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Breast Cancer- Anxiety and Depression

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Breast Cancer Survivors Exhibit Anxiety and Depression- The Key is The Variety and Efficacy of Therapies Provided in the Studies Linked and Excerpted Below-

Are  you surprised to read that that science has confirmed the fact that a cancer diagnosis causes a host of negative emotions including anxiety, depression, fear, anger, etc.?  I say “Duh.”

The important findings in the articles linked below is that:

  •  the risk of severe depression is high,
  •  that depression can last longer than the cancer itself and most importantly that
  •  antidepressants have a possible link to cancer and finally, lifestyle therapies such as aromatherapy and massage can heal depression.

Pursuing lifestyle therapies to reduce depression brought 0n by a cancer diagnosis are far more healthy and effective than taking a pill. Massage, aromatherapy, moderate daily exercise, diet/nutrition, supplements such as curcumin- there are a host of therapies that have been shown to reduce BOTH your risk of depression AND your risk of relapse.

Click now to learn more about the emotional aspects of cancer

I am a cancer survivor and cancer coach. For more information about managing the diagnosis of cancer, including both  conventional and non-conventional therapies, scroll down the page, post a question or a comment and I will reply ASAP.

thank you,

David Emerson

  • Cancer Survivor
  • Cancer Coach
  • Director PeopleBeatingCancer

After Breast Cancer, Depression Risk Lingers

“The risk of having to check into a hospital for severe depression was 70 percent higher for the breast cancer patients in the first year after diagnosis than their cancer-free peers. The breast cancer patients were also three times more likely to use antidepressants during the first year after diagnosis…”

“Breast cancer is one of the cancers in which we have the best opportunities for treatments,” Johansen said. “Women who are diagnosed with this cancer in general can expect decades of life following the primary treatment, and part of that life as a survivor [includes] care taking of the mental health.”

Antidepressants: Do they work and is there a possible link to cancer?

“Two recent articles bring into question both the safety and effectiveness of antidepressants.  One article suggests that antidepressants may somehow cause a small increase in breast and ovarian cancer.  The other suggests that antidepressants, for most people, are no more effective than a placebo.”

Anxiolytic Effect of Aromatherapy Massage in Patients with Breast Cancer

The patients received a 30 min aromatherapy massage twice a week for 4 weeks (eight times in total). The results showed that anxiety was reduced in one 30 min aromatherapy massage in State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) test and also reduced in eight sequential aromatherapy massage sessions in the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) test…”

 Curcumin for the treatment of major depression: a randomised, double-blind, placebo controlled study.

“CONCLUSIONS: Partial support is provided for the antidepressant effects of curcumin in people with major depressive disorder, evidenced by benefits occurring 4 to 8 weeks after treatment.”

Exercise for the treatment of depression and anxiety.

“Specific studies support the use of exercise as a treatment for depression. Exercise compares favorably to antidepressant medications as a first-line treatment for mild to moderate depression and has also been shown to improve depressive symptoms when used as an adjunct to medications. While not as extensively studied, exercise has been shown to be an effective and cost-efficient treatment alternative for a variety of anxiety disorders.”

The Most BioAvailable Curcumin Formulas

“Based on a review of these studies, it is evident that better bioavailability of formulated curcumin (CU) products is mostly attributed to improved solubility, stability, and possibly low first-pass metabolism”

A search of the Pubmed database for the word curcumin yields 601 studies spaning health topics from multiple myeloma and colorectal cancer, to chemotherapies that synergizes with CU, to Alzheimer’s Disease, arthritis and more. Based on years of reading studies and personal accounts, I think it is safe to say that CU supplementation is safe and relatively inexpensive.

I have read about myeloma patients taking daily doses of CU from 400 milligrams to 8 grams (1000 milligrams = 1 gram). By almost any measure, CU is a safe, inexpensive wonder drug.

The only challenge is that CU is famously difficult to absorb in the body. In other words, a person has to mix curcumin with some sort of fat (coconut oil, chocolate, etc.) or take a brand of curcumin capsule that is already formulated to be more “bioavailable” in order to derive the full benefit of CU.

The study linked and exerpted below reviews different formulations of CU. The study itself lists the three most bioavailable formulation/brand of CU and I’ve added an excerpt from a further review from Consumerlab.com that lists four additional bioavailable brands of CU.

I consult the independent evaluation service Consumerlab.com frequently. For one low annual payment, I can read about and evaluate all of the nutritional supplement that I take.

Recommended Reading:


CU is a bright yellow chemical produced by some plants. It is the principal curcuminoid of turmeric (Curcuma longa), a member of the ginger family, Zingiberaceae. It is sold as an herbal supplement, cosmetics ingredient, food flavoring, and food coloring.[1]

Bioavailable curcumin formulations: A review of pharmacokinetic studies in healthy volunteers.

“Curcumin is a widely studied natural compound which has shown tremendous in vitro therapeutic potential. Despite that, the clinical efficacy of the native CU is weak due to its low bioavailability and high metabolism in the gastrointestinal tract. During the last decade, researchers have come up with different formulations with a focus on improving the bioavailability of curcumin. As a result, a significant number of bioavailable curcumin-based formulations were introduced with the varying range of enhanced bioavailability.

The purpose of this review is to collate the published clinical studies of CU products with improved bioavailability over conventional (unformulated) CU. Based on the literature search, 11 curcumin formulations with available human bioavailability and pharmacokinetics data were included in this review. Further, the data on clinical study design, analytical method, pharmacokinetic parameters and other relevant details of each formulation were extracted.

Based on a review of these studies, it is evident that better bioavailability of formulated curcumin products is mostly attributed to improved solubility, stability, and possibly low first-pass metabolism. The review hopes to provide a quick reference guide for anyone looking information on these bioavailable curcumin formulations.

Based on the published reports,

exhibited over 100-fold higher bioavailability relative to reference unformulated CU. Suggested mechanisms accounting for improved bioavailability of the formulations and details on the bioanalysis methods are also discussed.”

According to Consumerlab.com:

“Novasol has the highest bioavailability (185 x compared to unforumulated CU), followed by Curcuwin (136 x), Longvida (100 x), Meriva (48 x), BCM-95 (27 x), Curcumin C3 Complex + Bioperene (20 x), and then Theracumin (16 x).”


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