Alternative health professionals have said for decades that the mind and the immune system are linked and that some disease symptoms manifest from our emotions. For instance, there have been cases where a perfectly healthy person who is not elderly, dies suddenly after the death of their spouse and there is an absence of any medical indication as to why. Some might say that that person literally died of a broken heart.
Another example is that of author Louise Hay, who wrote the book “You Can Heal Your Life.” She developed vaginal cancer after being raped as a teenager, a condition she thought was brought on by her feelings of revulsion at what had happened to her. Her doctors informed her that surgery was the only option, but after weeks of positive thinking and meditations, she cured herself of all traces of vaginal cancer.
This mind/body connection is dismissed out of hand by many in the medical professional and most doctors struggle with a holistic approach to medicine, treating only the specific symptoms of each condition rather than seeing the whole person and all of her ailments as being connected.
Now, scientists at Yale University have discovered that stress induces signals that tell cells in the body to turn into tumors and we have a scientific explanation for the mind/body phenomenon.
Two genes named RAS and scribble are thought to be responsible for up to 30 percent of cancers when the scribble gene is mutated. Previously, researchers assumed that both genes would have to be present in the same cells for cancer to occur. Now they have found that this isn't the case. A cell with only RAS present can develop into cancer if helped by the scribble gene of a nearby defective cell.
"The bad news is that it is much easier for a tissue to accumulate mutations in different cells than in the same cell," said Tian, who is a researcher with the Yale Cancer Center and the Fudan-Yale Center for Biomedical Research at Fudan University in China.
They also found that a signaling process called JNK was responsible for triggering cancer. This signaling process was activated by stress, either environmentally, emotionally or physically.