MELATONIN is a hormone produced by the pineal gland in your brain. During sleep the amount of melatonin increases, and during the day the amount of melatonin falls. This is because melatonin is influenced by the light/dark cycle and regulates our biological clock(1). Research has shown an inverse relationship between breast cancer size and nighttime levels of melatonin (Front Horn Res 1997; 23:132-36). And another study found that women who worked 3 or more night shifts for 3 years or less were 40% more likely to have breast cancer than women who did not work night shifts (Health facts, Nov 2001, 26 (11):3-4). Around the mid- forties the reduction in pineal gland becomes noticeable, and sleep patterns change. Supplementing with melatonin can increase your night sleep time, help treat jet-lag, and may help reverse the signs of aging (2). To naturally increase your melatonin you can:
1.Eat foods high in tryptophan
2.Supplement with vitamins B3 and B6
3.Sleep in a dark room
4.Expose yourself to 20 minutes of natural sunlight in the morning
5.Do not turn on bright lights when waking at night- this stops the melatonin production. Instead, use a night light in the bathroom/ hallway.
(1)Kaur, Sat Dharam, ND 2010
(2)Pettle, A., MD 2003
(1) a baby at her breast mammary gland, mamma; (breasts) bosom(s), bust, chest; informal boobs, knockers, bazooms, hooters.
(2) feelings of frustration were rising up in his breast heart, bosom, soul, core.
Today, in Canada, 1/9 woman will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in her life (1). As the incidence of this disease is rising every year we must increase our awareness and use preventative strategies to help protect ourselves, daughters, mothers and sisters.
10 Lifestyles Tips to help decrease the risk of acquiring breast cancer:
1. Exercise at least 40 minutes a day
2. Switch to using non-toxic cleaning products, like vinegar, lemon and baking soda
3. Use glass instead of plastics to store your food and liquids (included your water bottle!)
4. Avoid tight bras and consider a looser cotton bra instead of an under wire bra.
5. Check your cosmetics on http://www.cosmeticsdatabase.com/ before purchasing to make sure it is free of toxic dyes and chemicals.
6. Meditate everyday
7. Use a sauna as often as possible to eliminate chemicals and toxins stored in your fat cells.
8. Eat organic whenever possible
9. Eat at least 8-10 servings of fruits and vegetables a day
10. Consume 45 grams of fiber each day (you should be having AT LEAST 2 bowel movements a day!) for proper elimination.
1. Kaur, Sat Dharam. 2011. The Healthy Breast Program