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Health Articles 

Mushrooms for breast cancer?

October 11th, 2019

Yes! Give a gift of hope and healing by supporting Reach for Recovery’s Ditto Project

An external breast prosthesis may be the best option a woman has if she cannot afford reconstructive surgery. And the reality is that many breast cancer patients in SouthbAfrica cannot even afford a bra, let alone a breast prosthesis So come on South Africa, here’s your chance to help breast cancer survivors in financial need, regain their confidence and self-esteem.

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For the entire month of October, pink punnets will ‘mushroom’ onto Pick n Pay’s fresh produce shelves nationally. R1 from each punnet of 250g whole white button mushrooms, 250g sliced white button mushrooms, the 250g budget line and the 400g whole white mushroom punnets sold, will be donated to Reach for Recovery’s Ditto project. A remarkable initiative that provides silicone prostheses to women who, after breast cancer followed by a mastectomy, cannot afford to purchase a prosthesis even less so undergo reconstructive surgery.

Reach for Recovery’s Management Board Chairperson, Stephné Jacobs is passionate about the positive impact of the Power of Pink fundraising campaign on the success achieved by Reach for Recovery’s Ditto Project. She believes that women in low-income categories, diagnosed with breast cancer, deserve the same access to support services as anyone else as these could be life-saving, literally and figuratively. “

No one can understand the self- esteem, financial and family challenges these breast cancer survivors face unless they have walked a mile in their shoes. Our who are breast cancer survivors themselves and volunteers, understand that journey all too well and through the Power of Pink they have the capacity to assist these women in reshaping their lives.”

The South African Mushroom Farmers’ Association (SAMFA) and Pick ‘n Pay, Power of Pink campaign partners since its inception in 2010, have been tireless in their support of breast cancer survivors who find themselves in an even more difficult financial situation after a mastectomy. Over the last 9 years over R4m has been raised enabling the campaign to change the lives of more than 6000 women.”

To celebrate the 10 th year of the Power of pink campaign, Pick n Pay will be donating 1400 mastectomy bras for prosthesis recipients. The generosity of our partners and the support of all South Africans make this campaign possible. We are therefore asking everyone to be on the alert for colourful pink punnets of mushrooms in the veggie aisle of your local Pick n Pay during October. Be sure to pop a punnet or two into your trolley. It’s a lovely healthy way of giving a gift of hope and healing.


Mushrooms are thought to be particularly effective against breast and other hormone-related cancers because they inhibit an enzyme called aromatase, which produces oestrogen. Several types of mushrooms including white buttons and portobello varieties, have indicated strong anti-aromatase activity.

So, can tossing some sliced mushrooms onto your salad help reduce your risk of breast cancer? “Yes,” says City of Hope’s Shiuan Chen, Ph.D. and Chair of the Department of Cancer Biology at City of Hope's Beckman Research Institute. “Mushrooms contain compounds that prevent estrogen levels from getting too high. Since estrogen is a factor in 70 percent of all breast cancer cases, maintaining healthy levels of the hormone makes sense as a preventative measure.”


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‘Tis the season for some sneezing, but is it allergies or a cold?

Updated October 11th, 2019

You’re plagued with a sniffle and a throat tickle, but how do you know if it’s mere allergies or something more? Here’s how.  Spring is here and with it comes the highs and lows of seasonal allergies and ailments. But, how do you know if it’s allergies or something a little more serious like a cold?…

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Here are the tell-tale signs to keep an eye out for each and how they are similar or different, so you are prepared and treating your symptoms correctly.

What are the tell-tale signs for allergies?

When it comes to allergies, the tell-tale signs usually comprise of:

  • Itchy, watery eyes
  • Flare ups on itchy dermal conditions like eczema or hives
  • Itchy nose, throat or palate – aka your sinus passages
  • Tightened airways

What are the tell-tale signs for colds?

When it comes to colds, while you can experience some similar symptoms to allergies, some key symptoms that make it stand out include:

  • Tender, sore or irritated throat
  • Swollen glands
  • Headaches
  • Lethargy
  • Feeling chilly
  • Body aches

Things to look out for to help you determine which one you’re dealing with:

According to MedicalNewsToday, some ways to help you determine which are which include the following factors:

  1. Starting time – With colds, symptoms appear gradually and more slowly – over a day or two, whereas allergies can spike as soon as you are in close proximity to the irritant.
  1. When it ends – For colds, symptoms begin to taper off after a week or two (if untreated), while allergies will last as long as you’re still exposed to the irritant triggering it.
  1. Time of year – It’s important to determine when your symptoms occur in the year. Seasonal allergies tend to arise around the same time each year – or during the main seasonal shifts – like spring, whereas a cold can take place at any time if you’re susceptible to the viral germs causing it.

Treat yourself

Have you identified what you have? Ready to treat it?

Here are some useful ways to treat your allergies and your colds:


  • Decongestant nasal sprays or saline irrigations to flush out debris and irritants from your airways, like Sinutab
  • Over-the-counter antihistamine medications and cough syrups, like Benylin that includes Diphenhydramine which carries antihistamine properties, can help soothe an itchy throat and post-nasal drip
  • Steaming out your airways with hot water mixed with menthol
  • Keeping your home clean and steering clear of the irritant – like flowers if you have a pollen allergy or dust etc.
  • Drinking water to soothe a scratchy throat


  • Stay hydrated – drink plenty of water to keep flushing the toxins out of your system
  • Rest – try not to exert too much of your energy when battling a cold, as this might prolong your healing process
  • Cough medicines to helps soothe a sore throat, like Benylin
  • Gargle saltwater to help clear debris and bacteria from your tender throat
  • Nasal spray solutions, like Sinutab, can help with a runny nose
  • Pain killers can help soothe body aches
  • Keeping warm can also help soothe body aches and beat the cold

These are just some ways that can help you determine what’s keeping you down this season and how you can overcome it.

*Always check with a healthcare professional before taking any medication. 

This post is sponsored by Johnson & Johnson produced by Brandstudio24 for Health24.


Article by:  Saara Mowlana – PARTNER CONTENT

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