by Agatha M. Thrash, M.D.
Cancer is the result of the simultaneous action of at least three factors a virus, an injurious agent and a native weakness. We can determine cancer susceptibility early in life and keep up the body’s defenses by carefully managing lifestyle. Animals may be the reservoir for cancer viruses. Animal products figure highly in cancer risks. Viral particles have been found in certain cancers and in milk and eggs. Cooking may not be adequate to make animal products safe, as even heat-killed viruses have caused cancer in hamsters. In countries where dairy industries are well developed, cancer rates are high; where poultry industries are well-developed, leukemia and early maturation of children are high. There have been “clusters” of cancer cases associated with sick pets as well as with certain places. Implicated as cancer virus carriers are monkeys, chickens, cows, cats, and dogs.
Eighty-five percent of cancers are directly related to the environment in one way or other, and another 10 percent are indirectly related. Estrogens and bile acid derivatives are internally produced carcinogens which are recognized as being related to environmental factors. Examples of environmental factors include the following: There is a three times higher risk in women to develop bladder cancer if as little as one cup of coffee per day is taken. Any X-rays to the mouth, head, neck, and even diagnostic X-rays, increase the risk of developing thyroid cancer. Atromid-S (Clofibrate for lowering cholesterol) is associated with a higher incidence of cancer and gallbladder disease. Amphetamines, once used in weight reduction programs and now used for hyperactive children, may increase six-fold the risk of later development of Hodgkin’s disease. In the United States, about 32,000 deaths per year are attributed to Hodgkin’s disease.
Since so many different things cause cancer, it is difficult to put one's finger on any one thing as the cause of a specific cancer. A number of common agents in the environment are repeatedly incriminated as factors in increasing one's risk of developing cancer and these should be considered. Where possible these items should be eliminated from one's close-by surroundings, as the working together of many different factors can eventually overcome the defenses of the body and encourage the growth of cancer.
Following is a listing of certain factors known to increase risks for cancer, at least under certain circumstances:
High meat and fat consumption
Coffee, tea, colas
Aflatoxins (especially in peanuts and soy sauce)
Lack of iodine, Vitamins A, C, E
Amines in unrefrigerated foods, processed meat, cheese
High intake of certain vitamins
Habit of overeating (associated in 35% of all cancers)
Some species of mushrooms
Diet high in refined foods
Diet high in fat or protein
High “transit time” through colon
Drugs: certain antibiotics (Tetracycline, probably penicillin), aspirin, diuretics, immunosuppressants, Azolid, Butazolidin, Presamine, Tofranil, SK-Pramine, Tapazole, Methotrexate, antihistamines, amphetamines, Atromid-S, antidepressants, etc.
Use of tobacco, alcoholic drinks, caffeinated and decaffeinated drinks
Excessive exposure to chemicals, industrial fumes, hydrocarbons, cleaning solvents, vinyl chloride
Exposure to cold, heat, and radiation
Long contact with sick pets
Chronic irritation or infection
All viral illnesses (flu, colds, rashes, diarrhea)
Early sexual activities—cervical and foreskin cancer
A kidney transplant
History of any previous cancer
Nonspecific factors: age, race, sex, occupation, family history of cancer
Food preservatives such as BHT
Deficiencies of essential fatty acids in the diet, which can be obtained from nuts, seeds, whole grains, legumes, olives, and avocados, may be a factor in encouraging tumors to occur. Such tumors may be benign, precancerous, or actual cancer (Ref. Medical Hypothesis 48:55: 1997). A serving of nuts or seeds is about 1-2 tablespoons; a serving of cooked dried legumes is ½ cup: a serving of 6-8 olives or 1/8 of a medium avocado.
Studies done with mice revealed that stressful situations such as poor housing conditions, overcrowding, and social tensions between mice were factors in causing the mice to fail to respond well to treatment for cancer (Ref. Cancer Research 57:1124; March 15, 1997).
Childhood leukemia has been linked to electric and magnetic fields near residential areas for the last 25 to 30 years. Supportive research is continually being reported, although not as major factors (Ref. American Journal of Epidemiology 134(9):923; 1991). Major electrical lines or transformers should be at least 100 feet away.
Processed fat intake is linked to cancer in older women, especially the fat found in red meat, dairy butter, margarine, mayonnaise, fried foods, cooking fats, and salad oils.
The consumption of cured meats, most notably bacon, increases one's risk of getting cancer, as it increases the dietary sources of certain nitrogen-based compounds which are precursors of nitrosamines, strong cancer-producing chemicals.
The use of common table sugar (sucrose) and monosaccharides such as fructose have been shown to encourage an increased risk for getting certain types of cancer of the liver and gallbladder (Ref. Preventive Medicine 24:591; 1995).
Chlorination of water has been proclaimed a risk factor for bladder cancer (Ref. Cancer Causes and Control 7:596; 1996).
In some countries where colon cancer is unknown, the diet is chiefly fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and the dietary fiber is 12-15 grams daily. In this country, where colon cancer is high, many people average only 3-5 grams daily. Low-fiber animal products are suspect. A lifestyle that encourages diabetes will also encourage cancer, as more cancer of all kinds occur in diabetics. A lack of exercise, irregularity in sleeping and eating times and a diet high in protein, refined sugars, grams, and oils are all associated with a greater cancer risk. Animal experiments indicate a much higher incidence of cancer on high protein diets. There are some encouraging results from treating leukemic children with a low protein diet. Fats are repeatedly incriminated in medical reports as being likely to promote cancer when used in large quantities.
The following list shows factors connected to colon cancer:
High meat diet
High fat diet
Low fiber diet
High “transit time” for intestinal digestion
Aromatic spices, pepper, ginger, etc.
Beer consumption (rectal cancer)
Previous cancer of breast, colon, or endometrium
Prevention, as with cause, has many aspects. A lifetime of healthful living by one’s parents, as well as by oneself, gives the very best protection. Some aspects of prevention have been particularly emphasized, however, and should be given special consideration by all who wish to protect themselves against cancer.
The first item of consideration must always be to remove any known causes. Study the causes listed above and diligently aim at eliminating all of them.
A certain process of maturation occurs in cells of the intestinal tract making them resistant to cancerous changes. This process is brought about by folic acid, a substance found in generous supply in fruits and vegetables. It is believed that one of the reasons vegetarians have less cancer of the colon is because they naturally take in more folic acid. Vitamin B12 also beneficially affects the maturation process that protects against cancerous changes (Ref. Clinical Nutrition 156:8:1996). The most favorable diet for both prevention and slowing down the spread is a totally vegetarian diet without animal products, even eggs.
Exercise has been demonstrated to reduce both the risk of the development of cancer, and to retard the spread of already present cancers.
The objectives of the cancer routine are to improve circulation to and oxygenation of the cells, to change the intestinal flora with a high fiber diet, to discourage cancer cell growth with hot baths, to stimulate the immune mechanism for cancer resistance, and to combat toxins which cause anemia and loss of appetite.
Vegetables. Eat freely.
Nuts and seeds sparingly.
Avoid oils, margarine, shortening, greases, and fried foods.
Omit all animal products meat, milk, cheese, eggs, butter, yogurt, ice cream.
Use only whole grain cereals, bread, pastas. Make sure the cereal grains are well cooked, usually from 2 to 4 hours.
Use legumes (beans) five or more times weekly.
Take two tablespoons of Barley Green two times daily in water (6 oz.).
If you feel compelled to use a sweetener, use honey, molasses, barley malt, maple syrup, or turbinado sugar instead of white sugar, brown sugar or confectioner’s sugar In any case, use these all sparingly.
Dried fruits use moderately.
There is a great advantage in skipping the third meal. The two meal plan allows the digestive organs to rest. Never snack. Not a sip or a taste or a morsel between meals.
Have a set time for meals. Establish regularity and regimentation as far as meal schedule is concerned.
Read labels for irritants and harmful foods and additives such as vinegar, monosodium glutamate, pepper (black, cayenne, hot), baking powder, soda, animal products, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, all spices.
Omit one to three meals weekly unless underweight.
Eat a lot of your fruits and vegetables raw.
Eat slowly and chew well.
Cook grains thoroughly for three hours at least. Use Crock Pots overnight if desired.
Omit liquid foods at meals except on rare occasions. Liquid foods are pops, juices, water-based soups, other beverages.
Use frozen fruit blended with a little fruit juice, as an ice-cream substitute.
Shop at health food stores and produce markets as much as possible.
Put five hours between the end of one meal and the beginning of the next. Eat a substantial breakfast and lunch, supper, if eaten, should be only whole grains or fruit.
Never use soft drinks, coffees, teas, medicines, and chocolate. May use herb teas.
Take one clove of raw or steamed garlic, or four garlic pills (two capsules) four times per day at meals.
Drink 1/4 cup of Aloe Vera juice two times per day, at meals.
Drink 6-8 oz. of fresh carrot juice daily, at lunch.
Eat carrots, grapes, cabbage, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, beets, broccoli, dark greens, kohlrabi, cauliflower—one or two servings daily.
Eat plenty of raw fruit including fresh lemon and grape juice or raw vegetables including carrot juice (but not both fruits and vegetables at the same meal). If possible, fifty to eighty percent of the meal should be eaten raw. Asparagus and garlic have both been ascribed anticancer qualities.
Choose cooked grains or vegetables from the following list. These foods are selected because of their low phenylalanine and lysine content.
Potatoes, white or sweet, Wheat
Use field peas or green peas not more than twice a week, as they are high in phenylalanine and lysine. Select only one at a meal.
Use frequently whole grain cereals or quick breads without sugar, baking powder or soda, or excessive salt, to avoid overusing yeast products.
Cycle: Stationary, or three-wheeled, etc.
Walk, walk, walk
Jog on padded surfaces as appropriate
Exercise daily, progressively, and religiously, especially after meals for at least 20 minutes and up to 10 miles walking daily. Exercise produces brain substances (endorphins) that "doeth good like a medicine".
Massage for passive exercise.
Range of motion exercises.
Exercise is your best friend. Twenty minutes per day is minimal. One hour daily is better, but on certain days three or more hours may be needed. Do not get sunburned and do not make your muscles sore with too much exercise. Both of these are unhealthful. Gradually build to a good exercise level without ever developing sore muscles. Do not become exhausted by too much exercise. Exhaustion is exertion from which you cannot recover well from with a night’s sleep. Exercise helps keep your appetite under control, neutralizes stress, lowers blood cholesterol, promotes digestion, and normalizes blood sugar. Make it your companion. Breathe deeply while exercising and meditate on nature as you work out. By active exercise in the open air every day the liver, kidneys, and lungs also will be strengthened to perform their work. The studied habit of shunning the air and avoiding exercise closes the pores, the little mouths through which the body breathes, making it impossible to throw off impurities through that channel. This burden is then thrown upon the liver, lungs, kidneys, etc., and these internal organs are compelled to do the work of the skin. When the oxygen is cut off from normal cells, they are damaged to the extent that they are no longer able to burn foodstuffs down to carbon dioxide and water, because oxygen is needed for this reaction. The cells then have to depend upon the energy obtained from metabolizing sugar to lactic acid, which does not supply adequate energy to maintain normal structure and function. As a result, the cell can turn cancerous. Morning exercise, walking in the free invigorating air of heaven is the surest safeguard against colds, coughs, congestions of the brain and lungs... and a hundred other diseases.
Drink 6-8 cups of water, as pure as possible to obtain, between meals each day. Also, regular bowel movements daily are very important. Two cups of very warm water upon arising in the morning are very helpful for this.
Drink four cups of Pau d'Arco tea daily (Make the tea by boiling 4 teaspoons of the herb in four cups of water for 15 minutes, then steep for 15 minutes more).
Drink 2-4 cups of Chaparral tea daily (Make by steeping one teaspoon of leaves per cup of preboiled water for fifteen minutes).
Do not use sweeteners in your teas. Though they are medicinal and may not appeal to your taste, the herbs were given to us by our Creator for healing. Drink them faithfully!
Drink blue violet and red clover tea freely, made the same way as chaparral. The herb teas may be continued indefinitely if desired.
A daily bath is essential; personal hygiene is a must. Wear a clean change of clothes daily.
Clean and neat living conditions, and fastidious kitchen facilities are important.
Take 15-20 hyperthermia treatments (3-5 per week, depending on the strength of the patient, no more than one per day) (See 1-7 below).
Use a hot bath of 104-110 degrees F. to accomplish this "fever" or "hyperthermia" treatment.
Obtain 102-105 degrees F orally and maintain it for 20-40 minutes, as tolerated.
When oral temperature goes above 100 degrees F or patient begins to sweat, keep head very cool with icy cloths changed often. Keep bath water of sufficient temperature to maintain an oral temperature of 102-105 degrees F. Do this by draining cooling water and adding hot water.
End hot treatment with tepid shower, brisk rubbing to dry, and one hour of bed rest with an cold pack on forehead.
Prevent chilling after treatment.
Abort treatment if heart rate rises above 140. For more details on fever treatments, see the book Home Remedies.
For superficial tumors, use ice massage for seven to twelve minutes; follow by twenty minutes of hot compresses and end with cold compresses of one minute.
Water is the best liquid to cleanse the tissues. Drunk freely, it helps to supply the necessities of the system, and assists nature to resist disease. Pure water to drink and fresh air to breathe invigorate the vital organs, purify the blood, and help nature in her task of overcoming the bad conditions of the system. A good sign: Drink water till urine is pale.
Twenty to sixty minute sunbath daily will be helpful. Expose at least face and arms.
Sunlight increases the production of lymphocytes. The lymphocyte is also capable of producing a substance called interferon which is effective against several different kinds of cancer including carcinoma, sarcoma, and leukemia. This fact spurred the American Cancer Society to spend 2 million dollars to purchase interferon from Finland for experimental use. Dr. Hans Strander of Finland discovered that he could give interferon to terminal bone cancer patients and double the number of long-term, disease-free survivors. The lymphocytes in our own bodies manufacture this wonderful interferon that can help so dramatically in cancer and viral infections. Sunlight is a great stimulus for increased lymphocyte production and thereby increases the production of interferon. Sunlight also generates vitamin D. Sunlight destroys bilirubin. To the sick it is worth more than silver and gold to lie in the sunshine or in the shade of the trees.
God will supply power and help to overcome once and for all health-destroying practices. A few of these are: overeating, snacking between meals, indulgence of unhealthful habits such as caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, purging, prescription or nonprescription drug usage, masturbation and all other improper expressions of sexuality, overworking, television viewing, late bedtimes, use of harmful food items or overuse of marginal items (such as salt).
True temperance teaches us to dispense entirely with everything hurtful and to use judiciously that which is healthful. Drugs never heal, they only change the features of the disease.
Fresh, outdoor air. Avoid smog, motor exhaust, hydrocarbons, and tobacco smoke.
Keep correct posture.
Keep sleeping rooms well aired, being careful not to sleep in a draft.
Spend more time out-of-doors.
Take 20 deep breaths outdoors or near an open window 2-4 times per day.
Blow up balloons to encourage oxygenation of tissues.
Spend time out of cities as much as possible.
Remember that prayer is the breath of the soul.
A group of rats with cancer were allowed to breathe charged (outdoor) air while an equal number breathed common indoor air. After one month the cancer in the rats breathing the indoor air was twice the size of the cancer in the rats breathing the charged air.
Reinstate regularity, routine, order, and predictability in daily activities.
Simplicity and quietness of living is the goal.
Readjust your overly stressful job and whittle various involvements out of your life.
Prioritize your life with much prayer.
Keep the Sabbath holy. You need a day of rest. God made the Sabbath for man and specially blesses those who commune with Him that day by spending every possible moment in Bible reading, meditation, prayer, study of spiritual lessons in nature, and innocent family pleasures.
Rise and retire at set times.
Omit TV, Rock n' Roll, novels, love stories, idle talk, frivolity, and other exciting but unnecessary activities.
Learn to live more simply, spend less money on yourself, and utilize more to help others.
Refuse to defend yourself, argue, worry, or complain. If you are not sleeping at night, do not nap during the afternoon. Do not sleep late and take breakfast off schedule. A nap before lunch can be taken instead.
If you work afternoon or night shifts, change job assignments if at all possible.
Make sure you have one day off each week besides Sabbath. Use this day for personal chores and private projects; this is not selfish. Your first duty to God and to others is that of self-development.
Reevaluate your relationship to God.
Begin each day or end each day with a quiet hour or so alone with God in prayer and Bible reading.
Keep your joys (thanks), your wants (needs), your sorrows (sins), your cares, and your fears before God.
Talk to Him all day. Practice His presence.
Read Desire of Ages, Ministry of Healing (Health and Happiness), Steps to Christ, and Counsels on Diet and Foods by Ellen G. White.
Resume or continue morning and evening family devotions.
Become a Christian anew every day.
Accept the circumstances of daily life even if they are not what you may have planned or chosen.
Pray for God’s will to be done and do not insist on healing. He does not heal everyone but He intends to save every soul. Have faith that God will accomplish the very best thing for your life.
Be thankful, cheerful, and prayerful. These attributes produce endorphins. These are merry hormones and happy chemicals that fight cancer and promote a sense of well-being.
Consider being anointed by the church elders.
You will need the Lord to make these lifestyle changes and to maintain them.
Simple, modest, healthful, clean, and attractive.
Natural fibers and blends are best.
Keep your limbs warm.
No tight bands and restrictive garments.
Additional Treatment Suggestions:
In the treatment of malignant disorders there are some factors that seem rather specific for certain cancers, but most agents having a beneficial effect on one cancer will also have a beneficial effect on all kinds of malignancies. Therefore, the advantage of a cancer treatment which helped one type of cancer should be employed in all types of cancers. A listing of factors that have been proven, or believed to be beneficial, or even curative, are given below:
Flaxseed lignans, a type of fiber, has a variety of anticancerous actions. Flaxseed contains vastly more lignans than the next highest known source of lignans—lentils (Ref. Nutr. Cancer 27:26-30;1997).
The immune system is benefited by a variety of activities which could be said to bring peace or joy. A meaningful religious experience is one of the most effective means in this group of immune system stimulants. Charitable deeds for the poor or distressed also fall in this category. Creative activity such as playing a musical instrument, reading or writing poetry, planting a flower bed or a vegetable garden, or arranging flowers for a gift to a friend, can substantially benefit the immune system (Ref. Journal of the National Cancer Institute 87(5):342; March 1, 1995).
The use of vitamin supplements have appeared protective in people who were using cured meats, a source of ever increasing risk of getting cancer (Ref. Cancer Causes and Control 8:5-12; 1997).
Reduced risks for brain tumors have been associated with reduced risks from the intake of vegetables such as bell peppers.
Tobacco in any form is definitely a risk factor for cancer, including cancer of the brain (Ref. Cancer Causes and Control 8:13-24; 1997).
Coenzyme Q10, “CoQ10” has led to the complete regression of tumors in two cases of breast cancer reported in 1993. Three additional breast cancer patients later took 390 milligrams of CoQ10 over a three to five year period. The numerous metastases in the liver of one of the three, a 44-year-old patient, disappeared, and no signs of metastases were found elsewhere. Another, a 49 year-old patient revealed no signs of tumor in the pleural cavity after six months, and her condition was excellent. A 75-year-old patient with carcinoma in one breast after lumpectomy treated with CoQ10 showed no cancer in the tumor bed, nor were there metastases (Ref. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 212(1):172-7; July 6, 1995).
There were measurable effects reported from beta carotene and vitamins A, C, and E in benefiting cervical cancer. It might be well to try a routine of all raw foods for abnormal pap smears, cervical carcinoma in situ, or invasive cervical carcinoma (Ref. J Cel Biochem Suppl 23:96;1995).
Isoflavones, such as those found in soybeans, are not absorbed as efficiently when a lot of wheat is eaten at a meal. Since Americans are heavy wheat eaters and eat fewer beans containing isoflavones, Americans lose the benefits of these anticancer substances. For women who are highly susceptible to cancer, it would be well if they limited the intake of wheat to fairly small quantities, and that only two to four times a week, rather than with each meal as is the custom in the typical western diet (Ref. Quarterly Review of Natural Medicine, Fall, 1996, page 213). Perhaps the use of rice, oats, millet, corn, and rye may be helpful, rather than a steady diet of large quantities of wheat.
Grapes, particularly the purple kind, contain large quantities of a substance called resveratrol, which can block cancers during three major stages of development before a tumor ever appears. Mulberries and peanuts also contain resveratrol; but grapes and grape products are the richest source. While grapes have not been found curative, they have been found preventive for cancers, and retarding to their growth (Ref. Science 275:218; January 10, 1997). The resveratrol is present in the grape skins.
Ginseng works to tie up estrogen receptors in much the same way that Tamoxifen, a toxic chemotherapeutic agent used widely in hopes of preventing estradiol from the ovaries from binding to breast cells to stimulate cancer (Ref. Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 40:264; 1996).
Bladder cancer has been helped by instilling into the bladder a vaccine used against tuberculosis called Bacillus-Calmette Guerin (BCG). Furthermore, bladder cancer was treated successfully to prevent recurrences after surgery by instilling 25 milligrams of vitamin B6. This work was first done in the Veterans Administration hospitals in 1977 (Ref. Clinical Pearls News 6(4):37; April 1996).
Skin Cleansing and Stimulation: Take three showers daily for ten days; precede each shower by a dry, stiff bristle brushing of the skin. Then use two showers daily for thirty days.
Chemicals and Pharmaceuticals: Avoid cosmetics, deodorants, hair sprays, and all chemicals, especially pesticides, and herbicides.
Some may wish to follow a daily routine such as the one that follows:
Day 1: On the first day or two of the program have a total food fast. Repeat the fast one to two days a week as macrophages and lymphocytes are the most active and effective in fighting cancer cells after fasting.
Day 2: Take sixteen ounces of fresh (or canned, if necessary) grape juice three times a day. The juice may be diluted if it causes a stomachache undiluted.
Day 3: Switch to sixteen ounces of fresh carrot juice three times a day.
Day 4: Use grape juice at breakfast and supper, carrot juice at dinner.
Days 5-10: Use the same juices. In addition to grape juice, eat any kind of raw fruit. In addition to carrot juice, eat any kind of raw vegetables.
Days 11-15: Begin adding stewed or canned fruit to the fruit meal menu, and steamed vegetables to the vegetable menu. Serve hot. Use as little salt as possible, and never over one-half teaspoon per day. Never overeat.
Day 16: Begin taking three almonds with breakfast and dinner. Continue a very small fruit supper if essential, but it should be omitted as soon as possible.
Day 17: Continue the present food plan, but begin serving one-half cup of brown rice at breakfast and dinner.
Days 18-20: Increase the quantity of rice by one-fourth cup per day until serving one cup.
Serve with dry or chopped fruit, or onions, tomatoes, lemon juice, or green peas for seasoning.
Day 21: On the twenty-first day, increase the number of high protein foods served to supplement the rice, keeping the variety of dishes to a minimum, and using three items only at each meal as follows:
Eat plenty of raw fruit including fresh lemon and grape juice, or raw vegetables including carrot juice (but not both fruits and vegetables at the same meal). If possible, fifty to eighty percent of the meal should be eaten raw. Asparagus and garlic have both been ascribed anticancer qualities.
Choose cooked grains or vegetables from the following list. These foods are selected because of their low phenylalanine and lysine content:
Potatoes, white or sweet Wheat
Use immature legumes such as field peas or green peas not more than twice a week, as they are high in phenylalanine and lysine. Select only one at a meal.
Use whole grain cereals or quick breads without sugar, baking powder or soda, or excessive salt.
Bowels: A bowel movement daily is essential, even if an enema or colonic irrigation is required. All foods that ferment in the bowel should be avoided.
Massage: For the weak patient who is unable to exercise out-of-doors a daily massage is essential, but should not be done directly over tumor. After about ten days, the rubs may be reduced to one or more weekly.
Country Quarters: Avoid noise, smog, television, stress, and confusion. Do not overstudy, but get some reading or study each day. Remember that a rejoicing heart doeth good like a medicine.
These are just a few suggestions. Your future is in the hands of the Lord. He has loved you with an everlasting love and if we believe that, we have the peace that passeth all understanding. May God bless you as you seek to implement these suggestions.
The majority of this content is taken from Dr. Agatha Thrash of Uchee Pines Institute, printed with permission by Wildwood Inn Health Retreat.