Ann Summers boss Jacqueline Gold CBE has exclusively revealed to HELLO! her secret battle with breast cancer. The multi-millionaire businesswoman received the shocking diagnosis in October last year after she found a pea-sized lump in her right breast. “In a perverse way, I feel that having cancer has given me an opportunity and whilst I would in no way want it again, it has changed my life for the better,” she says.
Ann Summers boss Jacqueline Gold
Jacqueline, 57, who is married to mortgage broker Dan Cunningham, 40, with whom she has an eight-year-old daughter, Scarlett, tells the magazine how she approached the illness as she would a business challenge, drawing up a strategy which included telling only her close family and friends what she was going through. “I didn’t want sympathy or for anyone to treat me differently, because I felt that, if they did, it would affect my recovery.”
Jacqueline with husband Dan Cunningham and daughter Scarlett
She also reveals that she only cried once, when her hair started to fall out in clumps, shortly before last Christmas. “It’s hard for a woman to look in the mirror and see herself bald,” says Jacqueline, who switched to a more healthy lifestyle after her diagnosis, banishing sugar, alcohol and meat from her diet, doing regular yoga sessions and early morning workouts to build up her strength.
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Told the cancer had gone in April of this year, Jacqueline tells HELLO!. “I felt like I had won the lottery”. She underwent 30 sessions of chemotherapy and a lumpectomy, and will not receive the official all-clear for another two years but feels blessed with the outcome she’s had. “I’m lucky I’ve lived a charmed life, but we’re all equal when it comes to health; no matter how hard you’ve worked or how fortunate you are, it doesn’t discriminate.”
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