By John N. Moreno, ND, Ph. D.
There are only a few words that elicit more emotion than cancer: war, wedding, birth, death.
In 1971, 52 years ago, then President Richard Nixon declared war on cancer, and now cancer is on the verge of overcoming heart disease as the number 1 cause of death in America (actually, the number 2 cause, but that’s for another white paper)! Why? How?
There is no one reason we are losing the war. Some are controlled by the establishment, some by money, and some by blinders. The establishment is always being sidetracked by one dis-ease after another. Those who “treat” cancer make insane amounts of money and really don’t want to find a cure – they want to manage the disease with less side effects. And researchers have blinders on because they are looking for “THE CURE” of cancer – there is no ONE CURE! Because there is no ONE CAUSE of cancer. All of the above work against those of us who have or have had cancer – and yes, I had cancer. So did one of my granddaughters at 13 years old! So this is personal to me.
Just what is cancer? No, I’m not talking about the Zodiac sign. According to Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary: a: a malignant tumor of potentially unlimited growth that expands locally by invasion and systemically by metastasis; b: an abnormal bodily state marked by such tumors; something evil or malignant that spreads destructively. That’s too impersonal!
Cancer is a collection of rouge cells that have lost the ability to die (we call it apoptosis or programmed cell death). There are some researchers who believe that there are even cancer stem cells (stem cells are extremely important as they can develop into any type cell). These same researchers believe that if treatments don’t kill the cancer stem cell, it will eventually restart the cancer and may be the major cause of cancers returning to those of us who go into remission, only to have the cancer return. Ongoing research will bring clarity to this issue, hopefully in the near future.
Normal healthy cells are programmed to die off and be replaced with new cells. That process may take hours, days, weeks, months, or years, depending on the type of cell and the organ system in that it resides. As an example: cells in the duodenum and jejunum are replaced almost immediately after the acidic contents of the stomach are dumped into the small intestine (the environment is so harsh that serotonin is needed to keep the area calm).
Cancer cells have mutated to the point that they do not die, they just keep replicating other defective cells (cancerous cells). Those cells can grow into tumors which we then say we have cancer. Some cancers are not tumorous, but circulate in the blood system, but the results are the same, just no tumor.
So cancer is a collection of defective cells that don’t die. The question then becomes, what causes it in the first place? That’s where researchers haven’t always agreed. New research seems to suggest a simple answer: inflammation. Sounds simple, right? But what caused the inflammation? That answer is not so simple. Inflammation can come from both internal and external sources. Some examples of external sources include chemicals that are found in hair sprays, toothpaste, herbicides, insecticides, processed foods, etc. Internal sources include viruses, bacteria, fungi, emotional stresses, etc. In other words, living! We can eliminate some of these sources, but all of them???
There have been suggestions that certain cancers can be genetic. Never say never, never say always, but cancer is not genetic. We “may” be born with genetic predispositions to developing cancer, but not born with cancer. It’s not the genes, but what we do to the genes – epigenetics.
Think of epigenetics like this: you were born with the genes that you will skin your knee if you learn how to ride a bicycle – that’s genetics. Epigenetics says that you will skin your knee only if you try riding a bicycle without help and fall down. Having training wheels or someone to hold you up while you learn to balance and you won’t skin your knee.
But my grandmother and my mother and my sister had or have breast cancer, so I’m going to get it too. Research says otherwise. What looks like genetics is usually lifestyle – including foods we consume (or don’t consume), activity level, alcohol consumption, tobacco use, etc.
So how do we prevent cancer? We don’t have a definitive answer, again, because there are multiple causes. But here are some suggestions to apply:
- Don’t smoke
- Don’t abuse alcohol
- Don’t abuse drugs (legal or illegal)
- Don’t over consume white sugar (cancer feeds on sugar)
- Do eat brightly colored fruits and vegetables
- Do exercise, at least every other day, if not daily
- Do drink plenty of water (yes, even it is tap water – it’s still better than no water)
- Do eat protein (cold water fish, chicken, turkey, red meat, pork – in that order)
- Do get plenty of rest and sleep (6 to 8 hours of sleep nightly)
- Address stress with essential oils, me time or whatever you are comfortable doing
What happens if you get cancer? That’s the subject of the next paper. Questions or comments? Contact me: email@example.com or text or call 337-515-2237.