Ananda Lewis is talking about stage 3 breast cancer.
The former MTV veejay and talk show host, 47, revealed her battle with the deadly disease on Instagram Thursday.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the former host of BET’s “Teen Summit” and her own nationally syndicated chatfest opened up about battling the illness for two years now, hoping her story will be a cautionary one for all women.
“This is tough for me to share, but if just ONE woman decides to get her mammogram after watching this, what I’m going through will be worth it,” she captioned the six-minute clip, encouraging followers be tested.
Lewis opened her video message apologizing to loved ones who might be offended that she was sharing her diagnosis publicly first.
“For a really long time, I have refused mammograms, and that was a mistake,” the 47-year-old Los Angeles native confessed. “I watched my mom get mammograms for almost 30 years almost, and at the end of that, she had breast cancer, and I said, ‘Huh. Radiation exposure for years equals breast cancer. Yeah, I’m going to pass. Thanks anyway.’”
Lewis stands by her beliefs that too much radiation can cause cancer but said she wants women to understand that mammograms are still one of the most powerful tools they can have in early detection.
She said she wishes she’d gotten one sooner because due to the delay, her body was subjected to more radiation.
“If I had done the mammograms from the time they were recommended, when I turned 40, they would have caught the tumor in my breast years before I caught it through my own breast exam — self exam — and thermography,” the Howard University alum said. “And they would have caught it at a place where it was more manageable. Where the treatment of it would have been a little easier. It’s never easier, but I use that word in comparison to what I’m going through now. Instead, what I’m dealing with is stage 3 breast cancer that is in my lymphs. I need you to get your mammograms.”
The mother of a 9-year-old son also shared that she went the alternative treatment route after her diagnosis.
“I have been doing 1,000 percent alternative and natural protocols and treatments and I have helped this particular condition not spread like wildfire through my body,” Lewis said as she fought back tears. “That’s good news, but it’s not gone, and I still have a lot of work to do. And, I wish I could go back.”
The former co-host of “The Insider” is optimistic about the future and is not giving up.
“I have a nine-year-old I need to be here for,” Lewis said. “I have no intention on leaving him. I don’t want to leave any of my kids. I don’t want to leave my friends or my family. Hell, I don’t want to leave myself. I like being here. So, listen, this is not how this was supposed to go but I’m just going to keep it real with you like I always do.”
“For me it was important to come to you and admit where I went wrong with this, because it could help you or someone you know,” she concluded. “This is an ongoing journey for me.”
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