Leukemia is a cancer of the blood-forming organs (bone marrow, lymph system, or spleen), and lymphomas are cancers of the lymphatic tissues. They are usually composed of dispersed cells, although lymphoma cells occasionally form solid tumors. Both diseases respond well to conventional treatment; chemotherapy and radiation.
Leukemia is a possibly fatal disease that occurs when the body produces an abnormal type and amount of white blood cells in response to blood toxemia caused by a breakdown in protein metabolism. Symptoms include high blood uric acid; weakness; bleeding of the gums, nose, and stomach; easy bruising; upper abdominal pain; anemia; fever; and infection. Blood counts are high, with white blood cell counts over 80,000 (normal range is 4,200-10,000), and platelets over 600,000 (normal range is 150,000-450,000). Leukemia affects both children and adults, although certain forms are more common in particular age groups. Leukemia may be caused by an excess of or a susceptibility to radiation, X-rays, or chemical pollutants. A selenium deficiency may be a factor.
Leukemias are classified into acute and chronic forms. Cancerous cells rapidly reproduce and accumulate in both types, crowding out normal white blood cells. Other organs are affected, such as the spleen, lymph nodes, liver, and central nervous system. Chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) is a slowly progressive disease characterized by the overproduction of granulocytes (neutrophils, eosinophils, and basophils). Platelets are increased in number, although their function is impaired. Marrow invasion occurs, leading to an increase of red and white blood cells. Symptoms of CML include fatigue, purpura, hives, shortness of breath when active, weight loss, fever, excessive sweating, bone and joint pain, enlarged liver or spleen, swollen gums, anemia, and chloroma (red-brown skin papules that become green when blood is squeezed out).
Leukemias respond well to chemotherapy and radiation, and treatments are usually used in combination. Interferon reduces the growth of cancerous cells. In children, Vincristine Sulfate (Oncovin), extracted from the Madagascar Rosy Periwinkle is the drug of choice and lessens leukemia fatality by 80%. In adults with CML, conventional medications include Hydrea, Myleran, Vincristine, and Interferon alpha. Several research studies have been performed on all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA), also known as Retin-A, with some successful remissions.
Avoid gluten foods, too much sugar, and dairy products. Eating meat, particularly red and white meat, can increase cancer risk. Eat foods that can increase blood count in chemotherapy for lymph cancer, including apples, beets, garlic, orange juice, black walnuts, and royal jelly. There are protease inhibitors in beans, rice, potatoes, and seeds that may revert cancerous cells to normal. Raw cabbage juice, pineapple, whole-grain bran fiber, chickpeas, and broccoli are also good food choices.
Soy products, which contain genistein and other isoflavones, may offer protection against leukemia. Some common foods that contain soy are tempeh, soy milk and nuts, tofu, and miso.
A disturbing report has linked leukemia to the ingestion of aspartame (NutraSweet, Equal) in rats. The European Journal of Clinical Oncology found that 8-week-old female rats fed varying concentrations of aspartame developed leukemia and lymphoma. The researchers said the study raises concerns and “urgent re-examination” of aspartame’s safety especially to protect children.
RISK FACTORS and CAUSES
It is unknown exactly what causes leukemia. Some suspected factors include genetics, viruses, and exposure to certain toxic chemicals. Known risk factors include heredity, having a sibling with leukemia, Down syndrome, radiation exposure, chronic virus infections, use of commercial hair dyes, certain cancer therapies, and environmental exposure to certain chemicals, including radon and benzene (found in unleaded gasoline). Epidemiological studies have reported associations between exposure to power frequency magnetic fields and increased risk of certain types of cancer including childhood leukemia.
- WIDE RANGE OF ANTIOXIDANTS
- VITAMIN A (BETA-CAROTENE)
Beta-carotene is widely distributed in fruits and vegetables and demonstrates high anticarcinogenic activity. In CML vitamin A therapy enhances cell-mediated immunity and modulates gene _expression. Dosage: 25-50,000 IU daily.
- VITAMIN E (TOCOTRIENSOLS)
Vitamin E is an effective antioxidant and free radical scavenger. Vitamin E levels are found to be lower in CML patients. Dosage: 400-800 IU daily.
- VITAMIN C
Vitamin C has added effects with QUERCETIN. Some people have treated leukemia with high doses of vitamin C (12,000mg/day) for months or years, and blood counts drop. The bioflavonoid quercetin has been found in numerous studies to have anti-leukemia properties.
Studies of selenium supplementation indicate decreased cancer incidence and decreased new adenoma formation. A strong inverse correlation has been found when measuring the average blood selenium levels and the mortality from any cancer among middle-aged to elderly adults in America. Low selenium levels have been associated with a greater risk. Dosage 100-300 mcg daily.
- VITAMIN D3
Vitamin D may induce certain leukemia and lymphoma cells to differentiate into normal cells and arrest the growth of cancerous cells. Vitamin D is involved in the regulation of cell growth and differentiation, as well as immune response. Dosage: as directed.
- ESSIAC TEA
Essiac tea has been used for 80 years as an authentic anti-cancer herbal agent. A minimal protocol calls for one cup twice a day for 12 consecutive weeks. Essiac is a wise choice for therapy with or without choosing chemotherapy.
- IP-6 CELL FORTE (Inositol hexaphosphate)
IP-6 is a component of fiber found in highest concentrations in cereals and legumes, especially the brand part of wheat. It has antioxidant activity and may cause malignant cells to revert back to normal. Dosage: As directed on package. Take on an empty stomach.
- B COMPLEX
B complex improves the regeneration of cells. VITAMIN B12 is an essential coenzyme for DNA synthesis and is deficient in CML patients. Niacin and folic acid are chemo-protective. Dosage: 50-100 mg daily.
DHEA is a hormone that favorably modulates the immune system in leukemia. Preliminary studies indicate the DHEA may be effective in treating immune deficiency in those leukemia patients with a DHEA deficiency (especially older people). Dosage: 25-100 mg; see a qualified practitioner.
- CHLORELLA, Blue Green Algae, Spirulina, Barley, Kamut
These may promote the activation of natural cancer-fighting substances in the body. Dosage: Enough to keep the body alkaline.
Arginine is a high-nitrogen amino acid that “feeds” our bodies natural killer cells so they can neutralize cancer. Dosage: 500 mg 3 times a day.
- SOY (GENISTEIN)
Soy is a potent inhibitor of the protein tyrosine kinase, the enzyme that cancer cells require in order to replicate. Genistein appears to inhibit cancer cell growth and has a positive effect on destroying leukemia cells in laboratory tests. Dosage: as directed.
- ESSENTIAL FATTY ACIDS (Fish oil, GLA)
A combination of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids will decrease inflammation associated with cancer. Fats such as conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) have a unique anti-carcinogenic activity. Dosage: 2 capsules 2-3 times day, or as directed by a practitioner.
This spice has antioxidant, anti-tumor, and anti-inflammatory properties. In patients with leukemia it may promote apoptosis or induce cell death, exhibiting cytotoxicity against human CML in a dose-dependent manner. Dosage: 1000-2000 mg daily.
- MILK THISTLE and DANDELION ROOT
These herbs bolster the immune system while protecting the liver, kidney, and colon from the side effects of chemotherapy. The active ingredient in milk thistle (silymarin) is thought to bind to the outside of the liver cells and slow the entry of liver-damaging toxins and other free radicals. Milk thistle also prevents the depletion of glutathione, a major antioxidant enzyme system in the body that is often depleted in cancer patients. Dosage: 1-3 capsules daily. See a qualified practitioner.
Epidemiological studies have reported associations between exposure to power frequency magnetic fields and increased risk of certain types of cancer including childhood leukemia. It has been proposed that over exposure of magnetic fields suppresses nocturnal production of melatonin in the pineal gland. Such melatonin disruption (which is normally highly protective of oxidative damage to the human system) may preclude the patient to the disease. Dosage: As directed by a qualified practitioner.
Indirubin is an active Chinese traditional medicine used for CML. It inhibits cyclin, strongly inhibits DNA biosynthesis in tumor cells, and inhibits the assembly of microtubules. Dosage: as directed.
- MANGOSTEEN FRUIT
In 2003, Japanese researchers found that xanthones from mangosteen seeds caused inhibition of growth of human leukemia cells. Dosage: As directed.
- SHARK CARTILAGE
Shark cartilage is used by an increasing number of natural practitioners. In some cases remission has been documented. Dosage: 60-70 grams per day, or as directed by a qualified practitioner.
Ginseng is a Chinese herb that has a long history of use to treat leukemia. Dosage: as directed.
Removal of toxins from the body can free up the immune system and normalize the functioning of other systems for reversing cancer or keeping any further development of cancer from taking place. See qualified natural practitioner who performs detoxification via bowel cleanse, liver cleanse, ion-cleanse, or sauna.
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