Cancer Prevention: The Facts

© 2014 Dr. Sharon Norling

Costs

During the period from 2005 through 2010, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) budget averaged $4.9* billion per year. * http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/NCI/research-funding

Other government agencies, including NIH Institutes and Centers, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Department of Defense fund cancer research in some capacity. In addition, state and local governments, volunteer organizations, private institutions, and corporations all spend substantial amounts of money on cancer-related research.

In spite of the billions of dollars spent each year for many years on cancer research the causes and the cures are still lacking. The key is to practice prevention. It’s that simple.

Cancer patients seek and deserve to have the best of modern and natural medicine. Natural medicine and healing, of course, includes living a clean and healthy lifestyle. Here are some things to seriously consider to help decrease your risk of cancer.

  • Avoiding toxins
  • Boost Your Immune System
  • Consuming certain dietary supplements as directed by your physician after proper testing

Avoid Toxins

Knowledge is power. Learn how to avoid the nasty chemicals in personal care products. The cosmetics industry is a $50 billion a year business (in the US alone). They spend a remarkable $2 billion a year on advertising.

Even more appalling than that is the amount of chemicals you women on their skin every year. “Women who use makeup daily, absorb on average, 5 pounds each year.” http://www.bioethiqueorganic.com/html/pressreleases.html

Here is a list of only a few of the chemicals found in personal hygiene and household products we use everyday.

View over 65,000 products, their ingredients, and toxicity levels on the following web site. http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/.

 

Chemical

Use

Risk

1,4-dioxane

This is not normally listed on ingredient labels.

It’s a petroleum-derived contaminant formed in the manufacturing of bathing products and shampoos.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has ranked it as a possible carcinogen, and the National Toxicology Program (NTP) has identified it as a reasonably anticipated carcinogen. http://monographs.iarc.fr/ENG/Monographs/vol71/mono71-25.pdf

Acrylamide

Found in many facial creams.

Linked to mammary tumors. Int’l Journal of Cancer. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ijc.23359/full

Ethylene oxide

Besides being found in cosmetics. It also is used as a fumigant and a sterilizer for surgical equipment.

It is classified as a known human carcinogen and is one of the 48 chemicals that the National Toxicology Program (NTP) identifies as mammary carcinogens in animals. http://ntp.niehs.nih.gov/?objectid=BC96ACFD-123F-7908-7B817207BC678E19

Mineral Oil, Paraffin, and Petrolatum

This is a by-product of the distillation of petroleum. It’s a common ingredient in baby lotions, cold creams, ointments and cosmetics. Also, in Veterinary Medicine as a livestock vaccine.

It has been known to increase the incidence of skin cancer in mice who were irradiated twice a week for 20 weeks. According to the Journal of Investigative Dermatology.

http://www.nature.com/jid/journal/v129/n2/abs/jid2008241a.html

Parabens

They are used as a preservative in many prescription drugs, foods, and cosmetics.

They are absorbed through the skin and through the gastrointestinal tract and have been discovered in biopsy samples from breast tumors.

 

Propylene glycol

Common cosmetic moisturizer and carrier for fragrance oils.

May cause dermatitis and skin irritation. May inhibit skin cell growth. Linked to kidney and liver problems.

Sodium laurel or lauryl sulfate (SLS), also known as sodium laureth sulfate (SLES)

Found in over 90% of personal care products! They break down your skin’s moisture barrier, potentially leading to dry skin with premature aging. And because they easily penetrate your skin, they can allow other chemicals easy access.

SLS combined with other chemicals may become a “nitrosamine” – a potent carcinogen. National Institutes of Health “Household Products Directory” of chemical ingredients lists over 80 products that contain sodium lauryl sulfate. Some soaps have concentrations of up to 30%, which the ACT report called “highly irritating and dangerous“.

 

You see, your skin is not only your largest organ – it’s also the thinnest. Only 1/10th of an inch separates you from all sorts of toxins. Your skin is highly permeable, allowing what you apply to your skin access to your bloodstream (and thereby to the rest of your body)…

You should not to put anything on your skin that you wouldn’t eat.

Boost Your Immune System

One of the first targets for cancer prevention and survival should be the immune system. Did you know we have Natural Killer (NK) blood cells? They destroy dangerous cells and other foreign invaders that can cause health problems. If we have an immune system that is running at optimal capacity, the greater chance we have for our bodies to recognize and fight off cancer or precancerous cells.

Cells need food for energy, strength, and proliferation. Below are a few of the best foods for your cells to be at their best.

Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) – a critical component in energy production within every cell.  Also a potent antioxidant, one of the most highlighted families of nutrients in cancer science.

Vitamin C – an antioxidant that can help protect healthy immune cells, which also contributes by supporting production of antibodies, NK cell activities, and interferon.

Vitamin E & Vitamin A – Specifically defend white blood cells and the thymus gland, the master immune gland responsible for the maturation of T-cells, as reported in the Journal of Nutrition in 2002.

Vitamin D – Low levels of Vitamin D increases the risk of diabetes, muscle and bone pain, as well as cancers of the breast, colon, prostate, ovaries, esophagus and lymphatic system.

Anti-cancer foods really do work..

There’s evidence that certain fruits and vegetables rich in plant-based nutrients can both prevent tumors from starting and halt their growth.

Cruciferous vegetables contain indole-3-carbinol (I3C), an antitumor agent known to suppress cancer cells. The cruciferous vegetables are bok choy, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, kale, kohlrabi, mustard greens, rutabagas, and turnips and their greens.

Garlic possesses many immune actions, especially relative to cancer management. According to the National Cancer Institute, an analysis of seven different large-scale population studies showed that the more raw and cooked garlic a person consumed, the lower the risk of stomach and colorectal cancer. http://jn.nutrition.org/content/131/3/1032S.short

Blueberries, açai berries, raspberries, and cranberries    rich, dark colors of the fruits come from phytochemicals that protect against numerous types of cancer.

Turmeric – The orange-yellow spice is best known for its role in Indian curries and other Asian dishes. It fights cancer because of an active ingredient, curcumin, that’s a powerful antioxidant.

Watercress – According to researchers in Ireland, who released studies in the past two years, showing that eating watercress everyday can prevent the DNA damage that leads to cancer. Research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition—but conducted in Ulster, where people are more comfortable eating watercress—found that antioxidants in the nutrient-rich greens prevented free radicals from damaging healthy cells. http://www.ajcn.org/content/85/2/504.abstract

Spinach, is also a cancer fighter; “research conducted by the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Texas showed spinach to protect against bladder cancer. The chemical that gives spinach its dark green color, chlorophyllin, proved to reduce the risk of liver cancer in research by the National Academy of Sciences.”

Other Healthy Alternatives

Reiki – There are many reports about Reiki’s power to increase feelings of well-being and refresh the spirit. Some cancer patients have said over the course of their cancer treatments receiving Reiki reported to have an increased sense of well-being, with less pain, nausea, and vomiting after Reiki sessions. 

Hypnotherapy – Common hypnotic suggestions given to cancer patients would be to have a healthy appetite or to sleep easily and awaken calm and refreshed. It can be suggested that the patient gain the maximum benefit of any medical treatment which will prolong life and increase comfort.  The immune system can be boosted and suggestions given to destroy the cancer cells. And the patient can be given a sense of hope through imagery which focuses on well-being rather than disease.

We have all been touched personally and professionally by cancer.  The bottom line is to actively make lifestyle choices to prevent cancer.

Good nutrition promotes health. But nutrition is only part of the story. Remember to also exercise each day, maintain ideal weight, sleep well, get regular physical checkups, and follow these cancer-prevention tips:

 

  • Enhance your immune system.
  • Laugh and relax.
  • Eat foods high in dietary fiber daily (fruits, vegetables, and whole grains).
  • Choose anti-cancer foods.
  • Normalize your levels of vitamins D and DHEA.
  • Ask your doctor for 2OH/16OH lab to determine your estrogen metabolism (A higher ratio of these two estrogen-by-products is more favorable, indicating less likelihood of breast cancer.).
  • Avoid food allergies and infections.
  • If you drink alcoholic beverages, do so in moderation.
  • Avoid too much sunlight; use safe, effective sunscreens.\
  • Do not use dark permanent hair dyes
  • Avoid the toxins in personal hygiene products.
  • Make sure to avoid toxic Bisphenol A or BPA in your plastics.
  • DON’T SMOKE. Tobacco smoke causes about one-third of all cancer.
  • Reduce exposure to pesticides, household chemical cleaners, air fresheners, and air pollution.

Written By: Dr. Sharon Norling, MBA