What Lizzo (and others) teach us about loving our bodies is that body positivity and self-care aren’t just for your Sunday afternoon to-do list, especially during your breast cancer journey. Learning to love your body today and through changes during treatments is vital to your physical and mental health, your quality of life, and your overall well-being.
Lizzo shares with her fans:
“Loving myself was the result of answering two things: do you want to live? Because this is what you will be for the rest of your life. Or are you just going to have a life of emptiness, hate yourself and hate yourself? And I chose to live, so I had to accept myself. “
This empowerment movement can focus on overcoming body shame and promoting self-esteem while living the battle of breast cancer.
“Breast cancer not only affects our bodies, but it also affects the way we see them,” says Dr. Miguel Pelayo, a Florida medical oncologist specializing in cancer. “It is difficult for some patients to accept the temporary variations that can come with treatment, such as hair loss and weight fluctuations. It is important to promote a positive body image if you are beginning to experience changes from treatments. I make sure to share with my patients that this is a mind and body journey. We are fighting today, for a better tomorrow ”.
Here are some tips from Dr. Peyalo to help you rethink the feelings you have about your body during breast cancer treatment and beyond.
1. Stay focused and positive when finding your support team
It is normal to feel depressed and it is okay. Always communicate any feelings of long-term depression to your medical providers, as they can help provide emotional and physical support throughout the treatment program.
During this time, remember that you are not alone. Feelings of sadness, hopelessness, or fear are extremely common. In fact, 1 in 8 women are diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. Dr. Peyalo emphasized that this diagnosis is not his fault and that breast cancer can occur from a combination of factors, from genetics, hormonal exposure, or lifestyle.
Focus on the positive and know that your medical oncologist can provide information on local support groups and community meetings with other women experiencing the same challenges with their body and image changes. Also know that you can reach out to your friends, family, or a mental health professional on days when you need an extra boost.
2. Show love to your body
Allow yourself to enjoy the simple pleasures in life and don’t forget to thank your body for what it allows you to do today and every day. Even if some days you can do less than others.
You can still love your body while fighting breast cancer. Eating nutritious meals will give your body the nutrients it needs to boost recovery and act as preventive medicine.
Staying active can also have an impact on how you look and feel. It’s important to get moving every day, whether it’s with gentle yoga or just walking around the neighborhood. If you don’t have the energy to leave the house, consider taking out a Lizzo album and dancing in front of the mirror.
“Mirror, mirror on the wall, tell me what you see / Is that, oh my God, it looks heavenly” – ‘excuse me—Lizzo
3. Adopt a healthy self-image
Body image has a lot to do with love – if you are constantly ashamed of how you look or if others judge you, there will never be enough time invested in self-care. Having a positive self image comes in all shapes, sizes, and hair types.
Hair loss side effects are something Dr. Pelayo talks about often with his patients, and it’s not always just about hair loss, but about getting something new.
Did you know that your medical oncologist can prescribe a wig while you undergo treatments? If you are not a fan of wigs, no problem. DigniCap® Systems are also available to reduce the risk of hair loss.
“Because I am my own soul mate, I know how to love myself.” Soulmate — Lizzo
4. Have hope
Embrace the change, you are fighting for tomorrow! You are experiencing all the side effects because the treatments are helping your body fight disease.
With so many medical advances in oncology, treatments and medications are more effective than ever. There’s a great chance that you could be there for that next special event, the birth of a grandchild, or a great night out with the girls.
Embrace your body and everything it does for you. Lizzo teaches us to “go home tonight and look in the mirror and say I love you, you are beautiful and you can do anything.”
About Dr. Miguel Pelayo |https://flcancer.com/staff/miguel-pelayo-md/
Originally from Miami, FL, Dr. Pelayo has lived and studied in Florida for most of his life. During his internship and residency at the University of South Florida / H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, FL, he was consecutively voted Internal Medicine Intern of the Year, Outstanding Resident, and Internal Medicine Resident of the Year. Board certified in Internal Medicine, Hematology, and Medical Oncology, Dr. Pelayo is highly interested in research and has presented several case studies at research symposia for Moffitt Cancer Center and MD Anderson Cancer Center. He is fluent in English and Spanish.