Almost all the cells in our bodies must be replaced on a regular basis. Some cells, like those that make up the intestinal lining, die out quickly and are replaced every few days. In other parts of the body, the cells live for years before they divide and form new ones. Under special circumstances, such as an injury or an illness, healthy new cells may grow more quickly than usual to replace those that are damaged. When the area is healed, the cell growth slows back down to its normal rate.
Normally, the genes that control the growth of cells automatically know when to start and stop the replication process. But when those genes are mutated—perhaps because of an inherited ﬂaw, or more commonly, because of dietary and environmen- tal factors—cells may begin to multiply and divide at an unusually fast rate. Eventu- ally, these cells form a lump. Sometimes lumps are benign (meaning that they are noncancerous and relatively harmless), as in the case of warts or uterine ﬁbroids. Other growths, however, are malignant. They pull nutrients away from the healthy tissues that surround them, and they interfere with the body’s normal functions, to a poten- tially life-threatening extent. If a tumor continues to grow, its cells may spread via the blood vessels or the lymphatic system to other parts of the body, where they form new tumors. Once this process, called metastasis, is underway, there is a risk of dying from the complications that can occur. Although many cancers can be treated successfully when caught early, the sad fact remains that they are the second-leading cause of death in the United States. Every minute, another person dies of some form of the disease.
The word cancer refers to the process of uncontrolled cell division, but, technically, it is not, in itself, the name of a speciﬁc disorder. Instead, cancer is an umbrella term that refers to more than one hundred different kinds of diseases, which are generally named according to the area where a tumor ﬁrst appears. In men, prostate cancer is most common; in women, breast cancer is most frequent. But both of these cancers can be highly treatable when caught early. Lung cancer is common and one of the deadliest. Cancer also tends to strike the skin, the urinary tract, the colorectal region, and the female reproductive organs, although it can attack anywhere. It’s beyond the
scope of this book to discuss each individual type of cancer, but the suggestions here apply to anyone who is ﬁghting off a tumor, wants to keep a cancer in remission, or hopes to avoid developing cancer in the ﬁrst place. We also have recommendations on what to take if you are undergoing chemotherapy and/or radiation, to reduce side effects and optimize immune function, as well as outcome.
Scientists break cancers down into four very broad categories, and if you’re try- ing to communicate with your doctor or keep up with medical literature, it’s helpful to understand the difference among them. Carcinomas affect soft tissues in organs and glands, like the skin, the breasts, the lungs, and the pancreas. Sarcomas, which are quite rare, occur in solid tissues, especially bone, muscle, and cartilage. Lymphomas appear in the lymphatic system. Leukemias are cancers of the tissues that form blood; these cancers are unusual, in that they don’t form hard tumors.
As with so many other chronic and deadly diseases, researchers have not been able to pinpoint the cause of uncontrolled, cancerous cell growth, despite decades of hard work and billions of dollars in funding. It’s likely that there isn’t just one cause. We know, for example, that faulty genes play a role in some cancers—but most people with genetic ﬂaws aren’t doomed to develop cancer; they simply have a greater chance of doing so. Although a family history of cancer carries with it increased risk, most cancer researchers agree that as a sole cause, genetics is relatively insigniﬁcant, accounting for only 5 to 15 percent of cancers. It appears that most cancers are caused by largely controllable factors, such as nutrition, lifestyle, and environmental factors. One of the criticisms of conventional medicine in preventing and treating cancer is that diet, lifestyle, stress, and the ability to rid the body of environmental toxins rarely are addressed in a comprehensive fashion. Yet these factors are both most inﬂuential and most controllable in the prevention of cancer, and they play important roles in the recovery from cancer. To reduce the risk of developing cancer, we all need to reduce free-radical formation in the body, limit exposure to dietary and
environmental sources of free radicals, and increase our intake of
Toxins That Cause Cell
• Pesticides and herbicides
• Toxic metals
• Metabolites of poor digestion and elimination
We also know that environmental carcinogens like cigarette smoke, man-made food, and pollution can have a devastating effect on the body. These toxins encourage the formation of free radicals, and many experts now believe that these unbalanced molecules con- tribute to uncontrolled cell growth. People with strong immune sys- tems and high levels of antioxidants—the substances that neutralize free radicals—are in a much better position to stave off tumor growth. But again, not everyone exposed to high levels of carcino- gens or with a weakened immune system will necessarily suffer from cancer. An increasing amount of research is demonstrating how the effects of stress may be the root cause for some people. In all probability, a combination of several factors leads to this group of diseases.
Since we can’t control the genes we inherit (not yet, anyway), it’s wise for people who are battling cancer or who want to prevent it to turn their attention to things we can control. First things ﬁrst: Early detection is the key to successful treatment, so have regular checkups and cancer screenings, as are appropriate for your age, sex, and med- ical history. Learn the warning signs of cancer, and contact a doctor immediately if one shows up on your body. Aside from these common-sense strategies, you must do everything you can to support your immune system and increase your intake of antiox- idants, while minimizing your exposure to environmental toxins. You should also
cleanse your body by drinking lots of clean water and eating plenty of ﬁber. Periodic fasts will further detoxify your system. Your liver is one of the most crucial organs for cancer defense; under normal conditions, it ﬁlters out toxins and helps them pass out of the body. But when unhealthful food, pollution, or other carcinogens overtax
Recommended Screening Tests for Cancer
Regular screening tests can help you and your doctor detect any cancerous growths at the earliest possible stage. When cancer is caught early, your chances of healing rise dramatically. Early detection also gives you a broader range of treatment options, along with more time to consider the ones that are right for you.
Breast exams and mammograms: Every woman should practice a monthly self-examination of her breasts. If you ﬁnd any kind of change—a lump, dimpling of the skin, a swelling, an unexplained discharge from the nipples, or a rash—contact your doctor. In addition to self-exams, women should get a yearly breast examination by a health-care professional. And women over forty should receive mammograms as directed by their doctors.
Colon and rectal exams: If you’re ﬁfty or older, your doctor should give you a digital rectal exam (DRE) every year. Because the ﬁrst sign of colorec- tal cancer is blood in the stool, you should also have an annual stool test for occult, or hidden, blood.
Oral exams: Be sure that your dentist examines your entire mouth during your twice-yearly visits. He or she should perform a manual, as well as a visual, inspection of your oral cavity and your neck.
Pap tests: All women over the age of eighteen, as well as younger women who are sexually active, should have annual Pap tests to screen for cervical cancer. The Pap test can detect precancerous cervical changes; with a rela- tively simple outpatient procedure, your doctor can stop cancer before it starts. If you’ve had three negative Pap tests in a row and have never had a positive result, your doctor may allow you to reduce the frequency of the exams.
Prostate exams and PSA tests: If you’re a man age forty years or older, your doctor should perform manual prostate exams at your yearly checkup. Starting at age ﬁfty, you should also have a prostate-speciﬁc antigen (PSA) blood test. Men who have a family history of prostate cancer should begin PSA tests a little earlier, at age forty-ﬁve.
Pelvic exams: In addition to Pap tests, women should have yearly pelvic exams to check for ovarian cancer. A doctor will feel your ovaries and uterus to make sure they’re healthy.
Skin exams: Everyone, even people who have avoided the sun, should have a skin exam during his or her yearly physical. It’s also wise to perform a self-exam once every month. Use a full-length mirror, as well as a hand mir- ror, to check places that are hard to see, like your back, as well as the backs of your knees and your upper thighs. If you detect any changes, give your doctor a call.
Testicular exams: Men should have their testes examined during their annual check-up. While self-exams are generally not necessary, you should be alert to any changes in your testicles. If you ﬁnd a lump or any other change, call your doctor.
it, some of those toxins are reabsorbed into the body, where they may encourage can- cerous growths. Good nutrition and a detoxiﬁcation plan will support your liver, but you’ll also want to give it a boost with cleansing herbs. And because stress can pro- duce free radicals and lower immunity, it’s also important to ﬁnd measures that release tension and get your stress levels under control.
As most of us know, the conventional measures for treating cancer—chemother- apy, radiation, and surgical removal of the tumor or the affected organ—are extremely harsh and sometimes even life-threatening. There are also highly promising reports of dietary and supplementation therapies that have caused cancer remission in some people, but as yet, we have few studies that can actually prove their effectiveness. Talk to your doctor, do some research, and weigh the pro’s and cons of the different treat- ments available for your type of cancer. If you choose to undergo chemotherapy or other conventional treatments, try to ﬁnd a doctor who is sympathetic to your desire to incorporate natural strategies into your healing process. Dietary changes, herbs, and other natural treatments can signiﬁcantly reduce your discomfort and boost your abil- ity to ﬁght the disease.
There is no single cause of cancer, but the factors that are tied to a greater likelihood of developing cancer are listed as follows:
• Genetic ﬂaws
• Environmental toxins, including pollution, toxic metals, andradiation
• A poor diet, especially one high in fat, additives, pesticides, and improperly prepared meats
• A toxic liver
• Viruses and other stealth infections
• A weakened immune system
• Poor digestion and detoxiﬁcation
• Lack of exercise
• Nutritional deﬁciencies
• Certain medical therapies (such as synthetic hormone replacement
related to breast cancer)
The following tests help assess possible reasons for cancer: Immune system imbalance or disease—blood Genetic defects—blood, saliva Hormone testing (thyroid, DHEA, cortisol, testosterone, IGF-1, estrogen, progesterone)—saliva, blood, or urineIntestinal permeability—urine Detoxiﬁcation proﬁle—urine Oxidative stress—urine or bloodVitamin and mineral analysis (especially magnesium, B12, iron, andCoQ10)—blood
Digestive function and microbe/parasite/candida testing—stool analysis Food and environmental allergies/sensitivities—blood, electrodermal Blood-sugar and insulin balance—blood
Cancers often grow for years, even decades, before they manifest in symptoms. Nev- ertheless, there are some early warning signs you should watch for. If you experience any of the following symptoms, don’t panic. Most likely, you don’t have cancer: the symptoms of cancerous growths are similar or identical to the symptoms of many other illnesses, often ones that are much less frightening. Nevertheless, you should see your doctor right away for an accurate diagnosis. If you do have a cancerous growth, the sooner you start treatment, the better your chances of sending the disease into permanent remission.
• A mole, a wart, or a blemish that changes in diameter, shape, color, or thickness
• A sore that doesn’t heal within three weeks
• A lump or a swelling under the skin
• Thickening of the skin on any part of your body
• Chronic indigestion or difﬁculty swallowing
• A change in bowel or bladder habits
• Blood in the urine or the stool
• Rectal bleeding
• An unexplained vaginal discharge or bleeding between periods
• Recurring headaches
• An unexplained loss of weight or appetite
• An unexplained pain, especially in the bones
• A persistent low-grade fever
• Recurrent infections
• Hoarseness that lingers for more
than a week
• A persistent cough or a cough that brings up blood
• Persistent fatigue, nausea, or vomiting
Dietary therapies for cancer seek to return your body to its natural state of balance
and health. Focus on a diet of whole foods, as outlined in this chapter, which optimize immune function and detoxiﬁcation.
Wherever possible, eat clean, live foods. Look for food that’s organically grown. If you’re eating poultry, check the label to be sure the animal was not raised on antibi- otics or other unnatural substances. When buying ﬁsh, ask whether the product comes from a clean water source.
When the liver processes toxins, cancer-promoting free radicals are produced in high quantities. Of all the antioxidants, glutathione is the best at counteracting the free radicals created during this process. Asparagus, avocados, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, and walnuts are all excellent sources of glutathione. Make it a priority to put one or more of these foods on your menu every day.
Eat as many raw vegetables and fruits as possible, especially those that have deep, rich colors. These foods are high in ﬁber, which helps ﬂush toxins from your system, and they’re potent sources of antioxidants. When you eat them raw, you will also retain their natural enzymes, which help you digest food and absorb the maximum amount of nutrients into your bloodstream.
For even more ﬁber, eat plenty of whole grains, including oats and brown rice.
Eat wheat germ, nuts, and seeds for their vitamin E content. Vitamin E is another powerful antioxidant.
Garlic, onions, and legumes will help keep your liver functioning at optimum capacity.
Fermented soy products, such as tofu, tempeh, and miso, appear to have anticancer properties, based on population studies. Consume these products three to four times weekly, unless you are sensitive to soy products. (But don’t take isoﬂavone extracts. Their effects on the body are still unknown.)
If you’re battling cancer, you don’t need to be told how important it is to keep up your strength and energy. Eat lean protein from beans, eggs, tofu, poultry, or ﬁsh. Peo- ple undergoing conventional cancer therapy require increased protein intake to pre- vent tissue wasting.
Studies in Japan show that in areas where people drink green tea, there are signif- icantly lower rates of stomach, esophageal, and liver cancer. It also acts as a mild stim- ulant of the immune system.
Tomatoes are high in lycopene, a substance that’s been shown to prevent and even help counteract prostate cancer. Cooked tomatoes are higher in lycopene than raw ones are.
Make sure to drink plenty of clean water to promote healthy detoxiﬁcation. Fresh juicing with vegetable and fruit juices is highly advised. Try to consume 8 to 10 ounces a day of a variety of juices.
For extra ﬁber and cancer-ﬁghting phytonutrients known as lignans, take 4 table- spoons of ground ﬂaxseeds daily with 10 ounces of water.
Food to Avoid
Do not eat foods that don’t come from nature. Processed food, junk food, and any- thing containing chemicals, additives, or dyes should be banished from your menu.
Make every effort to avoid foods that have been sprayed, waxed, or otherwise treated. If you absolutely cannot avoid eating these foods, at least be sure to remove their peels, skins, or outer layers and to wash the food thoroughly in clean water before eating.
While there’s no evidence that reﬁned sugar directly causes cancer, we do know that too much of it signiﬁcantly depresses your immune system. A weak immune sys- tem may leave you vulnerable to cancer, and it can also sap your ability to handle aggressive cancer treatment. Do not eat products containing reﬁned sugar. This includes sodas, candy, cakes, and cookies, as well as store-bought juices and many processed foods. You should also restrict your intake of natural sugars. Go easy on homemade fruit juices and baked goods sweetened with molasses or honey.
Saturated, hydrogenated, and partially hydrogenated fats are linked to most degen- erative disorders, and cancer is no exception. High consumption of these “bad” fats (as opposed to the “good” essential fatty acids found in cold-pressed oils and some ﬁsh) has been strongly linked to several types of cancer, including breast, prostate, and colorectal cancers. Avoid red meat, butter, margarine, shortening, and products made with these foods. Especially carcinogenic are meats that have been grilled, charcoal-broiled, cured, or smoked. If you’re trying to prevent cancer and want to enjoy red meat as an occasional treat, it would be wise to stay away from meats prepared in any of these manners, including hot dogs, cold cuts, and luncheon meats, as well as most types of bacon, ham, and sausage.
Be wary of alcohol. Heavy use is linked to mouth and throat cancers and possibly to cancer of the stomach, the colon, and the rectum. If you’re a healthy person trying to avoid cancer, limit yourself to a glass or two of wine per week. If you have
cancer, it’s best to avoid alcohol entirely, as it depletes much-needed nutrients from your body.
If you’ve been diagnosed with cancer, make regular detoxiﬁcation a pri- ority. Do a 3-day juice fast once every month; once every 6 months, do a longer fast—for 5 or 7 days. People who are in an advanced stage of cancer should use common sense: although it’s normal to have some bodily response like headaches or nausea while fasting, you should stop if those responses become severe or unbearable. Instead, simply add juices to your normal good diet.
None of us can completely avoid exposure to toxins, no matter how well we eat or change our lifestyle habits, so a person hoping to avoid cancer would do well to practice regular short fasts. You do not need to undertake the longer fasts recommended for a person diagnosed with cancer. Try doing a three-day juice fast once a month, or fast one day out of every week. These should be done under medical supervision.
oriolus enhances a disease- free period after colon cancer surgery. A 10-year, randomized, double-blind trial was performed by administering coriolus (PSK) to
56 patients and a placebo to another group of 55 patients after surgical operations on their col- orectal cancers. The rate of patients in remission (or disease-free) was signiﬁcantly higher (more than doubled) in the PSK group than in the placebo group. Researchers
also found that the white blood cells for the PSK group showed “remarkable enhancement in their activities.”
Maitake Cancer Study
A total of 33 cancer patients in stages II, III, and IV, ages 33 to 68, participated in this trial. Data was collected under the cooperation of their medical doctors in Japan. Patients were given either MD fraction with tablets only, or MD frac-
tion and tablets in addition to chemotherapy. Cancer regression or signiﬁcant symptom improvement was observed in 11 out of 16 breast cancer patients, 7 out of 12 liver cancer patients, and 5 out of 8 lung cancer patients.
Super Seven Prescriptions—Cancer
Super Prescription #1 Coriolus versicolor (Trametes versicolor)
Take 1,000 mg three times daily of the PSP or PSK standardized extracts on an empty stomach. Coriolus contains polysaccharides that
have been shown to enhance immune function. It is mainly used for esophageal, lung, stomach, and colon cancer. Note: It can be safely used in conjunction with conventional treatment (surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation).
Super Prescription #2 Maitake (Grifola frondosal)
Take 0.5 to 1 mg of the standardized MD or D fraction per kg of body weight per day in divided doses on an empty stomach. Maitake enhances immune cells that ﬁght cancer. It was found to be most effective for breast, prostate, liver, and lung cancers. Note: It can be safely used in conjunction with conventional treatment (surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation).
Super Prescription #3 Proteolytic enzymes
Take a complex of proteolytic enzymes (dependent on the dose of the formula, take as directed on the container) three times daily between meals. Proteolytic enzymes have been
Coriolus Alleviates Side Effects of
Chemotherapy and Radiation
A study at the University of Shanghai examined whether coriolus polysaccha- rides (PSP) could lessen the side effects of chemotherapy or radiation. In this
study, 650 people with cancer who were undergoing chemotherapy and radiation were given either PSP or a placebo, and their side effects were assessed. Researchers used twenty different criteria to assess adverse reactions and deter- mined that people receiving PSP had markedly fewer side effects than did those receiving placebo.
a study at the
niversity of Texas Medical Cen- ter in Houston, researchers found that astragalus restored or enhanced the func- tion of white blood cells that were taken from people with cancer. Inter- estingly, some of the damaged cells were so much improved that they became more active than normal cells taken from people who were cancer free. This
herb is also used to support bone mar- row function for patients undergoing chemotherapy.
one small human study, MCP was shown to decrease PSA levels (a marker for prostate cancer) in four out of seven men with prostate cancer.
shown to have numerous anticancer effects. Note: They can be safely used in con- junction with conventional treatment (surgery—except not three days before or after surgery—chemotherapy, and radiation).
Super Prescription #4 Astragalus (Astragalus membranaceus)
Take 1,000 mg or 4 ml of the tincture three times daily. Astragalus enhances nat- ural killer and other immune cells that ﬁght cancer. Note: It can be safely used in conjunction with conventional treatment (surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation).
Super Prescription #5 Vitamin C
Take 5,000 to 10,000 mg or higher in divided doses. One technique is to build up to as high a dose as you can tolerate. When diarrhea occurs, cut back on the dosage. Note: Vitamin C can be administered in very therapeutic levels by a doctor who was trained in intravenous therapy.
Super Prescription #6 Curcumin
Take 400 mg of curcumin extract three times daily on an empty stomach. This extract from turmeric has many different anticancer effects. Note: It can be safely used in conjunction with conventional treatment (surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation).
Super Prescription #7 Essiac
Essiac is a combination of detoxifying herbs derived from an ancient Indian heal- ing formula, and it has attained a reputation for great success in treating cancers of all kinds. When buying Essiac—many brands use the name—look for the fol- lowing set of herbs: sheep sorrel, burdock root (Articum lappa), slippery elm (Ulmus fulva), rhubarb root, watercress, blessed thistle (Cnicus benedictus), red clover (Trifolium pratense), and kelp (Ascophyllum nodosum). Essiac is most potent as a tincture or a tea; take as directed on the package label.
Super Seven Prescriptions—Cancer Prevention
Super Prescription #1 Green tea (Camella sinensis)
Drink three cups of organic green tea daily. Note: If you are sensitive to caffeine, there are many brands that have removed the caffeine. Or, take 1,500 mg daily of the capsule form standardized to contain at least 80 to 90 percent polyphenols and
35 to 55 percent epigallocatechin-3 gallate (EGCG).
Super Prescription #2 Super green food blend
Use a formula that contains a blend of super green foods, such as chlorella, spi- rulina, wheatgrass, and other green foods. They contain an array of phytonutrients and antioxidants that promote healthy cells in the body. Take as directed on the container.
Super Prescription #3 High-potency multivitamin
Take a high-potency multivitamin and mineral formula, as directed on the container. It provides a base of nutrients and antioxidants for immune health.
Super Prescription #4 Probiotic
Take a product containing at least 4 billion organisms of the friendly bacteria per daily dose. These good bacteria support immune function, digestion, and detoxi- ﬁcation of carcinogenic matter.
Super Prescription #5 Indole-3-carbinol
Take 400 mg daily to support detoxiﬁcation, particularly of cancerous hormone metabolites.
Super Prescription #6 D-glucarate
Take 400 mg daily to support detoxiﬁcation of carcinogens and cancerous hormone metabolites.
Super Prescription #7 Fish oil
Take a daily dosage of 1,000 mg of combined DHA and EPA daily. These essen- tial fatty acids support healthy cell structure.
Modiﬁed citrus pectin (MCP), studies suggest, reduces the risk of prostate cancer metastasis. Take 10 mg of the powder form three times daily.
IP6 (inositol hexaphosphate) has been shown in studies to be an effec- tive immune booster. Take 4 to 8 grams of IP6. Note: It can be safely used in conjunction with conventional treatment (surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation).
Quercitin is a type of ﬂavonoid that has been shown to inhibit tumor formation in test tube studies. Take 400 mg three times daily on an empty stomach.
Fish oil is an important supplement, especially in preventing cachexia (tissue wasting). Take a product that contains a daily combined total dosage of 1,500 to 2,000 of DHA and EPA.
Whey protein provides valuable protein to support the immune system. It also increases the levels of the important antioxidant glutathione. Take
25 grams twice daily as part of a protein shake or a smoothie.
A greens drink containing super green foods, such as chlorella, spi- rulina, wheat grass, and others, supports detoxiﬁcation. Take daily, as directed on the container.
Probiotic supplements are important for optimal immune function and for digestion and detoxiﬁcation. Take a product containing a daily total of at least 4 billion active organisms.
Colostrum is a good supplement to support the immune system. Take
500 mg three times daily.
Melatonin has been shown in several studies to be helpful as an adjunctive therapy for certain types of cancers. It activates immune cells
In this study, researchers exam- ined the association between consumption of green tea prior to clinical cancer onset among 472 patients with stages I, II, and III breast cancer. Consumption of green tea was closely associated with decreased numbers of axil- lary lymph node metastases among premenopausal patients with stages I and II breast cancer. They also found that increased consumption of green tea was cor- related with decreased recurrence of stages I and II breast cancer.
The researchers concluded, “Our results indicate that increased consumption of green
tea prior to clinical cancer onset is signiﬁcantly associated with improved prognosis of stage I and II breast cancer.”
and improves the action of chemotherapy drugs and radiation. Take 20 mg or more under the direction and the guidance of a doctor.
Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) will protect your liver during chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Find a product standardized for 70 to 80 percent silymarin con- tent, and take 150 to 200 mg twice a day.
A high-potency multivitamin and mineral formula provides a base of nutrients for immune support. Take as directed on the container.
A substance called carnosol, which is found in rosemary, has been found to inhibit cancer in laboratory animals. Take 2 to 3 grams twice a day, or use 2 to 3 cc of a tincture three times daily.
If you are undergoing radiation treatment or chemotherapy, drink fennel tea to reduce the side effects.
Garlic (Allium sativum) strengthens the immune system. Take 300 to 450 mg twice a day.
Cat’s claw (Una de bato) stimulates the activity of white blood cells. Take 500 mg or 1 to 2 cc twice a day.
Pau d’arco (Tabebuia avellanedae) is another highly potent immune-system enhancer. Take 100 mg or 0.5 to 1.0 ml three times daily.
Take 300 mg of echinacea (Echinacea purpurea) three times a day for its immune- boosting properties.
If cancer treatment is making you nauseated, drink peppermint or ginger tea to soothe your stomach.
Homeopathic treatment can be helpful for someone with cancer but requires a skilled homeopathic practitioner. The following remedies can be used safely to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation. Pick the remedy that best matches your symptoms in this section. For acute symptoms, take a 30C potency four times daily. After you notice improvement, stop taking the remedy, unless symptoms return.
Cadmium Sulphuratum is used to prevent and treat fatigue, vomiting, and loss of hair.
Ipecacuanha (Cephaelis ipecacuanha) is for persistent nausea and vomiting, when vomiting does not provide any relief from symptoms.
Nux Vomica is for symptoms of heartburn, reﬂux, constipation, and nausea. The person feels irritable and chilly.
Traditional Chinese Medicine
Many Chinese patent herbal remedies can strengthen your immune system and help you ﬁght infection while undergoing conventional treatment. Consult a TCM practi- tioner for a combination that meets your individual needs.
• Liver 4 is the point for general pain relief.
• Stomach 36 is a good addition to a healthful eating plan, as it improves your
body’s ability to digest food and absorb nutrients.
Massage won’t cure cancer—and you should run from anyone who claims it can— but in the midst of conventional treatments, the compassionate touch of a massage therapist can be quite welcoming. Depending upon your individual need, you can ask for a relaxing massage or an invigorating one. Or you may prefer to opt for a lym- phatic massage, which breaks up toxins and carries them away from the body. A note of caution is in order, however: Do not allow the area where a tumor is located to be massaged.
See pages 686–687 for information about reﬂexology areas and how to work them.
When time permits, work the whole foot to stimulate all areas of your body’s defense and promote a general sense of well-being.
If you have a limited amount of time, focus on the region or the regions where the growth is located. You should also work the liver and the colon to facilitate detoxiﬁcation.
Many cancer patients have responded well to fever therapy, which stimulates the body’s immune response in the same way that a fever does. It also pulls toxins from the body and expels them as you sweat. At the very least, hydrotherapy will help ﬁght bacteria or viruses that may be trying to take advantage of your body’s weakened state. Saunas also can be used. We recommend constitutional hydrotherapy, which you can do at home. See the Hydrotherapy chapter for directions.
Juniper breaks down toxins that are hiding in fatty deposits. To bolster the detoxify- ing effects of a lymphatic massage, ask your massage therapist to use an oil mixed with a little juniper. You can also add a few drops of juniper to your bath.
If you are fatigued, use rose, geranium, or jasmine for an energy lift. You can employ these oils in almost any preparation, but for all-day relief, you may want to place a few drops in a diffuser and let the scent waft throughout your room.
Lavender and melissa are calming when you feel anxious and stressed.
Warming oils like black pepper, rosemary, and ginger can help relieve pain. Add them to a bath, a compress, or a lotion.
Tea tree oil (Melaleuca alternifolia) is antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral. When treatment has left you vulnerable to infection or if you’re exposed to a contagious ill- ness like the ﬂu, take a hot bath and run a few drops of tea tree oil under the tap. (Add just 2 or 3 drops for your ﬁrst use, as this oil can be irritating to some people.)
If cancer treatment leaves you feeling queasy or downright sick, you can use pep- permint or ginger oils to calm your stomach. If your nausea is unpredictable, try car- rying a vial around with you; place the vial under your nose and inhale deeply as needed. You can also make a lotion or a cream with either oil and rub it into your skin. The scent will stay with you and reduce your chances of feeling ill.
General Stress-Reduction Therapies
Stress is a carcinogen, just like radiation and pesticides. Reducing stress has an inhibit- ing effect on tumor growth; it will also improve the quality of your life during treat- ment. Support groups are an excellent way to handle stress and reduce tension. One famous study of breast-cancer patients showed that women who discussed their problems in support groups lived a full two years longer than women who did not. It’s a good idea to supplement weekly sessions with a daily stress-reducing exercise, like meditation, yoga, or deep breathing.
Cancer also causes stress. In order to keep yourself in peak ﬁghting condition, do everything you can to avoid tense situations, even those that you usually accept as a normal part of a full life. This is the time to unload a demanding project at work or to avoid your personal stress triggers, like crowded roads or difﬁcult relatives.
Bach Flower Remedies
Select the appropriate remedy, and place 10 drops under your tongue. Hold the drops in place for thirty seconds and swallow. Use as often as needed.
Rescue Remedy comes to your aid in emotional or physical crises. It soothes your body and mind and allows you to turn your focus away from panic and back to healing.
• One of the most avoidable—but most prevalent—carcinogens is cigarette smoke. Everyone knows it causes lung cancer, but the free radicals produced by inhaling smoke may contribute to many other forms of the disease. Do not smoke, not even socially, and do not expose yourself to secondhand smoke.
• As much as possible, avoid radiation. Do not sit or stand close to television sets or microwave ovens (a distance of about eight feet is preferable). If you work on a computer, invest in a radiation screen. And limit X-rays to those that are absolutely necessary for your health.
• You must also avoid harsh chemicals. A good rule of thumb is to stay away from any substance that releases fumes: Nail polish remover, hair spray, gaso- line, household cleaners, and dry-cleaning solvent are all dangerous.
• Establish a healthy relationship with the sun. You need about ﬁfteen minutes of sunshine a day to keep your body in proper working order, but sunburn and prolonged exposure can result in skin cancer. (The sun is, after all, a source of radiation.) Try to get your daily dose of sunlight in the early morning hours, when the rays are weak; if you must go out in broad daylight, wear protective clothing and use sunscreen.
• Radon is a radioactive gas that is strongly linked to lung cancer. It’s usually found in the soil, but it may seep out, contaminating the air in your house and the water you drink. Radon cannot be detected with the senses, so you should buy a radon test kit and use it in your home. Should you have a radon problem, you can insulate your home by sealing up leaks.
• A sexually transmitted organism called human papilloma virus is a leading cause of cervical cancer, so do not engage in sexual intercourse with people whose sexual histories you do not know. Don’t rely on condoms to protect you, as the virus can pass through them.