After our recent Blog Post on the screening problems and cysts associated with dense breasts, (On Being Dense...) Loose Debra consulted nutritionist and top naturopathic chef Sally Galloway for advice on diet. Sally has shrunk her own breast cysts through the science of nutrition and was happy to share some tips.
So make yourself a cup of tea (green for Gawd's sake!) and enjoy the wisdom...
"Breast tissue naturally fluctuates throughout a woman's life. Breast cysts are a natural occurrence and very common, cropping up especially at times when a women's breast tissue is changing: during the monthly cycle, at puberty, during peri-menopause and in the menopause itself.
There are a number of tried and tested methods for reducing the size and the pain of breast cysts.
This ancient home remedy will help reduce the pain associated with the cyst as well as its size. Start by taking a cabbage leaf or two and trim them according to the size of your breast. Then, tie the leaves over your breast or place them inside your bra and leave them in place for a minimum of 30 minutes to an hour. You can hold a hot water bottle on your breast at the same time.
Castor Oil Pack
A caster oil pack can be very effective at reducing cysts as well as promoting lymphatic drainage. Caster oil is such a thick oil that making a pack is not as messy as it sounds! Get an absorbent cloth and soak it with a little caster oil. Place it on your breast and hold a hot water bottle over the top to warm the oil. I find that this works well when relaxing in an Epsom Salts bath with the radio on.
Get Moving, Massaging, Hot and Hydrated!
Promote lymphatic drainage with gentle trampolining (rebounding), walking, massage, osteopathy, sauna and keeping hydrated.
Eat Well and Soak Up Vitamin D
Improvements in breast health can be made by eating iodine rich foods like seaweed, asparagus, garlic, irish moss, mushrooms, oysters. Taking a vitamin D3 supplement of 600iu a day from October to March is recommended as well as getting out in the sunshine or light for at least 20 mins a day.
Cut Out Coffee, Black tea, Cola and Chocolate (yes, she said chocolate)
Methylxanthines are found in caffeinated products like coffee, chocolate, cola, tea, mate and guarana. Eliminating caffeine has been shown to reduce cysts and the pain associated with fibrocystic conditions.
Look After your Liver to Flush the Oestrogen
Liver health is crucial for breast health and oestrogen clearance.... and that will be another blog, but, generally follow the guidelines below:
Drink water throughout the day, at least 1.5 litres
Drink Green Tea, 2 cups a day, studies have found this is great for breast health.
Eat more zinc rich foods (nuts, seeds, meats, eggs)
Have more magnesium (green leafy veg, nuts, seeds, Epsom Salts bath)
Eat cruciferous vegetables like kale, broccoli, cauliflower, sprouts and turnip.
Take some exercise daily –at least 30 mins of physical activity a day
Eat more iodine rich foods like seaweed, asparagus, garlic, irish moss,
mushrooms and oysters. Iodine is found in the thyroid, breast tissue and the
There are supplements that can be taken for cyst prevention and removal but I would advise you speak with a nutritional therapist as some of these could interfere with preexisting complaints and need to be used with this in mind.
And, finally, I've put together a flexible recipe for Loose Debra followers who are interested in optimum breast health. Feel free to play with the ingredients, and I wish you the bonnest of appetites!
Loose Cystas Recipe
Stir fry with salmon, greens, seeds and seaweed
chopped brazil nuts
pumpkin seeds chopped
packet of seaweed sprinkles
Add the onions, garlic and ginger to a pan with hot coconut oil in and stir gently to flavour the oil. Add the rest of your chopped vegetables and stir fry for 5-10 minutes. If your pan is big enough you can fry the piece of salmon in the pan too, or else bake it in a medium hot oven for 15-20 minutes. Add the nuts and seeds to the vegetable stir fry, transfer to a warm plate, put the fish on top and drizzle olive oil and lemon juice over. Serve with a handful of seaweed to sprinkle and brown rice."