Preventing cancer workshop looks at healthy solutions

Kate Harrison Whiteside
By Kate Harrison Whiteside
October 9th, 2014

Most cancer stories focus on the fight to survive the disease. But two Rossland women want people to start fighting now to prevent the diagnosis. Diana Daghofer, pubic health specialist, and Amber Watson, herbalist and wild-crafter, are teaming up to deliver Preventing Cancer with herbs and more workshop through the Monashee Institute on Saturday, October 25, followed by a tour of organic gardens on Sunday in Rossland.

Daghofer, who was diagnosed with breast cancer a few years ago, began to question the information she was getting. She’d followed the recommended healthy lifestyle and still got cancer. It was around the time CBC presenter Wendy Mesley’s ‘Chasing the Cancer Answer’ documentary aired.

“It made me think the information I was getting from the medical field was not going far enough,” said Daghofer. “I was going through treatment and trying to find organizations who dealt with cancer prevention. The information I found was very limited.”

“I’ve always had a strong belief in our own prevention powers.”

Daghofer’s search lead her to Prevent Cancer Now, which she co-chaired for a number of years, and to the conclusion there is not enough research on environmental causes of cancer. With research finding that about 50% of cancers are lifestyle related and 10% hereditary, leaves 40% unexplained.

“There are a range of reasons environmental causes are highly under-researched,” said Daghofer, who began her own personal research project to find answers.

She will discuss prevention options in 12 topic areas, such as food growing, purchasing and preparing, and the Tainted 22 list of fruits and vegetables to avoid.

Daghofer and Watson will also look at menu planning and cooking.

Watson advises people interested in learning more to educate themselves on what they put into their body and consult with a health care provider or alternative to find which herbs will be a good fit. 

“I do not know if herbs alone can prevent cancer,” said Watson, “but, I do know their therapeutic benefits are plentiful. I enjoy connecting people with plants, learning and sharing the empirical knowledge.”

“I grow herbs in my garden and process them into teas, salves and tinctures,” said Watson. “I also wild craft indigenous plants following to the best of my ability the protocols set out by the S’inixt Nation. And, I educate my community on ethical wild crafting.”

“I would suggest getting to know one herb at a time and using it in as many different ways as you can over the four seasons,” said Watson. “The best way I enjoy using herbs is drinking nutritive herbal teas.”

Watson will be opening her doors to the organics tour on Sunday October 26th.

More information on monasheeinstitute.org/courses

Categories: Health

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