October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and while it seems the focus on breast cancer has waned a bit this year, here at Erase Disease we feel it’s crucial to keep focusing on how detrimental not only breast cancer can be for families, but how devastating breast cancer and heart disease can be for families.

It’s not often talked about, but breast cancer and high blood pressure go hand-in-hand. It seems logical, when you stop to think about how much stress a breast cancer body undergoes, to assume that fighting breast cancer would increase blood pressure.

But there are many other links between breast cancer and heart disease that are worth taking a look at…

  •  Breast cancer occurred 2.5 times more frequently in post-menopausal women who had been taking calcium-channel blockers for high blood pressure for 10 or more years, according to new research from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle. The study was published today in JAMA Internal Medicine.
  • It may seem like the ultimate insult, but having survived breast cancer can put you at higher risk of additional health problems later in life. The National Cancer Institute reports that the average five-year survival rate for breast cancer is now about 90 percent, thanks to advanced treatment protocols. However, some patients who’ve had radiation treatment and chemotherapy may be at higher risk of developing cardiovascular disease in what’s called a late side effect of treatment for breast cancer. This means that the heart problem may not surface for months or years after the conclusion of treatment.
  • According to a report in the journal EJC Supplements, an open access companion journal to the European Journal of Cancer, cardiovascular disease is already the leading cause of death “accounting for 30 to 50 percent of all deaths in most developed countries. Because of this high background rate, even a minor increase in risk of CVD [resulting from cancer treatment] will have an important impact on morbidity and mortality.”
  • High blood pressure can be a common side effect of cancer treatment, particularly chemotherapy and targeted therapies. Dr. Sussman notes, “Some chemotherapy agents are worse offenders than others, such as angiogenesis inhibitors, alkylating agents and immunosuppressant drugs after stem cell transplantation.” Additionally, some hormone therapies (e.g., Arimidex®, Aromasin®) can cause high blood pressure.

If you are living with breast cancer, fighting breast cancer, or are a survivor of breast cancer, it’s imperative that you speak to your doctor about heart disease and blood pressure…

L-Arginine Supplements

Arginine has been clinically proven to increase vasodilation, meaning L-Arginine can increase the widening of your arteries. As a precursor to Nitric Oxide, L-Arginine is a natural alternative to many prescription medications. If you have prehypertension, or high blood pressure, consider L-Arginine daily as a natural source of rejuvenating goodness for your body.