* Lung cancer is a tumor(s) consisting of lung cells that have ‘mistakes’ in their DNA or genetic coding and reproduce at an abnormal rate. Lung cancer is one of the most deadly forms of cancer and if left unchecked will spread quickly throughout the body causing illness and death.
* Over 150,000 Americans are diagnosed with lung cancer each year and the five-year survival rate is only fifteen percent. Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the US and is also the single most preventable cancer.
* The prime causes of lung cancer are smoking and passive smoking. Smoking more than a pack a day increases the risk of lung cancer by twenty times. Other causes include a previous history of lung cancer or tuberculosis, asbestos exposure, radon exposure and exposure to environmental pollution.
* Symptoms of lung cancer include fatigue, loss of appetite, swelling of the neck and or face, chronic coughing, chest pain, repeated bouts of bronchitis or pneumonia, shortness of breath and blood in the phlegm.
* Address Obesity Problems – the American Cancer Society recommends maintaining weight at a healthy level to reduce the risk of cancer.
* Quit Smoking – smoking and passive smoking increases the risk of lung cancers and puts unnecessary strain on a body trying to survive cancer. Smoking two packets a day increases your risk of lung cancer by sixty times. The single most important thing you can do to reduce the risk of lung cancer is to stop smoking and passive smoking. See smoking for information on how to quit.
* Avoid Chemicals – many chemicals are carcinogenic and some may have an unknown long term effect. It is safer to avoid exposure to chemicals and environmental pollution such as vehicle and other fossil fuel fumes as much as possible.
* Stress Management – the mind has a powerful influence upon one’s health, and techniques such as meditation, yoga or breathing exercises should be a part of your daily stress management program to reduce the risk of cancer, or to help the body to cope with cancer treatment.
* Regular Exercise – the American Cancer Society recommends at least 30 minutes of exercise daily as a preventative measure against cancer.
* Dietary Changes – diet may help as a preventative measure against lung cancer. If you have been diagnosed with lung cancer, positive dietary changes will help your body to cope better with chemotherapy, radiation or surgery and reduce the factors that cause disease.
– Reduce fat intake – high fat diets have been linked with cancer.
– Take in a high fiber diet, at least 35 gms daily. Fiber is known to reduce the risk of cancer.
– Eliminate animal flesh products. Animals are often treated with hormones and consume foods contaminated with pesticides; these chemicals are taken into your body when you eat meat and other animal products. Many studies have found a direct correlation between high intake of animal protein and some cancers.
– Avoid alcohol, caffeine products, processed foods or foods with additives, salt, sugar and white flour.
– If possible, eat organically grown food, as pesticides have been linked to cancer.
* Eat a vegetarian, whole foods diet including whole grains, legumes, oats, onions, berries, garlic, broccoli, carrots, sweet potato, brussel sprouts, nuts, seeds, yams, pumpkin and leafy green vegetables.
Lung Cancer Treatment
There are some therapies available to treat cancer. Conventional treatments include surgery – removal of the tumor; radiation – radiation of the tumor; and chemotherapy – drug therapy. The treatment depends upon the severity and type of lung cancer and will have many side effects. It is necessary to include other therapies such as diet, vitamin, mineral and herbal therapies into your regimen to improve the chances of successful recovery. Please consult your nutrition oriented physician for further information. If lung cancer is diagnosed and treated early enough in its progression, it may be possible to go on and lead a normal life after treatment. It is worth noting that the healthier a body is before, during and after treatment, the better the chances are of avoiding or overcoming lung cancer.
Lung Cancer – Natural Treatment
VITAMIN A – Contains anticarcinogenic phytochemicals shown to reduce the risk of some cancers and may help to reduce the risk of lung cancer. Vitamin A helps stimulate the immune system and is used in tissue repair. Natural sources of vitamin A include yellow fruits and vegetables, rose hip, sage, spinach, spirulina, alfalfa, asparagus, dandelion greens, red peppers, apricots and peaches. 50,000 – 100,000 iu for ten days in divided doses of emulsion form, reduced to 50,000 iu for thirty days, and 25,000 iu daily after that, may help if you have lung cancer otherwise take according to label instructions. Doses over 10,000 iu per day may cause birth defects if taken by pregnant women. Women of childbearing age are advised not to become pregnant during such a course or within one month after ceasing a course.
VITAMIN C – With bioflavonoids. Vitamin C is thought to reduce the risk of cancer and to lower death rates of cancer sufferers due to its antioxidant properties, which protect tissue from damage caused by free radicals. Vitamin C may also be used to prevent damaging side effects from chemotherapy and radiation. Natural sources of vitamin C include citrus fruits, berries, alfalfa, fenugreek, parsley, peppermint, tomatoes, pineapple, papayas, kale, spinach, brussel sprouts, onions, mangos, peas, persimmons and kelp. 5,000 – 20,000 daily in divided doses may help if you have lung cancer otherwise take according to label instructions. Do not use more than 5,000 mg daily if pregnant. Use esterified vitamin C if you use aspirin. Large doses of vitamin C may cause diarrhea, may deplete the body of copper and affect the reliability of oral contraceptives.
VITAMIN E – Helps to reduce the risk of cancer as the antioxidant properties protect cell membranes from attack from free radicals and is used in cell repair – important if you are undergoing chemotherapy, radiation or surgery. Natural sources of vitamin E include dark green leafy vegetables, cornmeal, milk, sweet potatoes, flaxseed, dandelion, soybeans, legumes, cold pressed vegetable oils, nuts, whole grains and seeds. 400 – 1,000 iu daily may help if you have lung cancer otherwise take according to label instructions.
BETA CAROTENE – Protects against cancer by scavenging free radicals and is needed to repair tissue. 25,000 iu daily may help if you have lung cancer, otherwise take according to label instructions.
SELENIUM – Some studies have shown that people who have a diet low in selenium have increased risk of developing cancer. Selenium works synergistically with vitamin C and A, has a powerful antioxidant effect and aids in digesting protein. Natural sources of selenium include dairy products, garlic, molasses, kelp, nettle, ginseng, fenugreek, fennel seed, chamomile, wheat germ, brown rice, alfalfa, whole grains and sarsaparilla. 200 mcg daily in divided doses may help if you have lung cancer otherwise take according to label instructions.
ASTRAGALUS, HUANG QI – Stimulates the immune system, assists in healing and digestion, improves fatigue and is used for cancer and after chemotherapy. Take according to label instructions. Works well if used alternately with echinacea. Do not take if a fever is present. Do not use for more than ten consecutive days.
CHAPARRAL – A free radical scavenger, helps during radiation, relieves pain and reduces the risks of cancer. Take according to label instructions. Chaparral in large or prolonged doses may damage the liver.
DANDELION – Is thought to reduce the risk of cancer. Take according to label instructions. Avoid dandelion if you have ulcers or gall stones.
ECHINACEA, PURPLE CONEFLOWER. – Stimulates the immune system. Works well if used alternately with astragalus. Do not take if you are allergic to plants in the sunflower family. Do not use if you have an autoimmune disease or have a progressive disease such as multiple sclerosis or tuberculosis.
GARLIC – Stimulates the immune system, detoxifies the body, improves circulation and is used for cancer. Take 2 – 3 capsules daily in divided doses. Seek medical advice before taking garlic if you are taking anticoagulant medication.
GINGER – Helps to alleviate nausea and vomiting which is experienced with chemotherapy and radiation and improves circulation. 1 gm daily in divided doses may help. Do not use for a prolonged period during pregnancy or if you have gallstones.
GREEN TEA – Is thought to reduce the risk of cancer. Drink daily.
PAU D’ARCO, TAHEEBO, LAPACHO – Used in cancer and has healing and cleansing properties. Use according to label instructions.