7 episodes

The Eagle Podcast is hosted by Sandra Donskyte. A bold and honest conversation with folks who, like eagles, soar in how they handle and overcome cancer and other illness against all odds, and how that changes their lives for the better. It also brings experts in the field of research, nutrition, health and healing to explain the above and shine light on the best-kept secrets to being healthier, more vibrant you.

The podcast offers a perfect balance of loving inspiration and caring encouragement. You never know when a story you hear today will resonate with you or will be an encouraging story

The Eagle Sandra Donskyte

    • Health & Fitness

The Eagle Podcast is hosted by Sandra Donskyte. A bold and honest conversation with folks who, like eagles, soar in how they handle and overcome cancer and other illness against all odds, and how that changes their lives for the better. It also brings experts in the field of research, nutrition, health and healing to explain the above and shine light on the best-kept secrets to being healthier, more vibrant you.

The podcast offers a perfect balance of loving inspiration and caring encouragement. You never know when a story you hear today will resonate with you or will be an encouraging story

    6: Crafting Body Confidence

    6: Crafting Body Confidence

    In this episode I talk to Michelle Elman who is a body confidence coach, an award-winning body positive activist, mostly known for her campaign Scarred Not Scared. She’s not just another coach on the block, her active presence within the body positive community with over 190k followers across her Instagram accounts was built because she knows what it is to go from feeling ugly, as she says, because of scars across her body, to being un-shakably body confident. This girl was given a third chance to live after brain tumour operation and has a lot of insights into how to deal with trauma, how to not give a dam about what people think about her body and turn adversity into meaningful life with purpose.

    We talk about:


    The journey of becoming a confidence coach
    The change in body positivity in the media today and project ‘Body Love’ led by Women’s Health Magazine
    Michelle’s attitude to her ‘being ugly’
    How she changed the idea of beauty at her school in 6th form
    How we can contribute to changing the culture around beauty, money or anything else around us
    Through surgeries and body adversity to created purpose
    How being given a third chance to live shifted Michelle’s attitude to life and purpose
    Relationship with trauma
    Comparing illnesses and why it's not a good idea
    Anger as an unexpressed emotion and how it’s been affecting Michelle’s life
    How to speak and what to speak about with your loved ones laying in hospital bed

    Connect with Michelle on:

    Instagram & Twitter @scarednotscared / @bodypositivitymeans

    Facebook & Youtube

    Book “Am I Ugly” by Michelle Elman on Amazon

    Ted Talk: Have you hated your body enough today

    • 1 hr 1 min
    5: The Gift of Illness in Changing a Mindset to Life

    5: The Gift of Illness in Changing a Mindset to Life

    Statistics say that one in two people are likely to be diagnosed with cancer during their life. Apparently one in eight women in the UK will develop breast cancer at some point in their lifetime. And the numbers don’t stop there, as this equates to over 55,000 women that are diagnosed with breast cancer each year in the UK. Each of those women experiences the shock and stress of a diagnosis. But that isn’t the full story, for around each woman are family and friends that are also affected. And each woman needs to decide how to approach their illness, which of the many potential routes to healing and recovery will they choose beyond the treatments and medications. 

    On The Eagle podcast I am looking through the statistics, media headlines and Instagram grid stories to the healing journeys of individuals. I want to understand the why, the what, the how. What can we learn that informs our own choices, our options and our beliefs. This isn’t necessarily about preventing reoccurrence or healing our emotional wounds but how we come to acceptance and how we move forward to live life healthily and with joy. Where do we begin?

    When thinking which Eagle I have met in my life who could have a logical, realistic yet inspiring conversation about their breast cancer healing journey, I didn’t need to look far. I am very lucky to know Victoria Fuller who I met two years ago. An established Wellness PR business owner, a poised, articulate, purpose driven woman who not only has a great story of recovering from breast cancer, but also has a vision on how this country needs to tackle this terrible issue. 

    In this episode of The Eagle Podcast we discuss:


    How the 50th birthday gift from NHS brought the news of breast cancer
    Clarity on the reasons for cancer and why the news of cancer was exactly what Victoria expected
    The impact of stress on the diagnosis of cancer
    The scariest part of the diagnosis and how to navigate it
    Decisions made on different treatments
    Comparing cancer and treatments with the business stresses
    What life stagnation and resistance to change means to health
    Why Victoria knows the cancer won’t come back
    Why meditators still get cancer or any other illness
    Victoria’s top tip for staying healthy and illness-free 
    Why feeling a victim of illness is not helpful for your recovery and how to turn that around 
    Purpose through cancer 
    How to shift the mindset and see a change in your healing process
    Why health education needs to be in schools 
    How Chinese medicine plays a big role in Victoria’s good health and prevention of illness

    Resources:

    London Meditation Centre 

    Katie Brindle Book 

    • 1 hr 3 min
    4: Making a Stand at The Grammy's

    4: Making a Stand at The Grammy's

    Breast cancer often leads to mastectomies, and the scars that surgery leaves can result in women feeling they have lost a core part of their femininity.

    Some cover scars with tattoos, others go the breast implant route, and there are those who leave things as they are. That’s Jen Rose from South Florida, US. Jen is a mother to two children, a wife to a man who fell in love with her and her scars, a musician, who composes incredibly high vibrational soulful music that creates a healing environment.

    Living a life with one breast in her early 30s was a decision Jen made consciously, despite being a single parent, fresh after a messy divorce. A few years down the road Jen is not only happily married again, breastfed her second baby with one breast, but also embraces her exposed half-full chest by making a stand at the Grammy’s earlier this year.

    This episode explores two of my great loves, health and its links to music. Jen’s story will touch even the biggest sceptic’s heart.

    In this episode of The Eagle Podcast we discuss:


    Fixed belief system as a catalyst to Jen’s to cancer diagnosis and cancer reoccurrence
    Inner vs Outer environment and its influence on our health
    Healing modalities Jen used to help the body heal
    What happened when the naturopath couldn’t help Jen to heal anymore
    Reflections on decisions and choices made along the way of cancer and surgery
    The importance of listening to spirit/gut feeling when making critical health decisions
    Breastfeeding after mastectomy
    How cancer changed her relationship with herself and others
    Mastectomy and changing perceptions of beauty
    Dating, new relationship  and sex after cancer
    Creating vs consuming: are you consuming other people’s beliefs, ideas, articles or choosing silence and meditation as a tool helping you to choose healing paths, the next steps and make decisions that suit you
    Taking a stand at the 2019 Grammys, why Jen chose this even to make a stand and the comments from people that followed
    The link between music and health

    Bruce Lipton “The biology of belief” 

    Jen’s Instagram 

    Jen’s Facebook 

    Jen Rose Website 

    Jen making a stand at the Grammy’s 

    • 1 hr 11 min
    3: In Health and In Sickness: Corina & Harrison

    3: In Health and In Sickness: Corina & Harrison

    Relationships and marriages in one form or another have a spoken or unspoken vow lovers give to each other: "I am with you in health and in sickness". And it’s all good and fun when we are healthy, but what really happens when sickness takes over one and the other becomes a carer?

    Corina, 25, and Harrison, 32, are a living example - a couple next door to any of us - of how illness that one suffers from challenges the entire relationship, their values, beliefs and communication habits. This young couple enjoyed their relationship for more than a year when Corina found herself enduring enormous pain and unable to walk properly. With the diagnosis of psoriatic arthritis came the change of the relationship dynamics. 

    In this episode of The Eagle Podcast we discuss:

    Show notes:


    How invisible illness takes away liberties and freedoms

    Searching for the root of illness

    Critical point in illness that helped Corina to start taking control of her health

    Decisions and experimentations with healing and trying to feel better

    How Corina chose a more sustainable way of living

    How exercise effects arthritis and pain management

    Emotions when suffering with arthritis

    Harrison’s and Corina's refections on her illness and how it affected their relationship

    The risk Harrison took in influencing Corina’s health crisis

    How we ourselves can be the villains in our lives

    Biggest lessons for both Corina and Harrison in the healing journey


    Harrison discovered 4 levels of his anger he felt during Corina’s health crisis. It was triggered by lack of her interest in finding ways to improve her health:


    Arthritis sucks - why this is happening to you? Why this and why now?
    By extension, this is happening to me and I am now thrust into this position of carer.
    Anger at myself for being angry about it happening to us.
    Rebelliousness agains that anger: I have right to be angry, its hard!

    References: 

    Elimination Diet by Mikhaila Peterson

    Article about Jordan Peterson and his daughter, Mikhaila 

    Jordan Peterson's Podcast

    Corina's email ericacorina@me.com

    Harrison's email harrison.moore@network.rca.ac.uk

    Facebook Group: The Eagle Collective

    • 1 hr 11 min
    2: Optimise your diet, tune your health

    2: Optimise your diet, tune your health

    Food and diet is not just a popular or fun thing to talk about. It's also something Toral Shah embraces as a vehicle for health, illness prevention, recovery and reduction of illness recurrence.

    Toral not only knows the human side of illness (breast cancer), but also is a nutritional scientist and food consultant, focusing on the role of diet and nutrition in the prevention of disease, such as cancer, diabetes and others.

    She saw her mum and a number of other family women survive breast cancer, she’s a breast cancer survival herself. Toral has been on both sides: the witness, the observer, the supporter to others facing the diagnosis and being on the healing journey, and also being the one on the receiving end, with all the roles reversed.

    In this episode of The Eagle Podcast we discuss:


    What led Toral to studying cancer and nutrition for cancer patients
    What it is like to work with cancer patents
    What it was like to share breast cancer experience with her mum
    Emotions people have when they see Toral for the first time
    Usual food patterns seen in cancer patients
    Resistance and importance for taking responsibility for your own health
    Food and cancer prevention
    Alcohol and cancer
    Stress and cancer
    Importance of community when you are ill
    The link of gut and inflammation to cancer and what you can do to avoid having inflammation

    British Society of Lifestyle Medicine 

    ODD BOX 

    Blue Zones - places with the world's longest-lived, and thus healthiest, people 

    Dirty Dozen Vegetables and Fruits 

    Rainbow Slaw recipe on Royal Marsden 

    The book “The Complete Guide to Breast Cancer: How to Feel Empowered and Take Control”by Professor Trisha Greenhalgh, an academic GP, and Dr Liz O’Riordan, a Consultant Breast Cancer Surgeon 

    Toral Shah's Website

    Toral Shah - The Urban Kitchen - on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook

    Facebook Group: The Eagle Collective

    • 59 min
    1: Finding your joy, why cancer is not a fight

    1: Finding your joy, why cancer is not a fight

    Jem Ayres is a British entrepreneur, Cancer Coach and Body worker. Jem is my very special first Eagle! Her story of cancer begins on an idyllic white sands holiday in Thailand in 2015 which turned rapidly into life saving surgery at the age of 32. She was diagnosed with a tumour in her brain and had immediate brain surgery.



    Several weeks after the trauma of her surgery and back home in the UK, Jem had the added shock of a diagnosis of an advanced melanoma. What followed was a very personal emotional journey and a number of difficult decisions.



    Things we talk about in this episode:



    ~ The events that led to Jem's diagnosis and everything that followed

    ~ The road to full recovery from stage 4 skin cancer

    ~ How Jem continues to remain healthy by decisions and actions she continues to take to affect her healing in a positive way (there are many gems there, and some of them will put a smile on your face!)

    ~ The words she chooses to describe herself that empower her on this journey - and aren’t the fighting words that people usually use towards cancer

    ~ How cancer affected Jem's relationships with her business, as well as family and friends

    ~ How her life pivoted from one business to another and how she treats her work now

    ~ Controversy of being your own cancer healer. Jem unpacks the bold statement on her website for us ‘Through choice, self-love and power of belief one can heal cancer’. Be assured, this doesn't go unnoticed by people and Jem shares the range of reactions she receives

    ~ Three biggest lessons cancer taught Jem



    Links mentioned in this episode:

    Jem’s reference to the video by Dr Emoto, Japanese doctor about the power of words and how water responds to them  

    Jem Ayes Coaching https://jemayres.co.uk

    • 1 hr 10 min

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