Updated: Sep 7, 2022
The Oncology Association of Naturoapthic Physicians (OncANP) hosted its 4th annual Conference in February to discuss the latest therapies in naturopathic oncology and cancer prevention. It is a true meeting of the minds where we discuss the latest research, share case studies and see what patients are actually responding to. There was a focus on hematologic malignancies (cancers of the blood, such as lymphoma) which respond differently than solid tumors and require unique treatments in both the conventional and naturopathic world.
Here are a few pearls I wanted to share with you:
Magnolia officinalis (Honokoi) has some promising research in its anti-cancer affects especially in leukemia. It appears to induce apoptosis (cell death), inhibit COX-2 (anti-inflammatory effect) and more.
Turn off your TV and start exercising! In this large, prospective cohort of patients with colorectal cancer, prediagnosis leisure time physical activity (LTPA) was associated with a 20% lower all-cause mortality (death) risk. In other words, living a sedentary life increases your risk of cancer and decreases your risk of surviving cancer once you are diagnosed. Exercise continues to be a forerunner in decreasing your risk of cancer as well as how you handle your conventional therapies. J Clin Oncol. 2015 Jan 10;33(2):180-8.
Remember to take your vitamin D for it was shown to improve disease free survival (DFS) in patients with non-metastatic breast cancer. Have your serum levels checked to assure you are not taking too much. Zeichner, Simon B., et al. Improved Clinical Outcomes Associated With Vitamin D Supplementation During Adjuvant Chemotherapy in Patients With HER2+ Nonmetastatic Breast Cancer. Clinical Breast Cancer (2014).
Stress is unfolding as a major player in cancer as the body of research on mind body medicine grows. Psychological stress is what people experience when under mental, physical or emotional pressure. Stress has the ability to shorten telomeres (resulting in premature aging) and deplete the immune system, making it more difficult for the body to clear itself of mutations and or cancer cells. A growing body of research shows that stress relief techniques such as meditation, visualization, exercise and laughter can benefit cancer patients.
The Humane Microbiome project is well under way with the job of determining what bugs are in 18 different locations in your body and the differences of each human/nation’s gut biome as well. Most of the microbes we harbor are working hard for us including assisting in our digestion, absorption of nutrients, protecting us from harmful microbes and they even may be involved in our sense of well-being. The importance of proper gut flora is becoming headline news.
As we learn more and more about our environment and its effect on our health, we find that getting back to basics may be your best insurance to decrease your risk of cancer occurrence and/or recurrence. These basics are the foundations of naturopathic medicine. See your naturopathic doctor today. Enjoy your day.