CANCER: Why Nutrition Can Help
common sense to take a method and try it.
When Anthony J. Sattilaro, MD, picked up two hippie hitchhikers one day, they told him that "Cancer isn't all that hard to cure." Ridiculous though the statement would seem to a hospital president such as Dr. Sattilaro, the issue was awfully close to home. Dr. Sattilaro, still in his forties, had terminal cancer. The doctor had already received the worst possible news: cancer had spread throughout his body. It was inoperable and untreatable. He was going to die.
If hunger is the best condiment, then desperation must surely be the most teachable moment. The seemingly inane remarks by his counterculture passengers prompted Sattilaro to try a rigid meatless macrobiotic diet, high in whole grains, beans and vegetables. Astonishingly, it worked. In a matter of months, his physicians could not find any trace of cancer in his body.
You don't believe this. I didn't believe it either. I am as skeptical as the day is long. In any business telephone call, I document the date, time and name of the person I speak with. Always. Lots of people do that, yes? OK, try this one: every time I take my car into the service garage to get the oil changed, I check the oil before I leave. I am far, far more careful about what I accept as medical fact.
book I've been asking the rhetorical question, "Who are the
quacks?" I've strongly implied, to say the least, that they are the
conventional, tunnel-visioned, sycophantic yes-persons of the medical,
dietetic and pharmaceutical professions. Not alone in this criticism, I
A bizarre scenario indeed is our "war on cancer."
Laetrile is a good
case in point. Laetrile is a very controversial anti-cancer agent, from
almonds and apricot pits. It has erroneously been called "Vitamin
B-17" but it is not a vitamin. Rather, laetrile is amygdalin, a
cyanide-containing substance. The cyanide is the active ingredient, so
to speak, that somewhat selectively kills the cancer cells. It is much
like cytotoxic pharmaceutical chemotherapy (which explains both the need for
caution and also the stringent rejection it has received from the medical
powers that be.) The imperious medical monarchy, which includes the
AMA, FDA, and their ensuing laws, make laetrile therapy strikingly difficult
to obtain legally inside
Chapters 8 and 9 of
Ralph Moss' The Cancer Syndrome (1980) disclose nitty-gritty details
of some tantalizingly successful laetrile research at
Dr. Sugiura's work constitutes limited, but nonetheless significant, findings. Sloan-Kettering’s brass wanted him to shut up about the whole thing, and declared in press conferences that laetrile had no value in cancer treatment. Once, Dr. Sugiura was personally addressed by a reporter, and he most expressly contradicted his bosses. How did author Ralph Moss know about all this? He was the number-two Sloan-Kettering PR man, that's how.
My personal view is that laetrile is probably a palliative treatment. Still, the fact that so many orthodox cancer foundations want it kept quiet is in itself sufficient reason to look into it more. Harold Manner, PhD's article in The Mother Earth News (November/December 1978, pages 17-24) is an excellent resource for more information.
So there most
certainly is a wider range of cancer treatment alternatives than conventional
medical sources will allow. Worthy adjuncts and alternatives to
chemotherapy, radiation, and surgical treatments are unpopular with organized
medicine, yet are employed by far-thinking physicians and self-reliant
persons around the world. Why is this? Because all possibilities need to
be considered in undertaking the treatment of such a serious disease for
which there are far too few survivors.
It is once again Nobel-prize winning Linus Pauling, PhD with Ewan Cameron, MD, a Scottish cancer surgeon, who have demonstrated the effectiveness of ten grams (10,000 mg) of vitamin C a day in reversing terminal cancer in thirteen out of 100 patients. These patients were given up as lost by medical authorities. Thirteen out of 100 may not seem like a high percentage of success, but keep in mind that those thirteen are free of the disease as far as can be determined. None were expected to live. Thirteen is infinitely greater than zero. All the vitamin C treated patients have lived, on average, five times as long as controls who did not receive the 10 grams of C. Do not be misled by false media hype against Vitamin C. A pair of politically-motivated Mayo Clinic studies condemning the vitamin are seriously faulted. You will want to refer to Drs. Cameron and Pauling's book, Cancer and Vitamin C, revised edition (1993) for the full story. There is no substitute for the truth.
Of course 10,000 milligrams of vitamin C a day is greatly more than what the federal government maintains that an average person needs. A reading of The Healing Factor by biochemist Irwin Stone (1979) will explain to you why we need so very much vitamin C, why it should indeed be normal to consume many grams of the vitamin a day, and why the lack of C is responsible for our human race's present state of illness. Irwin Stone, by the way, is the person who first got Dr. Pauling interested in vitamin C in the first place. For improved quality and length of life, the key is sufficient quantity of C. More orange juice just won't do it.
vitamin C therapy would do well to acknowledge that Pauling and Cameron's
work has been confirmed, first at Japan's Saga University by Murata and
others (Murata, A., Morishige, F. and Yamaguchi, H. (1982) Prolongation
of survival times of terminal cancer patients by administration of large
doses of ascorbate. International Journal of Vitamin and Nutrition
Research Suppl., 23, 1982, p. 103-113. Also in Hanck, A., ed. (1982)
Vitamin C: New Clinical Applications.
Intravenous vitamin C works better still: Padayatty et al. Intravenously administered vitamin C as cancer therapy: three cases. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 2006. 174(7), March 28, p 937-942. http://www.cmaj.ca/cgi/reprint/174/7/937
C vs. cancer references are available through your local
library. Request assistance in locating William McCormick's papers,
especially the blandly-titled but excellent "Have We Forgotten the
Lesson of Scurvy" and "Ascorbic Acid as a Chemotherapeutic
Agent." Dr. McCormick shows that cancer symptoms and vitamin C
deficiency symptoms overlap. Scurvy, which is obvious vitamin C deficiency,
is traced to medical writings as far back as1609. The similarity between
scurvy and cancer is so great that it is incredible that billions of dollars
of cancer research in the
treatment for cancer by nutritional means is readily available in
There are precious
few hospital based megavitamin programs available anywhere in the
While I'm at it, a
caution. Beware of wolves in sheep's clothing: hospitals and other
providers that offer so-called "holistic,"
"nutrition-based," "integrated," or
"comprehensive" therapeutic programs. The majority of them are
only paying lip-service to consumers' requests for alternative cancer
treatments, just to get them in the door. Their main approaches tend to
be chemo, radiation and surgery. As a benchmark, first ask them if they
give intravenous vitamin C, 30,000 to 60,000 mg daily. That'll settle
out the mud in a hurry.
Other Vitamins Against Cancer
B-complex vitamins individually and collectively appear to be useful against cancer, in prevention as well as treatment. B-complex vitamins (and vitamin C) are water-soluble, easily-lost-under-stress vitamins. There is ever growing evidence that stress itself is a major factor in cancer, and it makes sense, as stress depletes the body of B-vitamins and C. Only in theory does the "balanced diet" that all of us are supposed to be getting every day supply "ample" quantities of these and all other vitamins. But no realistic allowance is made for the very real psychological and physiological demands that each person is daily subjected to. This is all the more true for a cancer patient.
Vitamin B6 has been found to be as effective, at least, as the drug usually used to treat recurrent bladder cancer, says American Family Physician (17:3, p. 293). It was found that many bladder patients were deficient in B6. No big surprise there, as the 1975 MRCA survey showed that, of adults 19 and over, 99% got less than the US RDA of B6.
William McCormick, mentioned earlier, cites researchers who found that all cancer patients they tested were deficient in vitamin C by approximately 4,500 mg. When the US Recommended Dietary Allowance for "C" is 60 mg, how can one miss the need for megavitamin dosages? The US Food and Nutrition Board manages to just fine. Item: they raised the vitamin C RDA for smokers to a whopping, astronomical, all-time soaring high... of 100 milligrams.
It would be a tragic mistake to center any discussion of cancer on a single vitamin. Research will continue to confirm that all nutrients, and most certainly all the vitamins are required to prevent and to stop cancer. After all, which wheel on your car can you afford to do without? Which wing on your airplane can we leave off next time you fly?
It is our population-wide but medically disavowed vitamin deficiency that is almost certainly the single most overlooked predisposing cause of cancer. We can either decrease stress or increase our vitamin supplementation, or preferably do both.
Meditation (TM) has been demonstrated to be clinically effective in both
stress reduction and disease prevention. Research by Dr. David
Orme-Johnson has shown that hospital admissions for benign and malignant
tumors are less than half as common for long-time meditators. (Psychosomatic
Medicine, 49:5). If there were a drug that reduced tumors by 50%,
you would have heard it proclaimed from the rooftops. Simple and
natural tools are greatly underrated.
Non-Vitamin Factors against Cancer:
substance in plants that makes them green, helps "inhibit cell mutations
and therefore could help control cancer," said a Food Watch article in
Certain minerals an showing up as essential in prevention and treatment of certain forms of cancer. Zinc is one of them. A study at the Massachusetts Institute of technology showed that animals fed a low zinc diet are more likely to get cancer than those with normal diets. Characteristically, the majority of Americans do not get adequate zinc in their diets, either.
Even Family Circle reported on research done by Dr. Raymond Shamberger of the Cleveland Clinic back in its August 5, 1980 issue. It indicated that there is a relation between selenium intake and cancer. Parts of the country with selenium-rich soils have less cancer than selenium-poor soil populations.
If it seems to you that we need change a national malnutrition to prevent and holistically treat cancer, you are right. It's the over-cooked, sugar-laden, meat-heavy diet we eat that got us into trouble in the first place. These "foods," and other processed, worthless stomach fillers are not good sources of what we need to live in health. Our national cancer epidemic is not an accident. It is not necessary for you to just wait in line for a terminal disease with your name on it. There is much more to cancer prevention and therapy than the "food groups" and chemotherapy, radiation or surgery. As much as these may help, there is at least as much good scientific evidence that nutritional alternative approaches to cancer work just as well or better. The essential cause of cancer most likely is many years of deficient diets lacking what is now suddenly appearing in the literature as "new factors against cancer." These factors are not new. They've been there, or in the case of most patients, not been there, all along.
The time to turn it all around is now, whether a person has cancer or not. There is no need to wait for AMA, FDA, New York Times, American Cancer Society or anyone else's approval. The safety margin with nutrients is enormous. It is deficiency that is dangerous. A determined patient, some good references and reading, an open-minded doctor and the megavitamin-nutritional facts can do wonders. You may experience some difficulty in coming up with the open-minded doctor, but the rest is completely within your power.
alternatives, spoken for by people who've had occasion to try them, it is well worth contacting The International Association of Cancer
Victims and Friends (IACVF) through your nearest chapter, or the Cancer
Control Society. Your library and an internet search will provide you
with up-to-date addresses and phone numbers.
Nutritional Support for Cancer Patients: A Typical Alternative Protocol
(Again I state two things: 1. this is just anecdotal information and 2. if you take any of this seriously, consult your health care provider before proceeding with this or any program.)
Tofu: Soy products in general contain anti-cancer substances. Cut up tofu into small pieces and throw it into whatever you are making. It will take on the flavor of the recipe.
Cheese: Natural, with no coloring added. Eat cheese if it will keep you off meat.
Yogurt: Low fat, plain. Sweeten it yourself with a little fruit or honey.
Nut butters: Delicious and easy to
digest. Buy them fresh and keep in the fridge.
Milk: There is nothing like high-quality raw milk. Speaking as a former dairyman, I raised a family on it from infancy. Certified raw milk is inspected daily. Try to find it in a health food store or from a farmer. If not available, sweet acidophilus milk or watered-down yogurt digests better than pasteurized milk.
Sprouts: Eat two jars full per day. Sprouts are a complete protein, a complete food. A person could survive on a variety of sprouts and nothing else. Buy untreated seed. Alfalfa is a good one to start with, but include wheat, lentil, mung bean, clover, cabbage and radish. Each day start two more jars. Harvest alfalfa at the end of 4-7 days; the others may be ready sooner. Eat them in a sandwich or as the base of a salad. Dressings and garnishes are okay. Collect 12-15 wide-mouth quart jars and start farming. Ann Wigmore’s books will tell you how to sprout, and why.
J. Special Vegetables:
The other exceptionally fine food class is the legumes: peas, beans and lentils. They are loaded with fiber, protein, minerals, and complex carbohydrates. And, they are really cheap. Eat lots.
K. Good Snacks
Raw Veggies. Keep a tray of all your favorites in the center of your fridge, where you can reach it 24 hours per day. Celery, carrots, peppers, broccoli, black olives, tomatoes, snap peas, etc.
The Carotenes and
Calcium and Magnesium
Vitamin B Complex
If you need to sweeten something, try a little honey, sweet molasses or pure maple syrup.
Give this protocol a full four months trial, with your 100% effort, before giving it your final evaluation.
Don't eat anything without reading the label. Don't eat anything unless you know what it is. If you cannot pronounce it, don't eat it.
If your medical doctor is not familiar with orthomolecular (megavitamin) nutrition, hand him or her books, with the bookmarks stuck throughout, and ask, "Have you read what we've read?" Let Dr. Pauling and Dr. Hoffer and Dr. Williams and Dr. Gerson and Dr. Cameron do the talking. When you go to battle, don’t go without your best soldiers. If you are still unfamiliar with these physicians and their work, you are not ready to fight.
Who gets the credit (or blame?) for this therapy? Certainly not me, although I'd love to take the bow. But no, this is the collected, derivative work of many researchers. I'm not smart enough to come up with all this. I am just barely smart enough to find out who is getting good results... and suggest you copy them.
A Case In Point
The results never cease to impress me. Take Joe, for instance. Joe had terminal lung cancer, and no mistake. He was so constantly coughing up blood that he had a mostly red handkerchief in his hand all the while I talked with him in the living room of his small suburban home. Joe was too sick to come in to my office. In fact, he was too sick to get out of his recliner. It was in this chair that his life was played out, day and night. He could not walk. He was in too much pain to even lie down. He spent the night in his chair. He did not want to eat. Oddly enough, he did still want to live, and he was willing to try even vitamins if they would help him feel any better.
It was October and
the leaves, orange and bright yellow, were falling outside the picture window
as we talked. The TV was on, and some of the family was
visiting. It is never easy to work with the dying. As a student,
20 years ago, I'd seen enough of them at the
"How much?" Joe croaked.
"As much as humanly possible under the circumstances," I replied. I explained bowel tolerance to him, and answered the usual questions from the family. Most centered on how well would it work. Some were understandably skeptical; some were in overly-optimistic denial.
"If I had the sure cure for cancer, I'd be on the cover of Time magazine," I cautioned them gently. "Vitamin C is very much worth using, with due consideration of how sick Joe really is."
All agreed that Joe had nothing to lose.
Here is what happened.
Within days, Joe stopped coughing up the blood. If the C had done nothing else, this alone would have been more than enough benefit. But there was more good news within the week.
"Joe's appetite is back," said his wife. "And he is able to lie down in the bed now. He says he is sleeping much better and in much less pain."
Wonderful news, especially if you were Joe. Over and over I have seen profound pain relief and dramatic improvement in sleeping in terminal patients that take huge doses of C. Again, if the C did nothing else, these benefits would be indisputable arguments for using it.
A week or so later, I heard still more news.
"Joe is able to walk around the house with a cane. He's even walking around the yard!"
His wife was quite emotional as she spoke. She knew, at some level, as we all did, that Joe was not likely to survive such severe cancer. And in the end, he didn't. But he added to his length of life, and the quality of that life was extraordinarily enhanced by the vitamin C. He never did all the stuff I enumerated earlier in this chapter; he couldn't. But he was determined to manage taking the C, and he did.
Oh, yes: how much did he take? About 4,000 milligrams every half hour he was awake, day or night. That is approaching 100,000 mg a day. He had a big jug of water, a big spoon, a big glass, and a big bottle of vitamin C crystals on the table right next to his recliner.
Joe never got diarrhea.
For further reading:
Miranda-Massari J, Saul AW. I Have Cancer: What Should I Do? Your
Orthomolecular Guide for Cancer Management.
Hoffer A, Pauling L: Healing Cancer: Complementary Vitamin & Drug Treatments. CCNM Press (2004) Previously published as Vitamin C and Cancer: Discovery, Recovery, Controversy. 1999: Quarry Press, Kingston, ON.
A Cancer Therapy: Results of 50 Cases, by Max Gerson, MD. Read pages 187-250 first.
Survival Into the Twenty-first Century by Viktoras Kulvinskas.
How to Live Longer and Feel Better by Linus Pauling.
The Healing Factor: Vitamin C Against Disease by Irwin Stone.
Cancer and Vitamin C, revised edition, by Ewan Cameron and Linus Pauling.
The Cancer Syndrome, by Ralph Moss
Mother Earth News, "Dr. Harold W. Manner: The Man who Cures Cancer," Nov/Dec 1978, pages 17-24. This article is about documented laetrile cures.
A Physician's Handbook on Orthomolecular Medicine edited by Roger Williams.
Dr. Ann Wigmore's Recipes for Longer Life. All her recipes contain no cooking at all!
(There are many other good resources out there in addition to those I provide here. This is neither an endorsement of those listed, nor a criticism on those omitted.)
Copyright © 1999 and prior years Andrew W. Saul. Revised 2010.
Andrew Saul is the author of the books FIRE YOUR DOCTOR! How to be Independently Healthy (reader reviews at http://www.doctoryourself.com/review.html ) and DOCTOR YOURSELF: Natural Healing that Works. (reviewed at http://www.doctoryourself.com/saulbooks.html )
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