Last month saw the launch of a 10-week tour to promote breast cancer research and a new film documentary.
Wendy Sellens is a native to Alaska but lives in California where she released a book “Breast Cancer Boot Camp.” She started up the non-profit “Pink Bow-Breast Cancer Themography Research and Education” campaign. Sellens worked with Dr. William Hobbins to bring the world information on how breast thermography plays a role in breast cancer screening.
Thermography is a technique in which a digital photograph of the area in question, in this case the breast, is taken and then scanned for abnormal temperature variations. Sellens says she wanted to tour Alaska because this state has a long history with breast thermography-- the first digital infrared camera was invented by an Alaskan in 1979.
She says her book focuses on the things everyone, but especially women, can be doing to avoid getting breast cancer.
“So what we show is that women are told these healthy women supplements are estrogen; flax, soy, red clover, rhubarb. They are plant estrogens. And when you start using them for a supplement supposedly for breast health it’s actually increasing the risk because it’s stimulating the estrogen receptor. So it has the possibility of stimulating breast cancer.”
80 percent of breast cancers are stimulated by estrogen. Sellens says increased estrogen levels because of outside sources, such as foods or birth control, is what is causing young girls to start their periods younger and younger. She says foods like milk, don’t naturally have high levels of estrogen, however, the growth hormones given to the cows contain a lot of estrogen. That excess estrogen leads to weight gain.
Sellens says it’s important to remember this is not just a woman’s issue. An increase in estrogen levels in men has the same effect on breast cancer probability numbers.
“When the mother goes out and she’s told ‘Oh buy flax,’ and she comes home and she puts it on the cereal and the yogurt and grinds it up in the smoothies, and gives it to her husband and her children she’s raising the estrogen levels in her entire family.”
Trisha Huszka is a certified massage therapist and owner of OB Massage in Ocean Beach, California. She worked with Sellens on an experiment in which Huszka took the recommended daily dose of flax for one month.
“And within two weeks I was a mess. I was like a 13 year old or a 15 year old who just went on the pill for the first time. It was horrible. Mood swings, everyone thought I was pregnant, my butt blew up, my breasts got bigger and the only thing that changed in my diet was the flax seeds.”
Huszka says when the experiment began she displayed absolutely no signs of possible breast cancer. However, when Sellens conducted a breast thermograph at the end of the month, Huszka’s results showed the possibility of her getting breast cancer was far higher.
Sellens says she created the documentary, which is inspired by her book, to hopefully reach a broader audience and inspire women to take control of their diet. She says she wanted to do a campaign in Alaska because she believes the state is more open to alternative and new ideas. For information and for dates and locations visit Sellens' website at www.thepinkbowcompany.com.