Editor’s Note: This article first appeared in the March 2016 edition of TTAC’s Heroes Against Cancer member newsletter.
Many disturbances to our body’s natural capabilities can promote cancer growth. Some of these concerns include a weak immune system, unbalanced pH, reduced oxygenation to cells, and excessive toxicity.
These problems can be treated and symptoms of cancer can be healed. However, treating cancer naturally using non-toxic therapies requires a diligent approach and a long-term commitment.
You hold the power to unleash your natural healing capabilities. Use these 11 natural cancer treatments to relieve your symptoms and prevent the further spread of tumors throughout your body.
If you are currently cancer-free, these modalities can be used to prevent cancer from gaining a foothold. Unlike toxic cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation, these natural therapies fortify the body and help to keep your immune system strong.
#1. Ketogenic Diet
A ketogenic diet allows the body to turn fat into fuel (form ketones) in a physiological process which does not burden the cell’s powerhouses known as mitochondria. Typically, mitochondria create energy from glucose found in abundance in our carbohydrate-intensive diets.
The ketogenic diet is low in carbohydrates and high in good fats. A ketogenic diet reduces the risk of mutations occurring within cells along with the formation of free radicals, both of which are causes of colon, lung and breast cancer.
The ketogenic diet reduces symptoms in patients with metabolic conditions because it lowers the energy generated from the breakdown of glucose found in simple and complex carbohydrates. Cancer cells thrive off of the energy created from glucose fermentation, which is also called anaerobic metabolism due to the lack of oxygenation.
Examples of ketogenic approved foods include: pastured beef and dairy products (including eggs), organic poultry, and wild fish & seafood. Vegetables and fruits low in carbohydrates (including cabbage, asparagus, lemon and limes), healthy fats such as avocados and coconut oil, along with a few nuts and seeds are usually permitted.
Committing to a ketogenic diet can delay the development of tumors and increase the survival rate for patients by greater than 50 percent.
Using intermittent fasting where you consume meals between a 4 to 8-hour window each day can be a very effective way to get into ketosis. Fasting is an anti-inflammatory, immune strengthening activity as it reduces overall blood sugar and enhances ketone body formation.
#2. Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber
Couple your commitment to the ketogenic diet with hyperbaric oxygen therapy. The combination of a nutrient-dense ketogenic diet and hyperbaric oxygen therapy is being studied for its effectiveness with various forms of cancer. Many health care practitioners are using this modality to improve immunity and help people overcome chronic disease conditions.
The two therapies combined have shown to decrease tumor growth rates, improve ketosis, and decrease glucose levels.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy promotes oxygen supply to cells and improves pH by decreasing acidity which are two main factors which lead to cancer development. Healthy cells only thrive in conditions where they receive a proper oxygen supply, unlike cancer cells. Receiving hyperbaric oxygen therapy treatments can buffer your body’s pH, improve oxygen supply, and overall improve cellular conditions which reduce risk of cancerous growth.
Most practitioners will recommend a 50-minute session three times per week, but many individuals choose to purchase or rent a portable hyperbaric chamber where they can do several hours at a time or even sleep in it overnight on a regular basis.
Juicing is an amazing tool which anyone can use to decrease the likelihood of developing cancer. Juicing nutrient-dense foods inundates the body with powerful antioxidants and cancer fighting tools to boost the immune system and improve health. In fact, juicing some vegetables and fruit can supply a higher amount of nutrients for absorption in comparison to eating the entire raw or cooked food source on its own.
When deciding what to juice and how to receive the greatest benefits with minimal effort, try juicing cruciferous vegetable sprouts. Cruciferous vegetables, and their sprouts in particular, contain phytochemicals which have profound anti-aging, anti-cancer, and antioxidant properties.
Kale, broccoli, and cauliflower sprouts are only required in small concentrations to reap health benefits. Such sprouts provide natural enzymes for the body to fight cancer by reducing free radicals and inflammation.
To name only a few examples, sprouts contain nutrients such as:
- Vitamins and minerals including K and C
- Amino acids
Sulforaphane deserves special attention because of its abilities to detoxify natural pathways and reduce the burden of carcinogens in cells and tissue.
Quercetin, obtained in high yield when juicing fresh, high quality foods, increases apoptosis and prevents cancer metastasis.
Always attempt to drink juice immediately after making it in order to consume the juice at its most nutrient dense condition. Otherwise, store the juice in an airtight glass container in the darkest and coolest part of your refrigerator for optimal nutrient quality.
Many practitioners recommend cancer patients consume 32-64 ounces of fresh green juices each day to help slow cancer growth. For prevention, 8-16 ounces can be a great strategy to ensure your body is receiving sufficient micronutrients.
#4. Fermented Foods
Excellent sources for healthy bacteria are fermented foods and beverages. A healthy gut microbiota is important in regulating the entire health of the whole body and mind. Those at increased risk for metabolic conditions and cancer typically have elevated concentrations of harmful bacteria in their gut microbiomes.
Some cancers associated with unhealthy gut bacteria are colorectal cancer, pancreatic carcinoma, and gallbladder cancer.
Bacteroidetes are a main type of bacteria found in fermented foods which produce a substance known as butyrate. Butyrate possesses its own cancer-fighting properties and is involved in enzymatic processes associated with breaking down starch.
Try adding fermented dairy products such as yogurt and kefir with live cultures from grass-fed cows to your diet. Cultured vegetables, Kombucha, sauerkraut, and other fermented foods and beverages are also sources of good bacteria.
Many practitioners recommend 2-4 servings of fermented foods each day to improve health and prevent/slow cancer growth.
If following a ketogenic diet, look for fermented foods that are low in sugar and carbohydrates so that they fit into the ketogenic diet model. This would include sauerkraut, kimchi, coconut water kefir, water kefir, coconut milk kefir, apple cider vinegar, and unsweetened coconut yogurt.
Note of caution: Take things slow when first adding fermented foods to your diet to avoid painful gas and bloating.
#5. Vitamin D
An important component to the central nervous system and the health of the entire human body is vitamin D. This vital nutrient has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant abilities which continue to astound researchers.
Studies find that vitamin D is associated with reducing autoimmune complications and can limit the release of natural killer cell secretions when situations are unwarranted, such as during pregnancy.
One of the key functions of vitamin D is its ability to balance inflammatory pathways linked to cancer and promote the production of proteins such as GcMAF which regulate cancer cells. (Learn more about GcMAF here.)
GcMAF requires vitamin D in order to be created and fulfill its vital functions to maintaining the health of all cells and tissues. GcMAF has been shown to reverse breast cancer by preventing cancer cells from multiplying. Vitamin D therapy therefore also promotes GcMAF function and the ability to treat lymphoma, bladder, ovarian, and head and neck cancers among many others.
You can find out how much vitamin D is in your system by taking a blood test called the 25-hydroxy vitamin D test. (Other names for the test are 25-OH vitamin D test; Calcidiol; 25-hydroxycholecalciferol test.)
Ideal levels for vitamin D3 are between 60-100 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml) with ideal ranges between 80-100 ng/ml for individuals looking to prevent or slow cancer growth. As a general rule, take 1,000 IUs per 25 pounds of body weight to slowly raise your vitamin D levels into range. OR take 2,000 IUs per 25 pounds of body weight to quickly raise your vitamin D levels.
Your body contains numerous enzymes required for performing normal physiological processes. Enzymes promote anti-inflammatory effects, stimulate anti-cancer substances, and assist in the removal of toxins from the body.
Perhaps you remember learning from your science teacher how a lock and key model represents an enzyme and the substance it acts upon to perform a function? Maybe you also remember then how if certain conditions are not met, enzymes become unraveled.
For this reason it is very important that the proper balance of pH in our bodies is met. Unfortunately, our diets often leave our internal organs swamped in an environment full of excess acidity and affect the ability of enzymes to perform.
The toxins in the air we breathe, the water we drink, the personal care and household cleaning products we use, and many other lifestyle conditions further exacerbate this problem which can lead to cancer.
You must consciously choose to replenish the enzymes in your body and promote a stable environment for them to function. Enzymes are found in foods such as raw fruits and vegetables, fermented vegetables, and legumes.
A couple of the enzymes contained in fruits and vegetables are quinone reductase and glutathione-S-transferase, which are critical in regulating antioxidant pathways.
When we consume enzyme-containing foods we enhance the natural detoxification pathways to clean the liver, intestines, lungs, and stomach. Citrus fruits such as lemons and limes are rich in organic acids which (ironically enough) help to lower the acidity in our bodies and improve natural functions.
Enzyme therapy has been shown effective in treating individuals receiving chemotherapy treatment and reducing side effects including nausea, fatigue, vomiting, and pain. Systemic enzymes improve the natural immune system defenses which target cancer cells and prevent further growth.
Health practitioners who use enzyme therapy will often recommend anywhere from 5 grams to 45 grams daily depending upon the speed of the cancer growth. Five grams is great prevention for a slow growing tumor, while 45 grams is the typical dosage for individuals with very fast growing cancers.
Research in clinical studies has shown that curcumin found in turmeric root has powerful abilities to treat cancer symptoms, including its ability to fight inflammation. Turmeric exhibits the same inflammation prevention control as do synthetic anti-inflammatory drugs like Tylenol and is supported by more than 570 studies.
Turmeric is a spice which you can add to your favorite curry dishes, Indian cuisines, and traditional soups and stews. It is excellent mixed in with healthy fats such as pastured milk.
Many practitioners recommend 500-1000 mg doses of curcumin 3-4 times daily with food. Curcumin should also be mixed with peperine from black pepper and taken with a fat-based meal for optimal absorption.
#8. Budwig Protocol
The Budwig Protocol was developed by Dr. Johanna Budwig, a world leading expert of her time in research on fats and their impacts in human microbiology. Since the start of her research in 1952, the Budwig Protocol has been used to treat and cure cancers of the lungs, prostate, ovaries, breast, pancreas, and even brain.
The protocol requires the combination of quark (a soft, fresh cheese) and flaxseed oil. The resulting mixture limits the body’s toxic burden by improving oxygenation and promoting detoxification.
The health benefits of the quark mixture can be thought of as a comparison to a dead car battery. The flaxseed oil in the quark is high in electrons and saturated fats which becomes involved in a chemical reaction and protects electrons in the flaxseed so that they may enter dead cells.
This process charges these cells and gives them the boost they need to once again be healthy. Attracting oxygen into cells is necessary to kill off cancer cells and heal the body with healthy ones.
Dr. Budwig found this treatment so effective that she advised her cancer patients to consume quark up to 8 times daily for up to six months.
Follow the recommended recipe for quark preparation:
- Combine 2 Tablespoons of quark OR organic cottage cheese with 1 Tablespoon flaxseed oil or freshly ground flaxseeds. Using an immersion blender, mix the ingredients together until well combined and no visible oil appears. Eat immediately.
Various detoxification pathways can become blocked or underused which leads to the buildup of carcinogens and the formation of cancer. Increase healing in your body by removing toxins using any or all of the following detoxification strategies:
- Exercise: Increases oxygen flow and opens up pores for detox.
- Infrared saunas: Stimulates deep tissue for the release of carcinogens.
- Coffee enemas: Removes toxins along the gastrointestinal tract and can also improve mood.
- Castor oil packs: Stimulates the flow of toxins out of organs and out of the intestines.
- Dry brushing: Stimulates lymphatic flow and glandular function.
- Consume an anti-cancer diet: Decreases toxic burden and decreases inflammation.
- Drink lemon or mineralizing water: Balances the body’s natural pH.
Detoxification is a requirement in the process of healing the body and treating symptoms of cancer. Receiving a massage coupled with aromatherapy oils is another excellent technique to improve lymphatic function and promote detoxification. Essential oils can boost health in cancer patients and reduce stress and anxiety.
Removing toxins from your body in order to treat cancer is dependent on the proper functioning of your glands. Part of Dr. Budwig’s protocol mentioned earlier is to receive naturally-sourced photons from the sun. This creates a magnetic field which attracts electrons into the cells of your body.
Dr. Budwig also believed that the sun’s rays stimulate the function of glandular organs including the pancreas, salivary glands, bladder, liver, and gall bladder. Stimulating energy into your cells is not only vital to heal cancer but can improve the health of your mind as well.
Sunlight can improve your mood, create optimism, and better support your immune system’s ability to fight off foreign invaders and cancerous cells.
Getting 20-30 minutes (for fair skin) up to 1-2 hours of high quality sun exposure (for darker skin) each day is of tremendous benefit to those looking to prevent or slow the growth of cancer. Be sure not to use sunscreen so you are able to absorb the UV rays that are critical to good health. You can use organic coconut oil on your skin before and after sun exposure in order to optimize your skin health.
#11. Beta Glucans
Beta glucans are naturally-occurring compounds found in nature but not in the human body. These complex sugar molecules supplement the immune system in order to design well targeted attacks on cancer and other foreign agents. Beta glucans provide immunomodulation and treat excessive inflammation due to autoimmune responses.
Some common foods which contain beta glucans are yeast, mushrooms, fermented foods, and indigestible soluble fibers including oats and barley.
Beta glucans protect the body from cancer by activating immune cells such as antibodies, natural killer cells, cytokines, T-cells, and macrophages. Together these cells coordinate attacks on tumor growth.
There are more than 1,000 published scientific articles on the health benefits of beta glucan therapy. Beta glucan supplementation has been shown in research to lower the rate of cancer cell concentration by effectively detecting and destroying their targets.
Many practitioners use 500 mg daily as a preventative measure for a healthy individual and 1000 mg, taken 2 times daily, outside of meal times as an immune strengthening agent in order to slow or prevent cancer growth.