Live Better With’s 20 most helpful U.K. cancer blogs

At Live Better With we are dedicated to helping people feel empowered to deal with the issues that living with cancer can bring. A big part of that is having access to high quality information and a community that will support individuals through their cancer journey.

So, we’ve done the research, looked at the content and analysed the numbers to curate our list of the most read, talked about and helpful cancer blogs out there (aside from our blog, of course)!

The blogs we’ve chosen cover a wide range of topics from personal accounts, to food recipes, to expert information and advice. To help guide you through the list, we’ve pulled out the reasons why you should be reading each blog and share our three favourite posts from each one.

We hope you find it useful. If you think there are other bloggers out there that deserve our attention then email theteam@livebetterwith.com to nominate them for our 2017 list.  

 

1. Dr Kate Granger

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Dr Kate Granger is a geratologist from Yorkshire living with metastatic cancer. She was 31, on holiday in the States, when suddenly her whole world changed with the diagnosis of her desmoplastic small round cell tumour which had already spread to her bones and liver. Since then she has outlived her 14 month prognosis, written books on her experience, started a nationwide campaign to encourage better communication between doctors and patients for which she received an MBE in 2015 and writes regularly on her blog giving her thoughts on end of life care, patient centredness and her own experience of living with terminal cancer. You might think her blog would make for a sad read but you’d be wrong. Kate is full of positivity and her hopes for the future, she is currently working her way through a bucket list which included a skydive and qualifying as a consultant.

Why you should read it: If you’re wanting an honest, frank account of terminal cancer from both sides, the patient and the doctor, then this is the blog for you.

 

Our top 3 posts:

Dear Cancer part 7

And a Happy New Year

Happy second birthday to # hellomynameis

The Stats:

Twitter - 44.6K

Facebook - 2K

Follow Kate: 

     


 

2. Stephen’s Story

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Back in 2010 when Stephen was just 15 years old he was diagnosed with bowel cancer and despite a gruelling treatment regimen of chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery his cancer kept coming back. Sadly Stephen passed away in May 2014, but during his last years he succeeded in inspiring thousands of people across the world with his passion for life. Even more impressive is the £5.5 million pounds raised by Stephen, and later Stephen’s mum Jane, for the teenage cancer trust. Stephen was awarded an MBE in recognition of his amazing charity work and dedication to the Teenage Cancer Trust whilst battling terminal cancer himself. This is not a sob story, this is Stephen’s story.

Why you should read it: If you’re trying to find positivity and motivation, read Stephen’s life-affirming blog

 

Our Top 3 posts:

Chemotherapy cycle week 2

International day of happiness

Stephen Sutton Awarded MBE

The stats:

Facebook - 1.35M

Twitter - 172K

Follow Stephen's Story:

        


 

3. Macmillan Blogs

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When it comes to providing high-quality information and engaging material, Macmillan have set the standard and their community blog is of the same high calibre. Their blog is divided by cancer type so you can quickly and easily find advice and information that’s most relevant to you. You can find personal stories and tips from other people affected by cancer. There’s also an army of Macmillan nurses who regularly contribute to the blog, answering questions and directing people to further information as needed. The breadth of subjects covered is incredible and the focus is on making life with cancer as manageable as possible.

Why you should read it: For reliable, trusted information and a large community of support from others affected by cancer and the Macmillan team.

 

Our top 3 posts:

Book club - Mum’s List

Walking miracle

Guest blog - Emma and Ryan

The stats:

Facebook - 642K

Twitter - 558K

Follow Macmillan:

     

 

 

4. How to Glitter a Turd

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This is Kris Hallenga’s blog, founder of CoppaFeel, breast cancer activist and all-round breast cancer superstar. She shares her story of the ups and downs of being a twentysomething (now 30) year old with stage IV breast cancer and helps to educate young people on the importance of checking their breasts. There’s all sorts of information in her blog from music to recipes as she continues on her cancer journey. In Kris’s own words she’s not 'suffering' or  'battling', she’s just living! Her blog is not only about refusing to let cancer wreck her party, but refusing to let it ruin yours too.

Why you should read it:  If you’re looking for inspiration, information or tumour humour on life as a young adult with metastatic breast cancer this is the perfect blog for you.

 

Our top 3 posts:

Updates

Cancer on board

My end of year thingy

The stats:

Facebook - 354

Twitter - 30K

Instagram - 28.6K

Follow Kris:

     

 


5. Ellie’s Friends

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Ellie’s Friends is a charity started in memory of Ellie Jeffery who was diagnosed with advanced metastatic breast cancer aged 28. Through her blog, she proved to the world that it is still possible to live a relatively normal, even fabulous, life despite having cancer. After she passed away in 2012 her fiance and friends decided to set up Ellie’s Friends in memory of Ellie, it’s full of freebies and discounted services to help people living with cancer enjoy life, not just survive it! That’s why Ellie’s Friends made our list - although it’s moved on from the original blog (which you can still read on the site), it focuses on helping people with cancer.

Why you should read it: The website is a fantastic way to find things to help you live better with cancer and Ellie’s blog will give you an insight into living with advanced cancer

 

Our top 3 posts:

The fight

Losing hair, making friends

Times to smile

The stats:

Facebook ~ 1.9K

Twitter ~ 1.7K

Instagram - 81

Follow Ellie's Friends:

     


 

6. Chris’s Cancer Community

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When Chris was diagnosed with cancer he found non-clinical support and resources somewhat lacking. So he decided to do something about it and set up this blog and website as a resource to help others on their cancer journey find a source of support, help and advice. Chris shares his thoughts and actively encourages his readers to contribute theirs in the hope that it will help replace feelings of isolation with those of reassurance and connectedness.   

Why you should read it: If you’re looking for a place of safety and support, beyond the purely medical side of cancer, this is the blog for you.

 

Our top 3 posts:

Living with the side effects

And breathe

The emotional turmoil of living with cancer

The stats:

Facebook - 877

Twitter - 13.8K

Follow Chris:

  




7. Alice-May Purkiss - Londoner Bossing Breast Cancer

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Alice-May was diagnosed with breast cancer in July 2015 at the age of 26. She started to blog about her experiences to raise awareness of breast cancer in younger women – and to get as many women as possible to ‘check their chebs on a regular basis’. She manages to do this in a brilliantly sassy and engaging manner and her boobsaurus is just one example of this. She also covers far more than just breasts and cancer and writes about fashion, food and other hobbies of a twenty-something-year-old living in London.

Why you should read it: If you’re looking for a personal account of living with breast cancer in your mid-twenties with a feel good factor then this is the blog for you.

 

Our top 3 posts:

Cancerversary - one year on

On Bravery

Boobsaurus

The stats:

Facebook - 467

Twitter - 1.3K

Follow Alice-May

     


 

8. Children with Cancer UK

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Children with Cancer is the leading national children's charity dedicated to the fight against childhood cancer. Their aim is to ‘determine the causes, find cures and provide care for children with cancer’ and their blog is a way for people to find out more about their work but perhaps, more importantly, it also helps form a network of support for families with affected by childhood cancer. The ‘patient stories’ section of the blog shares personal accounts from families and children living with cancer in-order to help others in what must be the toughest of all challenges.

Why you should read it: For instant access to professional, high-quality content and the support of other families helping each other get through this most difficult time.

 

Our top 3 posts:

Elliot

Bella-Rose

Sebastian

The stats:

Facebook - 14.4K

Twitter -  6.5K

Follow Children with Cancer

     



9. Breast Cancer Care

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Breast Cancer Care is a fantastic site for all things breast cancer-related. It has a free quarterly magazine called Vita with a blog feature where you can find the latest breast cancer news, real-life stories, and articles about health and wellbeing, as well as fashion, food and other hot topics. The blog is written by 4 women, each with their own take on living with breast cancer and covers everything you need to know to have a better cancer journey. There’s even an option to have a ‘live chat’ with a cancer nurse specialist to help answer any questions or concerns you might have.

Why you should read it: If you’re looking for high-quality content on all aspects of life with breast cancer then this is the site for you.

 

Our top 3 posts:

The club that no-one wants to join

Getting support; counselling, support groups and mindfulness

Radiotherapy - I knew what to expect but the reality was quite different

The stats:

Facebook - 128K

Twitter - 142K

Instagram - 2.5K

Follow Breast Cancer Care:

     



10. Breast Surgeon with Breast Cancer

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Liz O’Riordan describes herself as ‘a breast surgeon (with breast cancer), baker, blogger, cyclist, triathlete, and wife’. She uses her blog to give a rare insight to being both a doctor and patient in her own speciality. This is a well-written, thought-provoking blog with a sprinkling of scientific facts every so often which really adds to the content rather than taking away from it.

Why you should read it: Liz O’ Riordon’s blog provides a unique perspective on being a breast cancer surgeon and patient.

 

Our top 3 posts:

How long have I got?

Recovering again

Feeling hot, hot, hot

The stats:

Facebook - 492

Twitter - 5K

Follow Liz:

 

 

11. Tumour Has It

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Beth was 21 years old when she discovered that the sciatica pain in her leg was actually a symptom of her cancer. Since then she has been writing a fantastic blog about living with cancer in her own unique, funny and brilliantly engaging way. She doesn’t shy away from the hard truths of a life with cancer, instead, she tackles them head on and conquers the toughest of challenges. Beth has not lost sight of who she is just because she has cancer. Her diagnosis does not define her.

Why you should read this: If you want a blog that stands up to cancer defiantly, confidently and with a brilliant sense of humour, look no further.  

 

Our top 3 posts:

Bootyshake

WTF Chemo, WTF!

Hair today, gone tomorrow

The stats:

Facebook - 1.9K

Twitter - 250

Follow Beth:

  



12. Storm in a Tit Cup

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Heidi Loughlin’s blog is ‘raising awareness of inflammatory breast cancer through humour most dark and sweary’. She writes about her experiences of dealing with cancer and the side effects of treatment in a hilarious fashion complete with cartoons. Her use of humour means she can tackle the toughest of subjects without leaving the reader feeling down or dreary. It’s inspirational and enlightening and as she tells her two boys - mummy's laughing to the end!!!! In fact, at the time this list was being compiled, Heidi tweeted ‘About 2 have my whole boob removed so I'm celebrating by jumping out of a plane with my 66-year-old mum!!’ Heidi you rock!

Why you should read it: For a humorous yet hard-hitting account of living with cancer

 

Our top 3 posts:

Hyper aware

The Bucket and Spade list

The Guffalo

The stats:

Facebook - 6.3K

Twitter - 1.8K

Follow Heidi:

     



13. My New List for Living

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Helen Fawkes was busy getting on with her life having booted cancer once already when she found out she had cancer - again! She decided to write a new bucket list and started working her way through it and blogging about it. She describes herself as ‘Life loving. Cancer fighting. BBC News Correspondent’. The latter probably explains why writing and reporting on her experiences come so naturally to Helen. She covers a whole host of topics from living with advanced ovarian cancer to chemo side effects to food cravings on steroids and much much more.

Why you should read it: If you want a personal account of life with cancer and the impact of treatment on your body and mind, read Helen’s blog.

 

Our top 3 posts:

Constant chemo  

Chemo mini break

Happy Mothering Sunday

The stats:

Twitter - 4K

Follow Helen:

  

 


14. Coping with the Big C

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Even though Becki was 6 years into remission from her osteasarcoma, she still felt the impact of her cancer in her life. In particular, she found it difficult to cope with the psychological effects of her treatment. That’s why she started her blog. She has created a platform for people at all stages of their cancer journey to share ways of coping with the mental, physical and emotional impact the diagnosis has had on them. It is a marvellous resource and raises the profile of mental health and cancer as well supporting many worthwhile charities.

Why you should read it: For help, advice and encouragement in dealing with the impact cancer can have on your mental health and well-being during or after treatment.

 

Our top 3 posts:

My story

Brothers in arms unite for prostate cancer UK

Each round is a trial

The stats:

Facebook - 265

Twitter - 3.65K

Instagram - 7.5K

Follow Becci:

     


 

15. The Big Scary C-word

This is a blog by Laura Price who was diagnosed with breast cancer at the young age of 29. She started her blog as a way of keeping her friends and family updated on her progress. She describes her blog as an ‘ongoing story of how I took the big 'C' by the balls, beat it to a pulp and left it cowering in the corner!’ Laura has made the conscious effort to see her cancer journey as a positive experience and her blog reflects this, full of humour and hope.

Why you should read it: Not only to find out about life as a young adult surviving breast cancer, but also to get inspiration and feel positive to help you continue your cancer journey.

 

Our top 3 posts:

Five reasons why I’m trekking across Iceland

Three good things

Exercise makes me feel alive

The stats:

Facebook - 3.26K

Twitter - 1.75k

Follow Laura:

  



16. A Daughter’s Diary

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Naomi lost her mum in October 2015 after a long battle with breast cancer and since then she has had to come to terms with her grief and the after-effects of having dealt with cancer in the family for so long. She now writes a blog about her mother’s death, her own grief and how she is learning to live without her mum. Her mother was a palliative care doctor and openly discussed end of life care and death which, Naomi feels helped them deal with this awful challenge. She hopes that in openly talking about death and loss in her blog she will be able to help others find their way past grief.  

Why you should read it: If you have ever lost anyone to cancer or know someone who has then Naomi’s words will resonate with you. This is a blog born out of loss but ultimately it’s a tale of love and the importance of family.

 

Our Top 3 posts:

Dad: Picking up where we left off?

Some days are just hard

Where’s the ‘good’ in goodbye?

The stats:

Facebook - 203

Twitter -  1K

Follow Naomi:

     

 

 

17. Rianna Nagel - My Cancer Diary

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Rianna writes about her fight against Hodgkin's Lymphoma. At just 20 years old she writes about how cancer has affected her, her journey through treatments, investigations and life in general. Many of her readers describe her as ‘positive’ and ‘inspirational’ and if you read her entries you’ll see why. She also uses her blog to help promote the brilliant work of The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity and help fundraise for them.  

Why you should read it: To get insight into life with Hodgkin's lymphoma from an exceptional young lady.

 

Our top 3 posts:

July update

Chemotherapy session 3

Chemotherapy session 2

The stats:

Facebook ~ 1K

Twitter ~ 800

Follow Rianna:

     

 

 

18. Emma’s Blog

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Emma shares with us her experiences of fighting sarcoma and tells it like it is, covering important topics like the psychological impact of a cancer diagnosis and the sadness and anxiety that it can bring. But it’s not all dark and gloomy, Emma also uses her blog to raise awareness about sarcoma and describes her many positive experiences of living with cancer.

Why you should read it: To get insight into life with sarcoma and the impact it can have on your mental health

 

Our top 3 posts:

Flying solo

What a decision to make

Bittersweet

The stats:

Facebook - 519

Twitter - 429

Follow Emma:

     



19. Little Dragon Cancer

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Dracunculus is the alter ego giving voice to a man ‘kicking bowel cancer in the ‘nads’. Back in 2014, his oncologist gave him between six and eighteen months to live but Dracunculus didn’t like the sound of that so decided to ignore it. Two-and-a-half years later, he’s still going strong and continues to write an interesting and sometimes tongue-in-cheek account of life with metastatic bowel cancer.

Why you should read it: For a personal account of what life with metastatic bowel cancer is like.

 

Our top 3 posts:

Ups and downs

None of my clothes fit

Down to one

The stats:

Twitter - 735

Follow Little Dragon Cancer:

 

20. Surviving Pancreatic Cancer and My Street Food Life

When Carl Denning was first diagnosed with pancreatic cancer two and a half years ago he was shocked, frightened and felt alone. There was little in the way of online support from other pancreatic cancer survivors so Carl decided to start his own blog as a way of coping with his new diagnosis. Carl’s blog is full of wisdom and encouragement and although he has written the final entry for his blog, it still serves as a powerful reminder that even the toughest cancer can be beaten. His final message is ‘‘when you find out the percentage of survival, don't accept it, challenge it, and do everything you can to do that."

Why you should read it: If you’re looking for a blog to encourage and support you in the face of a difficult diagnosis then read Carl’s blog.

 

Our top 3 posts:

Result…

A brave new day

Ablation in London

The stats:

Twitter - 300 

Follow Carl:




















 

 

 



 

Comments

  1. Tanya Malpass on

    great, I'm always looking for upbeat cancer testimonies. you need one on glioblasomamutifome (aka "The Terminator") try mine

Comments are closed.