Top 10 tips for enjoying the sun while reaping the benefits!

By Dr Janey

Nobody does it more perfectly than nature herself!  It applies to our diet, and it applies equally to getting adequate amounts of Vit D, our all-important ‘sunshine vitamin’.  Quite simply, if you have access to sunshine it will trump popping a Vit D pill or opting for a sun bed every time! If you read our previous article entitled The sun and skin cancer – revealing the myths you will know that the sun is in fact our friend when it comes to preventing a whole host of diseases, and that includes 16x different types of cancers! 

As Dr William Grant Ph.D (recognised Vit D expert) concluded from his studies, a startling 30% of cancer deaths (approx 2 million worldwide) could be prevented with higher Vit D levels!

Sadly however, most are not aware of this and instead are running scared of the sun due to the pervasive misinformation that exists around this subject which has people avoiding it almost entirely or slapping on sunscreen whenever they have to go outdoors.  This prevents them from benefiting from the good UVB rays that enable Vit D3 production. Little wonder that 85% of people today are deficient in this crucial vitamin!

Note: If you missed the previous article, you can check it out here: https://blogdrjaney.com/2016/11/22/the-sun-and-skin-cancer-revealing-the-myths/

 

So how do we go about enjoying our beautiful sun and reaping all the benefits, while avoiding burning?

  1. When? Contrary to everything we’ve been told for so long, the best time of the day to sun bathe is near midday! Surprised?  Most people are. The reason for this is that UVB rays have a short wave length which results in these beneficial rays only penetrating the ozone when the angle to the sun is more than 50 degrees to the earth.  That only happens between 10am-2pm.

UVA on the other hand which penetrates the skin more deeply, causing more oxidative damage and hence skin aging or potentially contributing to skin cancer has a long wave length and is therefore present throughout the daylight hours.  Therefore those people only going out in the mornings and late afternoons – as we’ve been falsely advised for so long – are only exposing themselves to the harmful UVA rays, while not being exposed to the beneficial UVB.

(please note: UVA from the sun is NOT the sole cause of skin cancer but should rather be considered a catalyst with the underlying primary causes been a poor diet, smoking and other negative lifestyle influences – more on this crucial topic in another article)

The good news is that for all those busy people who feel that they don’t have time to get out into the sunshine very often, you now only require a short window of time to get your dosage of Vit D at this hottest time of the day!

joy-3

 

  1. How long? This will naturally depend on your skin colour. If you are very pale and unaccustomed to the sun then you may want to begin with just 5 minutes in the sun.  This you can extend gradually as your natural protection builds. People with bronzed skin may handle 15 – 30 minutes, and if you have black skin then you will require 2-6x the time in the sun to get your dose of Vit D.  The rule of thumb to follow is to leave the sun as soon as your skin shows the earliest signs of pinking. Staying longer in the sun has no additional Vit D benefit, and puts you at risk of burning.

 

  1. How much of your body? Expose at least 50% of your body to the sun to enjoy the UVB benefits by getting into some shorts and sleeveless top, or how about your swim suit?

 

  1. How often? Ideally at least 3 times per week building up to a minimum of 15-20 minutes.

 

  1. Don’t wear sun cream if you want to top up your Vit D levels. Most sun creams shield you from the good UVB rays that enable you to synthesise Vit D, while 60% of sun creams provide no protection from the harmful UVA rays.  In addition most conventional sun creams contain toxic chemicals that have been shown to increase your risk of skin cancer and aging, while also potentially causing endocrine disruption when absorbed into the blood stream.

 

  1. If you have to be out in the sun for extended periods wear a broad brimmed hat and cool clothes that will provide a shield from the sun. It is worth noting that cotton clothing has the equivalent sun protection value of SPF 15.

 

  1. For those areas that are not adequately protected by clothing, opt for a non-toxic sun cream such as the following that we have carefully hand-selected for you here: http://www.drjaney.com/c45/Natural-Sun-Protection.aspx

 

  1. If you are very pale and would like to increase your natural protection against the sun, consider supplementing with Asthaxanthins. These powerful antioxidants are produced by microalgae called Haematococcus which will help protect your skin and eyes from the sun. You can find out more about this wonderful natural anti-inflammatory and antioxidant at this link: http://www.drjaney.com/pRTA001/Anti-X-Astaxanthin—60-caps.aspx

 

  1. Try to avoid wearing sunglasses! While you do not want to look directly at the sun, gentle and natural exposure to the full spectrum of light is good for your eyes – again contrary to what we’ve been told for too long!  If you have been wearing glasses (both sun and prescription) for a long time, you probably have very sensitive eyes so you would be advised to begin your exposure to natural light slowly, starting with a few minutes at a time and gradually building on this.  In addition, with respect to your skin, choosing not to wear sunglasses allows the light entering your eyes to enable a chain of events that will lead to you generating melanin which will in turn afford you natural protection from the sun while creating a beautiful healthy glow.   In contrast, wearing sunglasses will actually increase your risk of burning or skin damage by blocking this natural protective pathway.

sunglasses

 

  1. Finally, remember to observe the 48 hour rule! Vit D is a steroidal hormone (not a vitamin) and so we can wash away the good we have achieved by spending time in the sun by using soap for the first 48 hrs.  While you can certainly shower during this time, it is best to avoid excessive use of soap which will dissolve the Vit D before it can be adequately absorbed.  Therefore save the soap simply for feet, groin and armpits while resorting only to the flushing action of water to cleanse any dirt away.

 

Last, but not least – enjoy the sun and all those good happy hormones such as solitrol and serotonin that are released when you are out in the sunshine.  They will leave you feeling vibrantly healthy while you can enjoy peace of mind knowing that following these simple guidelines in the sun will be protecting you from a long list of modern diseases including cancer!

The sun and skin cancer ~ revealing the myths!

By Dr Janey

Few subjects on health are as riddled with myths and misconceptions as the question of the sun and its presumed role in contributing to skin cancer.

Let’s take a look at this intriguing subject more closely……

 

The sun has been demonised in recent decades as being the source of escalating skin cancers resulting in most people today running for cover from the sun in their efforts to avoid this most common of cancers that has seen a rise in incidence of more than 300% since 1992.

However, if we stop to scrutinise the facts for a moment we are left with some surprising twists in the beliefs and perceptions surrounding the sun and its role in skin cancer (and other cancers).

It is worth reminding ourselves that without the sun – the only true source of energy for our planet throughout all of history – life as we know it, would simply not exist.  We also need to remain cognisant of the fact that until recent decades, skin cancer was a rare disease.  How then do we explain that the sun, provider of life for millennia, should suddenly become so harmful in recent times causing unprecedented loss of life through various forms of skin cancer?

sunshine

Let me point out that the answer to this all important question is NOT the common misconception of a thinning ozone layer permitting excess UV light penetration.  This point is demonstrated best by the vast difference in UV radiation experienced by individuals living in different geographical locations.  Those living at high altitudes are exposed to considerably more UV radiation than their counterparts at low altitudes.  The same can be said for those living at the equator whom are naturally exposed to substantially more UV light than those living in polar regions. And yet in both instances it is those populations exposed to the most UV radiation (ie at the equator and high altitudes) that paradoxically enjoy a much lower incidence of skin cancers, and in fact all cancers!

Could there be more to the sun and its role with respect to skin cancers than that which we’ve been sold by the media and those industries with vested interests in propagating the pervasive fear of the sun as we know it today?

It is interesting to know that the practice of heliotherapy (controlled sunlight therapy) was successfully embraced in Europe in the late 19th to mid 20th century for healing diseases that ranged from tuberculosis, to small pox, lupus and rickets.  This would however be replaced in the 1930’s following the discovery of Penicillin and the advent of the pharmaceutical age.

However the benefits of sunshine remain unchanged in modern times when exposure to sun is regular and enjoyed safely.  Some of the benefits to be enjoyed through sunshine are the following:

  • Stimulation of our immune system
  • Production of mood enhancing hormones such as solitrol and serotonin (the reason for the syndrome, SAD (Seasonal affected depression) experienced in countries with low sunlight levels)
  • Germicidal wavelength controls germs, moulds, mites etc
  • Enhances haemoglobin-oxygen binding crucial for oxygen transport and delivery around the body
  • Reduces raised blood pressure, reduces cholesterol & reduces high blood glucose
  • Responsible for Vit D3 synthesis that is in turn crucial in promoting the following:
  • Building of strong bones and teeth (Ca + P uptake)
  • Prevention of cardiovascular disease – hypertension, heart disease, stroke
  • Prevention of auto-immune diseases – eg IBD, MS etc
  • Regulation of >3000 genes – promoting DNA repair so crucial in avoiding a myriad of diseases
  • Protection against a range of chronic diseases such as diabetes, osteoporosis, eczema, insomnia, depression, migraines

These benefits are significant and not to be overlooked, particularly when we consider how many of the above conditions are pervasive in modern times.

 

But how about the sun’s effect on cancer, a disease that is rapidly growing to epidemic proportions when we consider that the modern-day risk of being diagnosed with cancer is approaching 1 in 2?

Well incredibly the sun protects us against 16x different types of cancer!  Some of these most common of cancers include breast, colon, endometrial, oesophageal, ovarian, bladder, gallbladder, gastric, pancreatic, prostate, rectal, and renal cancers, as well as non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

sunshine-prevents-cancer

I bet your doctor didn’t tell you that?

How does the sun do this?  Well, the protective effect of Vit D works in several ways:

  • It promotes destruction of mutated cells
  • Causes cells to become differentiated (cancer cells frequently lack differentiation)
  • Reduces spreading and replication of cancer cells
  • Reduces formation of new blood vessels (which would otherwise encourage the transition of benign tumours into malignant ones)

 

Sadly however, 85% of people are Vit D deficient in modern times due to the pervasive misinformation about sunlight and its alleged harmful effects. In fact a study conducted by Dr William Grant Ph.D (recognised Vit D expert) concluded that approximately 30% of cancer deaths (approx 2 million worldwide) could be prevented with higher Vit D levels!

 

 

In fact to elaborate on breast cancer, the most common of cancers in women, over 60 studies reviewed and published in the ‘American Journal of Public Health’ have demonstrated that when Vit D deficiencies are corrected, the risk of breast cancer is reduced by 50%, while for those women who already have breast cancer, their survival rates are doubled when Vit D deficiencies are addressed.

 

So I’ll just pop my Vit D in a pill?  Not so quick!  Synthetic versions of Vit D are non-sulphated and therefore poorly absorbed, and of additional concern is that this quick-fix option has been linked to increased risk of arteriosclerosis and heart attack.  A perfect reminder that nothing does it better than nature herself!

 

However the problem with our approach to sunshine sadly doesn’t end there.

Several studies have shown that most sun creams shield us from the beneficial UVB rays which promote Vit D synthesis so crucial in providing us with the many health benefits as listed above, while over 60% of sunscreens are not protecting us from the harmful UVA rays which are considered the most dangerous in promoting skin damage, ageing and skin cancers.

And now to rub the proverbial salt in the wound, most common sunscreens that people are applying copiously to their skin and to their children’s skin every day through the summer months contain toxic chemicals that can actually cause skin cancer, while also entering the blood stream leading to endocrine disruption!

sunscreen-causes-cancer

And now to the question of skin cancer itself; just what role is the sun playing in this all-too-common of diseases?

Let’s look at a brief outline of the 3x most commonly witnessed of skin cancers:

  1. Basal cell carcinomas (BCC), the most common of skin cancers are benign because they rarely spread (metastasise) beyond the original site. Reports suggest that approx 3 million cases are diagnosed annually.
  2. Squamous cell carcinomas (SCC) are less common but represent 90% of skin tumours on the head and neck arising as result of abnormal replication of cells of the epidermis. They are considered malignant and can result in death if left to grow.  Reports indicate that approximately 700,000 cases are diagnosed each year with 2,500 deaths resulting.
  3. Melanomas are the least common, but the most dangerous of skin cancers responsible for approx 10,000 deaths in the US every year. These tumours frequently resemble moles either black or brown in colour, although they can occasionally be blue, red, pink, white or skin coloured. Fortunately, if detected early they are curable.

 

 

While both basal cell carcinomas and squamous cell carcinomas ARE linked to excessive UV exposure, the sun has been unfairly blamed as a scapegoat as several studies now confirm that appropriate sun exposure actually helps prevent skin cancer through the mechanisms of action described earlier.

In short, exposure to the sun in relation to the above-mentioned non-melanoma skin cancers is only part of the equation. We crucially also need to bear in mind the fact that the inner terrain of our body also plays a significant role in predisposing the skin to adverse changes.

While this represents a substantial topic in its own right, by regularly cleansing the body of toxins and impurities, avoiding the use of harmful chemicals on the skin (home and body care products as well as toxic sun care products), minimising your exposure to processed food while nourishing your body (and skin) from the inside with a diet rich in organic fruits and vegetables, wild-caught fish, grass-fed meat, nuts and seeds and healthy fats, we go a long way to protect ourselves from the harm that excess UV light might otherwise trigger.

And what of melanomas and sunshine?  Contrary to popular opinion, this most dangerous of skin cancers is NOT caused by normal exposure to the sun!  Dr Bernard Ackerman (winner of the American Academy of Dermatology’s prestigious Master Award) claims there is no proof that normal sun exposure causes melanoma in spite of claims by medical mainstream and the multimillion dollar sunscreen industry.  He also goes onto say that there is no evidence to support the belief that sunscreen prevents melanoma.

Furthermore, as published in The Lancet, “outdoor workers have a decreased risk of melanoma compared with indoor workers, suggesting that chronic sunlight exposure can have a protective effect.”  In addition, melanomas are most commonly diagnosed on regions of the body that are not exposed to the sun at all.

 

Interestingly a study published in the journal, ‘Medical Hypotheses’ suggests that indoor workers have increased rates of melanoma because they are deprived of the protective effects of UVB rays of sunlight that cannot pass through glass windows and hence are deficient in Vit D, while simultaneously being exposed to the harmful effects of UVA that are being filtered through windows.

Further evidence suggesting the protective effective of normal sunshine exposure with respect to melanomas is witnessed in the incidence of melanomas being 10x higher in the sun-deprived regions of the Orkney islands north of Scotland as opposed to those in the sun-drenched Mediterranean islands.

 

In summary, the sun has been unfairly used as a scapegoat with respect to skin cancer and avoiding the sun is certainly not the answer in attaining vibrant health! The truth is that the sun is your friend!  It protects you from a wide range of ailments including various cancers, and provided we follow simple protocols to enjoy it regularly and in safe amounts, the benefits you will enjoy will significantly outweigh any negatives!

Changing the ‘meaning of cancer’ could change your outcome!

By Dr Janey

It is hard to argue the fact that the mindset with which we approach all things in life plays a large contributing role, not only towards the manner in which we experience that circumstance, person or challenge, but crucially also to the outcome of it.

Cancer is no different!

Let’s begin by pointing out that it is completely understandable for anyone who has recently been diagnosed with cancer to experience a cauldron of what would normally be considered as negative emotions. These may include immense fear, denial, anger, thoughts of ‘why me?’, to mention just a few, and they are a natural response to learning of a condition that is frequently perceived as life-threatening. In fact the very act of processing these emotions can be a necessary and powerful phase of achieving greater clarity, understanding and purpose in our journey forward.

What is important however is that we understand that staying in this place of often-times enormous fear and despair is not helpful in the long term if we are to restore full and vibrant health. While these emotions of fear can serve us in the short term, galvanising us to take appropriate actions and to make changes where changes are needed, it is important too to realise that a mindset immersed predominantly in fear and helplessness over the longer term will suppress our wonderful immune system and greatest ally in healing at the very time we need it most!

Therefore it becomes crucial that at some point we make the choice to find a way to transform our meaning of cancer to one that promotes a mindset that will support and enhance our healing journey.

So how do we do this?

By reminding ourselves that cancer is so much more than the tumour! When we choose to look at the bigger picture of our health, including our dietary choices, various aspects of our lifestyle and the emotional patterns that have governed our lives, cancer frequently provides the catalyst to address what has not been working in our lives instead of brushing it under the proverbial rug that we as humans are so prone to doing.

When we choose to look more closely at the aspects of our lives that may have contributed to cancer developing – not from a place of blame or harshness to ourselves, but simply by accepting our own role in our health or lack thereof – we get to unlock our own immense power in restoring health! And when we choose to make changes where they are needed, life invariably begins to take on a richer, deeper, more fulfilling way of being. Therein lies the ‘gift of cancer’!

In essence, by choosing to see that there is indeed profound purpose in everything in life, including cancer, we can begin to embrace our journey from a place of gratitude for the opportunity of living life in a more complete and enriched way. In turn, our entire physiology will start to reflect this new mindset and will serve to support and enhance our body’s efforts in the healing process.

Many who have traveled this journey and have learned to accept the challenge that cancer brings as a ‘gift’ will attest to the power in this, and while we acknowledge that this may be a giant step from the initial shock and fear experienced at the time of diagnosis of cancer, it remains a beautiful and powerful journey for those who are prepared to take it!

Enjoy the journey!

Dr Janey

See how cancer survivor, Brett Simpson, attributes his ability to transforming the meaning of cancer to that of a ‘gift’ as being instrumental in his ultimate full recovery!

A new era in cancer and health!

By Dr Janey

The time has come for us to change our approach to cancer! If we continue to do more of the same, ie the conventional approach of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation, we will continue to get more of the same results! Those results being, to name chemotherapy as an example, an average success rate of just over 2% (Journal of Clinical Oncology, 2002)

While our doctors and medical system have served us well in many areas, and the considerable advances in modern medicine are to be applauded; in the area of chronic debilitating diseases such as cancer, the modern approach is not serving us!

Consider the fact that there have been no medical cures for any chronic debilitating diseases for over 50 years! This is quite inconceivable in view of other advances achieved, and can be mainly attributed to modern medicine’s mechanistic approach that involves treating and suppressing the symptoms while giving little attention to the causes and the ‘bigger picture’ involved. It gives the patient what they think they want- a ‘quick fix’ so that they can go on their way and get back quickly to living life exactly as they have been.

 

The problem in this of course is that the manner in which the individual has being living is usually precisely what caused their medical issue. Misled by this quick turn-around in their symptoms, they think that their illness has been resolved and go on living in the same non-constructive manner that initially brought about a visit to their doctor.

This may happen many times, often with seemingly unrelated health issues. Unfortunately the quick-fix answers of drugs and surgery usually fail to make the patient adequately consider the reasons for their ill health and so the causes are never addressed.

symptom vs cause

Ultimately they may find themselves ‘waking up one day’ to heart disease or cancer and may wonder how they got to be so unlucky. The seemingly unrelated ‘minor ailments’ of colds and flu, allergies, headaches, constipation, high blood pressure etc were in fact some of the early signs that the body was congested and toxic. When we choose to ignore these warning signs (symptoms) on an ongoing basis, it will invariably present as a disease of greater consequence down the line!

Conditions such as cancer and heart disease don’t arise overnight, but rather from a lifetime of ignoring (or suppressing) the warnings our body has been sending us.

Our medical system can’t take all the blame for the poor state of health of the masses either however, because we too have wanted the quick-fix solutions from our doctors rather than investing the time and effort to make the more enduring lifestyle changes required.

Suppression of symptoms and not dealing with the cause is a ‘cash cow’ for the medical industry. It almost guarantees that the patient will be back again for more treatment. What we need to begin doing instead is embracing our own education in ‘true health’ so that we can begin to understand our bodies and work in harmony with the incredible inner wisdom we each possess, rather than against it.

In conclusion, an exciting new era is dawning in the way cancer (and health generally) is being approached. We welcome you to join this paradigm shift of awareness that encourages accountability, some knowledge and a deepening respect for your body’s own wisdom, while offering a freedom and vibrancy in health that the previous era could never match!

 

“The philosophies of one age have become the absurdities of the next and the foolishness of yesterday has become the wisdom of tomorrow” Sir William Osler (1902)

Microwaved food and cancer!

By Dr Janey

Microwave ovens provide a ‘convenient’ way of cooking that has led to them finding their way into more than 90% of homes in the western world today. In fact, in our fast-paced modern culture that demands convenience and quick results, it is not surprising that microwaves have become such a universal feature in our kitchens. We use them to cook or heat up our ready-made meals, drinks, desserts, meat and vegetables, soups etc…

 The truth however, is that microwave cooking isn’t nearly as ‘convenient’ as millions of people all over the world would like to believe – assuming that is, that increasing your risk of cancer as a result of using them is not very convenient at all!

Microwave-In-Use-Danger

Yes, that’s right. The use of microwave ovens in heating your food is highly damaging to your food, and therefore also potentially damaging to you! It can contribute to a long list of illnesses, cancer being one of them! As is so often the case, there is a price to be paid for convenience and taking short cuts.

Let’s look at some of the facts….

Microwaves are based on the principle of alternating current. The atoms, molecules and cells are hit by an electromagnetic radiation that forces them to reverse polarity over a billion times per second. This staggeringly high frequency of microwaves creates a whipsawing action of the molecules within the food, and the high friction created as a result is the reason why microwaves can so quickly generate heat in food. However, the molecules and cells within food are delicate, and cannot withstand this violent force. As a result, the molecules of food are torn apart and rearranged into new chemical compositions that are foreign to the human body. Unable to recognize these weird new configurations or radiolytic products (unknown fusions not found in nature and resulting from radiation) created as a result of the action of the microwaves, the body is not able to utilise it as food, and instead dumps it in and around the cells as toxic (or effectively nuclear) waste.

The manufacturers of microwave ovens of course state that the food cooked in them do not form more radiolytic waste products than food cooked in other conventional ways. However research conducted by numerous unbiased trials reveal that this is simply not true.

Let’s go back in time to find out how microwave cooking came about?……

Microwaves as a means of heating food was first stumbled upon by the Nazis during WW2. Microwaves were initially used for radar, however they began to notice that their soldiers who hovered around the radars for warmth, developed cancers of the blood. Microwaves were then adjusted for use in the heating of food intended to warm the German soldiers in their battle against the Russians. However, when this also caused cancer in the soldiers who ate the food, the use of microwave ovens was banned in the entire 3rd Reich.

The Russians subsequently conducted considerable research on microwave ovens. Their findings not only demonstrated a considerable reduction in nutritional content, but alarmingly revealed that carcinogens (cancer-causing compounds) were produced when microwaves were used to heat meat, fresh or frozen vegetables, especially root vegetables (there goes microwaving your baked potato!), frozen fruits, as well as milk and cereal grains. In short, their findings resulted in a complete ban of microwave ovens in the USSR in 1976.

Microwaves

In addition to this in Switzerland, scientist Dr Hans Hertel also carried out extensive research into the effect of microwaves on the heating of food. His work revealed similar numerous concerning health risks. He stated that amongst other alarming findings, the eating of microwaved food caused a marked stress reaction in the body and profound changes in the cholesterol levels- for example simply eating organic vegetables that had been microwaved would send the body’s cholesterol levels soaring.

However, when Dr Hertel attempted to publish his findings in 1992 to warn the public, there was swift action from the ‘Swiss Association of Dealers for Electro-apparatuses for Household and Industry’ who forced a gagging order and Dr Hertel was convicted of ‘interfering with commerce’ and he was not allowed to publish his findings.

Dr Hertel persisted however and finally in 1999 the decision was reversed in light of this order being ‘contrary to the right to freedom of expression’ and he was awarded compensation. However, for the most part the damage was done as microwave ovens were already a firm favourite in most homes across the world!

Interestingly, the US Federal government has never conducted trials on the effect of microwaves on food. Their trials have focused simply on testing the effects of when the door of a microwave oven doesn’t close properly. Since people ingest the food subjected to the microwaves, one would think it logical to test the food?

 

So how is your food affected by these high-frequency, violent forces in a microwave?

  • the nutritional value of all food is significantly reduced (by 60-90%) with vitamins B Co, C and E (so crucial in their protective roles against cancer and heart disease) as well as essential trace minerals, being destroyed
  • brain-damaging radiolytics are created
  • haemoglobin levels of the blood are reduced (haemoglobin is crucial for its role in carrying oxygen to all the cells of the body) thus causing anaemic tendencies with resultant associated illnesses
  • your immune system which is so crucial in protecting the body from cancer and other illnesses is suppressed
  • cancer-forming free radicals are released causing a higher % of cancerous cells in the blood
  • disorders of the digestive system are caused (including stomach and intestinal cancers)

 

Microwave risks

And what are the symptoms/diseases you could experience as a result of these changes?

  • cancer
  • heart disease
  • high blood pressure
  • migraines
  • memory loss
  • decline in intelligence
  • disconnected thoughts/attention disorders
  • sleep disturbance
  • depression
  • anxiety
  • irritability
  • adrenal exhaustion
  • reproductive disorders and more….

 

And if this were not enough, all microwave ovens have unavoidable leaks of radiation into the environment causing radiation to you if you stand in front of it, as well as to the kitchen fittings providing a further source of radiation in itself.

According to the Forensic Research Document of Agricultural and Resource Economics (AREC), “The effects of microwaved food by-products are long-term and permanent within the human body. Minerals, vitamins and nutrients of all microwaved food is reduced or altered so that the human body gets little or no benefit, or the human body absorbs altered compounds that cannot be broken down.”

When microwaves destroy the nutritional content of our food, our cells are starved of nutrients and our immune system is overburdened with dealing with this unrecognizable toxic waste, which then needs to be dumped somewhere, adding to the toxic build-up in the body! When we consider that this process of toxin accumulation in and around the cells contributes to the suffocation of cells from oxygen (the primary cause of cancer!), it leads one to ask the question……could it be coincidence then, that the cancer ‘plague’ is most prevalent in the countries of the western world that rely so heavily on microwave ovens??


In summary, microwaves turn healthy food into poison! If your health matters to you, you may want to consider throwing out your microwave!

Thermography – the safer alternative!

By Dr Janey

While mammograms have been the widely accepted (and strongly promoted) method of screening for breast cancer since the 1950′s, the evidence now points strongly towards mammograms not only being unreliable in their role of screening, but in fact being responsible for posing real dangers to women (see article, ‘Mammograms ~ what your doctor won’t tell you!’).

The good news? There’s a safe and non-invasive alternative, and it’s called Digital Infrared Thermal Imaging (DITI) or Thermography. Approved for clinical use in 1982, this quick and easy procedure that is not only pain-free and side-effect free, but most importantly radiation-free, is now widely available! This device makes use of an infra-red imaging camera that is used to detect subtle changes in skin temperatures that can indicate inflammation of the tissues which precedes cancer development.

thermography 1

DITI is a highly sensitive screening method that can pick up what would otherwise be imperceptible changes. It works by detecting physiological changes in the tissues (rather than looking for anatomical changes/lumps as in mammography) and as a result, abnormal changes in the breast can be detected far earlier than that of a mammogram.

It is a very safe monitoring device for women of all ages, including young women where mammography is particularly contraindicated. It is often used for full-body imaging (not just the breast tissue) and is highly sensitive to pathology of the muscles, blood vessels, nerves and bone tissues throughout the body potentially revealing other problem areas.

So why then, if DITI is such a safe alternative to mammography has it not been promoted as such by the various cancer groups?  The answer: politics and big money!

In summary; those women who wish to avoid the risks of radiation that regular mammograms pose, can consider thermography instead as an annual screening test, or resort to it at times when concerns are identified.  When this is adopted together with gentle ‘breast awareness’ (see article: breast self examinations – new thoughts) and a healthy diet and lifestyle, breast health can be monitored and maintained in a natural and non-toxic manner.

Soy products and cancer – good or bad?

By Dr Janey

Soy, the ‘miracle New-Age food’, has reached virtually all the corners of the globe in recent decades.  It has been having a notable influence on breast cancer (and several other conditions).  But just what is the nature of this influence?  Anyone with cancer (or anyone who wishes to prevent it), should make a point of knowing the facts!

soy 2

When you delve into the controversy of whether soy products as a nutritional source are a good or bad thing, you begin to unearth a vast array of conflicting opinions.  These range from ‘best nutritional discovery on the planet’, to extremely harmful with ‘disastrous consequences for millions of people!’  It is little wonder that people are so confused as to what they should, or shouldn’t be eating!

So what is the truth and how does soy influence cancer?

The supporters of soy products enthuse about a food that is an inexpensive way to consume large amounts of an ‘ideal’ protein, while being very low in calories and fat, and with zero cholesterol. They add that it can prevent osteoporosis and cancer and is protective of the heart. They also point to the fact that in Asia where supposedly large quantities of soy products are consumed, the incidence of breast cancer is very low, and even go as far as to say that this ‘miracle food’ will save the world from starvation! High praise indeed!

So how did the soy phenomenon begin? Mary Enig PhD (lipid specialist and nutritionist) explains: “The reason there’s so much soy in America is because they (the soy industry) started to plant soy to extract the oil from it and soy oil became a very large industry. Once they had as much oil as they did in the food supply, they had a lot of soy protein residue left over, and since they can’t feed it to animals, except in small amounts, they had to find another market.” And so the human population became the vehicle in which to dump what is effectively a waste-product, after the soy oil has been extracted.

A dedicated soy marketing machine was engineered and a new multi-billion dollar industry was born! Now if this ‘miracle food’ was everything the enthusiasts make it out to be, then that would indeed have been a great breakthrough for mankind; however, as we begin to probe beneath all the layers of propaganda, a darker side to this ‘Cinderella of food’ is revealed!

As Mary Enig PhD and Sally Fellon go on to explain; the success in establishing a world-wide soy-eating trend is all the more remarkable when you realise that the soya bean was considered unfit to eat, only a few decades ago.

While the Chinese have eaten soy since the Chou dynasty (1134-246BC) this only began when they had learnt how to correctly ferment the soya bean in a manner that destroyed the large quantities of natural toxins or ‘antinutrients’ in soy which are harmful when consumed. Soy in Japan is fermented using traditional methods which take at least 2 summers, or ideally over 5-6 years, during which the soy toxins are destroyed and the nutrients preserved such that they can be utilised by the body.

Crucially however, soy is not fermented in this appropriate manner with the modern soy products we consume in the western world, and most significantly, we consume more than we ever thought we did! (more on that below)

Added to this, the natural toxins which remain in our ‘modern soy’ after inadequate fermentation, are not deactivated during cooking.

So just what are these ‘natural toxins’ in soy?

  • Phyto-oestrogens (isoflavones) with regards to breast cancer are perhaps the most relevant ‘antinutrient’ of them all! The high content of isoflavones in soy act as oestrogen agonists (ie they mimic oestrogen), and therefore contribute to our oestrogen exposure.

The important role of oestrogen in connection with the development and progression of breast cancer has been well established; quite simply, when we increase our exposure to oestrogen over our life-time through a number of different routes, we increase our risk to breast cancer! If for no other reason then, this single ingredient in soy is reason enough for any woman to avoid soy!

  • Phytic acid in soy effectively blocks the uptake of essential minerals in our diet, particularly calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc. Because of this, phytic acid has contributed considerably to the suffering from widespread nutritional deficiencies in 3rd world countries where they eat a large proportion of grains and legumes. In fact soy has one of the highest levels of phytic acid of any grain or legume! When we consume soy, the phytic acid blocks our absorption of calcium which contributes to osteoporosis (contrary to what the promoters of soy advertise); it also reduces our iron uptake which results in anaemia and reduced oxygenation of the cells (which plays a role in all chronic degenerative diseases including cancer). When the absorption of Zinc is blocked, it causes reduced fertility (Japanese wives are known to feed their husbands soy when they wish to reduce their virility!). Zinc is also the ‘intelligence mineral’ so important in brain and nervous system functioning. Deficiencies cause accelerated brain-aging and is linked to Alzheimers and dementia

 

  • Potent enzyme inhibitors in soy which block the enzyme trypsin, result in reduced protein digestion and absorption. It also causes pancreatic disorders including cancer.

 

  • Haemaggluttins in soy which cause the clumping of red blood cells increase the risk of blood clots and associated strokes, while also reducing oxygen uptake at the tissues contributing to many disease conditions.

 

  • Goitrogens in soy suppress thyroid function and in doing so predispose to hypothyroidism, a common thyroid dysfunction particularly amongst women (1 in 5 women can now expect to get hypothyroidism).

soy free

Added to this, the modern processing method of soy as used in western countries is highly damaging in the following ways:

  • It undergoes spray-drying at high temperatures which denatures the protein and renders it biologically unavailable (useless) to the body.
  • The soy is separated from the fibre using an acid wash which takes place in aluminium baths responsible for leaching large amounts of aluminium into the final soy product (aluminium is linked to Alzheimers)
  • During the spray-drying process, nitrites, which are potent carcinogens, are formed in the final soy product
  • Several artificial flavourings, including MSG (well known for its numerous adverse health effects!), are added to mask the ‘beany’ taste and impart a more ‘meaty’ flavour

Therefore in reality, while the soy enthusiasts talk of an ‘ideal protein’ and a food that promises to ‘save the world’, this is based on theoretical ‘qualities’ which are destroyed during the modern fermentation process while carcinogenic compounds are formed!

 

When pointing to Asia’s low breast cancer incidence as evidence of soy’s positive influence, the ‘soy fans’ are mistaken when they give soy the credit for this. Not only is the soy in Asia fermented over several seasons thus removing the natural toxins of soy as explained previously, but one also needs to take into account other important factors that contribute to low breast cancer levels in Asia such as the high vegetable/low meat diet consumed, higher activity levels and lower obesity levels to name a few. In addition, contrary to western assumptions, the Japanese and Chinese actually consume small amounts of soy – on average 10g (2 teaspoons) per day – and only as a condiment rather than as a meat replacement.

Back in the West, the marketing and promotion of soy has been relentless.  It is now being extensively incorporated into school lunch programs, diet beverages and many of our day-to-day food items. In fact if you think you don’t eat much soy, consider this; soy can be found ‘hidden’ in over 60% of our food products such as most supermarket breads, canned soups, pizza, cake mixes, muffins, chocolate, tortillas, canned tunas, some baby foods, hot chocolate, frozen foods and the list goes on…..

 

A few additional points to keep in mind:

  • Contrary to what the proponents of soy will tell you, the growing of soy is not good for the environment! Most soy is genetically modified and grown on farms that use pesticides that are toxic and carcinogenic. In addition, soy often takes the place of locally grown crops that are grown by the indigenous population thus transferring the value of processing to that of multinational corporations.
  • It is strongly advised not to feed infants any soy-containing products. The phyto-oestrogens are responsible for oestrogen levels equivalent to those children receiving over 5 birth-control pills per day! This results in a suppression of testosterone in male children, with resultant abnormal sex organ development; while in female children, it causes excessively early onset of puberty (often before 8 years of age) with resultant raised risks of breast cancer later on in life due to the prolonged life-time exposure to oestrogens. In addition, as a result of the endocrine disruptive nature of phyto-oestrogens, these children become prone to auto-immune thyroid disease as they get older. If that were not enough, the inhibition of protein enzymes causes poor protein absorption and stunted growth.
  • Vegetarians have often been encouraged to consume soy as a source of Vit B12. However the compound that resembles B12 in soy cannot be utilised by the body and in fact creates a greater requirement for this vitamin thus causing or exacerbating deficiencies. When you add to that the blocking effect of the minerals calcium, magnesium, iron and zinc, those vegetarians and vegans who replace their meat and dairy intake with soy products, risk suffering multiple severe mineral deficiencies!
  • Soy can cause severe, and in some cases, fatal food allergies. For those who tend to be allergic, avoiding soy may be a good place to start!
  • soy weakens the immune system

say no to soy

Avoiding soy however, isn’t always easy, but here are some tips:

  1. Eat fresh and unprocessed foods – soy can’t be hidden in natural foods!
  2. Use real butter instead of margarine or butter substitutes, all of which contain soybean oil
  3. Avoid microwave meals -many contain soy
  4. Avoid using vegetable oil (which usually contains soy oil as part of the mix). Instead use olive oil, coconut oil, flaxseed oil or hemp oil.
  5. Make your own healthy home-made muffins, bread etc; that way you know what has gone into them
  6. Avoid all canned and frozen foods wherever possible
  7. Avoid the list of food products known to contain ‘hidden soy’ as listed previously

As far as soy itself goes; avoid soy, soy milk and tofu completely! Only the soy products that have been fermented the traditional way in the east such as miso, tempeh and natto are fine in small amounts.

 

In summary, the introduction of modern soy and soy products in recent decades is having, and will continue to have, extremely hazardous effects on the health of millions of people unless we begin to educate ourselves and find the truth!

If you wish to prevent or treat cancer, or if you simply want to optimise your health, you must take steps to avoid intentional (and inadvertent) soy intake wherever possible….         it simply is not safe for human consumption!

The Crucial Role of Oestrogen on Breast cancer

By Dr Janey

“Breast cancer is strongly linked to an individual’s life-time exposure to oestrogen!”

The above is a statement that few dispute, regardless of their chosen approach to the treatment of breast cancer.  Put differently, the more you are exposed to oestrogen during your life-time, the greater your risk is of developing breast cancer, or relapsing after treatment. In fact it is for this reason that Tamoxifen (an oestrogen-blocking drug) has become the most prescribed medication in the conventional treatment approach of breast cancer patients.

However, in spite of the unquestionable influence which oestrogen has in the development and progression of breast cancer, we need to remind ourselves that oestrogen was designed by the body, and for the body, and women have of course always produced oestrogen. The question that must follow then is, ‘why would a hormone that was meant to help the body (not harm it!) be contributing to breast cancer, and why has this become progressively more prevalent in recent years?’

It is a question that deserves some pondering, not only because the answers bring into question our modern approach and its failure to recognize and address the causes of our increased exposure to oestrogen, but also because the answers give us an awareness that enables us to make more considered daily choices to reduce our exposure to oestrogen thereby allowing us to exercise our own significant powers to prevent (and heal from) breast cancer.

Firstly, let’s begin by reminding ourselves what oestrogen is…..

Oestrogen is a hormone (or chemical messenger) that is produced by the ovaries and adrenal glands and which is crucial in regulating the organs involved in reproduction particularly; namely the ovaries themselves, the uterus, breasts, testes and prostate. Oestrogen production starts at puberty and is released in a cyclical fashion in women (controlling menstruation) until menopause when the ovaries cease to produce oestrogen. After reaching menopause smaller amounts of oestrogen continue to be produced predominantly by the fat tissue. Oestrogen also plays a role in bone density and heart health. It is for this reason that many women are recommended by their doctors to take HRT (hormone replacement therapy which contains oestrogen) when they reach menopause. (The wisdom of this is questionable however, and will be covered in a future article)

oestrogen 2

Firstly, let’s talk about the reasons why the presence of high levels of oestrogen are likely to increase the risk of breast cancer……

Cancer develops when the cellular terrain in the body has become toxic and acidic and therefore oxygen-deprived. Breast cancer develops for the same reasons, however the breast tissue is unique in that it is comprised of glandular tissue (responsible for milk secretion) surrounded by a cushion of fat cells. The glandular tissue is highly responsive to hormones particularly oestrogen, while the fat cells may serve as a depot for toxins. The close proximity of these tissues is very relevant when we consider the part oestrogen plays in increasing the risks for developing breast cancer.

When the cells of the glandular tissue in the breast are struggling in an oxygen-deprived terrain brought on by accumulating toxins, they can mutate to cancer cells. The fact that the glandular tissue of the breast is in close proximity to a source of toxins – the surrounding fat tissue- increases its exposure to the toxic burden. These conditions allow for cancer to develop, and is further exacerbated by the influence of oestrogen on these cells because oestrogen acts by increasing the rate of replication of cells, which includes the cancerous cells.

In addition, excess oestrogen also has the effect of reducing the protective protein carrying capacity of iron in the blood and tissues. As a result, the amount of iron in the free form increases in the blood which is highly damaging to the tissues and causes free radical damage. This adds to the toxic load that our immune system has to deal with, and in time can compromise oxygen delivery to the cells because of it, which also contributes to creating favourable conditions for cancer to develop.

However, as mentioned earlier, women (and men to a lesser degree) have always produced oestrogen to perform several vital roles in the body, so one is left wondering why the negative effects of oestrogen are being witnessed to a greater degree as it would appear from the rising breast cancer statistics.

The short answer is that our exposure to oestrogen is significantly more than it used to be! In our modern world we are exposed to increasing amounts of oestrogenic compounds in our environment called xeno-oestrogens (chemicals that act like oestrogens) that cause a cumulative exposure to oestrogen, which in turn increases our susceptibility to breast cancer (and certain other cancers).

 Xenoestrogens-2

The sources of exposure to these oestrogenic compounds are numerous and important to know for any woman wishing to prevent (or heal from) breast cancer. The following is a list of these sources:

  1. We are ingesting foods that contain phyto-oestrogens that have oestrogen-mimicking effects, such as our modern soy foods (see article ‘soy products and breast cancer ~ good or bad?’)
  2. We are ingesting oestrogens inadvertently when we eat foods that have been contaminated with oestrogen hormones (such as in meat and dairy products)
  3. Many of the refined foods we eat contain preservatives that act as oestrogens.
  4. Plastics and canned packaging leach harmful chemicals into the food and liquids that are contained within them, some of which mimic oestrogens (eg BPA)
  5. Fat cells also produce oestrogen, therefore in instances of obesity there is increased production of oestrogen
  6. We are choosing to take in pharmacological oestrogens (medical drugs containing oestrogens) in the form of oral contraceptives and HRT
  7. Many pharmacological drugs are preserved with chemicals with known oestrogen-mimicking effects (eg parabens).
  8. We apply products to our bodies that contain chemicals with oestrogen-like functions in the form of creams, antiperspirants, cosmetics etc

xenoestrogens-3

The effect of this pervasive exposure to oestrogen is demonstrated not only in young girls reaching puberty at a progressively earlier age, which in turn exposes them to a longer life-time of oestrogen, but women too are reaching menopause at a later age, thus producing oestrogen into later life.

 

The above list is not exhaustive; however it gives you some idea of the multitude of diverse sources of oestrogen we are being exposed to on a daily basis. It is the accumulation of oestrogens from a variety of different sources that can ultimately contribute to a terrain that is ‘ripe’ for breast cancer. The good news however, is that most of these sources of oestrogen can be minimised through greater awareness.

In conclusion, while oestrogen is not the only factor involved in causing (or exacerbating) breast cancer, the role it plays is an important and undeniable one, and it is up to anyone who wishes to reduce their risk to breast cancer (while enhancing their health) to take full heed of the factors that increase their life-time exposure to oestrogen!

Note: To find out more of the details on how to avoid oestrogens in your day-to-day life, whether in prevention of cancer or healing from it, please see our ‘7 Step Natural Cancer Program’

Plastics, tin cans and……cancer!

By Dr Janey

The chemical Bisphenol A (BPA), has in recent years become a subject of much debate. While the scientists who raise the alarm of the potential health hazards of BPA and the growing numbers of self-educated, health-conscious members of the public express their concerns; the industries that utilise BPA, continue to utter their reassurances.

If you are reading this because you are interested in preventing or treating cancer, you may want to sit up and take note of some of the facts of this debate!

 

So just what is BPA and where do we find it?

Put simply, BPA is everywhere – in our homes and in many of the food and drinks we buy in our supermarkets! It is a chemical found in polycarbonate plastics that can generally be recognised as the hard, transparent and shatter-resistant plastics as used in water bottles, sports bottles, babies’ bottles etc. Apart from plastics, it is also used as a component of epoxy resins as found in the lining of most of our canned foods and canned drinks.

BPA at a glance

And it doesn’t end there! Dentists use it as a component of many dental fillings and sealants. Many of us handle thermal paper in the form of purchase receipts and event tickets on a regular basis – these have large quantities of free BPA. And then there’s our water pipes that may be repaired, especially in older buildings, with epoxy linings that contain, guess what…..BPA!

BPA was initially introduced as a chemical back in the 1930′s. However, it is only in more recent years with the exponential increases in the use of plastics and cans for holding our food and drinks, that the use of BPA has become increasingly more relevant.

As Tim Osswald, an expert in polymer engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison explains; during the manufacturing process not all BPA is locked into chemical bonds and thus the remaining BPA can work itself free and enter into the food or water contained within the bottle or can. This becomes exacerbated as the plastic ages, but importantly also when the structure is heated as would be the case when holding hot drinks, being heated in the microwave, left lying in the sun etc. In addition to that, the high heats used by autoclaves to sterilise all canned foods during the manufacturing process also induces leaching of BPA into the contents within them.

In fact, because of the omnipresence of BPA in our water bottles and tinned cans, as well as the other sources of BPA as mentioned above, a trial conducted by the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention in 2004 in the US, revealed that 93% of over 2500 people tested, showed levels of unmetabolised BPA in their urine. BPA has also been detected in the blood as well as in human breast milk.

BPA controversy

So just how relevant is it that most of us have BPA in our bodies?

The plastic industries and chemical associations would argue, not much! A predictable response of course, but let’s look a little closer…

The industries that stand in defence of BPA state that the trials that point to the risks that this chemical carries, are not reliably repeated, and therefore cannot be considered to carry much weight. However, Patricia Hunt Ph D, a prominent researcher in molecular biosciences states otherwise. When she worked together with a team of 36 other researchers led by Frederick vom Saal in analysing hundreds of studies on BPA, it was found that 90% of these studies confirmed the health risk of BPA. Notably, the only studies that failed to demonstrate a health risk with BPA were those that were funded by the plastics industry!

The American Chemical Association (supporter of dozens of companies involved in the production of plastics) states that the toxicology of BPA is “well understood” and that it “exhibits toxic effects only at very high levels of exposure”. These ‘toxic effects’ have been set at 50 micrograms per kg of body weight per day by the FDA.

However, Patricia Hunt reminds us that treating BPA as a toxin can lead to false conclusions. By following the rules of toxicology, if a chemical is bad then a higher dose must be worse. However BPA is a hormone disruptor and mimics the action of oestrogen, rather than being a straight forward toxin. At low levels such a chemical can wreak the most harm, while at high levels it can ‘overwhelm’ and serve to shut down the body’s response. In fact, during Hunt’s trials on rodents which originally brought the issue of BPA to the world’s attention, a level of 20 micrograms per kg body weight of BPA per day (ie less than half of the FDA’s ‘safe’ levels) was sufficient to cause significant adverse effects. In addition to this, it would appear that in reality, exposure to BPA is longstanding and the effects likely to be cumulative, while trials only demonstrated a relatively short term exposure to this chemical.

These above trials worked with concentrations of BPA in the range of parts per million. However, as noted in ‘Scientific American’, more recent trials dealing with concentrations of BPA as low as 1 part per trillion triggered a physiological response. This suggests that any exposure to BPA could have consequences!

 

So just what are these consequences?

  • Breast cancer: As per the article entitled, ‘The Crucial Role of Oestrogen on breast cancer’ (also available on this site), our risks of breast cancer increase proportionately with our life-time exposure to oestrogen. BPA is a synthetic oestrogen and therefore, as mentioned above, acts by mimicking the effects of oestrogen.

Therefore women who consume food or drinks from polycarbonate plastics and tinned cans are increasing their exposure to oestrogen, and with that their risk of breast cancer. This occurs not only through life, but is likely to begin as early as the foetal stage in the womb of the mother if the mother consumes these products. Due to this oestrogenic effect, BPA has also been shown to induce early-onset puberty in girls, thus increasing the length of exposure to oestrogen during those girls’ lifetimes.

  • Prostate cancerdue to increased exposure to this oestrogenic chemical with exposure beginning as early as in the womb
  • Various reproductive problems including reduced sperm counts, miscarriages, male sexual dysfunction (when working with BPA in the work place) and others
  • diabetes due to insulin resistance
  • Behavioural changes: Children and infants appear to be particularly susceptible to BPA and there are concerns about its affect on foetal and infant brain development as well as behavioural disorders such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorders (ADHD)
  • obesity by promoting adipogenesis (the tendency to form fat cells)
  • thyroid abnormalities by attaching to thyroid receptor cells and in doing so becoming a thyroid disruptor

Note: BPA has been demonstrated, in rodents at least, to have detrimental effects not just in the individual consuming it, but in 3 subsequent generations.

 

So how do we go about avoiding exposure to BPA?

  1. Avoid drinking from plastics that show the recycling symbol with the number 7 (or the letters PC – polycarbonate) that can usually be found on the bottom of the bottle. As mentioned earlier, these tend to be the hard, transparent plastics. Use glass bottles or stainless steel water holders instead.
  2. If you do have to use these plastics, take all precautions to avoid them becoming heated which will promote leaching of BPA into the contents. This includes avoiding the use of microwaves to heat the contents, avoiding washing these plastics in the dishwasher, manually washing them with hot water and not leaving them to get hot in the sun.
  3. Avoid washing these plastics with chemical detergents which can be abrasive, thus accelerate leakage of BPA.
  4. Avoid consuming food or liquids from tinned cans eg soft drinks, canned vegetables and fruit etc
  5. Choose natural and non-refined foods instead!
  6. Choose holistic dentists and question your dentist on the constituents of dental sealants and implants used (note: BPA is not the only toxic chemical used in dentist’s chairs)
  7. Many baby’s bottles and pacifiers (called dummies in some countries) are made from polycarbonate plastic. Use glass bottles instead and avoid pacifiers where possible.
  8. Free BPA can also be present in large amounts in carbonless copy paper and thermal paper such as is used in receipts, event tickets, airline tickets and some labels. The handling of these tickets can leave residues on the hands which may lead to inadvertent ingestion of BPA. Therefore take care when handling such items and wash hands thoroughly thereafter.

BPA in plastic bottles

Risk to the environment: Apart from the numerous adverse health effects on humans, BPA has also been shown to have detrimental effects on aquatic organisms through direct contamination as well as through degradation of plastic litter that reaches our oceans and inland waters. Fish appear to be the most vulnerable, but molluscs, crustaceans and amphibians are also affected both with regards to reproduction as well as in growth.

 

Governing health bodies around the world have been slow to act on the regulation of BPA use with a couple of exceptions: In Japan BPA was replaced with natural resin to line tin cans in 1997 after scientists demonstrated that BPA was leaching out of babies’ bottles. Subsequent studies in Japan have shown that levels of BPA in the urine have dropped dramatically. In addition, Canada’s federal health system, ‘Health Canada’, has instituted proposals to reduce BPA levels in the lining of infant formulas and to investigate industry alternatives.

 

If your health and those of your friends and family matters to you, don’t wait for health authorities and governments to tell you that BPA is a risk to your health……you may wait a long time!

Act now, and act by choosing alternatives to tin cans and plastics when it comes to your food and drinks…… your health and those of your loved ones will be better for it!

Tamoxifen – the other side of the story!

By Dr Janey

Tamoxifen (trade name Nolvadex) has been hailed as a ‘wonder drug’ by many physicians (and patients) since its introduction in the 1970′s. It is the most recommended drug for recovering breast cancer patients, and its ‘fans’ will tell you that it produces results.
But at what costs, and is it truly healing those who take it? Anyone currently on Tamoxifen treatment (or considering it) owe it to themselves to become aware of the bigger picture!

Tamoxifen

Firstly we need to understand a bit about how Tamoxifen works……
Breast cancer is strongly linked to the influence of oestrogen. In other words, a greater exposure to oestrogen over your life-time can increase your risks for developing breast cancer (or your risk of relapsing after treatment). Tamoxifen is a weak oestrogen and is classified as a SERM (selective estrogen receptor modulator). This means it can either selectively block or activate the action of oestrogen depending on where the oestrogen receptors are in the body.
In breast tissue, Tamoxifen acts by competing with oestrogen in the body, displacing it from the receptors and thus blocking its action – hence referred to as an oestrogen-blocker. This is Tamoxifen’s reason for being because oestrogen acts by stimulating replication of cells including cancerous cells. By blocking the action of oestrogen, breast tumours are less likely to develop or progress. In other tissues however, such as the uterus, the heart, bones and liver, Tamoxifen acts differently; rather as an oestrogen agonist- thus promoting oestrogen’s activity.
Sounds clever doesn’t it? In fact it is for this reason that Zeneca, the drug company behind it, promotes it not only as a protectant against breast cancer, but also against osteoporosis in post menopausal women due to the alleged protective effect that oestrogen has on bone density.
Now not all breast tumours have oestrogen receptors, but approximately 2/3 have been found to have these receptors and are thus categorised as oestrogen receptor positive tumours (ER+). Those that do not have the receptors are oestrogen receptor negative (ER-). Tamoxifen therefore, should only be used for ER+ breast tumours for which it can have a protective effect, but not in ER- tumours for which it has no effect.
It is prescribed for premenopausal women, as well as post menopausal women usually as an adjuvant (additional) treatment after receiving other conventional breast cancer treatment (surgery/chemo and/or radiation) in an attempt to prevent a relapse and to help prevent it developing in the other breast. It is also often used in advanced breast cancer when there is already metastasis (spread) to other organs, and more recently has been used in alleged high-risk non breast cancer patients to prevent the onset of breast cancer.
And Tamoxifen has yielded some results as its loyal proponents will tell you. When a trial was done on 10 645 women, the following results were achieved:

  • Of the women who took Tamoxifen approximately 26% had a relapse at the 10 year mark, while 40% relapsed after 10 years when not on Tamoxifen
    • At the 15 year mark, 33% of women who have taken Tamoxifen relapsed as opposed to 46% who hadn’t
    • With regards to death rate, 18% death rate was recorded after 10 years in women who had taken Tamoxifen as opposed to 25% in women who did not
    • At 15 years after starting treatment with Tamoxifen 24% of women had died, as opposed to 33% who hadn’t taken the drug

However as is usually the case, there is another side to the story and a bigger picture to consider. Let’s look at the following 4 points…..

  1. Statistics can lie!While the above statistics as quoted by the ‘fans’ of Tamoxifen reveal a moderate success story, other trials will tell you a different story. (I use the word ‘moderate’ in describing Tamoxifen’s success because to accept that nearly one quarter of all women will be dead within 15 years after treatment with Tamoxifen is probably not a statistic you want to be shouting from the roof tops!)

So how is it possible that different trials could reveal quite different answers?
Firstly, scientific trials are often not as unbiased as we would like to believe; frequently set up in a manner to produce an intended end-result, while the statistics themselves can be manipulated to deliver a particular point of view. The lesson: one should never take any one given set of statistics as gospel! One of the most important factors to consider is who the trial was funded by, and what they were set to gain (or lose) by delivering a particular set of statistics.
(It may be worth mentioning at this stage that Tamoxifen is worth 1/2 billion dollars annually to the pharmaceutical company promoting it, the cancer associations affiliated with the pharmaceutical companies, and finally the doctors who prescribe it!)

 

When you begin to look at a cross section of trials, a different picture begins to emerge!
Take for example the trial led by Dr Christopher Li at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centre in 2009 in which it was revealed that the fact of Tamoxifen protecting against breast cancer was only partially correct. It also caused certain other breast cancers! While taking Tamoxifen long-term reduced the incidence by 60% of a 2nd ER+ tumour (a common type that tends to not be aggressive), it simultaneously increased the risks of getting an ER- tumour in the opposite breast by 440%! This ER- tumour is more aggressive, harder to treat and carries a poorer prognosis!

Tamoxifen breast cancer link
(Note: interestingly and predictably, Dr Li in spite of the concerns which the above-mentioned trial revealed, released this statement; “While the study confirmed a strong association between long-term Tamoxifen therapy and an increased risk of ER- second cancers, it does not suggest that breast cancer survivors should stop taking hormone therapy to prevent a 2nd cancer.” The trial was funded by the National Cancer Institute which has strong ties with the pharmaceutical giants. I’ll leave you to come to your own conclusions.)

 

Dr Sherrill Sellman also reminds us that almost all women become resistant to Tamoxifen within 5 years. The result is that in time, Tamoxifen rather than protecting the breast tissue from oestrogen, begins to feed it!
Also consider the trial carried out by the University of Michigan in which a thorough personalised analysis was carried out on 632 women in which they were explained the details of the benefits and risks of taking Tamoxifen with regards to their personal family and medical history, age, race etc. Once having a full understanding of Tamoxifen and the benefits and risks that existed for them, alarmingly only 1% of women opted to take the drug!
Not convinced yet? There is more…..

  1. The side-effects!Proponents of Tamoxifen will tell you that the benefits far outweigh the risks and will often go on to explain that these are usually mild and seldom experienced.

tamoxifen side effects

However in my experience with the countless women I have interviewed and consulted with, the chat groups I have viewed, the newsletters I have read, and last but not least the personal family experience I have, the truth would appear to be somewhat different! Women are experiencing many of the listed side-effects, some of which are considered not to be serious, yet still cause considerable loss of quality of life, while others (such as my own mother) experience the more serious side effects!
Below is a list of the less severe (though often very debilitating) side effects:

  • Menopausal symptoms (in premenopausal women) such as hot flushes (sometimes frequent and severe)
    • irregular menstrual periods
    • headaches and fatigue
    • nausea and/or vomiting
    • vaginal dryness and itching
    • weight gain (sometimes significantly)

(note: men also get breast cancer, although it is relatively uncommon. The symptoms they can experience while taking Tamoxifen are nausea and/or vomiting, impotence and decrease in sexual interest, headaches and skin rashes)
And the more serious side effects:

  • Eye damage:Approx 6% of women even on the low dose of Tamoxifen report impaired vision due to damage caused to the retina and cornea
  • Blood clots: Tamoxifen is highly irritating to the blood vessel walls causing inflammation which can give rise to blood clots with resultant stroke or fatal consequences. Oral contraceptives are known to carry a risk factor that is regarded as significant (1:2000); Tamoxifen’s risk is 30x greater!
  • Cancer of the uterus: As you may have noted in the explanation above, Tamoxifen acts by promoting oestrogen activity in the uterus (and you may remember that oestrogen promotes cell replication and therefore cancer). In fact abnormal cells in the uterus have been detected only 1 day after starting treatment on Tamoxifen. In addition, precancerous changes of the endometrium (uterine lining) such as thickenings and polyps were evident in 10% of women on Tamoxifen. As a result, women on the low dose of Tamoxifen face a risk of getting cancer of the uterus that is 2-3x greater than the normal risk after 2 years on the drug. The longer they take it, the higher the risk becomes.
  • Liver cancer:Tamoxifen is not only toxic to the liver potentially causing hepatitis, but it has also been referred to as a ‘rip-roaring liver carcinogen’ by Gary Williams- director of the American Heart Foundation. Even Zeneca, the pharmaceutical company that vigorously promotes it has admitted that it is a liver carcinogen. Trials have shown a 6x increase in the incidence of liver cancer in women who have taken Tamoxifen.

Personal note: my own dear mother died not of breast cancer which had been addressed many years before, but from the treatment with Tamoxifen which caused liver cancer!

  • Psychological problems:Many women struggle with depression and poor concentration abilities
  • Asthma attacks:more likely in those who are sensitive
  • Vocal chord changes:causing impairment of singing and speaking abilities

Modern medicine seems to think that it is okay to suffer some drug side-effects if it is all in the good cause of healing from breast cancer, however this is short-sighted! Your body is never meant ‘to feel bad’. Side effects of drugs are a sign of your body warning you that you are doing something to it that is hurting it!
The sensible alternative of course is to address the cause rather than resorting to drugs that provide short-term answers through attempting to suppress the symptoms, while producing a different set of problems in the side effects they produce!
[Note: in spite of the theorised potential protective effects that Tamoxifen promised on osteoporosis and heart health (due to the oestrogenic effects it has on these organs) this has never fully materialised in clinical trials].

 

  1. Ignoring the underlying cause!As the conventional medical approach reveals to us time and again, it is very good at identifying and suppressing the symptoms.  However this mechanistic approach, while producing ‘quick-fix’ answers, creates long-term problems by failing to address the cause.With Tamoxifen, one may think that blocking the effect of oestrogen is treating the cause because oestrogen has been demonstrated to raise the risk of breast cancer.  However, there is a bigger picture to consider!

One needs to delve deeper and ask the important question of why oestrogen – a hormone produced by the body and for the body – should be causing such devastating effects on women only in recent decades when women have produced oestrogen for thousands of years!

 

The answer to this important question is that women (and men) in modern times are being exposed to significantly greater amounts of oestrogen in the form of Xeno-oestrogens (chemical compounds that act as oestrogen mimickers) in our modern diet and environment.
Therefore to address the issue at its source (ie treat the cause) we need to become aware of these xeno-oestrogens and do all we can to avoid (or significantly reduce) exposure to these oestrogens in our diet and our environment. This is something with a little awareness that we can all achieve!  How infinitely more sensible than attempting to block these Xeno- oestrogens with pharmaceutical drugs that have their own side effects, some of them significant!

When you do make diet and life-style changes that reduce your exposure to oestrogen, while also addressing other factors that may have contributed to a toxic and oxygen-deprived terrain, then the results you can experience will far exceed anything that any man-made drug could hope to achieve and without the side effects!

(See the article entitled, ‘The crucial role of oestrogen on breast cancer’ to find out more about the sources of exposure to xeno- oestrogens)

  1. Treating cancer with a carcinogen!!Yes, you read that right….. Tamoxifen is a carcinogen! I bet your doctor didn’t mention that to you?

Tamoxifen CarcinogenIt was first recognised in laboratory studies that Tamoxifen acts as a carcinogen because it binds irreversibly to the DNA causing mutation to cancerous cells.

Various institutions have subsequently recognised Tamoxifen as a carcinogen:

  • Australia’s National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) who stated that no amount of Tamoxifen is safe with regards to its carcinogenic effect.
  • In California, the Carcinogenic Identification Committee voted unanimously in May 1995 to add Tamoxifen to their list.
  • Health Organisation followed in 1996 by officially designating Tamoxifen (along with 70 other chemicals) as a human carcinogen.
  • Even the pharmaceutical company, Zeneca, who promote and sell Tamoxifen, has had to confess that it is a liver carcinogen.

As was mentioned in the section on side-effects, Tamoxifen is responsible for increasing the risks of cancer in the uterus and liver. In addition, cancers of the 2nd breast as well as cancer of the gastrointestinal tract have also been associated with Tamoxifen treatment.

You need to ask yourself if you consider it acceptable to try and suppress one cancer with a drug that puts you at risk of developing other cancers, all the while ignoring the safer and more effective route of avoiding the causes! (see article ‘The Crucial Role of Oestrogen on Breast cancer’ for the causes)

Millions of breast cancer patients (and their doctors) the world over cling to this drug like a security blanket in the hope that this little pill will somehow protect them from that which they fear more than anything – having a relapse (or getting breast cancer in the first place in the case where it is used as a preventative).

However this mindset only demonstrates a misunderstanding of what cancer is. We are not helpless victims of cancer that strikes randomly! Cancer develops when the cellular terrain in our body is toxic and oxygen-deprived and each of us has the power to address and reverse this by learning and embracing the protocols and lifestyle that support a vibrantly healthy cellular terrain! (We cover how to achieve this in detail in our ‘7 Step Natural Cancer Program’)
In contrast, to add more toxic chemicals (carcinogens in this instance) to a body that we know is already struggling with a toxic crisis can never achieve true healing from breast cancer, nor peace of mind from relapse! To achieve this we must correct the root cause, which in this instance is reducing our exposure to xeno-oestrogens!