My Cancer Journey: Conventional or Alternative Treatment?

I had two important appointments following my surgery: one with an oncologist and one with a naturopath. Both gave me polar opposite advice. How was I to choose which path to take? Would I choose conventional or alternative medicine to treat my breast cancer?

Conventional Medicine: Oncologist #2

I had previously met with an oncologist just prior to my surgery who recommended I consider chemotherapy as my cancer had spread to the lymph nodes. She also recommended the standard of care following chemotherapy and surgery, which is radiation and a pharmaceutical hormone suppressant which I would be expected to take for 5 years. I mentioned in the previous post that I did not feel comfortable with this oncologist, not because of her suggestions but because of her “bedside manner” and the sensed lack of respect for my viewpoint on things (not even cancer related). So after firing her I spent time seeking recommendations for a new oncologist. I read every bio and review on all of my cancer center’s oncologists. I finally found one who seemed to be someone who would potentially respect my desire for information and to support me in my decisions whatever that would be. I booked an appointment for the beginning of August.

Alternative Medicine: Naturopath

I pursued the natural route by booking an appointment with a naturopath. I had considered working with a naturopath a few years ago when struggling with depression and anxiety, and gut issues. I knew that they would be able to help me get to the root causes of whatever was causing my issues and guide me in healing. What held me back was the money. Naturopaths, as well as most functional medicine doctors and any natural therapies, are out of pocket and not covered by insurance. I knew it would be several thousand dollars to pursue this course of action and I just couldn’t spend the money on myself. This time I had no excuse to not spend the money. My health was at stake. So I booked my appointment for the middle of July. 

This naturopath had experience working with clients with breast cancer so I was excited to see what she could offer. She informed me that she could not “treat” my cancer but that she would rather help me to figure out what was going on inside my body and provide a treatment plan for healing. She would also be able to give me suggestions in regards to the breast cancer. The first step would be testing. After she had my full history and a clear understanding of all of my symptoms, both physical and mental, she ordered the appropriate tests. We did full panel blood work as well as a GI Map and the DUTCH test for hormones.

Both Docs in the Same Day


Funny enough I had my follow-up with the naturopath the same day as my first appointment with oncologist #2. Talk about information overload! It was definitely a lot to process but most of it was very exciting and helped me feel more confident in my decision making process.

The naturopath provided me the test results and a treatment plan that would take 4-6 months. She explained what the tests showed and was able to pinpoint at least three major areas of concern: my hormones, inflammation, and a weak immune system.

The GI Map tested the bacterial pathogens, the parasitic pathogens and the viral pathogens in my GI system. The overgrowth of specific negative bacteria that showed causes inflammation, bloating and diarrhea. The test also revealed that my digestion and immune response were not functioning properly. I was also borderline to having leaky gut.

The DUTCH test revealed what was going on with my hormones. This was very important as my breast cancer was hormone driven. It showed that I was not metabolizing estrogen properly (ding-ding), my total DHEA production was elevated (which can cause oily skin, sleep problems, mood disturbances: ding-ding), and my DHEA-S was low (inflammation is causing the lack of sulfating of DHEA-S). It also showed that I had too much stress! The adrenal gland produces DHEA and Cortisol. While my cortisol was in the optimal range, my DHEA was too high. What was interesting though was that my cortisol levels were high at waking time when typically one should wake rested and then cortisol should spike in the first two hours. This meant a better sleep protocol was needed. All of these issues with hormones definitely needed to be addressed not only for my general health but for my mental health, which I have struggled with most of my life, and for healing my cancer, which is hormone driven.

What amazed me is that the naturopath was not suggesting I start taking all of these synthetic pharmaceutical drugs, which would most likely cause side effects requiring additional meds. What she proposed with lifestyle change (think exercise, sleep, stress reduction), proper and specific nutrition, and some supplementation of plant based supplements (herbs and spices). Basically everything God has provided for us and found in nature.


The oncologist was super nice, had a wonderful bedside manner, and was completely thorough in providing information. She actually sat with us for an hour and a half! She explained why chemotherapy was recommended as well as radiation and the hormone suppressing drug. She provided paperwork on all of the drugs suggested per my request. She answered all of my questions including, “what if I choose not to do any of these treatments?”. She said she would still be there for me to support me 100%. She said I could take time to read over the material and make my decision and send her a message with my decision.

Fairly quickly I knew in my spirit that I wouldn’t be pursuing the conventional treatments. I messaged my decision to the oncologist and scheduled a follow-up visit for November. A few months later I messaged her asking her to order some blood tests so I can assess what was going on in my body. I was curious if I had any circulating tumor cells in my blood and what my hormones levels were. She refused, saying it was unnecessary. I politely explained why they were important to me. She said she was uncomfortable ordering them. Um, so even though she said she would be there for me 100%, now she is too uncomfortable to order some simple blood tests for me???

Second oncologist fired.

Natural Healing Treatment Plan

To lay out my natural healing treatment plan I would point to these seven things:

  • Taking control of my health and making better choices
  • Radical change in nutrition and addition of specific supplements
  • Exercise, movement, and daily time in nature
  • Quality sleep
  • Reducing stress and negativity, increasing gratitude and positivity
  • Removing toxins from my home and environment
  • Seeking God daily for wisdom, guidance, peace, joy, and trusting Him for healing

I believe that God created our bodies to heal. I have learned that cancer cells are not foreign objects that have invaded our bodies but rather our own cells that have been damaged and gone “rogue”. As Chris Wark says, “If your body can make it your body can heal it”. Our bodies were designed to handle viruses and toxins and disease, if they are given the right support. If we put the correct nutrition in, the food that God provided for us, and avoid as many harmful or toxic things, then our body can keep us healthy. Our immune system is an amazing thing! We just need to support it. That means eating the food God provided, not ingesting GMOS, pesticides, living on a diet of fried and processed foods, or synthetic ingredients made in a lab. If we use natural ingredients in our homes and on our body, rather than synthetic ingredients that are harmful to the body. If we move our bodies daily to support our lymphatic system to deal with flushing out any toxins. If we make sleep a priority and give our bodies ample time to rest and heal. If we keep our stress levels down and take time to rest and reflect and spend time with our family and friends. If we focus on gratitude and positivity rather than watching the negative news and hanging out with negative people. If we do these things, we support our body to function as God designed it. Our lymphatic system and immune system will take care of the inflammation, the cancer cells, the autoimmune disorders. Our body can heal. Our body is constantly making new cells each day and flushing out the bad ones. However, we have to support it by making good choices.

Natural or Conventional Treatment Plan?

When the oncologist offered me her treatment plan, one that would destroy my immune system, put highly toxic unnatural chemicals into my body, radiate or burn parts of my body, and then give me a synthetic drug to suppress my hormones which God created in me for a purpose…I knew I could not accept that plan. I have read much on the negative effects of chemo and radiation and seen the recurrence rates for most people who do them. I have read about how the conventional treatments wreak havoc on peoples bodies and lives and make them miserable. I have seen the research that shows that these treatments only target the few cancer cells that they know about and do nothing for the cancer stem cells that are left floating in the body only to come back with a vengeance later on.

I have also heard the numerous testimonies of the people who have supported their bodies in the healing process and healed their cancer naturally. I have read the books and seen the research. I have learned which herbs and spices, which foods created by God, have been shown to kills cancer cells. I have learned which foods support the immune system and reduce inflammation and balance hormones. I have heard what lifestyle changes are important in supporting the healing journey.

I had weighed the options. I had prayed to God for wisdom and guidance. And I trusted my intuition. I made a choice that I was very comfortable with. I chose to give my body a chance to heal. I chose to begin making conscious decisions each day about what I did, what I ate, and how I lived.

Of course I had doubts here and there. Its not easy going against the grain and doing something so “unconventional”. But I believed it was what I was supposed to do and I am so grateful for my wonderful husband, my friends and family who supported me in my decision.

It wasn’t an easy thing to do…to drastically change my whole way of living. But it was easy to make the decision and stick with it. I truly believed in the power of Jesus to heal me, in the design of the body to heal and get better, and in the lessons I learned from other people who have healed.

I have read, studied, and learned as much as I can about nutrition and healing. I have listened to many stories and podcasts from people who have healed and doctors who are helping people to get well. I have surrounded myself with faith believing friends and family who pray for me and keep me going. I have been doing the hard work in counseling to change my toxic behaviors and learn to live a more peaceful life. I have found a group of other women who are healing naturally and meet regularly with them. I have sought God like never before and am truly amazed at how He has taken this awful thing, “cancer”, and used it for good to make me more the woman He wants me to be. I am so grateful for the peace and joy I have found in Him. I am grateful for this healing journey that I have been on because I am blessed and better than I was before I was diagnosed.

In case you missed the first few parts of my cancer healing journey, you can read them here:

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