The authors suggested in a previous article that the following can reduce the creation of new blood vessels by tumors: glycine, fish oil rich in eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA,) green tea polyphenols, selenium, silymarin, low-fat vegan diet, aerobic exercise training, and, when possible, aspirin. Cancers cannot grow without the creation of new arteries and attempting to prevent cancers from growing by preventing the growth of new arteries is called “multifocal angiostatic therapy.”
Other approaches to cancer control include blocking metastasis, boosting natural killer (NK) cells, preventing weight loss, preventing clots in the veins, preventing bone loss and maintaining good micronutrient levels. This entire program is called the Core Nutraceutical Program (CNP) for cancer management.
Modified citrus pectin prevents metastasis of cancer (its spread to other parts of the body). Cancer cells spread by way of blood vessels but these metastases cannot grow unless the cancer cells are able to stick to the inner walls of the blood vessels. The ability of the cells to stick depends on a short chain protein (lectin) called galectin-3. If they don’t stick, cancer cells die and modified citrus pectin inhibits the galectin-3, thus preventing potential metastatic cells from adhering. One study successfully used 5 gm. of modified citrus pectin three times a day, which is safe and easily absorbed.
Aspirin also prevents the adhesion of metastatic cells to the walls of blood vessels and prevents the development of metastases.
Mushroom beta-glucans, probiotic lactobacilli, selenium and glutamine increase the number of natural killer (NK), which destroy cancer cells. NK cells work well on small clusters or single cells but do not work so well when tumors become larger. In well-nourished humans 200 to 400 mcg. of selenium increases the number and activity of NK cells. Beta carotine however does not increase the numbers of NK cells but increases their activity. The mushrooms Agaricus, Ganoderma, Lentinula and Shiitake are beneficial.
Probiotic strains of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium increase the ability of NK cells to kill abnormal cells, especially in elderly people in which they nearly double the activity of NK cells. The authors suggest that probiotics be used in lyophilized powders or in milk products.
Glutamine amino acid in very high doses suppresses cancer growth and increases NK cytotoxicity against cancer cells. Glutamine prevents and treats loss of weight from cancer (cachexia), which is important because more than 20% of cancer patients die of cachexia. EPA rich fish oil reduces cachexia and early treatment works best to prevent cachexia. The authors administered doses of 6 gm. daily of EPA and advise using EPA with a very-low-fat vegan diet.
Nattokinase, a product from fermented soy, shows the ability to break up venous clots (venous thromboembolism) that are common in cancer patients. (Nattokinase can also prevent clots that are frequently seen in airline travel.) Fish oil, polycosanol and aspirin have been shown to reduce venous clots in cancer patients.
Fish oil, policosanol and vitamin D help prevent the breakdown of bones (osteolysis) due to cancer. Osteolysis occurs especially in cancers that produce proteins similar to parathyroid hormone, which promote bone metastases. Salicylates prevent metastasis, weight loss and muscle loss and reduce bone loss for cancer patients.
Loss of muscle mass can be reduced by supplementation of fish oil and l-glutamine.
Silymarin, an extract of milk thistle (Silybum Marianum), has been shown to be beneficial in slowing the growth of cancers.
The authors suggest the use of a multiple vitamin and mineral supplement that include the following: selenium, folic acid, vitamin C, vitamin D, gamma tocopherol, vitamin K, calcium, magnesium, chromium and lutein. To prevent angiogenesis the supplement should be copper free and 2,000 to 4,000 I.U. of vitamin D is suggested.
CONCLUSION: The authors propose the development of a nutritional supplement which will benefit cancer patients by preventing the growth of new blood vessels, slowing the development of metastases, preventing cachexia, preventing the breakdown of bones and avoiding clotting within veins. A number of nutrients would be included as well as aspirin and salicylates. A low-fat, whole food, vegan diet is suggested along with a routine of aerobic exercise.
NOTE: Read about nutrient approaches to thyroid cancer.