The Place for Alternative Cancer Treatment
The real genetic baggage we’re carrying is epigenetic. These genetic changes are in fact reversible in one generation through lifestyle changes.
The scientific community is excited and chilled about epigenetics, perhaps the most important breakthrough since the genome, because it shifts the paradigm from nature to nurture. In other words, we no longer can blame our genes; we must take responsibility for our behavior.
There’s evidence that lifestyle choices like smoking and overeating can change the epigenetic marks to cause the genes for obesity to express themselves too strongly and the genes for longevity to express themselves too weakly. We all know you can truncate your own life if you smoke or overeat; what’s chilling is that those same behaviors can also predispose your kids—before they’re even conceived—to disease and early death.
What’s exciting is that if you change your behavior, your genes change too! A bad habit by our parents or ourselves epigenetically programs our genes to work against us. By improving our habits we can epigenetically reprogram genes to work for us with the added advantage that we will bestow upon our next generation a better epigenome.
For years we’ve fought the concept that we’re inheriting bad genes, especially for breast cancer-prone families. We maintained that what these women were inheriting was bad habits and family cookbooks. Though we have accepted that we inherit high-risk genetic traits, because of these findings we feel partially vindicated; what’s passed on to us are un-mutated genes, epigenetically altered by our ancestors’ habits.
Normally we do adopt, implement, and pass these on—but we can change all that! Even if our destiny were written in our DNA, we can rewrite it by espousing diet, lifestyle, and environmental changes to switch on genes that promote health and switch off genes that lead to diseases.
One way in which we strive to suppress tumor growth is by decreasing blood levels of certain pro-growth hormones, such as insulin, free IGF-I, and free estrogen, that promote increased growth and survival of many types of cancer cells.
This is achieved with a lifestyle program that stresses a low fat, wholefood vegan or quasi-vegan diet, a regular program of aerobic exercise training, such as brisk walking, and a reduction of excess body fat in overweight patients fighting cancers in which obesity has a known negative prognostic impact.
Oasis of Hope thus recommends its cancer patients to modify their lifestyles in ways that will reduce their blood levels of insulin and free IGF-I.
This recommendation is of importance for patients with breast, colorectal, or prostate cancer. More and more, epidemiology suggests that one can greatly lower the risk for certain cancers by measures such as:
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