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Chemotherapy

General characteristics

General characteristics

Chemotherapy represents a group of chemical substances that kill cells (cytotoxic), particularly those that divide rapidly such as cancerous cells and also normal bone marrow cells, hair follicles and digestive tract cells. Side effects include nausea, vomiting, soreness, loss of appetite, hair loss, tiredness and weakness of the kidneys, liver and pancreas.
Cytotoxins are commonly used in the treatment of certain cancers and to switch off the immune response after an organ transplant and in a number of auto-immune disorders such as MS and lupus.
The main drawback is that many forms of chemotherapy also destroy healthy cells and considerably lower immunity and vitality.
Natural healing and herbal remedies aim to support the body through the potentially damaging treatment, assist the body to deal with the potential harmful side effects and improve general vitality.

Diet and lifestyle

Diet and lifestyle

The German doctor Otto Warburg was awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1931 for discovering that cancer cells need sugar to live. Cancerous cells are known to consume 4-5 times more sugars than normal  healthy cells and the sugar fructose ( which is added to many, many products) positively energises cancer cells.

That means cutting out all processed white, brown or any other sugar, especially fructose from the diet and also drastically reducing all carbohydrates and starches which break down into simple sugars in the body.

Eat plenty of fresh, organic fruit and vegetables, seeds, nuts and be careful about carbohydrate intake, even complex carbohydrates break down into sugars. Eat more protein generally but ensure any meat is organic and as fresh as possible.

Eat a little natural unsweetened yoghurt every day.

Eat smaller meals more often and don't drink with your meals. Have dry crackers, rice cakes or similar with a little butter on for snacks.

Drink a small glass of pure filtered water every few hours and drink supporting herbal teas to keep hydrated.

Fasting for between 2 and 4 days, immediately before receiving chemotherapy can help increase the effectiveness of the chemotherapy and considerably lessen harmful side effects according to researchers at the University of Southern California. Researcher, author and lecturer Jon Barron puts it this way "According to research director Walter Longo, when starved, normal cells slow down and go into a kind of hibernation where they stop performing their normal function and instead redirect energy to repair and protect themselves. This protective mechanism forms a kind of barrier that keeps stresses out. Since cancer cells have no such mechanism, they just keep multiplying, remaining vulnerable to chemotherapy agents. Dr. Longo estimates that starving healthy cells makes them up to 10 times more resistant than cancer cells to chemotherapy. Because of this effect, chemotherapy becomes more targeted and effective.


Useful herbs

Useful herbs

Reishi mushroom has been noted for providing some protection against the side effects of chemotherapy, particularly tiredness, loss of appetite, hair loss and immune suppression. It has been used traditionally in China in many cases as a cancer fighting herb. A suitable dose could be 3 capsules of powdered reishi daily with meals.
Use a teaspoon of slippery elm and fennel seed powders as needed to ease digestive discomfort.
Drinking a couple of cups of peppermint tea daily may help with feelings of nausea.
Alfalfa tea is rich in chlorophyll and vitamin K which help to reduce tissue damage from radiation exposure. A cup each day using a heaped teaspoon will also provide valuable nutrients.
The herb astragalus has demonstrated some protection against immune system depletion resulting from chemotherapy treatment, as has ashwagandha root and barberry root. These herbs boost the production of white blood cells which are dramatically reduced during cancer treatments of this nature. You could mix eqaul parts of the tinctures together and take a teaspoon in a little water up to 3 times daily during chemo or radiotherapy.
 
Hawthorn berries and/or flowers can help to protect the heart from the damge of chemotherapy.
 

Natural healing

Natural healing

Apple pectin has been used by some (Russian and Eastern European) to help bind and remove harmful heavy metals and other toxic substances from the body. Many people believe in its ability to protect the body from some of the harmful side effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
Charcoal powder (activated) may also help to keep the blood stream clean.

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