Alternative Medicine & Cancer Prevention

 

Alternative Medicine & Cancer Prevention

Diet

Proper nutrition is the first line of defence in cancer prevention. It is essential to obtain a full spectrum of nutrients from a wide variety of food. The USDA recommends eating a diet based on whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, and lean proteins.

The USDA also recommends avoiding processed foods (such as white flour) and hydrogenated oils, or trans-fats. Processed foods, hydrogenated and trans-fats have been altered from their natural states, and, many of the chemicals used in processed foods are known carcinogens (cancer-causing agents); yet these substances remain on the market.

A healthy diet--rich vitamins and minerals, and free of chemical additives--helps to lower the risk of many cancers, including colon cancer. In addition, many fresh fruits and vegetables are high in antioxidants.

Herbs

Certain herbs are used in both cancer treatment and prevention. For example, the popular Indian herb, turmeric, has been studied in recent years. A study, reported in Science News in 2004, showed that curcumin ( the chemical constituent of turmeric) has the ability to stop the proliferation of cancer cells. Turmeric also has anti inflammatory properties, and can help relieve pain.

Another common herb used in cancer treatment and prevention is garlic. Used in many culinary dishes, garlic is a powerful antioxidant. It is also anti-fungal and anti-bacterial, and helps to support the immune system. Garlic can be used in cooking, and is also, found in capsule and liquid form. Adding both garlic and turmeric into the diet, several times per week, helps to protect the body from cancer-causing free radicals.

Nutritional Supplements

A number of individual vitamins and minerals have been shown to protect the body from free radical damage. As mentioned above, a healthy diet includes a full spectrum of nutrients. However, additional supplements will help to strengthen the immune system. At the top of this list are vitamin E, selenium and beta-carotene (vitamin A).

According to the National Cancer Institute, one study of cancer in Chinese men and women "showed a combination of beta-carotene, vitamin E, and selenium significantly reduced incidence of both gastric cancer and cancer overall".

Immune system. Garlic can be used in cooking, and is also, found in capsule and liquid form. Adding both garlic and turmeric into the diet, several times per week, helps to protect the body from cancer-causing free radicals.

Chemical-free Choices

The most significant cause of free radical damage may well be environmental toxins. Toxins are everywhere, including in the public sphere in industrialized nations. However, it is also important to eliminate toxins in the home as much as possible.
The most publicized cancer-causing agent is cigarette smoke. It has more than a dozen carcinogens. Household products also contain many toxic chemicals. Here are just a few examples of things to avoid:


Sodium lauryl sulfate (found in commercial shampoos and soaps)
Formaldehyde (found in many household cleaning products)
Many pesticides (including sodium2, and  4-dichlorophenoxyacetate)
Quaterium 15, FD&C  RED 40 (found in baby shampoos and some soaps)
Aluminium dioxide (found in most deodorants)
Dioxin (found in spray disinfectants)
Trisodium nitrilotriacetate b(found in popular laundry detergents)