#244 The Problem With Thinking Life Isn't Fair

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On today’s episode of the Breast Cancer Recovery Coach Podcast. Today, we're diving deep into a topic that resonates with all of us: the concept of fairness in life. It's a universal truth that life isn't always fair, but sometimes we struggle to accept this reality, which can lead to self-sabotage.

So why do we resist accepting this universal truth?

To embrace the truth that life isn't fair and make conscious decisions, we need to explore our underlying thoughts and beliefs. Why do we feel entitled to certain things? Why do we think we shouldn't have to put in extra effort? By understanding these thoughts, we gain insight into our boundaries and take ownership of our choices.

It's important to remember that we are the ones making the decisions. Acknowledging our agency empowers us to create the life we desire. When we accept that life isn't fair and take control of our choices, we can align our actions with our goals.

Life may not always be fair, but we have the power to shape our experiences and treat ourselves with kindness and respect.

Listen now and find out how.

Referred to in this episode:

Better Than Before Breast Cancer Life Coaching Membership




Read the full transcript:

You're listening to the breast cancer recovery coach podcast. I'm your host, Laura Lummer. I'm a Certified Life health and nutrition coach, and I'm also a breast cancer thriver. If you're trying to figure out how to move past the trauma and the emotional toll of breast cancer, you've come to the right place. In this podcast, I will give you the tools and the insights to create a life that's even better than before breast cancer. Well, let's get started. Hey there, welcome to episode 244 of the breast cancer recovery coach podcast. I'm your host, Laura Lummer. As always, I am thrilled to be here with you today. And I'm really looking forward to talking about today's topic on the show. Because this topic has had a thread for a long time in my life, I bet it has in your life. And it definitely has in the lives of pretty much everybody that I coach and everybody that I know, because it isn't just a thought what I'm going to share with you on today's show, but a universal truth. But I think sometimes we fail to accept this as a truth. And so it feels like an injustice. And then we get really angry. And then we do something pretty much to harm ourselves. Now, that's not going to be a lot of harm. I'm gonna go into why. But self sabotage really, I think is rooted in this idea at some times in our lives. So what's the thought? What's the statement? It is? This isn't fair. Right? This is not fair. Now, I know you've had that thought many times throughout your life. How many times have you had that thought, since having breast cancer? Since having breast cancer and thinking this isn't fair? Why me? Why am I the one that got breast cancer, I'm a good person, I did all these things. I know this person, they're not such a great person. They haven't done all the things that I've done to take care of myself. This is so not fair. Maybe you gain weight from chemotherapy and steroids and all of this stuff. And maybe you're thinking, This is not fair. I have this friend who literally it's a box of Chronos and watches them down with a bottle of wine and she never gains an ounce. She doesn't have to dye it. She doesn't have to think about it. I look at a grown up again, five pounds. That is so not fair. Right? Maybe it's making some dietary changes, and giving up some of the things that you thought were special in your life and you just haven't done it because you look at it. And you say, no, that's just unfair. I shouldn't have to do this. Right. So I said, this is a thought can we get stuck on? But this is also my friends a universal truth? Could we all agree that life is not fair? That there's not one idea of what fair is? So how could life be fair, what might be fair in my mind isn't going to be fair and yours and vice versa? There's so many ways that we could look at what is fair, but I can say the universal truth. And some of the examples I decided for you. These are just truths, right? We observe things throughout life. And in our mind, we look at and say that shouldn't work that way. Right? It shouldn't be harder to get into debt than it is to get out of debt harder to lose weight than it is to gain weight, harder to build back trust than it is to lose trust. It is. And we know this to be true.
So why do we refuse to accept this universal truth? And in refusing to accept this universal truth? We find it and we sabotage ourselves again, and again. And again. I'm gonna share a story with you. I'm not sure if I've ever shared this on the podcast before I may have. But when my daughter was very small, I would say she was maybe first or second grade. I pick her up from school one day. And come on What kid hasn't said to you? That's not fair. Mom. That's not fair. Right? Share your favorite toy with someone? Well, that's not fair. This is just something that is said. And I would always respond to my kids. Okay, well, life isn't fair, honey. So get used to it share the toy, right? So I pick up my daughter from school this one day, and she is just up in arms. She's maybe six or seven years old. She's little so I don't know, maybe he's kindergarten in first grade. But I just remember she was so cute with these pudgy little cheeks. And she tells me this story about someone who wanted something of hers. I can't remember the exact details of it yet. And she told the other kid No. And the other kid went and told the teacher on her and the teacher came and said, Honey, we have to share this because that's the fair thing to do. And my daughter responded with, well, life isn't fair. And so I am trying so hard to take that Conversation seriously, and I'm holding back my laughter and she says, my teachers wrong, right, mom? She's wrong. Life isn't fair, is it? And I said, Well, we'll talk about that. But no, life isn't fair. It just isn't you guys, because what is fair, it's what we think we want in that moment what we think is right for us or someone else in that moment. And so we know this to be true. So why don't we put ourselves through the hell of fighting the fact that life isn't fair, sometimes we just have to accept things. And when we come up to this life isn't fair, followed by the comment I made just a second ago, I shouldn't have to do that. Right? Think about that rule, I shouldn't have to do that. Based on what I shouldn't have to count every micro or a macro nutrient that I put into my mouth, I shouldn't have to take 40 different supplements a day, I shouldn't have to be on chemotherapy pills, I shouldn't have to stick so strictly to my plan that the smallest deviation throws off my bloodwork. I shouldn't have to do that. Based on what, by whose rules, by whose rules my playing a fair life, a fair universe somewhere. So yet, this thought comes up, it comes up for me over and over again. And every time this thought comes up, this isn't fair, or it's twin, I shouldn't have to do this. Every time that thought comes up. It brings the feeling of frustration or anger, right? Definitely. Resentment, maybe. And most of the time, when we find ourselves facing this thought this, this isn't fair, I shouldn't have to do this. It is when we're faced with a situation where we have to put in extra intentional energy. And what I mean by that is, we're in a situation where something's really fun, right? People are having a lot of fun. Or maybe there are desserts or cocktails or things that you're trying to avoid, but you really love them and enjoy them. And in the moment, you're happy, and you're just thinking, I just want to feel normal. And then you've got like the devil on one shoulder, the angel on the other shoulder saying, Don't do this, you know, you're gonna end up suffering. No, I want to do this, I want to feel normal. This just isn't fair. I gotta live my life. And I'm just gonna go in, right? And what why does that specific scenario, what is that kind of scenario, we're in a place where we're just having fun. And we haven't decided, in fact, maybe even ahead of time, we've decided I'm not going to do this right, I'm not going to indulge in something that I know is going to make me feel bad physically, or emotionally or affect my energy or something like that. It's one thing if we're going into a situation, we're saying, I'm going to be really intentional about this. I've decided that this is what I'm going to indulge in while I'm there. It's another thing if we said no, I'm really trying to stay with my plan and stay in the flow of everything I've got going on. And then we get in the moment, we're having fun. And instead of putting that extra energy because it really does take extra emotional mental energy in that moment. We just go Forget it, right? And we go all in, and then we end up regretting it because we sabotage ourselves. We've done something, we've drank something, we've eaten something that leaves us feeling bad afterwards, or leaves us gaining weight afterwards or feeling bloated or having digestive issues, something that we already knew going in this was going to happen. So let me give you a real life scenario to kind of illustrate this even more. I avoid eating sugar or flour as if you listen to this podcast at all you know that I follow a ketogenic diet with a goal of staying in therapeutic ketosis. But there are times when that's really challenging, right and I know how important it is because I'm managing active disease and it's very important that I stick to the plan. Because I have seen in my blood work when I don't stick to the plan. Things shift really quickly. And you know what, that's not fair is it doesn't sound fair. I work really hard most of the time and then a little deviation here and there. And what ends up happening is doesn't just reflect in my bloodwork, but it reflects in my body. So in places where I have active disease, if I eat something sugary, if I have alcohol, I will suffer for it. I will feel it in my digestive system, I will have issues I will have heartburn, I more than likely won't sleep soundly because of that. And it has been my experience that almost every time that I deviate from what my plan is, I'm in pain, it creates a lot of inflammation in my body, it creates a lot of pain. In fact, it's just shocking to me sometimes how powerful food is, and how much of an inflammatory response I can experience. And I think, you know, we'll talk more about that at other times. But it's really a powerful thing to consider how much of an influence food has on our body. So I don't want to get off track here. Let me go back. So let's think of this scenario, you're out having fun. In fact, I was out with my daughter and her fiance, and my husband, we were having a lovely dinner, we were at this really cool restaurant. And there, it's like this great tapas restaurant, we're sharing all these little small plates. They're fantastic. And we're just in the moment. And they have a Key Lime Pie Martini, which is one of my favorites ever. And I decide, I'm just gonna have a martini. And I did, and I had the Martini. And then at the end, they brought around this dessert tray, and the desserts that at that place look remarkable. And from everything I've heard, they're remarkable. I've been there several times, but I haven't indulged in the desserts. And they bring the desserts. And they order a couple of desserts for the table. And finally, I go in, and I take a couple bites of the cookie butter cake, which was absolutely delicious, I have to say. And for about two days, I had an incredible amount of inflammation. I really felt it in my body. And because I hadn't gone to that dinner with the intention of indulging with the intention of saying, You know what, I've been so good for so long. Tonight, I'm going to have a cocktail, because I didn't go with that energy. And that intention in my mind, I went with the I'm going to stick to my plan no matter what. And then I didn't. And I did it. Because in that moment, when they were offering the specialty cocktail menu, and they were bringing it around the dessert tray, instead of exerting a little more energy in that moment, and saying thank you, but no, thank you, as I often do most of the time do. I said, You know what? It's a special dinner. And I'm having fun. Let's just do this. And that word right there. That word, I'm having fun, that can really come into play, especially when we have this underlying thought of this isn't fair. I'm having fun. I should be able to do this. This is fun, right? And it's not fair that I have to miss out on the fun. But is that really true? What I've been missing out on any of the fun at that lovely dinner with my people, if I hadn't had a glass with alcohol in it? If I hadn't had a couple of bites of a sugary dessert what I really have missed out on something. No, absolutely not. And what I did instead was created more suffering for myself, right. Because of that, I just want to have fun, I just want to be normal. This isn't fair, I shouldn't have to be the one to miss out. Right? I shouldn't have to do this. And I think that it's really important to point out here that the the idea of fun has to be different than life. In you know, life and sticking to the plan has to be boring and not fun. And fun has to be stuff that's not good for you. You see that how we can get off track here because this is all a part of life. Everything is a part of life, our social engagements, our special dinners, the things we decide to do for ourselves on a day to day basis. It's all just a part of life. And some of us have to be a little more stringent with the parameters with our nutrition and what we decide to do. And even everything when we sleep, what we eat all the things right. Some of us depending on what's going on in our body, we've got to be a little more disciplined with ourselves. And some of us we can get away with a little more. So that's okay, you have to know where your balance is at. But wherever your balance is, that's your sweet spot. Right? You find the sweet spot that works for you that says, This is life. Life is my day to day life that I do and life is also fun. But fun. doesn't have to mean that I do so many things that I go outside of my sweet spot and end up creating pain and suffering for myself. Whether that is emotional pain, or physical pain, or the mental pain of the shame spiral and the guilt and all of all of that stuff that comes along with it. So how do we embrace first of all the life truth? That life is not fair. Can we embrace that? Can we say to ourselves, yeah, I don't have to fight that idea. Because it's just friggin true. And I just have to learn how to accept that. I have to learn how to come to terms with that. I have to learn how to be at peace with it. because if I can be at peace with the fact that life isn't fair, then I can just say, well, that means I may have to do some things that I wish I wouldn't have to do. I wish I could be the girl who could eat the box of Cronos and wash them down the ball of red wine and never feel a thing. But that isn't me. Right? And so then I have to figure out, okay, so what is my sweet spot? How does my life flow? So I don't find myself feeling so deprived? I'm thinking, I shouldn't have to do that. Where can I find the balance in my mind? With the flow of my life? Why does day to day living have to look one way? And vacation date nights special occasions have to mean the wheels come off? Can we be more intentional? Can we exert energy can we say, This is what fun sounds like, to me, this is how I live my fun life all the time. This is how I live my fun life. This is what I do. This is what brings me happiness, this is how much I choose to indulge in things that may not support my health, or that may create inflamed inflammation in my body. And I know that going in, but I also enjoy the flavor of it, or the sensation of it or the experience of it. And so this is how often I'm okay with doing that. So that I don't feel bad. And so I don't create a net negative effect in my life. Okay. But as long as we refuse to accept that life isn't fair. And we want to fight the fact that life isn't fair. And we go into it, stomping our feet. And we go into it, having our little Tizzy fit and saying, life isn't fair, this is bullshit, give me all the things and then we suffer.
And then when we suffer, we're harder on ourselves. And there's no fun comes from that, right? So we have to ask ourselves this question when, when the thought comes up, life isn't fair, I shouldn't have to do this. And you find yourself in this scenario. And you realize, like, I'm not taking care of myself, the way that it feels good to take care of myself, right. There's some ways when we take care of ourselves, and we think I feel really good. You know, I've had just the right mix of all the things, all the healthy things, all the treats, and I when I say healthy things, I don't mean like we're giving up something but delicious choices that make us feel good and satisfied and taste good. And I've had some of this special treats as well. And it's all just a flow of my life. And this is what makes me feel good. So we circle back to that thought, am I taking care of myself the way I want to be taking care of myself? The way that I know feels good to me? And if the answer to that is no. And you realize that you have the thought, well, isn't fair, I shouldn't have to do those things. That's where your work is. Right? When that thought comes up to me, and I just think this isn't fair. I say to myself, I remember that little girl in my car is like my teachers wrong, right? Mom, life isn't fair. And I think that that's true. It's true. So what choice am I going to make here? If life isn't fair, and I can't do all the things I want to do whenever I want to do them as much as I want to do them. What am I going to make that mean to me? How am I going to apply that truth to my life and still make conscious decisions and put in a little extra energy, so that I am taking care of myself the way I deserve to be treated, so that I am taking care of myself in a way that feels good to me in a way that I'm happy with myself for doing? And then what are the thoughts come up for you in that moment? This is where work gets really good. Because if you notice, and now you're going to notice you listen, this podcast and something's gonna come up anything. This is so not fair. You're gonna hear my voice. Okay, what other thought is underneath that? What's happening there with you in that moment? What is underneath that that's not fair. Well, that's not fair doesn't make me feel good. And when I don't feel good, typically the actions that I take are things that self sabotage what I want to be doing for myself and don't need to be treating myself the way I deserve and want to be treated. So what are their thoughts are in there? Can you explore why you think things have to be fair? Why you think you shouldn't have to expend extra energy in order to support yourself or treat yourself the way that you want to be treated? Right? It's up to you. It's like, this is a boundary thing. This is where we come in, and we're like, this is me, honoring my own boundaries. Am I honoring them? Or am I violating them? What's going on here? Why am I turning to the idea? It's not fair to kind of mask making poor choices for myself, and I'll tell you what, sometimes what comes up is oh, I just It just happened. I don't know what happened. It got out of hand, right? It got away from me. And I think this is a really important thing. When we're thinking that This isn't fair, I shouldn't have to do this. And we do make choices, friends, because we're the one making the choices. So we make the choice, that we do something that doesn't serve the way we want to be treated, we have a net negative effect from it. But then we don't even embrace and acknowledge that we're making that choice. Right? We made that choice, we just kind of say, I don't know, it's like the universe just swooped in, and took over, and maybe drink the Key Lime Pie Martini, right? It's not true. We're making the choice. And when we own that fact, that I'm the one who's choosing, then we're moving even more into awareness. And when we move into that awareness, we take that power. So I can acknowledge and I can say, and you can say you can look, you're like, Yeah, I don't like that, because it doesn't feel fair, I wish I didn't have to be the one who has to make these kinds of choices. But at the same time, we have to accept, I am the one, you are the one, if you want to create certain results in your life, you're gonna have to make certain choices in order to get there, right. And when we take ownership of the fact that we're the ones who make or do not make those choices, then we become more powerful. Because I can say, You know what, it's true. When I go out on date night, or I go to a dinner with my family, I'm the one that chooses to have the things that I said ahead of time I wasn't going to have, I'm the one that chooses to stay up too late and watch the Netflix thing until one o'clock in the morning. I'm the one that chooses not, I don't know what happened before I knew it was one o'clock, right? When we step in, and we take ownership, then we have much more control over our lives. And we still get to make whatever choices you want to make, you still get to stay up and watch Netflix to one o'clock. But know what that's going to mean for you. and own the fact that you're making that choice for yourself. All right, and we can't get there. If we think that we deserve something else. You know, we can't own our own choices. We can't decide, like, I've got to look at my overall life and make this choice on where my sweet spot is in life. And where are the balances between the foods that nourish me, and the foods that maybe don't nourish me, but I super enjoy and love to indulge in. And we don't take power over all of that we don't take control over all of that. If we're just fighting the fact that we tell ourselves, we shouldn't have to do it. So the first step is we've got to just accept some of the truths in life. Some of the time we just have to stop and say, This is how life is. This is just what is. Can we also say, well, that sucks. Yep. You sure can. You can say, well, that sucks. Can you say I wish I wasn't like that? Yep, you sure can. But then you've got to look out. Are you going to keep choosing those thoughts? What's the result those create in your life? How do those leave you feeling? Do they move you closer to living the life or experience the kind of experiencing the kind of health that you want to experience? And if not, when you're going to step in and say it's true, I accepted, it isn't fair. But I'm the one in charge of the choices I make. And I can have it all. I just have to decide on what spectrum it all fits in. Maybe I can't have it all all the time every day. But here's how I can have it all in a way that serves me. And I feel good about it. And it brings me happiness. And it makes me feel like I'm participating in my life the way I want to participate in my life while I'm still loving and caring about myself. Okay. So give some thought, examine where this idea of this isn't fair, is working in your life. Were the threads of this isn't fair. Sometimes it's in relationships. This isn't fair, I shouldn't have to work so hard. I shouldn't have to repeat myself so much. I shouldn't have to ask for what I want. I shouldn't have to just spell it all out for them. Why not? Who says most of the time, you're going to find out that the rules around that were created in your own mind. Yeah. So the reason why it's not fair is because you decided on the rules. And the way life works. Well, I guess you forgot to inform life that it has to follow your rules, right? So sometimes we just have to be a little more aware. Where am I thinking that life isn't fair? Where am I thinking I shouldn't have to be the one that shows up. Where am I thinking I shouldn't have to be the one who puts more energy. Why am I telling myself I shouldn't have to be the one to do that. Am I happy with the results that making those choices? is creating for me? Am I happy with the results that fighting this unfair life? is creating for me. And if not, it's time to dig into that thought a little deeper. And maybe just give it a hug, and start to learn how to embrace it. And then start to learn how to take intentional control of the things you want to create for yourself in your life. All right, my friends, you know, you can get help with that by coming in joining, the better than before breast cancer life coaching membership, where I'll be there to support you, where every single month we dig into some of the things like I talked about on this podcast, and we really work from this most compassionate place to serve ourselves and love ourselves and take better care of ourselves and connect with an amazing group of other women who get what you're going through right along with me. All right, my friends. You can find all the details on my website, the breast cancer recovery coach.com forward slash life coaching and I'll talk to you again next week. Take care
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I'm excited to share the second edition of Tuesday Terrain Talks with you, where we discuss how to care for the terrain of our bodies. 

In the Western approach to health, we often focus on treating specific issues or symptoms, but in these episodes, we're talking about how to support and treat the tissues in our body, much like we would nurture and care for the soil in a garden.  

It’s easy to slip into overwhelm when we talk about supporting our health because the idea of making numerous changes can feel daunting, but it doesn't have to be.  

In this episode we’ll talk about how to start making simple changes that won’t break the bank and how to notice when your brain tries to stop you from thinking about the possibilities that might be available to you. 

Watch the full episode on myYouTube channel 

Referred to in this episode: 

Dr. Chris Palmer on the Andrew Huberman Podcast 

Brain Energy by Dr. Chris Palmer 

Podcast #29 Three Things You Should Know About Your Gut Health 

Read the full transcript here:

Laura Lummer  00:00

Hey friends, welcome to episode 243 of the breast cancer recovery coach podcast. This is the second edition in our newest episodes, which come out on Tuesdays, and I'm calling Tuesday terrain talks. Because in these episodes, I'm talking about how we care for the terrain of our body. And let's just picture this like a garden, if a body is a garden, and we think about our garden, what's one of the most important things is that it has healthy soil, when we have healthy soil, and it's got the right nutrients in it, and we give it the right amount of water, and we give it the right amount of food and the right amount of sunshine. It produces good fruits and vegetables and beautiful flowers and beautiful greenery. And when we think about our body, in the western approach to health, oftentimes we think about what is wrong? And what we have to treat to, I don't know relieve symptoms. But in these episodes we're talking about what do we do to treat our body the tissues in our body? Like the soil, like the terrain? How do we keep that terrain healthy? How do we give it the best nutrients? The most efficient water intake? How do we make sure we're taking just the right amount of calories and the right types of calories? How do we make sure that we move our body enough? What do we do to support the things that make our body feel as good as it can feel, function as good as it can function, and support its ability to do what it does, which is to do detoxification, to clean ourselves out to support a healthy functioning immune system. And to keep us healthy and vibrant through the span of our life. That's what we want to do. So this is all about what do we do to support the terrain. And if you've read the metabolic approach to cancer, you know that Nisha winters, even though she is a naturopath, and she talks about oncology, she says very distinctly, I don't do anything to heal cancer, what I do is help to support people's terrain, and then their healthy bodies do the work for themselves. But when we start to talk about the things we can do, to support the train to keep this soil as healthy as possible, so that it functions as good as possible. The first thing I hear from people, and something I have often and frequently experience is overwhelm. And again, if you've read the metabolic approach to cancer, starting on page 11, you're going to find about a 10 page intake called the terrain 10 questionnaire. Now, if you're anything like me, well, the first time I read this book, I actually stopped at the terrain 10 questionnaire, I saw that questionnaire and I was like, la la la la, it's just too much too much. I can't do it. And why is that because it depends on where we're at, in the process of supporting our bodies where we're at in the process of breast cancer before, which will really dictate what we're ready to take on, we only have so much energy, right. And that's why even as a life and health and nutrition coach for breast cancer survivors, I specifically when I started my business, I'm starting this business to support people in that space after breast cancer. Now, although I have many clients who come to me, Well, they're in treatment now. Because what they hear resonates with them, that tells me that they have that space. And they're in the right place when they're in treatment, where they can balance the thoughts and the ideas and the amount of emotional and physical energy that goes into being in treatment and managing all that that entails. But they also feel that they're capable of having enough energy to focus on doing other things to support their health, and some people aren't. And some people are ready to take on a tiny little bit. And some people are ready to dive all in. So I want you to know that wherever you're at, is perfectly okay. Even if that is only I just want to listen to this podcast, I don't even want to do anything. I just want to hear. And you'll hear this information. And maybe it'll percolate with you. So like the first time I started to read the metabolic approach to cancer, and I saw that list and I was like, look, and I put it down. And it sat there for months before I picked it up again. And then I worked through it and what you'll find in the train 10 or 10 different little buckets that basically say hey, where are you at in this as far as your hormones? What do you experience? Where are you at in this as far as the toxic burden in your environment? Do you have these things? Do you experience these things? And each question has a purpose. And then the book fills you in on on what things you can do to support your body within that bucket. So there's a tremendous amount of information. And I remember the second time that I picked it up, I started reading through it. And then I got to the part on toxic burden. And my thought about toxic burden was, Oh, my God, everything's toxic, everything causes cancer. And I flipped through to the next section, I wasn't ready to take that on yet. I don't know, I'm losing track of how many times I've read the metabolic approach to cancer because I ended up being in the right place, and falling in love with this book. And I think a lot of that was in the interviews and the summits and things that I listened to nature winters on, and she's just so dang smart, and so brilliant. And I started to really dig deeper into this a metabolic approach to supporting the terrain of the body. So I wanted to start here, because I understand that there are so many things out there, there are so many approaches to health, there are so many ideas, there are so many people who say, this is what you should do. And that is what you should do. And it is overwhelming. And it is confusing. And whenever our brain goes into overwhelm, what do we do? We freeze, we do nothing. It's just too much to take in. And it's okay for us to admit that and just say I cannot take it all in at once. So I considered walking you through the terrain, 10 buckets, and really simplifying and looking at these buckets and saying what each of them mean. And I thought you know what, not yet, we're not going to do that yet. We are going to get there at some point. But where I wanted to start was with the low hanging fruit. Where I wanted to start with is the idea of here we are, you've gone through breast cancer treatment, you're done with treatment, you're feeling all of the fields that happened to our body after that, whether you went into menopause, you didn't go into menopause. So no, I'm not talking about necessarily, you know, the thought processes in the emotional piece at this point. But we will also address that because it's a huge part emotions are a huge part of supporting our train. But here we are. And one of the first things that people turn to is that, what can I eat? What can I do? How can I get healthy again, and there are so many things, so many things that can be done so many therapies that can be done. And we're going to move into those therapies a little bit at a time and talk about them. But the first thing that I want to bring to mind, and the first thing I want to ask you to consider and focus on for yourself is looking at this from a very big holistic picture. You've gone through breast cancer treatment. So at the very least, that says to me, you had a surgery, and then you're on some kind of aromatase inhibitor, or scrm. So these things in and of themselves and the stress that you've been through, have an impact on your microbiome, they have an impact on your gut. Now, if you've also gone through radiation, and you've also gone through intravenous chemotherapy, or you are taking some kind of oral chemotherapy, then it's having even more of an impact on your microbiome. And what does that mean, when we say it has an impact on your microbiome? It means all these trillions of living little critters that are inside of our gut? Are they healthy? What do they eat? When they eat something? What do they produce? Because yes, the bacteria in our gut producing so think of it as a little cell that poops it's not poop, but it's a metabolite. So when we eat things, it feeds the bacteria in our gut, those bacteria have different functions. And as they do their functions, they have different waste that they release into the body. Our intestines are built out of cells, and these therapies, drug therapies, radiation, therapy, stress, all those things affect the cells in our body. And they can widen the connection between each cell and we end up with leaky gut. In fact, I'm pretty sure I did a podcast way way back in the beginning, on chemotherapy and leaky gut, look up that episode and put a link to it in the show notes for this episode. So you can click back and refers to that podcast also in listen to how chemotherapy impacts our gut. But now, even in these few short years, so much has come out that talks about our microbiome. Now let's think about this, again, from a holistic perspective. When we go through any kind of stress or any type of medications, whether they're antibiotics, and that's another thing we may have been through many of during breast cancer treatment. Steroids. I


Laura Lummer  09:41

know I had a boatload of steroids. I also had different times where my white blood cells dropped to literally nothing and was put on prophylactic antibiotics. So when we think about all of these things that we did for all the right reasons, no shaming, no judging, no regrets you did them because you believed it. was going to save your life. And that's probably what it did. And now is the aftermath. Now we look and say, Okay, I gave my self permission to do this, because I believe this is what I needed. And I knew this was gonna have side effects. And now I'm done with this treatment, and I'm cancer free. Or maybe you're not, maybe you're managing the effects on an ongoing basis, like I am of living with and being in treatment for Stage Four metastatic disease. But we have to realize that this is having a side effect. And one of the biggest impacts of those side effects is going to be in our gut. And when our gut is impacted, the signals that those little bacteria send to our brain has a huge impact on our emotions on our mood. And the science behind that is utterly fascinating. I believe I've referred to this book before on the podcast, but I will refer to it again here. And it will also link to another podcast, the Huberman lab podcast here, where you can listen to Dr. Chris Palmer, and you can read his book brain energy. And that book talks a lot about diet, gut health and its effect on our mental well being. Because as I sit back, and I look at cancer, and I think about the clients that I deal with, and I think, well, from everything that I read, and it shows how common depression is after breast cancer. Now, of course, that's going to have emotional elements and thought elements. And there's a tremendous emotional trauma involved in breast cancer. But I wonder how much of it is also impacted and built on by what's happened in our gut, because of the treatments that we've gone through, because of the surgeries and the drugs and all the other things that I've talked about. And I know that those have an impact, right? So what percentage of what we experience emotionally, even if we, if it's chemo brain, if it's depression, if it's anxiety, if it's living with tremendous amount of fear, how much of that could be lessened by what has happened inside our gut? I don't know the answer to that. So what I'm suggesting, and this is just my philosophy, and my theory, is let's step back and take a big picture, look and say, Okay, well, we know that drugs, antibiotics, chemotherapy, radiation has an effect on the microbiome. We know that gut dysbiosis when our gut is not as healthy as possible, affects our ability to eliminate affects our ability to digest may cause GERD and heartburn and diarrhea and constipation, and malabsorption issues as well as emotional and mood issues. We know this, the science tells us this. So for me, the lowest hanging fruit is to work on healing your gut. So how do we work on healing our gut, we don't have to worry about whatever label of diet you're gonna call it. The only thing we have to think about when we talk about healing our gut is eating nourishing foods broths clean water and allowing toxins to escape our body. So if you're experiencing elimination issues, if you're having constipation, or diarrhea, or both, then these are indications that the gut is not as healthy as possible. So there are things that we could talk about that include different detoxification therapies, meaning he therapies and herbal remedies, and all this kind of stuff. And we'll dig into them later. But before we get to that point, because that gives your brain an opportunity to say, oh, my gosh, those must be expensive. Oh, my gosh, I don't know how to do that. I wanted to start at the very, very, very basic, the lowest hanging fruit. And even though I say this is very basic, this is going to come with a lot of work, you're going to have to do with the way that you think, because the best thing we can do to heal our gut is to clean up our diet. It's to get refined foods, refined sugars, and lots of carbohydrates and pesticides out of our diet. So what does that mean? It means we have to work towards eating more organic foods. And I'm not saying all organic foods because I realize all organic foods may not be in someone's budget. However, before you tell yourself, it's too expensive for me to have organic things. I want to offer you a couple of options. So I'm gonna come back to that. So we're talking about drinking clean, clear water, eating whole foods as much as possible with as few pesticides as possible, so organic wherever you can. animal proteins that are wild caught in or grass At, but eliminating things that have tons of preservatives and food dyes, and that are laden with sugars and pesticides. Okay, we can start there. And that's a free way to do not freeway as in 405 freeway, but it is a free approach to beginning to support our train. Let's go back to the garden analogy and think about if our body is the soil, what's the Miracle Grow for that soil? Right? When we have an unhealthy plant, we go down to Home Depot or Lowe's or the nearest garden store and we say what do I do to get the soil healthy? Well, let's feed it differently. That's water a differently, let's say compost, right, let's take your morning paper, if people still read the morning paper and your coffee grounds and your eggshells and grind them up and compost them and get all these great nutrients and put them in the soil. That's what we're talking about when we're talking about improving our diet. So I don't want to talk about what has to be eliminated, this is only going to bring up thoughts of deprivation. What I want to offer you here are ideas of things that you can do to clean up your diet, support your microbiome, get those gut bacteria nice and healthy, so that they're producing metabolites that are sending messages to your brain that support even better moods and a clearer ability to think this is so wild how the gut affects the brain so strongly, it's just a fascinating, fascinating part of nourishing our bodies in the right way.


Laura Lummer  16:40

So let's talk about some things that you could switch up in your diet. And depending on your financial resources, maybe you can't afford to go all organic. For all I know, maybe you can afford to hire a personal chef. Fabulous, do it right. Maybe you can hire a nutritionist, maybe you can go to wherever you're being treated, and see if a dietitian or an oncology nutritionist at the hospital, your ad is covered by your insurance, many of them now offer that service. And then you can get some expert guidance. Okay. But we're going to come back to if you had to start here today, without searching anything else, without putting out any more effort to hire someone to find someone to listen to something new, what could you do, we can consider how you can shift the grocery budget to support a cleaner way of eating. And here's what I mean by that. If you're eating dairy, that is not pasture raised, and organic dairy, then there is a very high likelihood I'm not gonna say 100% Because I don't know. And there may be different percentages in your food. But there's a very high likelihood that that dairy has residue from hormones, antibiotics. And if it's not grass fed animals, and it's grain fed animals, then those grains more than likely have pesticides and herbicides on him that that animal has been consuming. And so those residue are going to be in the dairy products. And so dairy products have been shown to have and to elicit inflammatory responses in many people, not all people, but in many people. Some of us are more sensitive, some of us are less sensitive, but dairy products also come with a little bit of a higher price tag. So since we don't need to have dairy products, and I just want to point out here because a lot of people think eggs fall under the category of dairy. And I'm not suggesting that eggs come from chicken butts, eggs or eggs. Anything that comes from a cow is dairy. Okay, except obviously the meat. So let's talk about what a cow produces from cow milk as dairy. So since we don't need to have that, we don't need to have dairy products to get proper nourishment into our body. I would offer that you consider shifting those dollars that maybe go to your dairy products into more organic vegetables into different portions of grass fed grass finished beef or wild caught fish or pasture raised chickens. Okay, because even though the organic products may be slightly higher, if we think about things that we include in our diet that don't support our wellness, like processed foods, like high sugar foods, specially high sugar, fructose laden drinks, breads and pastas, and things that we may enjoy from time to time, but don't necessarily need to be staples in our diet because what they offer us is not required for optimal nutrition. But for optimal nutrition. We do want to have great high quality fruits and vegetables. And if the fresh vegetables are too much out of someone's budget, frozen vegetables are good Ah, and I know that tons of grocery stores out there, they offer organic lines, their own namebrand organic lines. And since I mean over the years over the last couple of decades, just organic food is more and more available. And because of its availability, it's becoming more and more affordable. So I think a lot of times when you hear that, eat more organic food, people's minds go, right, that's too expensive. I can't do it. But if we stop and really look at it, and I would ask because I'm all about the data, don't guess, right? Get the data? Is it really that much more expensive? If so, how much more expensive? If so, where are those dollars going? Is there anything you can shift? Are there things you consume in your diet that do not support getting the healthiest microbiome, reducing leaky gut again, that's the space kind of in between the cells in your intestines and the danger with that. And the problem with that, is that larger food particles that normally would not go through the intestinal wall, when we have leaky gut, and we have a separation in those gap junctions, those things that connect our, our intestinal cells to each other, those spaces get larger, larger food particles go out into our body before, they really should, they're too big to be out there. And they cause inflammatory reactions and immune response. And that's a problem. So we want to address that. So this is the first step we can take and starting to really decide to look at our food, like, what if the food was money, right? Where do you want to put your money, you want to put it in a way that serves you the best. So if we looked at the food, and we said, Okay, this food could go towards healing my gut, mostly organic food, as much organic food as you could afford, as much grass fed grass finished. And this is important. Now, grass fed, grass finished, because a lot of times, you might even find a butcher that says we have grass fed beef. And when you ask them, how is your beef finished, they'll say it's green finished. And the reason that happens is because we can still call it grass fed, which has a great health halo, we all want grass fed. But green finished gives who's ever producing that beef the opportunity to fatten them up, because carbohydrates make us fat. So they take grain at the end of the animal's life and give a lot of grains to that animal to get it fat and ready for slaughter. And what happens then even though it may have had a lovely grass fed life, it now is grain fed. And it's taking in more than likely glyphosate because we put glyphosate which is the one of the chemicals in Roundup, and has known to cause different cancers and to have crazy inflammatory responses in our body. And I mean, it's amazing how glyphosate permeates our life and people's bodies. So if an animal is green finished, then more than likely, they're taking in grains that have been sprayed or have some kind of residue for glyphosate on him. So just to be aware of this. Now, we have to be careful not to allow yourself to freak out about this. Don't get overwhelmed by this. Because again, as you've heard me say, do this as much as possible. Now, even if you cannot afford to have wild caught seafood, or grass fed grass finished beef, or free range poultry in your diet every day, that is also okay. Because we don't need to have it every day at every meal. There are wonderful alternatives. Eggs are a wonderful alternative. cage free organic eggs are an excellent alternative. And you can make them in so many ways with different vegetables, right? There's so many creative ways that you can cook eggs. So when we start to think about, well, how can I eat that much organic and you know, I've seen those organic meats and they're really expensive. We don't have to eat them with every single meal every single day. Right? That's not how we have to nourish our body. So there are options to that as well. So here's a simple plan, low hanging fruit. First step, how do I heal my gut? How's my elimination? Am I going one to three times a day? pretty smoothly, pretty easily. No discomfort, no pain, no gurgling stomach, no offensive gas, no heartburn, like what's flowing from my digestive tract, which means from my tongue, all the way out the other end. That's our digestive tract. I know when I went through chemotherapy, I had sores on my tongue. I had sores in my mouth. I had sores in my throat, I had horrible heartburn and it lasted for years. Right? So if you think about your digestive tract, from tongue to anus, how do you feel? What's going on there? And then we started to experiment. Let's clean up the diet. Let's look at the grocery budget. Let's make some intentional decisions about what you might be willing to let go of so that You can add in something that gives you better support. And I want to address this thought I don't want to give up. I feel deprived, I shouldn't have to go without. And I want you to think about it in a little bit of different way. I'm not saying cut everything out. As I said in the beginning of this podcast, ask yourself what you're ready for. If you heard me say dairy, and your thought was what I hear most commonly, I didn't give up cheese than don't give up cheese. Right? Ask yourself, What am I ready and willing to do? Could I eat less cheese? Is that possible? Am I willing? Am I open to that idea? Do I really eat cheese as much as I think I do? Maybe I could eat the same amount of cheese that I already eat, because I don't really eat cheese all that much. It's just now and then. Okay, great. Get yourself some really good quality cheese. And really enjoy it. Make sure it's nice quality. You don't have to have it all the time. So you see where I'm going with the way that we're thinking here. So how do we nourish the train? Let's get into the food. And let's not go with the first thought that comes to mind that automatically says can't change won't do it too expensive. Not possible. If we've got breads, pastas, desserts, and we look at the pantry and say, well, there's a lot of prepackaged processed food here. Can I shift this a little bit? Can we forget to fresh or Whole Foods without preservatives that are freezable, right, because I know another thought that can have oh, if I buy all these veggies, they rot, veggies, freeze beautifully, my friends, clean them up, peel them, chop them up, put them in baggies, throw them in the freezer,


Laura Lummer  26:38

I do it all the time. I mean, walk down the freezer aisle in your grocery store, you're gonna see frozen veggies, right? It's okay to freeze your veggies freeze from fresh, there are meal services there organic food services that take foods that maybe have blemishes on them. And I don't mean by blemishes that this was rotten food, my God, I would never suggest that to their blemishes like it's kind of remarkable how we as consumers don't realize that people behind the scenes on the food industry and the grocery industry, they know that if food is ugly, we're not going to buy it. So they'll go through it and put the most perfect foods out into the produce section for us to buy. But then I think Jamie Oliver was one of the chefs who kind of got on this bandwagon and said, Hey, let's take these imperfect foods that are still full of nutrition. And let's get them back out into the world. Let's not waste so much. And so now there are food services that offer that as well. So if you're willing to peel a little, you know, blemish off of your sweet potato, and you also have the opportunity to get a better price on that as well. Okay, so before we dig really deep into terrain 10 And we start looking at genetics. When we start talking about testing and all this stuff, I can tell you right off the bat, we can all begin by examining our gut health, getting to really understand what's going on in our microbiome, and looking openly and honestly at our food budget. And asking yourself what am I willing to do? And without spending more money? What could I shift in what I'm already putting in my pantry and my fridge, my freezer and then subsequently into my body and into my gut? Okay, I would love to hear questions and comments on this. I love love, love it because I want to support you in helping to understand whatever it is you need to wrap your mind around to move forward with supporting your healthiest reign, so you can find me on Facebook, Laura Lummer, the breast cancer recovery coach, you can find me on Instagram the breasts. As the breast cancer recovery coach, you can DM me you can leave a comment you can join my free Facebook group, the breast cancer recovery group on Facebook where you can also ask questions when it comes to the podcast. And you can work with me by joining the better than before breast cancer life coaching membership, where you have an opportunity to do live coaching with me several times a month and I'm there for remind people to answer your question support you and coach you through the thought processes that can sometimes get you stuck between treating yourself and nourishing yourself in the way that you want to or even learning about it first. Okay, so go to my website, the breast cancer recovery coach.com You'll find everything there. Alright, so good luck. Let's get started on supporting our microbiome. And check out the show notes for this show the breast cancer recovery coach.com forward slash 243 where you'll find the links to anything I referred to here in this episode. Take care friends


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