One of the participants on the WalkWithMeNow platform, Julien Drouin, has written this interesting piece about the connection between living in a state of fear and what effects it can have on the body. He is a Medical Doctor living and practicing in Marseille France.

As a member of walkwithmeknow.com, we have to do an exercice each week. Meditation, visualisations, readings etc…  One was to read Anita Moorjani’s book: “Dying to be Me – My journey from cancer to near death to true healing”. After reading it, we discuss it on the platform and I had the idea to write the article below:


In her book “Dying to be Me – My journey from cancer to near death to true healing.” Anita Morrjani explains how she healed from terminal cancer after a near death experience (NDE).

The biggest change she made was to drop fear. Fear of not being good enought, fear of failling, fear of conflicts (people pleaser) etc…

I higly recommend that you watch her 7 minutes interview here: video

Really? Just dropping fear and cancer heals?

Well, scientific and « rational » people will certainly ask for more explanation.

Some proposals:

The flight or fight response, triggered by fear, also called “acute stress response” was first described by Walter Cannon in the 1920s as a theory that animals react to threats with a general discharge of the sympathetic nervous system. The response was later recognized as the first stage of a general adaptation syndrome that regulates stress responses among vertebrates and other organisms.

The onset of a fear response is associated with specific physiological actions in the sympathetic nervous system, primarily caused by release of adrenaline and norepinephrine from the medulla of the adrenal glands. The release is triggered by acetylcholine released from preganglionic sympathetic nerves.

Has Campoy, PhD, explains in his article published in Chemico-Biological Interactions (April 2016) :

“Acetylcholine (ACh) is a neurotransmitter, but also a local signaling molecule which regulates basic cell functions, and cholinergic responses are involved in cell proliferation and apoptosis. So, activation of nicotinic and muscarinic receptors has a proliferative and anti-apoptotic effect in many cells.“

“The content of cholineacetyltransferase, acetylcholine receptors and cholinesterases is altered in many tumours, and cholinesterase content correlates with patient survival in some cancers. During apoptosis, acetylcholinesterase is induced and appears in the nuclei. Acetylcholinesterase participates in the regulation of cell proliferation and apoptosis through hydrolysis of acetylcholine and by other catalytic and non catalytic mechanisms, in a variant-specific manner.”

“Functions of non-neuronal ACh include proliferation, differentiation, apoptosis, locomotion, migration, angiogenesis, immune functions, secretion, cytoskeletal organization and ciliary activity ”

“Given the proliferative and anti-apoptotic effects of AChR activation in different cell types, along with the fact that this activation facilitates tumor invasion and angiogenesis, the non-neuronal cholinergic system performs an important role in tumorigenesis.”

“Endogenous ACh, made by the non-neuronal cells themselves, along with nicotine and nicotine-derived nitrosamines in the case of smokers, stimulate proliferation in many cancers, including lung, colon, or breast.”

“The most relevant AChRs capable of stimulating cell proliferation are α7-nAChR and M3 mAChR (M3R) in lung, pancreas or colon cancers, and α9-nAChR for breast cancer cells.

A wealth of information confirms the role of ACh and AChRs on cell growth. Thus, inhibition of ACh synthesis decreases basal cell growth;”

“ACh, nicotine and other cholinergic agonists stimulate proliferation, whereas AChRs antagonists or silencing decrease it.”

“ In HT-29 colon cancer cells, which express α7-nAChR, inhibition of ChAT attenuated basal cell growth and nicotine augmented it.”

“Addition of ACh stimulated the proliferation of the M3R-expressing H508 colon cancer cells; this stimulation was prevented by the mAChR antagonist atropine, which also decreased basal growth, indicating interference with the action of endogenous ACh.”

“In H82 small cell lung cancer (SCLC) cells, which release ACh, ACh synthesis inhibitors, muscarinic and nicotinic antagonists, and siRNA against M3R decreased proliferation.”

“Nicotine also stimulated proliferation of cancer cells from bladder, pancreas and other organs”.

Cf: Cholinergic system and cell proliferation:http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0009279716301387

So, fear triggers “Fight or flight” response which increase acetylcholine concentration and stimulate cancer cells.

As Anita Moorjani said, she was living in fear for years (It’s not a judgment).

We now have a hypothesis explaining why her body developed cancer.

Remenber, that’s just a hypothesis. Maybe a form of help help for adjuvant therapy. Always consult your Doctor.

But how an external factor could change the course of cancer? We hear everywhere that cancer is triggered by genetic mutations.

Well, first you need to know that genes account for only 2-3% of DNA. The remaining 98% once considered « junk DNA », are actually powerfull regulators of gene activity. They are even able to CREATE genetic mutations.


Secondly you need to know who controls « Junk  DNA » : the environment.

The increased toxicity of our environment explains the rise in childhood cancer. (Exposure starts in utero) https://www.theguardian.com/science/2005/jan/17/cancer.medicineandhealth

So, genetic mutations are not sufficient to trigger cancer (old paradigm/victim)

Even if there are mutations, scientific can reverse cancer cells phenotype,


“More and more data suggests that just having mutations is not sufficient to cause cancer,” said Dr. Kornelia Polyak, a breast cancer researcher at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, “You need the right context.”


Is unexpressed and accumulated fear the right context ? It is an hypothesis to consider.

You could be interested in Mina Bisell’s work: “a cancer cell doesn’t automatically become a tumor, but rather, depends on surrounding cells (its microenvironment) for cues on how to develop. She shares the two key experiments that proved the prevailing wisdom about cancer growth were wrong.”


So, Anita dropped fear

What happens in our body when you do that? When we process the fear? When we start living in joy/love?

The body goes into « relaxation response ».

What is the biological effect of activating the relaxation response?

Donald D. Lund, from the University of Iowa, said in 1986: “Vagal nerve stimulation (a sign of relaxation response) decrease acetylcholine concentration”

Vagus nerve stimulation alters regional acetylcholine turnover in rat heart.


Gidron, De Couck, and De Greve (Faculty of Medicine and Pharmacy, Free University of Brussels (VUB), Belgium) explain that: “Vagal nerve activity independently predicts prognosis in cancer. When vagal nerve activity is high, cancer stage no longer predicts tumor burden”

« If you have an active vagus nerve, cancer stage may no longer be important. » (new paradigm/power)


Well, now we understand that it’s a very (very, very) good idea to drop fear.

How can we do that ?

You can start with this very effective meditation “fear processing exercice”, by Inelia Benz.


Thank you Anita Moorjani for sharing your story www.facebook.com/Anita.Moorjani/

And thank you Inelia for sharing your tools.

Julien Drouin MD

See also: Psychoneuroimmunology and cancer: A decade of discovery, paradigm shifts, and methodological innovations


Disclaimer: Any information contained herein does not take the place of professional advice from your health care provider nor is intended as medical advice or to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional.The authors/webmaster assume no responsibility in the use of this information. Consult your doctor before using any presented information as a form of treatment.

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