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How My Friend Dealt with Breast Cancer

Update in Aug  2017: Ling has since retired from her corporate job and now reaping the benefits from retirement.

May used to be my mentor when I was starting out in the working world. By the time, she had already worked for many years, coming in at entry level and rising to managerial position. She always emphasized on work ethics and how we must do our best. She also shared lots of her own personal experience and given me lots of advise on how to deal with different colleagues, office politics, etc.

Unfortunately, she was diagnosed with breast cancer, undergone treatment and then, passed away when there were secondaries to her lungs (that time she did not complete the prescribed 6 course of chemo treatment). She was such a wonderful person.

Then, few years later, her younger sister Ling also contracted breast cancer. That was a few years ago. Ling took a very different approach compared to what her sister had taken after she recovered from the treatment (operation, chemo and radiotherapy):

  • she chose not to go organic like May did.
  • but she cut down on processed food- even till this day. This means, only once a few months, she will eat KFC or McDonalds. She also does not take sausages, ham or other type of processed meat
  • she ate meat but in reduced amount- she did not become a vegetarian
  • she took up exercising- joined the gym, did cardio and weights. Her fitness level is impressive- she was able to maintain a heart rate of about 150+ beats per min.
  • she joined Qi Gong- she felt Qi Gong exercises are beneficial as it increases oxygen flow to the body and improves circulation. She also sleep better at night after practicing Qi Gong twice a week (she told me sometimes, she gets lazy to practice at home but she makes it to the classes)
  • she learn to take things easy- no longer become too obsessed with work. Her mental and physical health is what matters. She does her best to eliminate all the stressors that goes on in her life
  • she devotes herself to God, prays often and goes to church
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Ling is a very strong lady and I truly admire her courage and determination. She told me that she always had to be on the lookout and becareful. She had detected it through self breast examination as cancer runs in the family (her mom also had died many years ago from cervical cancer). She believes that cancer is the disease of the immune system. Each one of us has cancer cells in our bodies. In a normal individual with strong immune system, we are able to eliminate or keep the population of these cells under control.

But once we allow stress to take over, allowed our bodies to be abused by taking in junk or neglected by lack of exercise (causing bad circulation and non removal of toxins), we compromise our immune system. With our immune system is weak, the cancer cells has the chance to attack and multiple themselves in our body.

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