“You aren’t sick because you have cancer –
You have cancer because you are sick.” Dr Lorraine Day
The Cancer Compass an Alternate Route blog was created to provide information for those who are struggling with a cancer diagnosis and are looking for alternative options. Cancer patients are often rushed to begin the conventional treatments of surgery, chemotherapy or radiation and aren’t given the opportunity to investigate any alternative therapies that might be helpful to them. There are many options available, but you will not hear about them from your oncologist, radiologist, or surgeon because it is illegal in the U.S. to use anything other than the aforementioned therapies to treat cancer. There are two reasons for this.
- Your doctor has not been trained in nutritional or alternative therapies so they will not be aware of how these therapies may be helpful to you.
- Your doctor would risk losing their medical license if they mentioned anything other than the FDA approved methods of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation for the treatment of cancer.
The War on Cancer– We are in the midst of a cancer epidemic, as one in two men and one in three women can expect to be diagnosed with cancer at some point during their lifetimes. Cancer is expected to claim 585,720 American lives in 2014, along with 7.6 million people worldwide. About 1,665,540 new cases are expected to be diagnosed in the United States in 2014, and this estimate does not include figures for carcinoma in situ (which is a non-invasive cancer) of any site except for urinary/bladder, nor does it include basal cell or squamous cell carcinomas because they are not required to be reported to the cancer registries.
Even though research and treatment efforts have intensified over the past three decades the annual death toll has continued to rise. Researchers point out that this is because people are living longer than ever, and since cancer becomes more prevalent with age it is unfair to just look at only the raw numbers when assessing current progress. Therefore, when mortality rates are calculated, they are adjusted to compare cancer fatalities by age group, over time. Yet even when using this model for analysis, the percentage of Americans dying from cancer is about the same as it was back in the 50’s. And since our population has grown since then, this means that more people than ever are being diagnosed with cancer, and more people than ever are dying from the disease, and many of them are below the age of 50. We must recognize that our current strategies are not working.
Billions of Dollars Spent- The National Cancer Institute has an annual budget of 5 billion dollars and has spent about 90 billion dollars on research and treatments since the war on cancer was declared in 1971. Pharmaceutical companies spend about 8 billion dollars annually researching and developing cancer drugs, and there are about 260 nonprofit organizations in the United States that have dedicated themselves to cancer that have annual budgets topping $2.2 billion. All told, the money spent each year on cancer exceeds 16 billion dollars. But one must question, what has all of this money bought for us? For the majority of patients, cancer treatments remain the same as they have for the past 20 years, with the vast majority of them being treated with chemotherapy regimens. We hear regularly about new breakthroughs that are happening in the cancer arena, yet even these very expensive treatments are only extending lives by an average of 2 or 3 additional months and this is often in a state of suffering.
Genetics- From a historical perspective, cancer has been a rare disease, that is, until the steadily increasing rates that occurred within industrialized nations since the mid 1900’s. Billions of dollars have been spent looking for the genetic answer to cancer, but when mapping of the cancer genome was completed, the researchers found a mind-boggling puzzle of genetic switches that were turned on or off with no pattern or similarities for them to work with. Any hope that gene-targeted therapies would lead to a quick victory over cancer were immediately dispelled. There are a few gene-targeted therapies that can address certain lower-profile cancers, but these also stop working once the cancer cells mutate further and are no longer vulnerable to the effects of the drug. “What we know today is that very few drugs, even those with fantastic clinic results, end up curing people because the cancer becomes resistant to the drug that we are using in almost every case.” Dr Richard Klausner, Director of the National Cancer Institute, from The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer
Epigenetics – Could we be we ignoring the obvious when it comes to genes. The human genome has not changed significantly for thousands of years. Why would our genes suddenly go rogue and become the cause of death for millions of people? The answer is that damaged and faulty genes may not be the killers that they have been made out to be. Perhaps what kills a patient is not the tumor itself, but the numerous reasons behind the cell mutations that have led to the development of the tumor in the first place.
There are genes in our bodies that control normal cellular growth. When this process is disrupted, these genes have the ability to switch on the development of cancer. Some of these disruptors include: exposure to carcinogenic substances such as smoking, asbestos, or radiation; then there is obesity, a lack of movement, eating toxic diets; contracting certain viruses; and even by experiencing constant emotional conflicts such as being in a bad relationship, holding onto resentments, or having extreme feelings of guilt and shame– all of which have the ability to overwhelm and collapse the immune system.
The study of epigenetics reveals that our genes have the incredible ability to respond dynamically to the environments that they are exposed to– literally activating and deactivating the chemical switches that regulate how they will express themselves. This was revealed in a study orchestrated by Dr Dean Ornish that involved prostate cancer patients who voluntarily adopted vegetarian diets and also began incorporating exercise and stress relieving techniques into their daily lives. The study revealed that over 500 genes were affected by the diet and lifestyle changes that were made. In fact, certain disease-preventing genes were up-regulated (turned on), and certain disease promoting genes, including the oncogenes involved in the development of cancer were down-regulated (turned off). The study suggests that comprehensive diet and lifestyle changes can induce positive changes in gene expression that can be beneficial to the general population as well as to those suffering from cancer. Read more about his study with this link.
Cancer is a symptom, not the problem – it is time that we look at cancer as a symptom of already sick body, not as the main problem. If we took this approach first, then we would address the deficiencies and the toxicity of the body that triggered the production of unhealthy cells in the first place. Think of it with this analogy…. Imagine going downstairs and finding that your basement is covered in mold. You could put a mask on and spray bleach all over everything. The bleach will kill the mold, but it will also damage your furniture, the walls, and everything else that you are storing down there in just the same way that chemotherapy will do to the rest of your body. But in the end the original problem remains; you still have a damp, dark basement, and without any ventilation or sunlight that mold will grow back. This is what happens when we use conventional cancer protocols that see the cancer as the primary problem and try to cut, poison and burn it out of the body. If a patient is fortunate enough to achieve remission, the doctor sends them on their way and says ‘go and live your life exactly as you had before.’ Then, 6 months, 2 years, or 5 years later the cancer comes back…Why? Because the underlying cause of cancer was never addressed, and the doctors took an already compromised immune system and damaged it further with extremely toxic treatments.
The Immune System – healing cancer successfully depends on our ability to stimulate and rebuild the immune system. The simple fact is that our bodies are continually developing cancerous cells all throughout our lives. A healthy immune system is able to identify and destroy these cells before they are able to grow uncontrollably. It is only when the immune system fails at this most basic function that cancerous cells are allowed to grow and reproduce at uncontrollable rates, thus creating a life-threatening situation. For this reason, all cancer healing protocols should recognize that a breakdown of the immune system is a primary concern, and then work to build it back up- not tear it down further as is the norm when having conventional medical interventions. Start by addressing your nutritional deficiencies as well as clearing your body of toxicity, and you will begin to address the true cause of cancer.
Change your internal terrain:
- By nourishing your body with whole foods that are rich in enzymes and nutrients
- The health benefits of juicing and blending fruits and vegetables
- Understanding acid/alkaline balance
- Eliminate the sugars that feed cancer, and artificial sweeteners that are linked to its development
- Eliminate the nutritionally depleted processed and fast foods from your diet; we are overfed and under-nourished
- Read about enzyme therapy
- Remove the unhealthy fats that interrupt cell function
- Include cancer-fighting foods, supplements and herbal therapies.
- Incorporate various detox strategies to cleanse your internal and external environments
Eliminate the toxins
- Hormones and antibiotics in conventional dairy and meats that promote the growth of cancer
- Chemical additives, preservatives and colorings
- Removing commonly used toxic chemicals such as fluoride and chlorine from your drinking water
- Why Genetically Modified Organisms are harmful to your body and the environment
- Removing pesticides, herbicides and fungicides
- Taking a closer look at vaccines
- How to make your own natural products.
- Learning relaxation therapies such as yoga, meditations and other stress relieving exercises.
- Documentaries, book-lists and a library of websites to provide an in-depth look at alternative cancer therapies.
- Information for breast health and breast cancer.
- Articles about corruption in our current health system that relies solely on pharmaceuticals that are doing nothing to cure diseases because they don’t address the underlying causes of our health issues.
- A growing collection of doctors and clinics who are using alternative methods to treat cancer.
- Search tools to locate holistic healthcare in your area.
- A collection of various alternative therapies for cancer.
- An extensive and growing collection of personal testimonials from those who have used alternative methods to heal cancer.
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- None of the statements regarding alternative treatments for cancer have been evaluated by the FDA, and many of the therapies that are written about have not been approved by the FDA.
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