Emmerdale actress Leah Bracknell defends marijuana as she faces terminal cancer

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Emmerdale actress Leah Bracknell defends marijuana as she faces terminal cancer

Former Emmerdale actress Leah Bracknell, who has been diagnosed with terminal cancer, has praised "alternative" medicines

Soap fans everywhere were shocked and saddened to learn that ex-Emmerdale actress Leah Bracknell had been diagnosed with terminal cancer.

Leah, 52, revealed that she had stage 4 lung cancer in October, which doctors described as "incurable and inoperable". But Leah refused to let it get her down, with her partner Jez Hughes then setting up a Go Fund Me page to fund a new type of medicine at a clinic in Germany.

Leah was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer last October (Credit: ITV/ Loose Women)

Since her diagnosis in September, she has appeared on This Morning and Loose Women to discuss her new outlook on life.

Speaking to Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby, she described how the diagnosis came as a shock as she leads a very healthy lifestyle and has a new career as a yoga teacher.

She said: "I don't drink that much And I was reasonably fit for my age. But I literally started to feel a little bit breathless that I thought was a bit of stress or whatever."

She has appeared on This Morning and Loose Women to discuss her diagnosis (Credit: ITV/ This Morning)

But Leah refused to be beaten, going on to say: "In their opinion, that means it's terminal, not curable, not operable. A fairly brutal and bleak diagnosis but one I am determined to challenge and see from the perspective of 'a glass half full' - going against a lifetime of pessimism, negativity and fear!"

She told the Loose Women panel how the Go Fund Me donations were funding life-prolonging treatment, realising that although "the medicine will stop working at some point", she had asked doctors not to 'guess-timate' how much longer she might live.

And Leah, who has two children, has now written a lengthy Facebook post on how "alternative medicines" should not be pushed aside.

She wrote: "The way I see it is that you have to look every which way to find out what works best for YOU.

"It narrows the outcome of anyone's journey to only 2 possibilities: that is cure, i.e success, or failure. Well if that's all there is, I might as well lay down now and get on with the inevitable."

READ MORE: Mum gave cannabis to son with cancer who had days left to live and he made a miraculous recovery

Leah appeared in Emmerdale as Zoe Tate (Credit: ITV)

Leah then explains that she is choosing not to be beaten by her diagnosis: "Or, how about this, what if one were to consider the journey from the perspective of 'healing'. The concept of finding healing on my journey is something in which I can be active and proactive, one that gives me hope of contributing to my own process of healing, rather than await whatever the professionals prescribe.

"I can get out there and make sure my life, is exactly that, MY life. MY body. MY spirit."

The ex-Emmerdale actress then offered advice to others going through the same thing: "If cancer calls, it is telling you loud and clear - something's gotta change. Whether it's diet, lifestyle, addressing unresolved emotional wounds and problems, mending broken relationships, looking at where the stress is in your life etc, perhaps for the first time, it's telling you to put yourself first, you MUST put yourself first.

"And, if it calls to you, try it. Don't ever underestimate the power of the placebo, the power of our own minds, our own will, our own indominitable spirits. I do think it's important not to buy into the fear and thinking of the establishment, it is so hard not to, I know from first hand experience."

She then turned her attention to "unconventional" medicines: "If trying unconventional, alternative treatments calls you, please have a go. Go with your gut. You only need to scratch the surface of how the medical industry has been hijacked by pharmaceutical companies over the last 80 years or so, to the complete detriment of complimentary and holistic and natural treatments, and most importantly us, the public. And it still persists globally.

"What we need to be asking is WHY can't we access drugs that actually already exist for certain conditions, WHY are they prohibitively expensive?"

Despite the diagnosis, she is staying upbeat and positive (Credit: ITV/ This Morning)

Although she doesn't actually name marijuana, she implies that that's what she then goes on to discuss: "And don't even start me on the controversial illegal cancer cure method that thousands are turning to. And if you don't know what it is, please don't ask, I cannot say as it's illegal in this country, though not in 23 states in America."

Leah also described how she thought Queen Victoria had even used the drug: "Incidentally, Queen Victoria was prescribed it for menstrual cramps. So, it comes with a royal seal of approval."

She added: "Research and listening to your own needs are crucial on this journey, we are all different, we all respond in different ways. I just know, that I am open to all suggestions as they might just open a door that reveals itself to be healing and inspiring in ways that I couldn't imagine.

"Because, whatever the professionals decide to tell me, it is I who am in charge of how my life flows, and no one can take away the joy and magic and beauty that I continue to see as I look around, in vibrant colours. No one can take away how delicious life can taste. Not if I don't let them. So, I wish you all a wonderful week as I head off to find some healing.

"We're gonna hit the road, we're going on a pilgrimage of the spirit, sing some songs, find us some wandering shaman, pitch up, share ceremony, have some healings, meet new friends. LIVE. Now that's what I call Medicine. Aho! And bright bright blessings to you all."

We're thinking of you, Leah ❤️

Have you or a loved one ever had to face a terminal cancer diagnosis? Let us know over on Facebook and Twitter.

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