An anti-cancer diet and cancer nutrition that would help the average person on Chemotherapy. By Chris Woollams
1. A diet for Chemotherapy - the NHS
One of our readers was having chemotherapy and picked up an NHS booklet at the Royal Marsden on ´A Diet for Chemotherapy´. It covered recommendations on what to eat as a cancer diet when undergoing chemotherapy. And she was horror struck.
"I thought it was some sort of April Fool", she wrote in her letter to us.
Small pictures of a cheeseburger, a milkshake and a sticky bun or cake on every page, with recommendations to drink milky sugary tea, consume cows´ dairy, sugar and fats were commonplace. Is this really a cancer diet for cancer patients? Is this cancer nutrition at its best? A diet to beat cancer?
We quizzed the hospital, for whom we have the greatest respect. The reply stated that the sole issue during chemotherapy was to keep up body weight, hence the diet full of calories from fat and sugar. Only recently in a Times review on cancer, an ´expert´ reiterated this fat and glucose-rich diet, telling cancer patients - ALL cancer patients - on chemotherapy that calories were good and they should have lots of cows´ dairy and sugary foods to keep their weight up! Yet we are all told regularly in the media that this is a ´junk diet´ to be avoided at all costs. Isn´t it supposed to be the cause of cancer?
The truth is that in 2013 this UK advice is dangerously misleading and indeed, out of date. In America, cancer centres such as MD Anderson and Memorial Sloan-Kettering talk about tailoring a nutritious diet to help the patient heal and to fight the cancer better. The American Cancer Society talks about an explosion in research that shows a good diet can increase survival times and even keep you cancer free. The National Cancer Institute in America has endorsed this report and also conducted research showing that poor diet helps cancers regrow, while good diet helps stop that regrowth!
Then there is specific research that:-
* Cancer patients with HIGHER BLOOD GLUCOSE levels SURVIVE LESS - they live the shortest times.
* Common sodium salt poisons healthy cells and can reduce their oxygen levels and power.
* Bad fats like trans fats can severely compromise the liver and the immune system.
* Cows´ dairy contains a growth hormone (IGF-1) known to encourage cancers to grow and divide.
Why give people this diet which seems to encourage the growth of cancer at the very same time your oncologist is struggling to kill off the cancer? Especially when there are now some important research studies showing that FASTING (thus cutting out the junk food and glucose etc) can stop a cancer progressing!
The answer to the NHS cancer diet booklet came when we found out UK hospital dieticians are so busy that they only see approximately 7 per cent of patients on chemotherapy who are in severe trouble. These patients have cachexia, where the chemotherapy is causing severe weight loss and this can kill. And Doctors certainly don´t want their drugs blamed for killing people, do they? It´s a political hot potato, so the dietician aims simply to build you up and keep your weight up.
However, we cannot agree that this calorie-laden, fat-rich diet should be recommended for the other 93 per cent of patients on chemotherapy. It is not a general diet for chemotherapy. In fact, publishing a booklet under that title for all chemotherapy taking patients, we think, is simply crazy. Not least, because the American Cancer Society report highlighted how ´weight control´ was an important factor in beating cancer, Northwestern University Medical School have research showing that weight control and the deliberate loss of weight by overweight people improves survival times, and research from Italy shows that Calorie Restriction seems to be beneficial for cancer patients having chemotherapy and especially radiotherapy.
A diet for chemotherapy should support and enhance your oncologist´s activities, whilst strengthening your body and reducing the side effects of the chemotherapy if possible. Why feed the very cancer you are trying to kill?
Moreover, in 2012/3 research covered in Cancer Watch showed that the consumption of fish oils by lung cancer patients on chemotherapy, actually encouraged appetite and reduced cachexia (British Journal of Nutrition). This could well be true for other cancers too.
3. The latest research findings:
All the research studies we quote are in Cancer Watch on the CANCERactive website. Several important studies seem to point towards the answer for what diet is best if you are having chemotherapy:
a) 2013 research covered in Cancer Watch suggests that Calorie Restriction increases survival times for those on radiotherapy and chemotherapy too (For example, Dr Andrew T Turrisi, Editor of The Oncologist writing on study: Renato Beserga et al. Nutrition Restriction and Radiation - When less is more). Clinical Trials are planned.
b) More than 6 studies in the last three years have shown that glucose feeds cancer cells. In 2012/3 Cancer Watch we cover research showing High Fructose Corn Syrup (think fizzy soft drinks) was found to be even worse. Cutting out these sugars restricts a cancer´s growth. (UCLA)
c) The University of South Florida have shown that starving the body of glucose by using a ´good fat diet´ can return cancer-infected mice to good health. A good fat diet includes eggs, avocado, cold pressed olive oil, flax seed oil and so on. This is called a Ketogenic Diet. Healthy cells can metabolise the ketones for energy, but cancer cells have to have carbohydrate, especially glucose. So you starve them. (See the Ketogenic diet - CLICK HERE).
d) 2012 was a watershed year for research into natural compounds with, for example, polyphenols, resveratrol, quercitin, green tea, curcumin and even aspirin, all being shown to stop cancers reforming, growing and metastases etc etc etc. In the American Cancer Society report reviewing research since 2006, the researchers talked of an ´explosion´ of research and ´overwhelming´ evidence that diet, exercise and weight control could improve survival times and even prevent a cancer returning. Researchers at The National Cancer Institute in America have even shown that bad foods can cause your cancer to come back, while good foods can stop it regrowing (see below).
So here, based on the latest research and views of a dozen expert nutritionists, herbalists and experts we consulted, we present an outline of a real Diet for Chemotherapy.
Building an effective cancer diet that will HELP your oncologist treat your cancer.
So let´s try and build up to a list of what is important to avoid, and to definitely include:
1. Cancer cells need glucose, lots of it
It is quite clear why fasting or a ketogenic diet (where the patient focuses on good fats and quality protein at the complete expense of carbohydrates in their diet) might stop a cancer progressing. Cancer cells aren´t like normal, healthy cells. Three factors are important to understand:
A healthy cell produces energy by burning specially prepared carbohydrate in the presence of oxygen in the power stations, or mitochondria; whereas a cancer cell makes its energy in a very inefficient process in the body of the cell, burning glucose in the absence of oxygen. Otto Warburg won his Nobel Prize in 1931 telling us this. Refined by Krebs later, the theory runs that the mitochondria in a cancer cell have effectively ´shut down´, leaving a very primitive cell working in a very primitive way.
The waste product from this cancer cell´s energy process is a form of lactic acid and this can only be detoxified and neutralised by the liver.
The liver detoxifies this lactic acid and produces a harmless substance called ..... glucose, which passes back round the body to feed the cancer. ´Alien´ has taken over the controls - it is now making its own food; using the body system´s to grow! With a very inefficient energy production system and a cancer that wants to grow quickly, glucose is in high demand.
Only one or two other fuels may be used instead. For example, research is clear: High Fructose Corn Syrup can also feed a cancer. But ketones from fats can only feed healthy cells; while people with the highest blood sugar levels develop more cancers and survive least. Why feed your cancer?
Avoid all cakes, sticky buns, chocolate, sugar in tea, fizzy soft drinks, Ribena, biscuits, processed and packaged foods.
2. Cancers need growth hormone, as much as they can find
Scientists have recently been looking at giving breast cancer patients bisphonates, which are bone-strengthening drugs. Why? Because breast cancers attack bones causing the bone to try to defend and strengthen itself by producing growth hormone. The cancer says ´Thank you´ and uses the growth hormone to boost its own growth and division. It is really taking control of the body system´s now. Why would you want to add more growth hormone from cows´ dairy into your body? Avoid all cows´ dairy.
3. Cancers need a blood supply to grow
Scientists also know that tumours need to grow and that demands an increased blood supply. They have been looking at drugs like thalidomide to stop blood vessels forming in cancer tumours. Growth hormones and other factors in your body can be stimulated by the foods you eat but research shows clearly that other foods (like garlic, grape seed extract and curcumin) can slow or even stop this process. Include these ingredients daily.
4. Bad foods help a cancer regrow; good foods can stop this
Oncologists can tell breast cancer patients whether they are oestrogen-positive or not. Oestrogen is the female sex hormone. In 70 per cent of cases where the woman is positive, they can prescribe drugs to cut oestrogen production (Aromatase Inhibitors).
However, it is now clear many cancers (both male and female) are oestrogen-driven. For example, some brain tumours, colon cancers, prostate cancers, lung cancers, not just female cancers like womb and breast. And the oestrogen doesn´t drive them all in the same way. Two overall routes may be found - one where the oestrogen drives ´stem cells´ and another where oestrogen (oestradiol) causes havoc inside normal healthy cells.
(1) A great number of studies in 2012 focused on the role of cancer stem cells in a tumour. Work at St Bart´s and the Blizzard Institute in London have now isolated cancer stem cells from tumours. Cancer stem cells are the driving cells of a cancer, kept in that state by oestrogen. Chemotherapy may destroy a whole tumour but if one cancer stem cell remains, it can all regrow. Crucially Young S. Kim of the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, USA has shown that ´eating inappropriate foods and their ingredients may result in the loss of regulatory molecules and promote the aberrant or uncontrolled self-renewal of cancer stem cells. But eating other foods containing specific natural compounds can stop the self-renewal´. So, you can guess the ´inappropriate foods´ for yourself. Avoid all refined foods - refined (white) wheat, bread, pasta, oils, junk food and so on. Don´t put it in your mouth if it is not natural and whole. Consume extra virgin olive oil, plenty of fibrous vegetables and fruit, whole oats ... ...
So why eat bad foods if they can make your cancer regrow? Eat the good ones.
Interestingly, the good foods/natural compounds list included sulphoraphanes, curcumin, piperine, theanine and choline plus vitamins A and D, genistein (which can block oestrogen) and EGCG from green tea. The researchers added the statement that ´all these can be taken as supplements´.
Curcumin or turmeric can be taken daily as a supplement, piperine (from black pepper seems to help its absorption); vitamin D is essential in an anti-cancer programme - if you cannot go in the sunshine for 45 minutes a day, supplement with 5,000 IUs. Genistein is found in Red Clover, the herb of Hippocrates. It is also found in pulses, like chickpeas, lentils and soya. Drink 4-7 cups of green tea per day, avoid coffee. It provides the compound EGCG a strong polyphenol, which with other red grape polyphenols such as resveratrol and quercitin have strong antioxidant and anti-cancer abilities. Green tea also contains Theanine, which can cross the blood/brain barrier and is known to reduce stress and increase glutamine/glutamate levels helping to re-oxygenate the body and cells. Choline, another B vitamin, also crosses the blood/brain barrier, helps de-fat the liver and body, and is essential for correct cellular membrane function. Research has shown only 2 per cent of postmenopausal women consume the recommended daily intake.
Oestradiol and causing cellular havoc
(2) Oestrogen is not a single chemical, but a ´family´ of chemicals. There are many oestrogens all of which can bind to the receptor sites on the walls of healthy cells. The most dangerous, oestradiol, then creates havoc inside the cell setting up and driving some cancers. Other human forms like oestrone are far less dangerous. Plant oestrogens (phytoestrogens) are far, far weaker still and can block the receptor sites from attack by oestradiol.
So your diet can help or hinder: Animal and saturated fats can increase aggressive oestrogen production and so drive your cancer, whereas a diet high in phytoestrogens (plants, greens, pulses) can help block the receptor sites. Research shows indole 3 carbinol (from cruciferous vegetables including broccoli) and its metabolite DIM can both denature and convert oestradiol into its safer sister oestrone and even alter cell receptor sites to prevent this oestrogen-binding, while certain medicinal mushrooms, flaxseed/linseed/flax oil and other foods can actually cut oestrogen production. Which would you rather do?
5 Common salt can cause the same oestrogen effects in the cell
A diet high in sodium salt, but low in magnesium and potassium can poison your cells and their power stations and generate the same havoc effects as oestradiol. You need a low salt, high potassium and magnesium diet to counter this effect. The EPIC study has shown that higher magnesium intake means less cancer. The WHO has stated that cutting salt consumption means less cancer. Common table salt and also about 95 per cent of ´Sea Salt´ is just refined sodium chloride - avoid at all costs and if you have to use salt use unrefined Dead Sea Salt or Himalayan Salt. Avoid all processed, canned and packaged foods, dried meats, sausages, and Chinese food (MSG is high sodium). Why would you want a salty diet if you have cancer?
6 Your immune system can kick out a cancer
Scientists are looking at a whole range of immune boosting drugs and treatments like Interleukin or Interferon and dendritic cell vaccines to help boost your immune system to fight off the cancer. But we know that a high glucose diet depresses the immune system, and one high in animal fats can block liver and lymph systems also depressing your immune response. Conversely a number of natural compounds including grape seed extract, pine bark extract, vitamin E and curcumin, plus herbs such as astragalus, cat´s claw and echinacea can equally boost your white immune cell levels. Recent research shows that this is still not enough without the presence of vitamin D to activate the immune attacker T-cells, and vitamin K (from ´greens´) to enhance the uptake. So, do you want to flatten your immune system, or boost it?
7 Chemotherapy is changing
Chemotherapy drugs over the last fifty years are like unguided missiles
The new breed of drugs (Biologics, monoclonal antibodies, hormone treatments like Tamoxifen) are problem-specific, tackling problems such as missing proteins or reducing oestrogen levels, or growth hormone effects. They make ordinary chemotherapy drugs look like unguided missiles. Research is quite clear that these new drugs can be helped in their tasks by certain natural compounds, antioxidants, herbs and a tailored diet. MD Anderson has shown that vitamin E and vitamin C can help bladder cancer drugs; vitamin E can help tamoxifen´s action (you need less of the drug); whereas eating grapefruit can counter certain cancer drugs and should be avoided. What you eat can make a big difference to your survival as the NCI researchers in Bethesda found. A junk diet of sugar and saturated fats will only give you a junk body and encourage the regrowth of cancer. Do you really want to have a junk body when you are fighting to beat cancer?
8 Our knowledge is increasing
We also know that there are many unique factors to a cancer cell. For example it has more receptor sites than a normal cell for vitamin D. And since 2010 major research studies have shown that vitamin D seems capable of normalising/correcting and even killing a cancer cell. Vitamin D, which works more like a hormone than a vitamin, may eventually be available in a concentrated form as a drug, but why wait? You can join the sun worshipers for 45 minutes a day, or supplement. Vitamin K has been found now in several research studies to help vitamin D´s action. You can get your vitamin K from one good helping of greens per day but only if you have good beneficial bacteria levels in your gut (see below). These good bacteria are essential to your good health; they love whole grains, whole foods and natural fibre, they hate salt, alcohol, antibiotics, chlorine and especially junk foods like cheeseburgers, refined grains and glucose (which feed their enemies)!
9 You must have a good level of beneficial bacteria in your gut
There are 800 strains of bacteria in your gut; about 400 have been identified and a dozen or so keep coming up in research as being absolutely essential to your good health. American experts have named these ´helpers´ your ´Microbiome´. There are over 5,000 research studies and more than 80 Clinical Trials on Beneficial Bacteria in the last 5 or so years.
All the bacteria in your gut are, in fact, essential to your health, driving your immune response, cutting up your foods and releasing their goodness, vitamins and short chain esters, and even an anti-cancer chemical, sodium butyrate. But only if you feed them properly.
When you have orthodox medicine, the drugs and antibiotics can severely damage them. Your body becomes acidic creating an environment in which they work less well. You can try to restore their levels by taking multi-strain probiotics, but if you want to try to keep levels high, junk foods containing sugars, refined carbohydrates, saturated fats and salt are no-go areas. They feed the microbes and the yeasts in your gut - the enemies of the good guys. Conversely, whole foods and fibre allows them to thrive and multiply. All the latest American research is clear: ´Healthy microbiome, healthy you´.
10 Different folks, different strokes
When we covered research on common sugar in Cancer Watch we received several letters from irate nurses saying, basically, that we were talking rubbish because sugar is good for you.
Let´s get a few facts straight. Firstly, it´s not our research. We just tell you what Harvard, UCLA, MD Anderson, whoever, have found in THEIR research and clinical trials. Go argue with them! If they repeatedly say that people with the highest levels of common sugar in their blood streams survive less, then that´s good enough for us!
Cheeseburgers; milky/sugary tea; sticky buns; milk shakes??!! It´s a junk diet.
The World Health Organisation is quite clear that up to 70 per cent of all cancers can be attributed to poor diet and are preventable. If you had breast cancer in one breast and are now taking drugs, surely part of what you are doing is trying to PREVENT this cancer reappearing elsewhere?
Consuming milk shakes, cheeseburgers, milky/sugary tea, ice cream, supposedly ´healthy´ drinks like Ribena and Lucozade, sticky buns, chocolate and cake? You are pouring petrol on the fire!!! This is not a diet for chemotherapy it is positively dangerous. A good diet should prevent cachexia AND help fight the cancer. We are not alone in this view. Several major hospitals in the USA now talk about using a nourishing and nutritious diet with adequate minerals and vitamins a rainbow of colours and whole foods.
A real ´Diet for Chemotherapy´
So let us try to summarise a plan, based on real science, to give patients a strong route forward.
1. Clean Your Liver
Your liver is full of fats, dead cells, and overworked from the drugs and lactic acid. The cholesterol wraps around bits of dead cells and forms gallstones, as fine as particles of sand. This will cause bile blockages, blocking the liver´s ability to remove the rubbish from your body, and cause a backlog throughout your whole immune system.
One starting point can be the use of a Liver Flush involving Epsom Salts and olive oil consumed with a fruit juice to take the taste away. The details are elsewhere on this web site. Coffee enemas can also help the liver pass more toxins into the intestine by dilating/expanding the bile ducts.
Milk thistle has recently been shown in clinical trials to reduce side effects in chemotherapy patients and it is known to strengthen the liver. Mistletoe (injections have to be prescribed) also does both jobs. Boldo tea and dandelion amongst others will strengthen your liver and bile production. Magnesium is essential to the liver too, and choline and inositol (B vitamins, for example in soya lecithin) will help reduce fat levels. You could also add turmeric to some meals or take curcumin and drink at least two litres of clean water a day.
2. Prepare Yourself
a) Boost your immune system: Oncologists will often tell patients that they don´t want them taking supplements like antioxidants because they might interfere with their drugs - ´old fashioned´ chemo throws free radicals at cancer cells and they fear antioxidants might stop this. For me, antioxidants (especially the synthetic and deficient copies so prevalent in high street shops) are not the best way anyway, of boosting an immune system. In US research (the VITAL study) grape seed extract was the clear winner in boosting the immune system. Herbs such as astragalus, cats claw, and echinacea seem particularly effective, as do curcumin/turmeric, natural vitamin E and the natural food chlorella (for complete beta-carotene, B-12 etc) contains much of the nourishment you will need. Certain ´medicinal mushrooms´ are also effective and the product MGN-3 (Biobran) has excellent research results behind it.
b) Cut sodium from your diet, boost potassium and magnesium: Increase potassium and magnesium-rich foods. Sodium poisons your cells and displaces potassium in the power stations of your cells, making them more toxic and more acidic. Cancer thrives in acid bodies. Cut sodium foods like salt, soy sauce, gravy granules, hams, cooked meats, salami, turkey roast slices, sliced bread, breakfast cereals, sausages, bacon, processed food, prepared meals and Chinese meals. Consume high potassium and magnesium foods like fresh nuts, jacket potatoes, whole grains, green leafy vegetables, carrots, fresh apples, bananas, whole brown rice, broad beans, peas and pulses. A little rice milk or soya milk is acceptable.
You may wish to read our article on the website entitled ´Acid Bodies and cancer´. Your aim, is to have a slightly alkaline one! So cut out smoking, alcohol, coffee, fats, sugar, salt, cows´ dairy (like milk and cheese. Yes, and the healthy yoghurt and probiotic drink), chocolate, refined carbohydrates (white bread, pasta, rice) i.e. pretty well everything in the NHS A Diet for chemotherapy (or was that cachexia?) booklet. American research shows that alkalising the body stops new metastases, and the researchers (who are about to undertake clinical trials) used a sodium bicarbonate in water solution as a drink.
c) Increase your good fat levels: We have known since 1982, and a Nobel Prize by Sir John Vane, about the positive benefits of omega 3 in the cancer process. Fish oils provide the long-chain version, which helps to reduce cellular inflammation. Short-chain omega 3 can be found in flaxseed. In Dr Joanna Budwig´s anti-cancer diet, she used it with quark to improve cellular oxygen levels; and flaxseed helps reduce oestrogen levels. Cold pressed olive oil has major benefits in the intestine and can displace bad fats in the body. Eating a high fibre diet can reduce levels of circulating bad fats in the body, as can fruits like tomatoes (lycopene). On no account eat trans fats; and minimise saturated fat consumption. Good fat consumption at the expense of carbohydrates is a part of the Ketogenic Diet.
If you do consider fasting as a three or five day programme, please follow the thought of top American Hospitals that you should nourish your body. Even the NCI researchers above talked of eight or so bioactive compounds like curcumin, that you could derive from supplements.
To read more on the Ketogenic diet click here
To read more on Fasting click here
d) Aim off for oestrogen: It is not just breast cancer that can be driven by oestrogen. There is clear research evidence that some womb, ovarian, colon, melanoma, brain tumours and prostate cancers are driven by this female sex hormone.
If your cancer is linked to higher oestrogen levels women should avoid the pill and HRT, men and women should avoid recycled water, fatty foods and eating one or two big meals a day. Graze - eat five or six smaller meals a day. Big starchy or carbohydrate-rich meals stimulate insulin production and this has a knock-on effect to increase oestrogen production. Being overweight will mean greater fat stores and fat is the precursor for oestrogen production.
Oestrogen mimics (xenoestrogens) should be minimised too. These ´chemicals of concern´ feature in the 2013 World Health Organisation report on the urgent need to cut such ´gender-benders´ from everyday environmental chemicals. They invade our bodies in perfumed products, nail polishes (toluene), cosmetics and toiletries and via volatile organic carbon gases from glues, dyes, dry cleaning, bleaches and disinfectants; plus they are formed from chemicals in certain pesticides, white can linings (BPA) and plastic packaging (BPA and phthalates) and some common preservatives (for example, parabens).
So consider going toxin-free at home in the products you use; eat less pesticides; eat more greens, particularly cabbage and broccoli, and pulses. Research shows selenium and indole 3 carbinol can prevent their action.
Sleep in a fully darkened room as this will increase your melatonin production (it balances both IGF-1 and oestrogen excesses). Or you can supplement. (We have a book Oestrogen, the killer in our midst that tells you more click here to read about it.)
e) Consider the latest research. Read Cancer Watch regularly! Read the articles on Beneficial Bacteria, reducing excess yeasts in your body, taking vitamin D, medicinal mushrooms and so on (see the end of the article for all links)
3. Eat to Beat Cancer
In Chris Woollams´ book for CANCERactive, The Rainbow Diet and how it can help you beat cancer, he tells you what foods have been shown in research to be Protective and Corrective. The fact is the pigment in many foods is the bioactive natural compound that has strong anti-cancer properties. Across the week you should eat a rainbow of colours: So base your diet around foods like -
Fresh garlic, leeks, onions, spring onions, radishes - for example, garlic is known to contain a number of anti-cancer agents and is believed to help stop cancer spreading and blood supplies forming to new tumours.
Pulses - for thousands of years we have eaten broad beans, peas and pulses providing phytoestrogens (plant oestrogens that are far, far weaker than human oestrogens) to protect us especially against the spread of hormonally driven cancers.
Glycoproteins and polysaccharides - Four Nobel Prizes for medicine in the last dozen years have been won for discoveries on these natural compounds which help cells communicate -good for your immune system´s ability to see friends and foes. Foods include aloe vera, echinacea, turmeric, pectins (e.g. apples and pears), arabinogalactans (e.g. in oats, psyllium, coconut, tomatoes, carrots, brown rice). Even red wine and mother´s milk contain these important protective factors that encourage better messaging between cells. In the US they are now called "Super carbs" or monosaccharides but are actually neither. Probably the best studied are Medicinal Mushrooms like Reishi, Maitake, Cordyceps which are beta-glucan polysaccharides. (see below).
Dark Red foods - like beetroot, dark plums, aubergines, red grapes, blueberries etc which provide anthocyanins, known to kill cancer cells, and/or polyphenols such as resveratrol and quercitin which both have anti-cancer effects.
Bright colours - for example, red and yellow peppers, peaches, apricots, watermelon, for carotenoids, known to restrict cancers like breast cancer.
Greens - Kale, spinach, broccoli, cabbage for vitamin K, phytoestrogens and indole 3 carbinol.
Sprouting seeds - for sulphoraphanes, which have strong anti-cancer activity.
Nuts and seeds try a breakfast of a little organic muesli, boosted by organic pumpkin and sunflower seeds and crushed flaxseed/linseeds. Great for B vitamins like folic acid and biotin to help protect DNA, cellular oxygenation and detoxifying lignans.
Bitter foods - like watercress, gooseberries, cranberries, blackberries, wild strawberries. Or almonds, cashew nuts, millet, buckwheat and apricot kernels all of which contain fibre and a variety of natural compounds (yes, including B-17, which people like Dr Contreras at the Oasis of Hope calls ´nature´s chemotherapy´).
Notable additions - Green tea, olive oil, fennel, oregano, turmeric/curcumin to boost your immune system and kill yeasts.
Switch out of cows´ dairy - to a little goats´ cheese, soya and rice milk. Swap red meat for game and oily fish (although research shows eating oily fish comes second to taking a supplement of fish oils everyday).
Eat more mushrooms, apples, organic brown rice, Manuka Honey (grade 12) and onions. We could go on. There is research on everything from the benefits of quercitin against cancer to the ability of medicinal mushrooms to cut oestrogen and boost the immune system. It is all in The Rainbow Diet and how it can help you beat cancer. Importantly, avoid fried food or burning on the grill and eat more raw foods. Avoid beers and spirits, although the occasional red wine seems (from research, you understand!) to help.
Click here to read about The Rainbow Diet
4. Diet alone won´t suffice!
Your cancer is as individual as you are, so your treatment package needs to be tailored specifically to you and your cancer. At least half of all cancers are caused by poor lifestyle. Other cancers may be caused by environmental toxins or parasites. Cancer can take six or more years to develop.
So please understand that trying to find the possible cause is crucial. You can take anti-parasite purges and you can eat foods to remove harmful chemicals from your body.
But, don´t expect a ´cure´ in six weeks. You will need to undo the six or more years of damage and rebuild your whole life. A new you is needed. What are you waiting for!?
Maintain an ideal weight
65 per cent of adults in the UK are overweight and 22 per cent are actually defined as obese. We have women 55 to 60 pounds (25 kgs) overweight write to us and describe themselves as a little chubby.
Being overweight increases your risk of cancer by 40 to 60 per cent depending upon the research study. With smoking the increased "risk" is only 25 per cent.
If you are overweight, you should try to adopt a normal weight profile. While research is clear that overweight people with cancer survive less, Northwestern University Medical School in the USA showed that it was never too late to start weight control. People with cancer who deliberately lost weight improved their survival times.
As we said at the start, there is increasing evidence (and a planned clinical trial) in favour of Calorie Restriction during treatment. Calorie Restriction is known to release hormones called sirtuins in the body (resveratrol has the same effect) and these can be very protective.
You should exercise, even the least strenuous forms of yoga. It will move your lymph, taking toxins from your cells; it will add oxygen into your blood by getting you to breathe better and it will reduce levels of toxins in the body and rebalance hormones. We do, however, understand that for some people on chemotherapy this is just impossible.
The simple fact is that research shows that light daily exercise of about 30 minutes duration helps improve survival rates by up to 50 per cent.
5. The American Cancer Society Agrees
It was no surprise to us to read the 2012 report of the American Cancer Society into complementary therapies. As we said above, it talks of an ´explosion´ of research since 2006, and ´overwhelming´ evidence that diet and exercise plus weight control not only increases survival times, they can keep you cancer-free.
Do you really want to pig out on sticky buns, cheeseburgers and milky, sugary tea?
Real, whole food in the colours of the rainbow, with high natural fibre is the answer. Good fats; no glucose or empty sugars, refined carbohydrates. As the researchers in the NCI said, you can eat the foods, or the bioactive ingredients can be consumed as supplements.
Be clear, we do not believe any drug or supplement is a ´cure´ for cancer. At the end of the day, it is your body that kicks it out. Arm your body. Don´t weaken it.
Prevention is everything. When it comes to supplements we are not great fans of high street synthetic products. But if you are already considering buying natural compounds and/or toxin-free products, there are several good websites to consider - for example, you might like to look at the Natural Selection ´Products of Choice´. They only sell whole, naturally-sourced supplements, along with toxin-free products. None is a cure or treatment for cancer, but we use them because they´re the best on the market. Follow this link.
People who read this article, also read:
Acid Bodies and cancer - Click THIS LINK.
Beneficial Bacteria - Click THIS LINK.
Vitamin D - Click THIS LINK
Hydrazine Sulphate - Click THIS LINK.
A Clean, efficient liver - Click THIS LINK.
A Diet for Chemotherapy - Various ´expert´ view - Click THIS LINK