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April 2, 2015 | 3 minute read

A Breast Cancer Survivor’s Powerful Story

The year 2009 proved to be a difficult one for Lisa Hecht.  Not only did she undergo breast cancer radiation treatments, her ex-husband died in an accident – leaving her the sole parent to their two daughters. Here, she shares her touching story of how she’s survived cancer and is living a healthier, better life for her daughters.

Three weeks after my breast cancer radiation treatments ended in 2009, my ex-husband was hit by a bus while riding his bike and died. We have two daughters together, and losing him really brought home to me just how important my health was: I was now the sole parent. I was the only one my daughters had left. And I was committed to getting healthy and making sure I would be here for them for a long time. 

For me, following AICR’s recommendations wasn’t just a path to healthier living; it was and continues to be a path to better living.

Good information is the most valuable resource to a person who’s facing cancer, and AICR provided me with clear, practical, and trustworthy recommendations for how to reduce my cancer risk. The AICR lifestyle recommendations are scientifically based. Their research is not paid for by some company hoping to profit. It’s untainted research, and it’s presented in a way I can apply to my everyday life. 

Which is exactly what I did, starting with physical fitness. I began exercising at least 30 minutes a day. First I started to walk the hills near my home. Then I was running.  Then I committed to running a 5K each month. By the fourth year after my surgery, I had run two half-marathons.

I have followed AICR’s nutrition recommendations for decades to improve the health of my whole family. I wanted my daughters to eat better, so I started a garden in our backyard, which grew to over a thousand square feet. Our daughters have grown up transplanting veggie starts, pulling onions and potatoes out of the ground, picking tomatoes, beans and greens for dinner, and gathering fruit from our trees and berry bushes.

Today, I’ve lost twenty pounds, I’ve been cancer-free nearly six years, and I’ve never felt better. I’m a vegetable maniac. I bike or walk whenever I can. For me, following AICR’s recommendations wasn’t just a path to healthier living; it was and continues to be a path to better living. While there are no guarantees for any of us, I now feel confident that I’ll be here to watch my daughters pursue their dreams as healthy, beautiful women. I have AICR to thank for that.

Honor a loved one this spring and support cancer research that helps individuals live healthier lives.

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