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  • The Information:

    Written by Sydney Ross Singer, a pioneer of the sector of Applied Medical Anthropology, writer, & Director of the Institute for the Research of Culturogenic Illness. Originally revealed at, it’s shared here with permission.

  • Mirror On:

    Is it time to ditch the bra?

In case you are a lady, then there’s necessary info you should know to keep wholesome and avoid illness. This is info that you need to be advised by your physician and different well being professionals, however many of those professionals simply don’t have this info.

The difficulty pertains to the sporting of tight clothes. Research, and common sense, inform us that sporting something tight is dangerous for well being. Tight clothing compresses our delicate physique tissues, impairing the perform of blood vessels, lymphatic vessels, nerves, and more. Analysis exhibits tight neckties, tight pants, girdles, corsets, bras, and different compression garments may cause critical harm.

The aim of the International Bra-Free Research is to assess the modifications a lady experiences once she stops using bras. The research began in 2018 and continues to be recruiting members from around the globe. Members pledge to cease utilizing bras and their progress is followed by way of open and closed-ended questions. The research is ongoing, but we now have seen some superb patterns in the expertise of girls who cease sporting bras. We consider it is extremely essential to share these preliminary findings with the general public right now, hoping to warn as many ladies as attainable concerning the effect of bra utilization on health.

We began our research contemplating the effect of bras on breasts, and anticipated improvement in breast pain, cysts, and decreased cancer incidence in our group of bra-free ladies. What we discovered was that, in addition to the above, we also found that ladies recovered from many other bodily illnesses that appeared utterly unrelated to bra utilization.

We are discovering the various methods tight bras harm well being, together with each a part of the body. As you will notice, bras trigger greater than breast disease.


A lot of style is about altering the body to realize a culturally-defined shape. When tight garments cause illness, the style industry opposes the analysis revealing the disease, and the medical industry gets caught in the middle. Drugs is a business that income from the detection and remedy of disease, and makes cash when individuals are sick, not nicely. This conflict of interest helps perpetuate harmful cultural practices, similar to sporting tight clothes, since drugs, and the culture basically, are influenced extra by industry and money than by well being.

Bras have been proven in quite a few research to contribute to breast most cancers incidence. While the link between breast most cancers and bras has been acknowledged by docs since bras turned common, within the early 20th Century, cultural acceptance1 of the bra and in depth promotion by the style and lingerie industries have eclipsed info that bras pose a big menace to health.

When cultural influences from industry and social practices bias human conduct and cause disease, the resulting illness might be referred to as “culturogenic”. Breast most cancers is usually a culturogenic illness, with a small (lower than 10%) genetic element, and a large cultural-environmental element. These non-genetic causes of breast most cancers embrace publicity to environmental carcinogens and x-rays(together with mammograms), together with direct inhibition of the breast lymphatic system by tight bra usage.

How Bras Cause Breast Most cancers

Impaired lymphatics is central to the etiology of breast most cancers. The lymphatic system is a part of the immune system, and is chargeable for the circulation of interstitial fluid. This fluid develops from the bloodstream, delivering vitamin and oxygen to the cells, along with toxins which are in the bloodstream because of contaminants in our air, water, and meals. The lymphatic system consists of microscopic vessels with one-way valves that result in lymph nodes. Lymph fluid passively passes into lymphatic vessels to be eradicated from the tissue, inspected by the lymph nodes, and returned to the bloodstream.

Waste merchandise from cellular metabolism, together with toxins delivered to the cells from our petrochemically-polluted air, meals, and water, are faraway from the tissues by the lymphatic system. As well as, pathogens and cancer cells are also swept by means of the lymphatic, to the lymph nodes, where an immune response is elicited.

Nevertheless, when the tiny, easily-compressed lymphatic vessels are constricted by tight bras, this fluid channel turns into restricted, inflicting quite a lot of problems. Most girls who put on bras expertise breast ache and cysts because of this lymphatic impairment. In addition, the resulting lymph-stasis and lymph congestion of the tissue leads to decreased toxin elimination, inflicting the progressive toxification of the breasts. The native tissue setting becomes low in oxygen, decreasing the physique’s potential to process free radicals. The resulting accumulation of endogenous and exogenous toxins will increase cancer danger significantly.

Based on our 1991-93 US Bra and Breast Cancer Research, revealed in our e-book, Dressed to Kill: The Link Between Breast Most cancers and Bras, the bra-cancer link is the most important explanation for breast most cancers. This research concluded that bra-free ladies have about the same danger of breast most cancers as males, while the tighter and longer the bra is worn the higher the danger rises, to 125 occasions greater for a 24/7 bra consumer compared to a bra-free lady.

This was the world’s first research that appeared immediately at the bra-cancer link. A 1991 research from Harvard found pre-menopausal bra-free ladies had half the danger of breast cancer in comparison with bra users, but this finding was incidental to the primary focus of the research, which was on breast measurement, handedness, and breast cancer incidence.

Because the launch of Dressed to Kill in 1995, there have been dozens of different bra-cancer studies performed internationally that present a big hyperlink. Nevertheless, this difficulty is considered “controversial” on account of its potential cultural and economic impression, just like resistance to the tobacco-cancer link back within the mid-20th Century. Present opponents of the bra-cancer link embrace thought leaders such as the American Cancer Society2 and Susan G. Komen Foundation3, which have publicly referred to as the link scientifically implausible.

Figures Don’t Lie, however Liars Figure

Critics of the bra-cancer hyperlink confer with a 2014 research that was commissioned by the National Most cancers Institute, which has been denying any risk of a bra-cancer hyperlink because the release of Dressed to Kill. As a result of public acceptance of the link, NCI felt it essential to counter the research displaying a link by funding a research to oppose the hyperlink. This research was accomplished at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Middle, which raises money for breast most cancers research by means of promoting “Bra Dash” events4. The research was achieved on post-menopausal ladies solely, and none of the ladies have been bra-free, so there was no management group. The writer of the research, who is a female graduate scholar who also wore bras, unsurprisingly discovered no bra-cancer hyperlink in her chosen group of bra users.

This single, un-reproduced, flawed research has been used by the ACS and Komen Basis, and others who comply with them, as ultimate proof of no bra-cancer hyperlink. While conflicting research are typical of scientific research, this one research has been thought-about the primary and final word on this challenge by the most cancers “specialists” who deny the bra-cancer hyperlink. This research clearly serves the interests of the cancer detection and remedy industry, as well as the lingerie industry which fears class motion lawsuits for the harms brought on by bras.

However, since that try and cease interest in the bra-cancer hyperlink in 2014, there have been many more recent studies that show the hyperlink. And a current trend5 in breast most cancers analysis is asking about bra usage as a regular query, identical to asking about household history. In truth, a current research from Iran exhibits bra utilization is a much bigger think about inflicting breast cancer than household history.6

Culturally, bra usage has been questioned because of the #MeToo motion that has been difficult sexism and abuse in the office. Many women at the moment are opting for being snug and bra-free at work, as well as in their on a regular basis lives. Women in highschool are objecting to dress codes that require bras. And the overall legal consensus is that ladies at work cannot be pressured to wear sexualizing clothing, together with excessive heels, brief skirts, and bras.7 These tendencies are making it simpler for the tradition to simply accept the truth that bras are inflicting disease.

Perhaps the most important impediment to this probably lifesaving info is the resistance from the medical subject, such as the ACS and others who comply with their lead. We talk about in the 2018, updated, second version of Dressed to Kill why we consider there’s this resistance to this info, as an alternative of a name for additional research. Whatever the purpose, this unscientific, biased opposition to the bra-cancer hyperlink is a public health menace.

It’s to combat this menace to well being that we started the Worldwide Bra-Free Research in 2018. This research, which is free to hitch, is designed to create a cohort of bra-free ladies to be able to see what happens to their breast health over time. Whereas the research accepts ladies who’ve been bra-free for years, most of our members have been bra customers, permitting us to see what modifications occur to their breasts and general health once they stop utilizing bras.

Whereas this research is predicted to assist ladies keep away from breast cancer and different breast illness related to bra utilization, the women in our research may be obtainable for other breast research which require bra-free ladies. One massive flaw in breast most cancers and other breast disease analysis is that bra usage has been ignored as an element. That is as scientifically flawed as ignoring smoking when doing lung illness research, which was the case prior to the acceptance of the tobacco-cancer link.

The 2014 Hutchinson research did not embrace any bra-free ladies as a management group, which that research admits is a flaw. They rationalize that flaw by saying that it was almost unattainable to seek out bra-free ladies for his or her research. In fact, you can’t do a legitimate breast cancer research wanting on the bra-cancer link without together with a control group of bra-free ladies for comparability. So as an alternative of conducting poor breast most cancers analysis without control groups, we hope to offer our research individuals for attainable inclusion of their future research.

The response from the medical industry was swift after we announced our Worldwide Bra-Free Research. The American Council on Science and Well being, a public relations firm that aims to dismiss and discredit all those who challenge the interests of the drug industry, revealed successful piece towards me and the research. Mockingly, they claimed8 the research is flawed by not together with a control group of bra users.

However, regardless of the resistance by the medical industry through the years, many ladies have heard concerning the bra-cancer hyperlink and have stopped sporting bras. Many have joined the Worldwide Bra-Free Research. We anticipate that this group of girls may have a lower incidence of breast cancer than most of the people, which is our management group.

Nevertheless, we’ve discovered something sudden in the research. There have been some definite health modifications following the elimination of bra utilization, and while the research is ongoing, we felt it essential to report these shocking findings.

Bras Constrict More Than the Lymphatics

First, we should clarify that tight bras compress extra than just the lymphatics. Additionally they compress nerves and muscle tissues. The truth is, research has proven that sporting tight bras impairs the autonomic nervous system, leading to a number of problems.

For example, researchers have discovered that tight bras primarily create a full-body stress response. Based on one study9, “The primary outcomes could be summarized as follows: (1) urinary excretion of adrenaline, noradrenaline and cortisol was facilitated, and the quantities of urinary excretion have been significantly greater when TC (tight clothes) have been worn. Coronary heart fee was considerably larger within the TC group; (2) nocturnal urinary melatonin excretion was considerably higher in the TC group. These results are discussed when it comes to an enhancement of diurnal sympathetic nervous system exercise brought on by strain on the pores and skin produced by tight clothing.”

One other research of tight bras discovered that constipation is a end result10, presumably resulting from suppression of the parasympathetic nervous system and intestinal mobility.

Another research11 found that ladies who have been bra-free had shorter menstrual cycles, averaging 30 days, compared to bra customers, whose menstrual cycle averaged 45 days.

A research additionally found that tight clothing hampers respiration12, decreasing lung enlargement, inhalation quantity, and deep respiration.

Analysis has additionally shown that breasts raise and tone once the bra is not worn.13 The research writer concluded, “Medically, physiologically, anatomically – breasts achieve no profit from being denied gravity. Quite the opposite, they get saggier with a bra.” While this scientific discovering stands in contrast to bra-industry propaganda claiming that bras forestall droop, the science behind the bra-causes-droop effect is that reliance on the bra leads to weakened suspensory ligaments and extra droop. Once the bra is not worn, the ligaments strengthen and the breasts raise and tone. As well as. bras make the breasts heavy with excess fluid as a result of lymphatic impairment, resulting in extra pendulous breasts.

Shocking Outcomes of the Worldwide Bra-Free Research

I need to admit that earlier than we began the International Bra-Free Research in 2018, we thought we already knew what to expect when ladies stopped sporting bras. Since we first announced the outcomes of our analysis in 1995, ladies have stopped sporting bras and have reported to us that their breast pain and cysts disappeared. Actually, this shocking restoration was speedy, inside a month of not sporting bras. Many occasions, ladies felt an enormous enchancment in ache and cysts within days of ending the bra-caused constriction of their breasts. Indeed, this tangible self-demonstration of the hurt brought on by bras has stored this situation alive despite denials of any sick effects from bras by the cancer industry.

But we had no concept how many other problems would improve by not sporting bras, till we started the International Bra-Free Research. While the research is ongoing, we feel that it’s crucial that ladies find out how bras can intrude with their well being, to take correct precautionary measures.

From the tons of of girls who are part of this research, with extra joining every day, it has develop into clear that bras trigger greater than breast illness.

Everyone has reported reduction of breast ache and cysts, if that they had them earlier than starting the research. In no case has breast ache or cysts worsened.

Most report that their breasts are less saggy, and are rounder. Some report that their nipples now have extra feeling than once they wore bras.

Each lady reviews that she breathes easier with no bra.

Most girls report that their digestion has improved.

Ladies who had shoulder pain with a bra report lack of that ache once being bra-free.

Many women report lack of headaches since being bra-free.

Most girls report having extra confidence in public with no bra, and a larger sense of confidence and empowerment.

Ladies within the research report they haven’t any drawback being bra-free at work, and recognize the comfort.

Most girls report that they like their breasts extra since being bra-free.

Most report friends and family supporting their determination to be bra-free.

Surprisingly, being bra-free doesn’t seem to change these ladies’s sex lives.

Some ladies reported that their menstrual cycles turned shorter and normalized after being bra-free.

Importantly, not one participant has skilled any damaging effects of being bra-free.

We also found that when ladies freed themselves from bras, they started to free themselves from other oppressive points of their lives. As one participant explained, “I am more confident, I like my breasts now, and I need to advocate for girls and women to know the link between bras and cancer and how straightforward, rewarding and healthful it can be to feel this snug. I’m more empowered now, too.”

To Be Continued…

It must be clear that whenever you use a garment that compresses and constricts the lymphatic system and the autonomic nervous system, you’re probably altering the physiology of the breasts and of the whole body. Breast cancer would be the finish illness for the breasts, but there may also be different illness circumstances brought on by tight bras, and other tight clothing, that may result in nervous, hormonal, and circulatory issues.

Once we first researched the bra-cancer link, we have been stunned at how little research there was on the topic. Many individuals assume there can’t be a bra-cancer link, or they might have heard about it. Individuals assume that the American Cancer Society can be warning ladies about bras if there was analysis that linked bra utilization to most cancers, identical to the ACS lastly obtained to warning individuals about smoking (after taking many years to lastly accept the hyperlink.) But we aren’t just coping with smoking. Once we speak about bras, we are speaking about breasts. And in our breast-obsessed culture, breasts are sexualized, objectified, molded, squeezed, sucked, compressed, constricted, pushed-up, tattooed, pierced, implanted, minimize off, and framed in a lacy bra. It’s a cultural package deal that interferes with science and common sense. And whilst docs smoked cigarettes in the 1950s and promoted their use, docs at present wear bras and promote their use, oblivious to the apparent.

We’re all victims of a bra-using culture. Consequently, there’s an epidemic of breast ache and cysts than affects more than half of girls who use bras. Most of this is brought on by the bra and improves rapidly once bra utilization ends.

Some ladies will develop breast cancer because of a bra-constricted lymphatic system and exposure to cancer-causing chemical compounds, which consequently turn into concentrated in their breasts.

Radiation injury and other dangerous impacts, reminiscent of trauma, to the breasts can’t be as effectively repaired when the lymphatics are constricted by bras. And the immune system can’t as successfully battle creating most cancers cells with out good lymphatic circulation.

By way of the International Bra-Free Research, we now have also seen affirmation of different analysis into the consequences of tight clothing, including bras, on numerous bodily features, because of impacts on the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous techniques. Because of this ladies are affected by constipation, shallow respiration, increased stress, menstrual abnormalities, and different attainable problems because of their bras.

How tight is tight? If it leaves a mark in the skin, then it’s too tight.

While the influence of bras on the autonomic nervous system has been recognized for decades, it has been largely ignored, together with research displaying the other health hazards of bras. When a carcinogen is part of the material of the tradition, it takes ripping the culture apart to take away it.

Denial is a much easier and worthwhile technique for the industries that sell bras, and sell illness detection and remedy providers.

We encourage ladies all over the place to hitch the Worldwide Bra-Free Research and see for themselves, on themselves, how continual well being issues that plagued them for years might be related to the cultural apply of sporting tight bras and different tight clothing. You have nothing to lose but your discomfort and continual well being issues, and this virtually definitely will enable you to forestall breast most cancers.

Be a part of the Worldwide Bra-Free Research at


• 1991 Harvard research (CC Hsieh, D Trichopoulos (1991). Breast measurement, handedness and breast cancer danger. European Journal of Most cancers and Medical Oncology 27(2):131-135.). This research discovered that, “Premenopausal ladies who do not put on bras had half the danger of breast cancer compared with bra users…”

• 1991-93 U.S. Bra and Breast Most cancers Research by Singer and Grismaijer, revealed in Dressed To Kill: The Hyperlink Between Breast Cancer and Bras (Second Edition, Square One Publishers, 2018). Discovered that bra-free ladies have about the identical incidence of breast cancer as men. 24/7 bra sporting increases incidence over 100 occasions that of a brafree lady.

• Singer and Grismaijer did a follow-up research in Fiji, revealed in Get It Off! (ISCD Press, 2000). Discovered 24 case histories of breast most cancers in a tradition the place half the women are bra-free. The women getting breast most cancers have been all sporting bras. Given ladies with the identical genetics and weight-reduction plan and dwelling in the identical village, the ones getting breast illness have been those sporting bras for work.

• A 2009 Chinese language research (Zhang AQ, Xia JH, Wang Q, Li WP, Xu J, Chen ZY, Yang JM (2009). [Risk factors of breast cancer in women in Guangdong and the countermeasures]. In Chinese language. Nan Fang Yi Ke Da Xue Xue Bao. 2009 Jul;29(7):1451-Three.) discovered that NOT sleeping in a bra was protecting towards breast cancer, decreasing the danger 60%.

• 2011 a research was revealed, in Spanish, confirming that bras are causing breast illness and most cancers. It found that underwired and push-up bras are probably the most harmful, but any bra that leaves pink marks or indentations might trigger illness.

• 2015 Comparative research of breast cancer danger elements at Kenyatta National Hospital and the Nairobi Hospital J. Afr. Most cancers (2015) 7:41-46. This research discovered a big bracancer hyperlink in pre-and post-menopausal ladies.

• 2016 Sporting a Tight Bra for Many Hours a Day is Associated with Increased Danger of Breast Cancer Adv Oncol Res Treat 1: 105. This is the first epidemiological research to take a look at bra tightness and time worn, and found a big bra-cancer link.

• 2016 Brassiere sporting and breast cancer danger: A scientific evaluation and metaanalysis World J Meta-Anal. Aug 26, 2015; Three(4): 193-205 This systematic assessment and meta-analysis aimed to guage the affiliation between eight areas of brassiere-wearing practices and the danger of breast most cancers. Twelve case-control studies met inclusion standards for assessment. The meta-analysis exhibits statistically vital findings to help the affiliation between brassiere sporting throughout sleep and breast cancer danger.

• 2018 Lymph stasis promotes tumor progress Journal of Dermatological Science “(t)hese findings come as no surprise to us who for a long time have been conscious that alterations in regional lymphatic stream might produce dysregulation in pores and skin immune perform and consequent oncogenesis. Actually, since 2002, our staff has held the view that lymphedematous areas are immunologically weak websites for the development of neoplasms in addition to infections and immune-mediated illnesses. In recent times, growing proof has confirmed this assumption.”


1 For instance, Dr. John Mayo, one of the founders of the Mayo Clinic, wrote within the article “Susceptibility to Cancer” within the 1931 Annals of Surgical procedure, that “Most cancers of the breast happens largely amongst civilized ladies. In these nations the place breasts are allowed to be exposed, that’s, usually are not compressed or irritated by clothes, it is uncommon.” A bra patent in 1950 said, “Even within the correct breast measurement, most brassieres envelop or bind the breast in such a style that standard circulation and freedom of movement is constricted. Many instances of breast most cancers have been attributed to such breast constriction as brought on by improperly fitted brassieres.” (Taken from the 2018 version of Dressed to Kill.)









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