Side Effects of Cancer Treatment - symptomatic relief
Including supplements which may relieve side effects,
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More Natural Remedies that may Reduce the Risk of Cancer
Carotenoids are substances found in highly-coloured fruits and vegetables like carrots, peppers and tomatoes. They and include alpha- and beta-carotene, lutein, lycopene, carotenoids reduce the risk of cancerzeaxanthin, and cryptoxanthin. Beta-carotene is a precursor for vitamin A.
Carotenoids are anti-oxidant compounds with immune-balancing and cancer fighting properties. Carotenoids improve communication between cells. When normal cells communicate well with cancer cells, the growth of the cancer cells is reduced.
In particular, LYCOPENE has been shown to offer some protection against cancers of the digestive tract, lung, breast, cervix and prostate. It prevents and repairs damaged cells, reducing cell proliferation (a characteristic of cancer cells). Lycopene is found in high levels in tomatoes and pink grapefruit. Lycopene appears to exhibit about twice the antioxidant activity of beta-carotene.
Carotenoids also benefit eye health, circulation, the immune system, and skin health including acne, and help lower cholesterol.
Smokers and diabetics may have low levels of carotenoids. Smokers should NOT take beta-carotene as it may INCREASE risk of lung cancer. Beta-carotene is safe in pregnancy, although vitamin A is not.
those with chronic digestive ulceration may experience irritation.
Lutein and Zeaxanthin are best absorbed when taken with a meal containing fat.
Smokers should not take beta-carotene.
Supplements: look for mixed carotenoids, Lycopene supplements, or Red Food blends (tomato, carrot, beet, peppers).
Q10 is a powerful anti-oxidant, occurring in every cell of the body. It protects the heart, aids the immune system, and is essential for energy production!
CoQ10 can reduce the risk of cancer. French researchers found that breast cancer patients with low CoQ10 levels in breast cancer have less chance of remaining free of disease. Researchers from Denmark and the USA have been studying the effects of CoQ10 in a group of breast cancer patients. After 18 months it seemed that CoQ10 prevented recurrence in all but one. Those with early cancer had not progressed to advanced disease. Please note, this study used no control group, and some of the patients received conventional treatments, or other supplements, along with CoQ10. Therefore it is not a rigorous trial, although we understand that it is not reasonable to expect cancer patients to do without other treatments. Also, quite high doses of CoQ10 were used – 90-390mg day.
CoQ10 has shown protective effects against the cardio-toxic effects of the cancer drug Adriamycin.
Some drugs lower your natural CoQ10 levels: statins, betablockers, and tricyclic antidepressants. So extra Q10 may help if you take these.
There are no restrictions on long-term use. You may notice improvements in your general energy.
physician’s guidance advised with warfarin or similar
Supplements: look for CoQ10 in an oil base, that is, in capsules, at least 30mg day.
These very similar extracts are rich sources of flavonoids (plant compounds) called Proanthocyanidins or OPCs. Like carotenoids, they are powerful anti-oxidants, protectinggrape seed extract reduces the risk of cancer blood vessels, eye tissue, heart, brain, and all connective tissue from damage. They protect against cancer by preserving the extra-cellular matrix, a kind of protective net that surrounds all cells. Cancer cells try to break through this net.
OPCs may be helpful for recovery from surgery as well. Like oxerutins, to which they are chemically related (see Rutin), OPCs are thought to work by reducing leakage from capillaries.
OPCs have been extensively tested for safety and are generally considered nontoxic.
Pycnogenol® is a patented form of Pine bark extract.
Another form of grape seed/skin extract is called Resveratrol™. Its results are similar.
Warnings: physician’s guidance advised with warfarin or similar.
Supplements: Grape Seed Extract is generally less expensive than the brand name Pycnogenol, and they are very similar.
An extract is made from the pure fresh leaves of the tea plant, not fermented leaves as in black tea.
Green tea is antibacterial and contains strong anti-oxidants: stronger than either vitamin C or vitamin E. The principal active constituent in green tea is epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), a polyphenol. It also contains flavonoids, tannins, vitamin C and caffeine.
Green tea may reduce the risk of cancer. Green tea has traditionally been used as a cancer preventive, and this is backed by research into breast, prostate and endothelial cancers. However, some evidence is unclear, and research is ongoing. Numerous preliminary studies have shown an association between drinking green tea and a reduced risk of several types of cancer, although the American FDA recently refuted this. Green tea increases detoxifying enzymes such as glutathione.
Drinking green tea with meals can inhibit carcinogenic substances in food, called nitrosamines.
Preliminary studies suggest that certain green tea polyphenols may help prevent skin cancer, and other sun damage, if they are applied directly to the skin. Unlike normal sunscreen preparations, green tea does not physically block ultraviolet light. Rather, it seems to protect cells from some of the damage caused.
(For the technically minded, EGCG may inhibit enzymes involved in cell replication and DNA synthesis, by interfering with cell-to-cell adhesion or via inhibition of intracellular communication pathways required for cell division. EGCG has been shown to modulate vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) leading to apoptosis in leukaemic cells.)
Studies show green tea protects the heart and arteries by increasing HDL (good) cholesterol, and decreasing LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, as well as by blocking platelet aggregation (clotting tendency).
Green tea is also used to aid weight control.
It is not known whether decaffeinated green tea has the same properties. White tea is similar, and has a milder taste: it is made from the youngest leaves.
Warnings: physician’s guidance advised with warfarin or similar.
not to be used with the MAO type of antidepressant.
avoid with heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, thyroid problems, or prostate enlargement.
not for use if under 18 years.
Physician’s guidance if you are on any medication whatsoever.
avoid with any product containing ephedrine, eg. cold cures, decongestants,, allergy or asthma drugs – ask your pharmacist. Do not take with another slimming product containing ephedrine, or stimulating drinks such as guarana, mate, some sports drinks, or coffee.
if you experience nervousness, trembling, nausea or sleeplessness, reduce dose or discontinue.
Pregnant and breastfeeding women should limit their intake because of caffeine content. Tannins in green tea may reduce absorption and bioavailability of codeine, atropine, and iron supplements (take 4 hours away from iron). Tea can pass into breast milk and cause sleep problems in babies.
Viridian’s Mushroom Complex is one of several mushroom-based supplements on the market. It contains several mushroom extracts, containing a wide range of powerful anti-oxidants. These mushrooms may reduce the risk of cancer because of the protective nutrients they contain. Viridian Mushroom Anti-Oxidant Complex is useful for supporting the immune system, both during treatments that suppress the immune system, and for chronic illnesses such as chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, recurrent viral infections, or Crohn’s disease.
This Complex may be beneficial in conditions such as ulcerative colitis or genital warts, which carry a risk of cancerous changes.
In all these cases, do not neglect medical guidance or treatment .
The Complex contains, per 3 capsules:
Coriolus versicolor 250mg. The compounds produced by Coriolus are effective immune system boosters, which can support the immune system and supplement chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Maitake 100mg. The polysaccharides found in Maitake have exhibited the highest cell protecting quality, and are potent immune system stimulators. Maitake is thought to enhance the immune system through activating macrophages, T cells, and natural killer cells. This aids cancer protection. Reishi 250mg. This can actually increase bodily resistance against cell mutation. It also induces the production of interferon, and enhances immune function. Shiitake 250mg. Recently, studies have shown that extracts of Shiitake can lower cholesterol and blood-pressure levels, as well as provide anti-carcinogenic, and immune-enhancing effects. Quercetin 200mg. (see below) anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant and cancer protective Red Clover 250mg, protective for prostate cells. Citrus Pectin 250mg, has an affinity for certain types of mutated cells, and helps reduce metastasis. Indole-3-Carbinol 50mg(found in broccoli), may be protective against breast and cervical cancer, increases the break-down of oestrogen. Lutein 5mg (5%), protects against damaging UV radiation. Acerola Cherry 40mg, cell protective and high in Vitamin C. Beta Carotene 30mg, anti-oxidant with immune balancing and cancer fighting properties; increases lymphocytes and the action of interferon.
Warnings: avoid with warfarin or similar anticoagulants
avoid if pregnant or breastfeeding.
Avoid with calcium channel blockers, synthetic oestrogens and immune suppressors.
Blood levels of Selenium have been reported to be low in patients with many cancers, and low soil levels of Selenium have been associated with increased cancer incidence. selenium reduces the risk of cancerThe strongest evidence supporting the anticancer effects of selenium comes from a double-blind trial of 1,312 Americans with a history of skin cancer. They were treated with 200 mcg of yeast-based selenium per day for 4.5 years, and followed for 6.5 years in total. Although there was no decrease in skin cancers, there was a 50% reduction in overall cancer deaths, and a 37% reduction in total cancer incidence.
Selenium is essential for our bodies to make Glutathione. Glutathione is a powerful anti-cancer compound, an antioxidant, immune system booster, and detoxifier, helping us repair damage caused by stress, pollution, radiation, infection, drugs, poor diet, and ageing. To produce it we need adequate levels of Selenium along with protein, vitamins B and C, and Alpha Lipoic Acid. Please also see Barley Grass and Turmeric.
The association between higher blood levels of selenium and lower risks of cancer in men has been fairly consistent. However, it may be unrelated to cancer risk in women, particularly in relation to cancers that affect only women. Warnings: none. Safe at doses up to 200 micrograms: DO NOT EXCEED.
So-called 'Superfoods' are usually concentrated, dried, powdered foods that provide a wide range of nutrients, essential for energy and immunity, high in anti-oxidants, and easy to take. They are a valuable and convenient source of cancer-preventing nutrients. Superfoods are sometimes classified by colour:
Pre-sprouted barley – grains on the point of sprouting – provides an excellent range of nutrients including protein, B vitamins, Selenium, chlorophyll, and plant sterols such as beta-glucans (complex plant sugars).
Pre-sprouted barley is different from ordinary barley because it contains a variety of special enzymes – compounds that help certain processes in the body. It contains unique digestive enzymes that work on indigestible or toxic substances. It contains Super Oxide Dismutase (SOD), a crucial anti-oxidant enzyme, protecting tissues from free radical damage and boosting the immune system. SOD is such a powerful antioxidant, it is often called the ‘anti-ageing enzyme’. It also contains an enzyme called P4D1 which stimulates the renewal of DNA; this helps prevent cancer because DNA damage may lead to cancer.
Pre-sprouted barley contains beta-glucans Beta-glucans are soluble fibres, or polysaccharides. They are particularly effective at activating the white blood cells known as macrophages and neutrophils. These cells can recognize and kill tumour cells, remove cellular debris from free radical damage, speed up recovery of damaged tissue, and further activate other components of the immune system. Beta-glucans also lower cholesterol and improve blood sugar control.
Pre-sprouted barley also contains the nutrients needed for us to produce Glutathione. Glutathione is a powerful anti-cancer compound, an antioxidant, an immune system booster, and a detoxifier, helping us repair damage caused by stress, pollution, radiation, infection, drugs, poor diet, and ageing.
Pre-sprouted barley is easy to digest, and can generate up to 400% more energy than ordinary barley. This energy is released gradually. It also helps maintain an alkaline body-fluid and balance pH (acidity), assisting body cells to function. Pre-sprouted barley makes an ideal food for convalescents.
Warnings: very low gluten content, but avoid with Coeliac disease. Recommended: Viridian Organic Aktivated® Barley Powder is one of several barley foods available.
This cultivated microalgae is 60% all-vegetable protein, rich in beta carotene, iron, vitamin B-12 and the essential fatty acid, GLA. It contains a multitude of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. It appears to have anti-viral, immune stimulating, and possibly anti-cancer, properties.
Studies suggest the polysaccharides in Spirulina enhance enzyme activity and DNA repair synthesis. It boosts the immune system including T-cells, macrophages, B-cells and the anti-cancer Natural Killer cells.
Support for the use of spirulina in preventing oral cancer is quite encouraging. In an Indian study, supplementing with one gram per day of spirulina for 12 months lead to complete regression of oral cancerous lesions in 45% of those involved, all of whom were tobacco chewers. A year after discontinuation of spirulina supplementation, 45% had redeveloped lesions. It seems spirulina prevented the recurrence.
Turmeric contains a compound called Curcumin. A great deal of research suggests that curcumin may have potential in preventing cancer.
Curcumin protects against DNA damage, which can lead to cancer. Curcumin can boost Glutathione, an anti-oxidant made in our bodies. Glutathione is a powerful anti-cancer compound, an antioxidant, an immune system booster, and a detoxifier, helping us repair damage caused by stress, pollution, radiation, infection, drugs, poor diet, and ageing. Glutathione also prevents a particular kind of cell damage called glycolysation. See also Selenium.
Curcumin also inhibits an enzyme called stress-activated protein kinase (SAPK). SAPK encourages cell death in response to stress, so Curcumin protects against this cell death.
Curcumin's anti-cancer effects are also due to its inhibition of an enzyme, ornithine decarboxylase (ODC), which helps us make polyamines. Polyamines cause cancer cells to grow rapidly, so inhibiting polyamines slows down cancer growth. Curcumin seems especially powerful against breast cancer cells.
A number of in-vitro studies (that is, not live animals or people) have demonstrated that Curcumin improves the response to chemotherapy, by reducing drug resistance. Curcumin may reduce drug resistance to the following: Vincristine, Cisplatin, Doxorubicin (except in breast cancer), 5-FU, Paclitaxel. and melphalan. This improvement in drug response is in spite of the fact that inhibiting SAPK (above) protects against cell death – even in chemotherapy. If this interests you, it is essential for you to discuss it with your doctor. (Reference: www.annieappleseedproject.org, enter Curcumin in the search.)
(For the technically minded, Curcumin reduces drug resistance by lowering NF-kappaB and IL-6. Curcumin preferentially arrests cancer cells in the G2/S phase of the cell cycle.)
A further study demonstrates that Turmeric may protect cancer patients from the burns and blisters suffered as adverse effects of radiation therapy.
Turmeric also protects the liver, aids the excretion of cholesterol and is an anti-inflammatory.
physician’s guidance advised with warfarin or similar.
not advised with biliary obstruction/gallstones.
Viridian’s Anti-Oxidant Formula is one of se3veral combinations of anti-oxidants on the market. It contains several anti-oxidants conveniently in one capsule, plus trace minerals and more. The minerals, in particular, are essential for our body to make its own anti-oxidant enzymes, such as Glutathione, protective against cancer-causing free radicals.
Viridian Anti-oxidant formula contains:
Vitamin C as magnesium ascorbate 150mg
Grape Seed Extract 30mg
Mixed carotenoids 5mg
Alpha-Lipoic Acid 10mg
Also contains Copper, L-Cysteine, B2, B6, and Manganese.
Warnings: none at maintenance dose of one capsule per day, but see individual ingredients. Other brands may contain different ingredients.