In running Sobersistas I suppose it’s inevitable that some conversations we have might raise the eyebrows a little. This week’s discussion with my friend Sarah about nipple hair was definitely one of them! Thank you to Sarah at Simple Happy Life for giving me permission to share.
Regardless of whether you pluck, shave or bleach them, rest assured that neither Sarah nor I could find any evidence of a link to cancer through nipple hair plucking.
As far as I have been able to tell, just about everything we eat, drink, breathe in, wear, touch, look at or have, has the potential to cause cancer. Everything. Every day there is a new threat, a new thing to discard, a new thing to give up or avoid. I can’t see how it would ever be possible to live a stress-free life if you tried to avoid all of the cancer risks that present themselves to you on a daily basis.
However, we all try don’t we? To some degree or another, these cancer-causing time bombs seep our way into our psyche and we change our habits, sometimes as a conscious choice and sometimes without noticing.
It’s very noticeable today that many people no longer smoke and it is now often seen as a anti-social habit. The government campaigns have been successful and you can’t buy a packet of cigarettes without seeing the cancer risks spelt out on every pack.
The Risks of Drinking Alcohol
And yet, many drink alcohol, often to excess and never give a single thought to the risks they are putting themselves at. Risks such as:
- Alcohol is one of the most well-established causes of cancer
- Alcohol increases the risk of mouth, upper throat, voice box, and food pipe cancers.
- Breast cancer risk is increased with alcohol.
- Liver cancer risk is increased with alcohol.
- Bowel cancer risk is increased with alcohol.
- All types of alcohol increase cancer risks.
Did you know any of this? It wasn’t until I was in the midst of trying to give up drinking alcohol and started doing some research that I realised the risks I had been taking with my health. I had no idea. To say I was horrified was 2017’s understatement of the year. I later wondered why I had no idea but it slowly dawned on me that it’s rarely in the media. We’ve read all the stories about alcoholism, about how much weight it puts on us, about the negative social aspects of binge drinking…..but do we all know about the cancer risk?
Maybe it was just me that didn’t really know about that aspect of drinking, but I would imagine that you might not know either. Or maybe, I was just burying my head in the sand, and maybe you are too.
Even if plucking your nipple hair did increase your cancer risk, I would imagine it would be a pretty small risk because if it were true we would have information coming out of our social media feeds at speed.
So why aren’t the links to cancer and drinking alcohol being poured into our consciousness on a daily basis? Let’s make a guess at big money, big business and leave it there.
Your Relationship With Alcohol
What I truly care about is you and your relationship with alcohol and the risks you are taking with your health. Alcohol has become so normalised in our society that most people don’t see it as a bad thing. People have told me; “it helps me relax”, “I like it”, “it helps me in social situations”, “I don’t want to be sober when my friends are drinking” but I never hear “I really need to stop drinking because I read somewhere that drinking alcohol increases your risk of getting cancer.”
Isn’t It Time To Take Control?
Isn’t it time to take control of your health, your life? Isn’t it time to acknowledge that 3 am whisper that tells you that you really should give it up? To stop wasting your weekends with hangovers? To see how wonderful your life might be without it? To find the energy and enthusiasm to live your best life? To show the people you love that you are taking care of yourself, for yourself, as well as them?
I know these are hard questions and that the answers are often ones you don’t want to hear.
Try and experiment…look at yourself in the mirror. What you do see? Puffy, bloated, dull skin? Dull, reddened eyes? A beer belly? Lank hair? Clothes that don’t quite fit?
Someone worthy of love? Someone worthy of a full, blessed life, filled with health and vitality? Someone who is enough?
Whatever your answers are, please don’t fall into the trap of deluding yourself that the amount you drink is okay, that it’s not doing you too much harm.
Of course, you are free to continue to drink if you really don’t want to give it up, but if I’m right you’re at the bottom of this blog because something resonated, something spoke to you.
Please listen. Please inform yourself. And do the work. Do what it takes to be clear about the effect alcohol is having on you. And pluck your nipple hair if you want. It’s fine.
You are enough. You are loved. You are our sista. See you soon.