Cancer Research/References

Sep 292015
 

Acupuncture Cools Hot Flashes

I see Gabapentin, aka Neurontin, typically prescribed for diabetic peripheral neuropathy, or post-herpetic neuralgia (nerve pain), or more so nowadays, any type of pain. Anyhow, it has also been prescribed by some doctors to relieve the hot flashes associated with menopause (although this use was advised against by the FDA in 2013 ). Anyhow, this is another study showing how acupuncture will benefit hot flashes. In this research, acupuncture was used specifically on patients who had “treatment-related hot flashes”. This means that patients were taking pharmaceutical medications such as Tamoxifen and Arimidex (because they were diagnosed with Estrogen-Receptor Positive (ER-Positive) breast cancer), which results in hot flashes.

NOTE: See that the direct link to the MedScape article above does not work unless you log into MedScape unfortunately. But you can search for the title above on MedScape and find the article easily (or logging in anyway will take you directly to the article).

Aug 192014
 
YellowButterfly

While most of us in the US may know of tumeric as a spice coming from India, it has been in the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Materia Medica for as far back as 657 A.D. Tumeric is in the same plant family as ginger, commonly used in both Chinese herbal medicine and Chinese cooking1 . Tumeric is from the plant known as Curcuma longa, hence Curcumin became the name for the main active ingredient in tumeric.

In TCM, we commonly use at least three species that belong to the Curcuma genus. Each one contains Curcumin but each plant has different unique medicinal qualities. In the last few years, Curcumin has become popular as an anti-inflammatory herbal ingredient and is used in many western herbal and supplement products for musculo-skeletal injuries and arthritis, and for anti-cancer support. However, the various Curcuma species have been used in Chinese Medicine for a long time for pain syndromes, benign or malignant masses, and much more.

Turmeric (Curcuma longa) or Jiang Huang (literal English translation is “ginger yellow”) is used in TCM to treat chest and hypochondriac (anterior rib area) pain, epigastric pain, dymenorrhea, and hepatitis liver pain. It is also used to treat pain syndromes such as tendonitis, bursitis, and arthritis, especially in the upper limbs. Additionally, it is used to treat pain from certain types of infected sores and lesions. Modern research has shown it does have an anti-inflammatory effect and antiplatelet effect. Additionally, it has also shown the ability to lower both cholesterol and triglycerides levels, and has demonstrated an ability to increase production and excretion of bile.

Curcuma aromatica or Curcuma domestica (Yu Jin) is used in TCM to treat pain, cramping and bloating associated with menstruation, especially irregular menstruation. It also treats abdominal masses, especially those in the hypochondriac region and disorders such as liver cirrhosis, or hepatomegaly or splenomegaly (liver or spleen enlargement). It also has the ability to stop certain types of bleeding (based on diagnosis) such as vomiting blood, hematuria (blood in the urine) or nosebleeds. It is also used to treat certain types of disorientation, epilepsy, mania and other psychologically-related disorders. It will also treat jaundice and gallstones.

The root or rhizome of another species, Curcuma Zedoria or E Zhu, is traditionally considered one of the strongest herbs to break up masses, especially in the abdomen. Masses can be tumors, either benign or malignant. This herb is used in formulas for many types of cancer in TCM, however, modern research has shown this herb is most effective against cervical cancer. E Zhu is also a strong pain-relieving herb, especially used for abdominal pain, including certain types of epigastric or hypochondriac fullness, abdominal distention or hardness, and pelvic inflammation. It is also used for dysmenorrhea (painful menstruation), amenorrhea (lack of menstruation) and indigestion . Additionally, this herb has shown antiplatelet and anti-thrombotic properties, along with having antibiotic-like effects against Staph, Strep and E. coli.

In TCM, all health conditions, including pain syndromes or diseases, are treated after determining a diagnosis based on analyzing a patient’s signs and symptoms, along with by observing the tongue and pulse, all of which help determine the affected organs and the pattern of disharmony in the body. Once a diagnosis is made, an herbal formula will be prescribed, never an individual herb as often assumed by western patients. This is because an individual’s diagnosis is complex and specific, and in order to treat it, a combination of properties of herbs are needed to be most effective.

So, here are a few examples of modified traditional Chinese herbal formulas that I prescribe in my clinic, when appropriate, that contain Curcumin in them, along a description of their specific clinical applications (all products are from Evergreen Herbs):

1) Jiang Huang
Arm Support
Shoulder: periarthritis of the shoulder, frozen shoulder, capsulitis, rotator cuff tear, rotator cuff tendonitis, bursitis, inflammation and pain of the shoulder, subluxation or dislocation, AC (acromioclavicular) separation.
Elbow: lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow), medial epicondylitis (golfer’s elbow), olecranon bursitis, tendonitis.
Wrist: carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, sprain and strain.
General musculoskeletal injuries: tendonitis, bursitis, arthritis of the arm.
Numbness, decreased range of motion and atrophy of the arm.

2) Yu Jin
Shine – Depression with low energy, prolonged sadness or irritability, and lack of interest in daily activities.

Calm Jr – ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder), ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), autism, hyperactivity, impulsiveness, difficulty in focusing, inattentiveness, restlessness; childhood convulsions, epilepsy, seizures and twitching of muscles.

Liver DTX – Liver damage with high levels of SGPT and SGOT; liver detoxification: enhances the normal metabolic and detoxification functions of the liver; hepatitis: treats hepatitis with or without jaundice, repairs liver cell damage; liver cirrhosis from excessive alcohol intake; addiction: detoxifies liver during alcohol, drug or smoking cessation; cholecystitis with increased liver enzymes, possibly with liver impairment.

Migratrol – Migraine headache: acute and chronic; tension headache: acute and chronic; cluster headache: acute and chronic.

Cholisma ES – High cholesterol and triglycerides levels; fatty liver; obesity; prevention and treatment for the conditions above.

Back Support (Upper) – Acute injury or trauma to the chest, ribs, or thoracic area with pain, inflammation, swelling, or bruises; upper back stiffness and pain, scapular pain and/or pain between the scapulae; subluxation of the thoracic vertebrae; rib fracture.

3) E Zhu
CA Support – Cancer patients who suffer extreme weakness and deficiency and cannot receive surgery or chemotherapy and radiation treatments; late stage, terminally-ill cancer patients with pain and suffering.

Resolve (Lower) – Fibrocystic disorders in the lower half of the body, such as fibroids and cysts in the uterus and ovaries; endometriosis; palpable masses and benign tumors of the female reproductive organs; female infertility due to obstruction in the lower abdominal region (i.e. tubal obstruction); pelvic pain due to obstruction in the lower abdominal region; scarring or blood stagnation in the pelvic cavity from surgery.

Arm Support – described above

_______________________________________________________________
Footnotes:
1 The only dish I have seen in Chinese restaurants that has turmeric in it is ‘Singapore Noodles’. I especially like it because it combines turmeric with rice noodles (vs. noodles with wheat), which is great for those who are gluten sensitive.

References:
1. Chen, John K. and Tina T. Chen. Chinese Medical Herbology and Pharmacology. AOM Press: 2004.
2. Bensky, Dan and Andrew Gamble. Chinese Herbal Medicine Materia Medica. Eastland Press, Revised Edition: 1993.
3. Clinical Manual of Oriental Medicine, 2nd edition, Lotus Institute of Integrative Medicine. (Descriptions of Evergreen Herbs products.)

Apr 232014
 
CamelliaRed

Alliance for Natural Health Article:
Popular Antidepressant May Promote Breast Cancer

NOTE: There are many natural and safe alternatives to both depression and menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, including Acupuncture! See my other blog entries (click on tags for depression or menopause).

Apr 032013
 

Monograph on Curcuma Longa, published by Alternative Medicine Review, a peer-reviewed CAM journal years ago now, summarizing research on Curcumin (now considered the main active ingredient in Curcuma Longa).

Curcumin Monograph

Apr 032013
 

Scientists at the Institute of Cytology and Preventive Oncology (ICPO) based in India have recently found that Curcumin works against Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), a known cause of cervical cancer. As the research abstract summarizes “These novel findings imply that Curcumin may be an effective chemopreventive and therapeutic agent for cervical cancer prevention and treatment”.
Curcumin and HPV

Note also there is research showing Astragalus and Silymarin (from Milk Thistle) show promising results against HPV (research references will be updated later).

May 242012
 

Dr. Daniel Weber is a scholar in the field of Integrative Oncology, with a focus on using Chinese herbal medicine or isolates from Chinese herbs to treat cancer. He has done numerous clinical trials, especially regarding herbal isolates to treat breast cancer. He is the author of several books on the subject of Chinese herbs to treat cancer and has also been honored in China with an appointment to The Oncology Special Committee (OSC) of the World Federation of Chinese Medicine Societies (WFCMS) in 2011. For more info, see Dr. Daniel Weber’s bio

Dr. Daniel Weber’s research site
Dr. Daniel Weber is also the founder of the Association of Integrative Oncology and Chinese Medicine
Dr. Daniel Weber’s products, focusing on cancer treatments Panaxea – Specialty line of Chinese herbal remedies, including isolates (sold only to practitioners since they are trained in their use).

Oct 152011
 

Isaac Eliaz, M.D., is an Integrative Oncology specialist. He is a Licensed Acupuncturist and integrates Chinese Medicine and Naturopathic Medicine with allopathy (our common ‘western medicine’). He is the founder and researcher of EcoNugenics, a nutraceutical product company known for anti-cancer products (PectaSol (Modified Citrus Pectin or MCP) and BreastDefend).

Research shows MCP to be effective in many types of cancer, especially breast and prostate cancer. See his various websites for more details:
Dr. Eliaz’s Clinic
Dr. Eliaz
EcoNugenics
Breast Cancer Guide
Prostate Cancer Guide

EcoNugenics products are sold at Heavenly Herbs and Acupuncture.

Aug 242011
 

Wish I had written this book – it is all that I hope to educate patient about living a long, healthy life!!

Everyone should read this book, whether one has already had cancer, been recently diagnosed or would like to prevent cancer: Anti-cancer, by David Servan-Schreiber. Originally published in the US in 2009, a new revision is available as of January 2011. Here is an interview of the author in Lotus Guide, published Spring 2011:
Lotus Guide interview of Dr. David Servan-Schreiber

Summary of this book (in Lotus Guide article, but not online):
1. Eating less sugar, which feeds cancer growth and inflammation. Refined sugar is abundant in desserts, soft drinks (one can of Coke contains 12 coffee-size packs of sugar…), sauces (ketchup, ready-made salad dressing, etc.). Eating less white flour which is equivalent to sugar as far as the body is concerned (white bread, bagels, muffins, etc.), and reducing pro-inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids (red meats, dairy, corn, sunflower, soybean and safflower oils, and transfats).
2. Adding anticancer foods: including in our diet every day, three times a day, foods that help fight cancer, such as anticancer herbs and spices (green tea, thyme, rosemary, mint, basil, sage, turmeric, ginger), omega-3-rich foods (salmon, sardines, mackerel, walnuts, green vegetables), cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage), garlic, onions and leeks, red berries for dessert, dark chocolate (more than 70% cacao), and even a little bit of red wine.
3. Engaging in physical activity: it doesn’t have to be marathon training, not even jogging. Just rapid walking 30 minutes six times a week already dramatically reduces the chances of a relapse after breast cancer treatment. And physical activity has been found to help survival with many different types of cancer.
4. Managing our response to stress: we can’t avoid stress in our life, but we can learn to respond differently than with clenched teeth, stone-hard back muscles, and pressure in our chest. Basic breathing techniques that have been around as part of oriental mental and physical hygiene techniques for thousands of years (yoga, Chi Gong, mindfulness meditation) can transform our response to stress and strengthen our resistance to disease.
5. Cleaning up our immediate environment: indoor pollutants, scratched Teflon pans, perchololrethylene of dry-cleaning, PVCs and bisphenol A from liquids in contact with hard plastics, radiomagnetic fields of prolonged cell phone exposures are the leading and most easily controlled causes.

Anti-Cancer Book website

Posted this on 8/29/11 and just learned today that Dr. Servan-Schreiber passed away on 7/24/11. May he RIP and may the knowledge he shared in his books help many, many people!