear–we free ourselves. We sweep away the years of built-up sludge that jam up the channels through which abundance of every kind flows, and we move more firmly into our power to manifest that peaceful, prosperous world we want to live in.
 
Forgiving is something that a person does for himself and not for somebody else.
 
With much Love and Forgiveness,
 
Lea Yekutiel – author
Making the Breast of It:
Overcoming Fear of Intimacy After Breast Cancer
http://www.ilovemybreastcancer.com 
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/lea-yekutiel
 
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What Is Love

Dear readers,

Today as I was thinking about LOVE and how it’s affect us, I received via email these 3 videos as answer to my thoughts.

So, I decided to share them with you…..

Just copy them to your browser and enjoy!!!

What Is Love: https://vimeo.com/35407335

You Have No Limits: https://vimeo.com/35400133

Is It Time To Let Go: https://vimeo.com/35407215

With my unconditional LOVE to all of you,

Lea

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The Cure Is…. the movie – must watch

Dear friends,

The film’s message has resonated with so many and sparked something within people that is making them want to share it with everyone. And that truly is our wish: for as many people to see The Cure Is… and benefit from the life-changing information it contains

So, now YOU can help spread health around the globe. You may share this with anyone and please let you friends and loved ones know this: they may share it too!!

Complimentary Movie Link: http://thecureismovie.com/?page_id=213

Enjoy and happy new year!!!

With my unconditional love to you all,

Lea

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Types of Breast Cancer

Types of Breast Cancer
By Dr. Mercola

Breast cancer is classified into two types, based on
whether or not it is invasive:

•Noninvasive (in situ) breast cancer: Cancer cells have
not spread to adjacent areas of your breast—they have
remained in their place of origin. The most common type
is ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), which occurs in the
lining of the milk ducts. Noninvasive breast cancer is
sometimes called “stage 0″ cancer.

•Invasive breast cancer. Cancer cells infiltrate or spread
outside the membrane that lines a duct or lobule, into
surrounding tissues. The cancer cells can then travel to
other parts of your body. Invasive breast cancer can be
stage I, II, III, or IV, depending on how advanced it is.
Breast cancer can be further classified according to what
type of tissue it arises from:

•Milk ducts: Ductal carcinoma is the most common type of
breast cancer.

•Milk-producing lobules: Lobular carcinoma originates in
the lobules, where breast milk is produced.

•Connective tissues (muscles, fat and blood vessels):
Rarely, breast cancer can originate from these breast
tissues; in this case, it’s called sarcoma.

Please feel free to forward this newsletter to anyone who
could benefit from its content.

With my unconditional love,

Lea Yekutiel
www.ilovemybreastcancer.com
www.blogtalkradio.com/lea-yekutiel

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Honesty is Best The Energy of Honesty

Dear readers,

Dishonesty redirects a portion of our energy against the
flow, which requires extra effort and drains us.

As children most of us learn that honesty is better than
dishonesty, and we may not question this beyond whether or
not to do what we’re told. As adults, however, we can go
deeper to examine our choices as investments of energy with
predictable risks and returns. When we speak the truth, we
affirm what already is. This is like using a paddle when
the stream is already moving the same direction. We are
already supported by the universe and its energy flow, so
we don’t need to exert much energy, leaving more for other
pursuits. But dishonesty redirects a portion of our energy
against the flow, which requires extra effort. In addition,
it creates an alternate reality that requires further
energetic input to be maintained. So we can easily see that
we are best served when we work with the flow of the
universe.

Life is not always clearly defined, so we may find it useful
to follow our choices to their logical conclusions. We may
feel that little untruths are harmless, but they can be like
small cracks that weaken an overall structure over time.
Even giving someone a compliment or trying to protect them
can create problems later when the alternate reality we’ve
created becomes the basis for further actions. Even if the
actions that follow are honestly done, the underlying
unstable foundation of dishonesty will threaten to topple
things eventually. This can lead to further energy being
spent on keeping things hidden, working to remember the
tales we’ve spun and fearing the consequences of being found
out. Life doesn’t need to be this draining, but we can make
the choice to free ourselves from the bonds of dishonesty at
any time.

Speaking and living our truth may involve risking, among
other things, the possibility of rejection. But when we
allow ourselves to follow the flow of life, we are supported.
We can then use our energy to cultivate physical, emotional,
and spiritual well-being and to create our dreams, rather
than leaving ourselves too drained to even maintain our
existence. Today we can make honesty our choice in every
interaction, bringing the nurturing power of the universe’s
energy into our lives to bring positive, lasting results.

Reprinted from DailyOM- Inspirational thoughts for a happy,
healthy and fulfilling day. www.dailyom.com

With my unconditional love,

Lea Yekutiel
www.ilovemybreastcancer.com
www.blogtalkradio.com/lea-yekutiel

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Hello world!

Welcome to WordPress. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start blogging!

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Breast Health Tip #25: Protect from EMFs

BREAST HEALTH TIP: All electrical devices emit an invisible electric field called Electromagnetic Frequencies or EMFs. This includes household appliances, computers, cells phones and especially hair dryers. You can’t see them, hear them, taste them, or feel them, but they may be significantly damaging your health. Research shows that EMFs are deleterious to your health. Links have been found between EMFs and serious diseases such as breast cancer, leukemia, and brain tumors. EMFs exposure can also cause many nonspecific symptoms including fatigue, headaches, fuzzy thinking, and pain.

Fortunately, there are many ways to lower the damaging effects of EMFs from standing away from appliances while they are in use, to using devices that change how your body responds to them.

THE DANGERS OF ELECTROMAGNETIC FIELDS (EMFS)
An electromagnetic field (EMF) is an invisible electric field that is produced when an electrical current runs through a wire. EMFs are also a natural product of the Earth’s magnetic field. The effects of man-made EMFs can be very damaging to your health—particularly your breast health. One way that they interfere with your body’s ability to stay healthy is by disrupting certain hormones, especially melatonin.

Melatonin is known as your sleep hormone but it is also profoundly important for general good health and breast health. Women with chronically low melatonin levels, usually caused by going to bed too late or working the night shift, have a significantly elevated risk of breast cancer. Even seemingly small amounts of EMFs like those created by the wires and appliances in your home, can disturb your melatonin levels. Researchers have found that residential 60-Hz magnetic fields caused by normal electrical house wiring and equipment (such as clock radios, electric blankets, and televisions) depress melatonin.

In a comprehensive review of the all the published studies on EMF exposure and breast cancer, a definite link between the two was found, and so we can say with certainty that EMF exposure contributes to breast cancer. In many studies, even male electricians showed an increased risk of the disease. A review of eleven occupational studies found a statistically significant increased risk of breast cancer in several categories. Overall, the risk of breast cancer doubled in premenopausal women who had jobs with significant EMF exposure. These jobs included telephone-line installers, repairers, and line workers. The risk was 65 percent higher for system analysts and programmers and 40 percent higher for telegraph and radio operators. A German study published in Cancer Research in 2002 found that 50-Hz EMFs caused breast tumors to start growing and accelerated their growth—but, in this study, melatonin levels remained normal. These researchers concluded that EMFs may disrupt the body some other way. Regardless of the specific disturbance that EMFs cause in the balance of your body, we know one thing for certain: exposure to EMFs contribute to the initiation of breast cancer and accelerate its growth.

Understanding EMFs through Quantum Physics
Quantum physics has shown through the “superstring theory” that everything in the Universe including your mind/body at its most finite level is composed of vibrations. The intelligent vibrations of your mind/body create a measurable electromagnetic field around you called a “biofield”. The health of your biofield influences the health of your mind/body and visa versa. Some external influences are harmonious with your biofield and support its health; others disrupt it. When you’re exposed to man-made EMFs, they interact with your biofield. If the external EMF is out of harmony with your own, it creates imbalances in your biofield and obstructs the flow of its intelligence. When this intelligence is interrupted, it creates imbalances in your mind/body and causes it not to function properly. Eventually diseases such as cancer can result.

Protecting yourself from EMFs
There are many steps you can take to protect yourself from EMFs. For example, if you’re building a new house or rewiring your existing one, have your electrician install a master switch in your bedroom. Turning this switch off at bedtime will cut off all the power and, therefore, any EMFs in your bedroom. Your electrician can also use “BX electrical cable” when wiring your home. This twisted wire doesn’t produce significant EMFs.

Simply standing a few feet away from most electrical appliances reduces your EMF exposure to nearly zero. Whenever you use an appliance, such as a microwave, toaster, or blender, step a few feet away from it while operating it. Of all the common electrical household appliances, hairdryers produce the strongest EMFs. Fortunately, there is a company that manufactures low-EMF hairdryers (www.lowemf.com). So, if this is something you use daily, consider purchasing one.

One of the easiest and best approaches to protect yourself from the damaging effects of EMFs is to use devices that alter how your body and biofield responds to them. For example, a company called BioPro (www.mybiopro.com) provides a variety of devices that have been shown to be highly protective against electro pollution. These devices range from ones that you wear, to chips that you place on your appliances, to “harmonizers” that you plug into the walls in your home. I recently began using these devices and experienced a profound difference in the level of fatigue and stress I experienced, especially while working at my computer. There have been amazing case reports of improved symptoms after using these devices revealing that EMFs may play a significant role in many health problems. For instance, symptoms including headaches and pain associated with fibromyalgia have resolved. Most impressively, a health provider in Tennessee who specializes in autistic children has observed tremendous improvement in her patients using these devices. One child after using the devices for several weeks began speaking for the first time!

This information is used with permission by Christine Horner, MD www.drchristinehorner.com

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Breast Health Tip #24: Avoid Pharmaceutical Hormones

BREAST HEALTH TIP: When considering methods for birth control or for alleviating menopausal symptoms—it is wise not choose pharmaceutical medications first. Research shows that long term use of birth control pills and hormone replacement therapy may significantly increase the risk of breast cancer. There are many effective non pharmaceutical approaches that work just as well, without the health risks.

Pharmaceutical drugs are fraught with side effects, some mild and some deadly. The number of reported in-hospital adverse drug reactions to prescribed medications is estimated to be about 2.2 million per year. About 783,000 people die each year in the United States alone from iatrogenic causes (that is, health problems inadvertently induced by a medical treatment or diagnostic procedure).Of those deaths, about 106,000 are from side effects of a drug or combination of drugs.

One horrifying “side effect” of certain pharmaceutical medications is breast cancer. Until recently, little attention was given to the frightening increased risk of breast cancer associated with such medications as birth control pills, hormone replacement therapy (HRT), certain heart medications, various antidepressants, and many other pharmaceuticals.

Each of these medications has specific ways that it increases your risk of breast cancer. Most drugs are metabolized in the liver, and scientists have found that they may interfere with the liver’s ability to detoxify carcinogens. When your liver function is impaired, more carcinogens remain in your body, and thereby increase your risk of many different cancers, including breast cancer. That’s why your Warrior Goddess prefers that you supply her with foods, herbs, and other natural approaches, rather than pharmaceuticals whenever possible.

“THE PILL”
In a laboratory study published in 1987 in the journal Cancer, researchers found that the combination of estrogen and progestin (found in many birth control pills) stimulates breast cells to grow and divide and accelerates the growth of breast cancer. In another study, published more than twenty years ago in the Journal of Reproductive Medicine, premenopausal women who used the pill after age forty were found to have a 50 percent increased risk of breast cancer. More recent studies show that women who have a mother or sister with breast cancer and take the pill long term also have a significantly increased risk of breast cancer.

HORMONE REPLACEMENT THERAPY (HRT)
To combat perimenopausal and menopausal symptoms, Western medicine developed synthetic hormones. Drug companies promoted hormone replacement therapy (HRT) as the long-sought-after fountain of youth. HRT, women were told, lowered the risk of heart disease, strokes, Alzheimer’s disease, and osteoporosis. But recent studies, including the Women’s Health Initiative Study, have found that the opposite is true: Women taking HRT have an increased risk of heart disease, strokes, blood clots, gallbladder disease, and invasive breast cancer. It is true that HRT does help to prevent osteoporosis, but not any more so than a little weight-bearing exercise and a diet high in calcium-rich foods.

Pharmaceutical companies, as well as many doctors, still downplay the level of risk associated with these synthetic hormones. But research published in the August 2003 issue of the prestigious journal The Lancet found that the risk was considerable. One-quarter of all the women between the ages of fifty and sixty-four in Britain—1 million women—were followed from 1996 until 2002. Those women who took HRT had a 66 percent increased incidence of breast cancer and a 22 percent greater risk of dying from it. Those women who took a combination of estrogen and progestin had a 100 percent higher risk of breast cancer than those women who never took hormones. The women who took estrogen alone had a 30 percent higher risk. And the longer the women took these hormones, the higher their risk became. Of the women who developed breast cancer, those who had taken hormones had more aggressive tumors than those who had never taken them. Aggressive tumors are very dangerous because they’re more likely to spread throughout the body and cause an early death. The researchers of this landmark study in England estimated that HRT was responsible for 20,000 cases of breast cancer over the ten-year period from 1992 to 2002.

Several other studies have also found a significant connection between HRT and breast cancer. For instance, the Nurses’ Health Study, a large epidemiological study, followed 58,520 women who took HRT from age fifty to sixty. When these women reached the age of seventy, they were found to have a 23 percent higher risk of breast cancer. However, the women who took estrogen plus progestin had a much higher risk of breast cancer—67 percent. Another study published in JAMA in 2002 found that long-term users of HRT who took either estrogen alone or estrogen with progestin had a 60 to 85 percent increased incidence of breast cancer.

Researchers have also discovered that HRT causes an unusual type of breast cancer called “invasive lobular carcinoma.” The majority of all breast cancers start in the breast ducts. They are called “ductal carcinomas.” Lobular carcinoma originates in the terminal lobules or milk glands. A study published in 2003 in JAMA found that women who took a combination of estrogen and progestin had a 50 percent higher risk of lobular carcinoma. They also noted that the overall incidence in the United States of this far less common type of breast cancer increased from 9.5 percent in 1987 to 15.6 percent in 1999. HRT is thought to be the primary cause of this alarming escalation.

Taking HRT substantially increases the risk of ovarian cancer, too. Ovarian cancer is a relatively uncommon cancer. The average woman has only a 1.7 percent chance of developing this disease over her lifetime, whereas the risk of breast cancer for the average woman is 13.3 percent. In a 2002 study published by the National Cancer Institute (NCI), women who took HRT for ten to nineteen years had an 80 percent increased risk of ovarian cancer.

Millions of women in the United States have been prescribed HRT. It was one of the top pharmaceuticals sold for many years. In 2002, an estimated 8 million women in the United States were on some form of HRT. With this extensive use, you’d think that this pharmaceutical product would have been thoroughly studied, both before it was put on the market and afterward. But a well-designed study wasn’t conducted on HRT until forty years after it was put on the market

NATURE’S PERFECT DESIGN
Prescribing hormones for menopausal symptoms is a perfect example how the Western paradigm of health can be so off the mark sometimes, that the consequences can be catastrophic. We seem to forget that Nature designed human beings perfectly. We can’t outsmart Nature no matter how hard we try. We shouldn’t try to overpower it, but rather work with it. Menopause, for example, isn’t a disease or a condition that needs to be treated or controlled. The hormonal changes that women go through are perfect by design. They are part of the natural progression of life. Symptoms arise from imbalances caused by poor choices in diet and lifestyle. Restoring balance naturally is the solution; suppressing the symptoms of imbalances with supplemental hormones is not.

If you suffer from menopausal symptoms and are looking for relief, or if you want to stop taking hormones, there are many safe and effective natural approaches you can take including taking Brevail. There are several good books that I recommend for more information. Dr. Nancy Lonsdorf, M.D., wrote an excellent book on the Ayurvedic approach to menopause called The Ageless Woman: Natural Health and Beauty After Forty. Two other outstanding books are The Wisdom of Menopause, by Christiane Northrup, M.D., and Dr. Susan Love’s Hormone Book, by Susan Love, M.D.

This information is used with permission by Christine Horner, MD www.drchristinehorner.com

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Breast Health Tip #23: Don’t Smoke

BREAST HEALTH TIP:Smoking increases the risk of breast cancer. Even inhaling second hand smoke can increase the risk by 60% or more. So if you smoke, please do everything you can to quit. Don’t be bashful about requesting that those around you not smoke. You don’t want inhale their dangerous second hand smoke—and let them know!

Tobacco: Smoking and Breast Cancer
No one would argue with the fact that smoking is not good for your health. It’s an extremely dangerous and costly habit. According to statistics released in 2004 by the American Heart Association, smoking related illnesses kill an average of 442,398 Americans and cost the nation $157 billion each year.

For years we have known that smoking is linked to cancers of the bladder, esophagus, larynx, lung, mouth, and throat; to chronic lung disease, such as bronchitis and emphysema; and to chronic heart disease and cardiovascular diseases, including strokes, high blood pressure, and poor circulation. A new report released by the Surgeon General in May 2004 reveals that smoking also causes a rash of other diseases: acute myeloid leukemia, abdominal aortic aneurysms, cataracts, periodontitis, pneumonia, and cancers of the cervix, kidney, pancreas, and stomach.

There’s also evidence that smoking may cause colorectal cancers, liver cancer, prostate cancer, and erectile dysfunction. This report said that smokers die an average of thirteen to fourteen years earlier than nonsmokers. It states that smoking-related diseases have killed 12 million Americans in the last forty years, continue to kill about 440,000 each year, and cost the nation $75 billion annually to treat these diseases.

For years, it was unclear whether smoking increased the risk of breast cancer or not. Some studies found that it was difficult to separate the risk associated with cigarette smoking from the risk associated with alcohol consumption, because most smokers also drink alcohol, and alcohol is a significant risk factor for breast cancer. But now, researchers have concluded from several well-designed studies that there is a clear and significant association between cigarette smoking and breast cancer.

YOUNGER START—GREATER RISK
Smoking during the teenage years is particularly dangerous in terms of breast cancer risk. A study from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) found that women who smoked cigarettes during their adolescence had a 50 percent increased risk of breast cancer. This may be because female breast cells generally don’t mature until the first pregnancy (immature breast cells are more susceptible to damage from toxins).

But smoking can be dangerous at any age. A German study published in 2002 in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention found that women who smoked had a 50 percent increased risk of breast cancer. The risk for ex-smokers kept going down the longer that they abstained from smoking. But no matter how long it had been since they smoked, their risk was still 20 percent higher than nonsmokers.

These researchers also found that secondhand smoke increased the risk of breast cancer. They documented that women who inhaled passive smoke were 60 percent more likely to develop breast cancer than those who weren’t exposed to it. The highest risk was in smokers who also inhaled passive smoke.

Another study published in The Lancet in 2002 found that very specific categories of smokers have a particularly high risk. For instance, an unusually high risk of breast cancer was found in women who had been pregnant and who had started smoking as teenagers within five years of starting their period. Women who had never had a baby and who smoked twenty cigarettes a day or more for more than twenty years also had a significantly increased risk.

One of the reasons smoking increases the risk of breast cancer is that cigarette smoke contains carcinogens. A study from Albert Einstein University published in 2002 in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention identified the specific carcinogens in cigarette smoke: polycyclic hydrocarbons, aromatic amines, and N-nitrosamines.

This group of heterocyclic amines is similar to those found in grilled red meat. Certain carcinogens, including these, don’t become carcinogens until they are activated by enzymes—predominantly phase 1 liver enzymes—in your body. Breast tissue, like the liver, contains enzymes that can activate the carcinogens found in red meat and cigarette smoke.

All these carcinogens can induce mammary tumors, and they have all been found in the breast tissue and breast milk of women who smoke. Researchers have also found the changes in DNA and genetic mutations that are associated with an increased risk of breast cancer in the breast cells of women who smoke.

TO HELP YOU QUIT
If you smoke cigarettes and have tried to quit, you know how hard it can be to break this habit. Of all the addictions you can have, cigarette smoking is one of the hardest to give up. Research shows that the practice of Transcendental Meditation (TM) is extremely successful in breaking the addictive cycle and helping people to quit for good. In fact, of all the programs there are to help you stop smoking, the practice of TM is the most successful. People who practice this simple stress-reducing technique spontaneously quit smoking because they find their desire for cigarettes naturally decreases. Harvard-trained researchers David O’Connell, Ph.D., and Skip Alexander, Ph.D., wrote an excellent book, Self Recovery: Treating Addictions using Transcendental Meditation and Maharishi Ayurveda, that reports on all the research showing the impressive success that this mental technique has in overcoming addictions.

This information is used with permission by Christine Horner, MD www.drchristinehorner.com

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Breast Health Tip #22 Keep Your Body-fat Percentage Low

BREAST HEALTH TIP: Fat cells produce estrogen after menopause. The more fat you have, the higher your estrogen and therefore the higher your risk of breast cancer will be. Twenty to thirty percent of all post-menopausal breast cancers are thought due to obesity. So keeping your body fat low is one good way to to keep your risk lower.

Keeping your body fat low reduces your risk of breast cancer as well as your risk of developing many other diseases. Women who are obese (that is, have a BMI over 30) have a much higher risk of postmenopausal breast cancer: 50 to 250 percent higher. About 20 to 30 percent of all postmenopausal breast cancers are thought to be caused primarily by obesity. If you gain weight as an adult, your risk of breast cancer is higher than if you’ve been over-weight all your life. In addition, studies show that obese women with breast cancer are more likely to have advanced breast cancer at the time of their diagnosis and to die from the disease.

One big reason why obesity is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer is because fat cells produce estrogen. Estrogen isn’t created just by the ovaries. It’s also made by fat cells. After menopause, fat becomes the primary site where estrogen is manufactured in your body. So the more fat you have, the more estrogen your body will produce.

Obesity is also associated with higher levels of insulin and insulin-like growth factor–1 (IGF-1) both significantly increase your risk of breast cancer, and if you have the disease, they make your cancer grow faster.
There are many other serious reasons why you should avoid gaining too much weight. An estimated 300,000 adults die in the United States each year from obesity-related causes, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes, and that number grows every year.

Defining Obesity—Body Mass Index (BMI)
Researchers use very specific measures to define a body as being overweight or obese. The measures include the BMI or body mass index and the percentage of body fat (percent BF). Your BMI is traditionally calculated by dividing your weight in kilograms by your height in meters squared. Then, that number is divided by your height in inches again, and the result is multiplied by 703. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has a BMI calculator on its website (http://nhlbisupport.com/bmi/bmicalc.htm), so you don’t have to do the math yourself. If you don’t know how to convert your weight and height to metric measurements, that’s okay; this website can calculate your BMI using standard American measurements. Ideally, your BMI should be in the range of 18.5 to 24.9. If your BMI is greater than 25, you’re overweight. If it’s greater than 30, you’re considered obese.
BMI, however, is not the best measure to determine if you’re overweight or obese because it doesn’t take body composition into account. Muscle weighs more than fat. For example, bodybuilders may weigh a lot for their height, but their above-normal weight is usually due to their large muscle mass, not excess fat. These toned athletes may have a BMI greater than 30, but they are certainly not obese.

Percent Body Fat
A better way to determine whether you are overweight, obese, or just “solid” is to measure your percent body fat (percent BF). This measurement is an assessment of your body composition. It evaluates how much of your weight is lean body mass (muscle, bones, and so on) and how much of it is actually fat. There are several different ways to get this measurement. The most accurate way involves completely submerging your body into a tank of water. This fairly expensive test measures the amount of water you displace in the tank and compares it to your height and weight. Fat is lighter than muscle. So pound for pound, fat takes up much more space than muscle. The more water you displace for your height and weight, the higher your percent of body fat.

Body fat can also be calculated by the method known as “bioelectrical impedance.” This test is performed by passing a small, low-amp electrical current through your body and measuring the speed at which the current flows through you. Fat doesn’t conduct electricity very well, but muscle does. So, the more fat you have, the slower the current travels.

The simplest and least expensive way to measure percent body fat is to use a series of skin-fold measurements. However, calculating body fat using this technique has some limitations and is a lot less accurate than the other methods. The accuracy of this approach very much depends on the skill of the person doing the evaluation. Also, skin-fold measurements are unreliable for estimating the amount of body fat on people who are either extremely thin or very obese. To calculate percent body fat using this technique, a caliper is used to measure the thickness of skin folds in several very specific areas of the body. The skin and the underlying fat are pinched into the caliper—a device that looks and feels a lot like a vice. Yes, sometimes it hurts a little. The thickness of each skin fold is read from the numbers on the caliper. After all the measurements are taken, they are added up and divided by the person’s body weight. That number is then multiplied by a conversion factor to obtain the estimated percent body fat. Certified personal trainers are taught how to take these measurements as part of their certification training. Most gyms and fitness clubs have a personal trainer who can do these measurements for you.

Studies have shown that your BMI and percent body fat (BF) are associated with your risk of breast cancer. A study from Sweden published in January 2003 in the International Journal of Cancer found that your percent BF has a higher association with your risk of breast cancer than your BMI does. The normal overall range for percent BF in non-athletic women is 16 to 32 percent; the desirable range is 18 to 28 percent.

Healthy Diet and Lifestyle=Healthy Weight and Breast Cancer Protection
Many of the diet and lifestyle choices that protect against breast cancer will help you to lose and maintain a healthy weigh too. For example, eating fresh organic fruits, vegetables, and whole grains; avoiding red meat, processed foods, and sugar; taking flax oil or eating flaxseeds; and exercising every day.

If you find that you have frequent desires to snack, try this: Eat six small meals instead of three large meals, and plan what you’re going to eat on a particular day the night before. Every three hours or so, eat a small portion of protein with a serving of vegetables. Include a serving of fresh fruit and whole grains in two of your meals. Eating planned, small, frequent meals will keep you from getting hungry, overeating, and having the compulsion to eat the wrong things. If three meals a day works well for you, remember to eat your main meal at noon because that’s when your digestion is strongest. In the evening when your digestion is much weaker, eat lightly.

If you have a serious weight problem, joining a weight-loss program such as Weight Watchers can be very helpful. However, consult your doctor before starting a weight-loss program.

This information is used with permission by Christine Horner, MD www.drchristinehorner.com

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