Don’t go looking for cancer. Cut toxins by taking care of your breasts.

One problem with breast self-exams might be in our reason for doing them—we’re looking for a lump that could mean we have cancer that could mean we are going to die. Soon. Wouldn’t it be better if we began taking care of our breasts using a life-affirming, non-threatening method that improves our connection to our bodies and allows us to notice changes along the way?

Sat Dharam Kaur, ND, offers such an option in her excellent book, The Complete Natural Medicine Guide to Breast Cancer. Kaur, director of The Healthy Breast Program in Toronto—you can order her book through them— says one key to avoiding cancer is to maintain proper circulation in our lymphatic system.

And we can do that through a breast massage, including the neck and armpits. This improves our lymph movement, Kaur says, and removes toxins from our bodies. Plus, we stop looking for lumps, which means we stop focusing on cancer. Instead, we focus on caring for ourselves.

Here’s how Kaur explains the process an excerpt from and article in New Living Magazine in 2004.

1) Place your hands on either side of your neck and gently move the skin back and down towards your collarbone. Do this 15 times. 2) Place the palm of your hand under your underarm and gently pump your armpit. The movement is slightly up toward your shoulder and in towards your body. Do this 15 times. 3) With soft hands, use the flat surface of three or four fingers to make small semi circles around the outer part of your breasts working inward until you reach the areola. Apply as much pressure as you would to stroke a young kitten. 4) With your hands cupped around your breast, gently pull your breast away from the chest wall and move your breasts in a circular or up and down movement. 5) If you do find a lump, have it checked out. Eighty percent of all breast lumps are benign, but it is important to bring any lump to your health care professional’s attention.

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