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Benefits and Support You Can Get from Joining Breast Cancer Support Groups

Woman standing in front of a support group

When my friend Mara felt a lump in her right breast in April 2019, her first reaction was panic. She got on the phone with me right away and asked me to come with her to the doctor.

After a few days of anxious waiting, we received confirmation that it was breast cancer. As I sat beside Mara outside the doctor’s office, I could see her whole spirit deflating.

I wasn’t sure how to help her, so I suggested we look for breast cancer support groups that she can join. Maybe if she connects with other people going through the same thing, she would feel less helpless and overwhelmed.

Read more: Benefits and Support You Can Get from Joining Breast Cancer Support Groups

The HAMBURGER Study of Beef & Breast Cancer

Image of Butcher cutting meat

We know that eating red meat increases colon cancer risk, but what about breast cancer? This is a concern because cattle are given hormones, including estrogen, which is known to increase the risk of breast cancer. While this practice has been banned in Europe, it is common in U.S. feedlots to make cows gain weight more quickly. We don’t know what level of hormones ends up in the beef or how it might affect our health.

 ZBC is partnering with the Public Health Institute investigator Dr. Gina Solomon and her team on a study to look at this question in the HAMBURGER (Hormones And Meat: does Beef Under-Regulation Generate Estrogenic Residues) Study. In 2020, we surveyed 41 stores to see what cuts of beef were being sold, at what price, and from which producers. (For team members who are vegetarian, this was an odd task!)

Read more: The HAMBURGER Study of Beef & Breast Cancer

Top 5 Empowering Podcasts for Breast Cancer Survivors in 2021

Black woman with a smartphone and coffee wearing headphones.

You are not alone if the social distancing requirements and complying with the need of living in a social bubble has left you feeling anxious, socially isolated and feeling depressed. You are among millions of people who are bearing the brunt of Covid-19’s psychological effects. Our exposure to the continuous feed of stimulating news and notifications over wifi devices, television and social media has made many of us, myself included, worry about the future. As a result, it has made us vulnerable emotionally and mentally. Adjusting to the new normal of being isolated was not easy. I found the thought of following the mundane routine daily with little or no avenues of recreation or in-person interaction made me anxious.

Read more: Top 5 Empowering Podcasts for Breast Cancer Survivors in 2021

College Students Create Videos to Reduce Peers' Risk of Breast Cancer

image Tips to Reduce Your Risk of Breast Cancer Videos by Dominican University Students

During the Fall semester of 2020, ZBC Program Director Lianna Hartmour had the privilege of working with Dominican University students Brianna Arevalo, Jorrane Martins Moreno, and Elias Muro on their Business Leadership Practicum. They created a survey for their peers, collected data in English and Spanish, and created three YouTube videos that were informed by survey results. Their videos were shared on ZBC social media accounts and are posted on YouTube. Check them out below!

Read more: College Students Create Videos to Reduce Peers' Risk of Breast Cancer

Self-Care for Breast Cancer Survivors during Covid-19 PART 2: Connecting with Others and Ourselves

Self care blog part 2

This is the second of two parts about what we can do for our health and wellness during the Covid pandemic, from breast cancer survivors on the Pathways Study Community Advisory Board. Here they share how they cope: connecting with people; taking a break; breathing deeply, meditating or praying; asking for support; getting sleep; gratitude; and focusing on moving forward. Research has shown that all of these can help our mental and our physical health. (Check out the first part for ideas on moving our bodies and eating well.)

Read more: Self-Care for Breast Cancer Survivors during Covid-19 PART 2: Connecting with Others and Ourselves

Self-Care for Breast Cancer Survivors during Covid-19 PART 1: Being Active and Eating Well

Black woman eating salad

Anyone who has ever been diagnosed with cancer has had their lives changed and may have needed new ways to cope . The Covid-19 pandemic is also changing lives. Many of us dealt with wildfire smoke in the summer and the shorter winter days can be another challenge. Breast cancer survivors on the Pathways Study Community Advisory Board (CAB) decided that understanding our risk of Covid-19 and taking care of ourselves are important and timely topics for us to address.

Read more: Self-Care for Breast Cancer Survivors during Covid-19 PART 1: Being Active and Eating Well

What I Learned During My Internship with Zero Breast Cancer by Mechiel Taylor

MPH student and ZBC intern Mechiel Taylor

During my Master’s in Public Health degree Applied Practice Experience internship with ZBC, I worked with program directors Catherine Thomsen and Lianna Hartmour to meet communities where they were at. For three months, we collaborated on steps to effectively deliver health information, which involved identifying the organization’s target audience and determining a course on how best to meet the needs of community members in Alameda, Contra Costa, San Francisco, and Marin counties.

Read more: What I Learned During My Internship with Zero Breast Cancer by Mechiel Taylor

Advancing Health Equity in Breast Cancer: Zero Breast Cancer's 25th Year Webinar Series

Zero Breast Cancer's 25th Anniversary Speaker Series: Advancing Health Equity in Breast Cancer

In honor of our 25th anniversary, Zero Breast Cancer is proud to present a series of webinars featuring researchers and community members that we have worked with in our mission to reduce the risk of breast cancer and disease recurrence, and to improve health and wellness for all. Since our early days of trying to figure out what causes breast cancer, ZBC has focused on those of us with higher risk and fewer resources. Please join us to look at what we can do together to reduce the risk of breast cancer through social and environmental justice.

Read more: Advancing Health Equity in Breast Cancer: Zero Breast Cancer's 25th Year Webinar Series

ZBC's 2020 Impact

Landscape Impact 2020 logo

Your Support Makes Zero Breast Cancer More Relevant Than Ever!

2020 has been a challenging and difficult year for the world, with the pandemic bringing new health disparities and racial justice protests highlighting those that have existed for so long. ZBC continues to focus on reaching underserved communities. With your support, we have been able to build on our well-established practices and quickly pivot to work in this new environment.

Read more: ZBC's 2020 Impact