"In the New England Journal of Medicine, July 22, 2005 issue, there was a lead article showing that benign breast changes in women are associated with Breast Cancer . Benign breast changes is a new term for what we have called fibrocystic breast disease (FBD) in the past. FBD is currently affecting about 84 percent of the female population in North America.2 FBD is a misnomer because the medical problem is not a disease in the strictest sense. It is more a problem of cyclic breast pain that is associated with the menstrual cycle. In some patients the breast pain is seen daily, regardless of their menstrual cycle. Tissue biopsy for these benign breast changes that do grow larger are called proliferative lesions and if they do not grow they are called non-proliferative lesions.
Non-proliferative lesions (non-growers) can include cyst of the breast, radial scars, apocrine cells which generally make up sweat glands—the breasts are classified as a modified sweat gland—fibroadenoma, and hyperplastic cells that are normal in appearance under the microscope but are more numerous than usual. Proliferative lesions with normal cells are called sclerosing adenosis, which have a slightly increased risk (1.5 to 2 times). There are proliferative lesions with abnormal or atypical cells that are called hyperplasia—high degree with a moderate increased risk of breast cancer of (4 to 5 times), lobular neoplasia and intraductal papilloma. As a rule in medicine, the more abnormal cells look under the microscope, i.e., the more atypical the cells look, the higher the risk of cancer being present."
***Iodine triggers apoptosis (programmed death of cells) in normal cells and abnormal cells...***
"Fibrocystic disease of the breast consists of small or large, sometimes painful lumps in women’s breasts. It varies in the way it shows—not only in different women, but also because it changes from month to month in the same women. Medical doctors generally believe that fibrocystic disease results from the excess number of cells that grow in the breast during the menstrual cycle from the hormonal stimulation. Since the number of cells increases in the breast during the cycle, some of the cells have to be removed to restore the normal state each month. Iodine is the trigger mechanism that causes excess cells to disappear to complete this normal process of cell death. Without enough iodine, the extra cells that develop during the menstrual cycle due to the hormonal stimulation do not resolve back to the normal breast architecture. These leftover cells build up over repeated cycles and cause the lumps, soreness, and larger lesions of fibrocystic disease. However, while about 90 percent of North American women have fibrocystic disease, about 40 percent of these women experience no symptoms. Their breasts may be normal to examination, but the disease may be only microscopically detectable with a biopsy. Enough iodine enables the excess cells to be cleared out, and the breast can return to its normal resting state as the fibrocystic disease slowly disappears from the breast."
*** Fibrocystic breast disease is repeatedly referred to as being "common". Common? Yes! Normal? No! There is a lot of evidence to suggest that fibrocystic breast changes may be a precursor to cancer, and that excess estrogen may be involved(estrogen dominance). Estrogen inhibits thyroid action in the cells, interfering with the binding of thyroid to its receptor. Here's some info on additional nutritional support that we can use in our quest for happy boobs:)***
Additional Support Several other nutrients/hormones are also important to breast health and can be used in conjunction with Iodoral.), DIM (diindolylmethane the nutrient derived from cruciferous vegetables, for example, is influential in helping the body metabolize estrogen. DIM has been shown to change the way estrogen is metabolized. Metabolism of the natural estrogen estradiol occurs via one of two pathways. The tumor enhancer metabolic pathway, 16 alpha-hydroxylation, is elevated in patients with breast and endometrial cancer and in those at increased risk of such cancers. This increased 16 alpha-hydroxylation activity has been shown to precede clinical evidence of cancer, and it represents a significant risk factor for developing estrogen-dependent tumors.
Conversely, when estrogen veers away from the 16-alpha pathway and takes another route out of the body, the incidence of cancer decreases. This alternate route, which acts as a tumor suppressor metabolic pathway, is called 2-hydroxylation, a process that transforms estrogen into 2-hydroxyestrone (20HEI), an antiestrogen. Healthy individuals not at risk for breast or endometrial cancer bypass the 16-alpha route and instead metabolize estrogen through this preferable pathway. DIM signals the body to metabolize estrogen via the tumor suppressor 2-hydroxylation pathway.
In addition to this more well known estrogen-related mechanism of action of DIM, recent research also indicates that DIM can prevent angiogenesis, the process by which new blood vessels develop. Cancer cells use the development of new blood vessels to spread throughout the body. In mice, DIM inhibited angiogenesis by up to 76 percent.6 In addition, in mice implanted with human breast cancer cells, tumor growth was inhibited by 64 percent in animals treated with DIM.6
Another means of supporting breast health is by using natural progesterone cream. A syndrome known as Estrogen Dominance is prevalent in women, especially postmenopausal women. According to progesterone researcher Dr. John Lee, estrogen unopposed by progesterone results in a number of adverse effects including painful breasts, fibrocystic breast disease, and breast cancer.
Estrogen dominance usually occurs at menopause, when progesterone production falls to approximately 1 percent of its pre-menopausal level. At this time, the production of estrogen falls to about 50 percent of its pre-menopausal levels. This dramatically alters the estrogen: progesterone ratio, causing estrogen to become toxic without progesterone to oppose it. As a result, the risks for breast and uterine cancer and fibrocystic breast disease increase.7 Therefore, progesterone also has a crucial role to play in maintaining breast health.
Vitamin D is another breast-supportive nutrient. Women who have mutations in their vitamin D receptor gene are nearly twice as likely to develop breast cancer compared to women who do not have the mutation. The vitamin D receptor gene controls the action of vitamin D in the body. Scientists have found that Caucasian women with certain versions of this gene not only have an increased risk of breast cancer but also may suffer from a more aggressive form of the disease if it spreads. The results suggest that vitamin D does indeed play a part in protecting the body against breast cancer, as past studies indicate.