By Sayer Ji
October is the National Breast Cancer Awareness month in the U.S., and October 21 is National Mammography Day.
Zeneca Group plc., a pharmaceutical subsidiary of Imperial Chemical Industries and manufacturer of the blockbuster breast cancer drugs Arimidex and Tamoxifen, founded the National Breast Cancer Awareness Month in 1985 in order to promote the widespread adoption of x-ray mammography (and the sale of their products).1
While the increase in routine screenings has resulted in soaring breast cancer diagnoses, rates of invasive breast cancer have actually INCREASED in certain populations.2
Shocking Statistic: False Alarms May Be as High as 40 Percent!
A recent study and editorial published in the New England Journal of Medicine indicated that x-ray mammography screening may "save" only 1 person for every 2,500 screened.
Among the 2,500 screened at least 1,000 will have a false alarm, 500 would undergo an unnecessary biopsy, and 5 or more would become treated for abnormal finds that would never become fatal, i.e. their lives will be shortened due to medication/surgical/stress-induced adverse effects.
Given these findings X-ray mammography may be far more effective at generating increased numbers of breast cancer diagnoses than in "preventing" malignancy and mortality associated with the disease. To the contrary, a growing body of clinical evidence indicates that the "low energy" x-rays used in breast screenings are up to 500% more carcinogenic than previously assumed and upon which current radiation risk models that favor mass breast screenings with ionizing diagnostic technologies find justification.
The success of this highly popularized model of "prevention," which prevents nothing, is explained when we look deeper into who is behind AstraZeneca, the founding sponsor of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
AstraZeneca's Role in the Cancer Industry
AstraZeneca was in fact a by-product of one of the world's largest chemical (and carcinogen) producers, Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI). Before being acquired by AkzoNobel in 2008, ICI produced millions of pounds annually of known mammary carcinogens such as vinyl chloride. ICI demerged its pharmaceutical bioscience businesses in 1993 to form Zeneca Group plc., which later merged with Astra AB to form AstraZeneca in 1999.
AstraZeneca's best-selling cancer drug Tamoxifen is actually classified by the World Health Organization as a carcinogen. (To view toxicological data on this chemical visit our Problem Substances Database page on Tamoxifen). Presently all campaign ads and promotional events that are run by the National Breast Cancer Awareness Month foundation (which operates year round) must be "approved," i.e. "pink-washed," by AstraZeneca before being released for public consumption.
Other experts and organizations have pointed out this glaring conflict of interest:
"A decade-old multi-million dollar deal between National Breast Cancer Awareness Month sponsors and Imperical Chemical Industries (ICI) has produced reckless misinformation on breast cancer," ~ Dr. Samuel Epstein [a leading international authority on cancer-causing effects of environmental pollutants.]
"Imperial Chemical Industries has supported the cancer establishment's blame-the-victim attitude toward the causes of breast and other cancers. This theory attributes escalating cancer rates to heredity and faulty lifestyle, rather than avoidable exposures to industrial carcinogens contaminating air, water, food, consumer products, and the workplace."
~ Cancer Prevention Coalition
Prevention as Watchful Profiteering
Sadly, Breast Cancer Awareness Month has not become a time of increasing awareness of the preventable causes of breast cancer and has instead fed the breast cancer industry's insatiable need to raise money for research into a pharmaceutical cure, and to promote its primary means of "prevention": early detection via x-ray mammography.
On first account, a pharmaceutical "cure" is as unlikely as it is oxymoronic. Drugs do not cure disease anymore than bullets cure war. Beneath modern medicine's showy display of diagnostic contraptions, heroic "life-saving" procedures, and an armory of exotic drugs of strange origin and power, it is the body's ability to heal itself – beneath the pomp and circumstance – that is truly responsible for medicine's apparent successes. Too often, in spite of what medicine does to "treat" or "save" the body, it is the body which, while against invasive chemical and surgical medical interventions, silently treats and saves itself.
If it were not for the body's truly miraculous self-healing abilities, and the ceaseless self-correction process that occurs each and every moment within each and every cell, our bodies would perish within a matter of minutes. The mystery is not in how our body succumbs to cancer; rather the mystery is in how, after years and even decades of chemical exposure and nutrient deprivation our bodies prevail against cancer for so long.
Prevention versus Early Diagnosis
The primary causes of breast cancer: nutritional deficiencies, exposure to environmental toxicity, inflammation, estrogen dominance and the resultant breakdown in genetic integrity and immune surveillance, are entirely overlooked by this fixation on drug therapy and its would-be "magic bullets" and the completely dumbed down and pseudo-scientific concept that "genes cause disease." (See: DNA: Not The Final Word On Health).
Billions of dollars are raised and funneled towards drug research, when the lowly turmeric plant, the humble cabbage and the unassuming bowl of miso soup may offer far more promise in the prevention and treatment of breast cancer than all the toximolecular drugs on the market put together. (To view several dozen substances go to GreenMedinfo: Breast Cancer)
When it comes to the breast cancer industry's emphasis on equating "prevention" with "early detection" through x-ray mammography, nowhere is the inherently pathological ideology of allopathic medicine more clearly evident.
Not only is the ionizing radiation used to discern pathological lesions in breast tissue one of the very risk factors for the development of breast cancer, but the identification of the word "prevention" with "early detection," is a disingenuous way of saying that all we can do to prevent breast cancer is to detect its inevitable presence sooner than would be possible without this technology. (View our X-Ray Mammography page on our Anti-Therapeutic Actions database).
If women succumb to the idea of prevention as doing nothing but waiting for the detection of the disease, many will find a similarly deranged logic re-emerge later when the self-fulfilling prophecy of prevention-through-doing-nothing is fulfilled and "treatment" is now required. "Treatment," when not strictly surgical, involves the use of very powerful chemicals and high doses of ionizing radiation which "poison" the cancer cells.
The obvious problem with this approach is that the application of either form of death energy is not suitably selective, and in the long run, many women die sooner from the side effects of toximolecular "therapy" than from the cancer itself. Why is the obvious question never asked: if exposure to the genotoxic and immune system disabling effects of chemicals and radiation is causative in breast cancer, then why is blasting the body with more poisonous chemicals and radiation considered sound treatment?
The answer to this question has much more to do with ignorance than it does an intentional desire to do harm. But the results are the same: unnecessary pain, suffering and death.
Faced with a situation where medieval notions of prevention and treatment of breast cancer are the norm, it is no wonder that when polled over 40% of women believe they will contract breast cancer sometime in their life – well over three times their actual risk. After all, have any of them been given a sense that there is something they can do to actually prevent their disease other than "watchful waiting"?
Pink-Washing Away the Preventable Causes of Breast Cancer
Obfuscating the real preventative measures available to women to combat breast cancer, and all cancers for that matter, trusted "authoritative" sources like the Susan G. Komen Foundation publish irresponsible statements like this:
"It is unclear what the exact relationship is between eating fruits and vegetables and breast cancer risk…little, if any link was found between the two in a pooled analysis that combined data from eight large studies."
Have we really come to the point where the common sense consumption of fruits and vegetables in the prevention of disease can so matter-of-factly be called into question? Do we really need randomized, double-blind and placebo controlled clinical trials to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that our bodies can benefit from the phytonutrients and antioxidants in fruits and vegetables in the prevention of cancer?
Another atrocious example of this conspiracy against identifying the obvious causes and cures for diseases like breast cancer is the National Breast Cancer Foundation's website. Go to the bottom of their homepage and type in "carcinogen" in their site wide search box. This is what will appear on the results page:
"Your search – carcinogen – did not match any documents. No pages were found containing "carcinogen".
On Susan G. Komen's website the term only emerges three times, and always in the context of minimizing the causative connection between smoking, high saturated fat consumption from meat and breast cancer. If you can remove the reality of carcinogenicity by erasing from the minds of would-be cancer sufferers the word carcinogen, and thereby conceal the link between environmental and dietary exposures of a multitude of toxins, then the obvious "cure" these massive organizations which are vacuuming in billions of dollars of donations every year to find, namely, the removal of carcinogens and detoxification of the system, will never be discovered.
Examples like these make it increasingly apparent that orthodox medicine, and the world view it represents, is approaching a theoretical end-time perhaps most accurately described as Pharmageddon. Within the horizon of this perspective vitamins are considered toxic, fruits and vegetables simply a source of caloric content (a poor one, at that), and cancer-causing drugs are understood as the only legitimate and, for that matter, legal, way to combat cancer. Are we really at the tipping point, or is there still hope?
Fortunately there are thousands of scientific studies extant today on the therapeutic value of foods, herbs and spices in breast health, many of which can be found on the government's own biomedical database known as MEDLINE. Decades of research have confirmed the veracity of the Hippocratic phrase: "Let food be thy medicine," and until a prescription is required to obtain and consume organic food, we can still draw from a vast cornucopia of natural substances whose safety and efficacy put the conventional pharmacopeia to shame.
Breast Cancer Prevention Month Initiated by GrassrootsHealth
GrassrootsHealth is changing the current Breast Cancer Awareness Month to Breast Cancer Prevention Month with a focus on taking action to prevent breast cancer with vitamin D testing and education.
"It's time to take action, women are already fully aware of breast cancer and its consequences," says Carole Baggerly, director of GrassrootsHealth. "When you can project that fully 75 percent of breast cancer could be prevented with higher vitamin D serum levels, there is no justification for waiting to take preventive measures such as getting one's vitamin D level up to the recommended range of 40-60 ng/ml (100-150 nmol/L)."
According to Dr. Cedric F. Garland of the Moores Cancer Center and the UCSD School of Medicine:
"This will potentially be the most important action ever conducted toward prevention of breast cancer. The more women who participate in this study, the greater the chance that we will defeat breast cancer within our lifetimes."
Women across the world are invited to enroll in a 5-year Breast Cancer Prevention Study initiated by GrassrootsHealth. To be eligible to enroll, you must be at least 60 years of age and have no current cancer. A free vitamin D home test kit will be provided for the first 1,000 women to enroll. The study aims to fully demonstrate health outcomes of vitamin D serum levels in the range of 40-60 ng/ml (100-150 nmol/L) and will examine the occurrence of breast cancer among a population of women 60 and over who achieve and maintain a targeted vitamin D serum level in the bloodstream. In addition to breast cancer prevention, short-term effects of vitamin D such as hypertension, falls, colds and flu will also be tracked. More information can be found at www.grassrootshealth.net.
Funding for this initial enrollment is provided by GrassrootsHealth founder, Carole Baggerly.
"We are expecting to find like-minded individuals and organizations who will provide support to keep the full enrollment funded; our funding goal for the project is $300,000/year. We have been funded entirely by private individuals and organizations in the past. There is a large group of people who are ready for action to prevent breast cancer. We sincerely hope that those people will help by donating directly to this effort to demonstrate how we can do primary prevention, not just early detection."
- Official National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM) Frequenlty Asked Questions
- GreenMedInfo.com: X-Ray Mammography Studies
- GreenMedInfo.com: Natural Anti-Breast Cancer Agents
- GreenMedInfo.com: Natural Aromatase Inhibitors
- GreenMedInfo.com: Natural Anti-Breast Cancer Substances
- GreenMedInfo.com: High bone density is associated with profoundly elevated rates of breast cancer risk (330% increase).
- Dr. Mercola: Why Mammography is NOT an Effective Breast Cancer Screen
- Thermography: A Safer Option for Breast Cancer Detection