Category: CANCER & HIV stuff


Please click here to watch video “CUTTING EDGE SUPPLEMENTS AGAINST PAIN AND CANCER”

When one reaches over 40 and especially over 50 then there are two major concerns that becomes reality for many, constant daily pain and for some the dreaded cancer!

All is not lost. Well for some it is…when one continue on an unhealthy living path (smoking, drinking, and no exercise) well, then the future unfortunately looks a bit bleak.

But just the other day I met a 92 y/o guy, fit, very mobile, with it! So certain things can be done to limit your risks and enhance your quality life.

However even if you do that, constant pain in joints/muscles seems to be part of any person over 40’s life. And so does the possibility of getting cancer.

We use to think it is just by the “throw of a dice” luck that we do not get cancer. But alas, there might just be a way out! Yes you hear right there just might be a very (!) powerful tool in your arsenal that limits your risk for cancer DRASTICALLY.

The same goes for the constant pain. There are 2 weapons in your arsenal to fight this rather effectively.

But first, let’s lay the basic groundwork.

Alpha Lipoic Acid & Potent Multi Vitamin

Two health supplements that form the basis of good health is a good/potent multi vitamin and ALPHA LIPOIC ACID. The best two choices for a potent multi vitamin is OPTIMEN or ANIMAL PAK.

Take the multi vit as directed on the container (must be after meal).

Why the multi vit – well simple you need to ensure that all the basis are covered concerning vitamins and minerals. Just short of one of these can have real bad consequences. This is very important for the older individual. You CANNOT rely on your food to get everything in.

Alpha Lipoic Acid must be taken at 200mg after morning meal and after evening meal.

Why Alpha Lipoic Acid?

Based on evidence from animal and human studies, lipoic acid offers the following essential health benefits:

  • Reduces oxidative stress in the body via powerful antioxidant activity
  • Improves several components of the metabolic syndrome—a combination of risk factors that increases one’s risk for diabetes
  • Reduces blood pressure
  • Reduces insulin resistance
  • Improves the lipid profile
  • Reduces weight
  • Increases insulin sensitivity
  • Improves diabetic neuropathy
  • Protects against cataract formation
  • Improves visual function in glaucoma
  • Helps prevents retinal cell death when combined with vitamin E in retinitis pigmentosa
  • Reduces brain damage after a stroke
  • Prevents bone loss, possibly through an anti-inflammatory effect
  • Removes toxic metals from the body
  • Reduces frequency and intensity of migraines
  • Improves skin texture

Now on to powerful pain relievers (although Alpha Lipoic Acid also play a role to relief pain).

MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane)

The first one is MSM. Now you might have heard about it. But the truth is, IT DOES WORK. But, not immediately. It is not like popping a pain-pill. It is more like reprogramming your body first before it takes effect.

Some of the most common uses for MSM include treating:

  • chronic joint pain (osteoarthritis, joint inflammation, rheumatoid arthritis)
  • leaky gut syndrome and autoimmune disorders
  • osteoporosis and susceptibility to bone fractures
  • bursitis, tendonitis, the development of scar tissue and other musculoskeletal pains
  • allergies and asthma
  • yeast infections
  • muscle cramps
  • constipation, ulcers, upset stomach, indigestion
  • PMS symptoms (cramps, headaches, water retention, indigestion)
  • stretch marks
  • hair loss
  • skin problems including wrinkles, sun burns (it offers some protection against UV light/wind burn), wounds, cuts, skin abrasions
  • eye inflammation
  • poor circulation
  • high blood pressure
  • fatigue
  • oral infections, toothaches, gum disease/periodontal disease

Three uses that MSM has gained the most notoriety for include: acting like an anti-atherosclerotic (preventing the hardening/thickening of arteries), chemo-preventative compound and natural anti-inflammatory. MSM seems to help the body’s natural free radical-scavenging, which means it lowers oxidative stress as the many ailments that come along with it. It’s an effective anti-inflammatory because it blocks the release of pro-inflammatory mediators and down regulates certain harmful signals sent from the immune system that can affect the entire body.

According to the Arthritis Foundation, based on the most reputable studies conducted so far on MSM — such as a 2006 pilot study that analysed the effects of 6,000 milligrams of MSM taken daily by patients with osteoarthritis — it effectively helps improve symptoms of pain and physical function without any major side effects.

That being said, MSM is capable of causing mild side effects for some people, including indigestion, upset stomach or diarrhoea. It’s also not suitable for people taking blood-thinner medications. If you’re pregnant, you’ll want to speak with a doctor before taking it regularly.

Lastly, MSM does NOT start working immediately. It takes up to 3 months for it to start working effectively. For some up to 6 months. So although there is a considerable lead time…it really is worth investing in the long term in using MSM because it IS a powerful pain suppressant with many other health benefits.

Co Enzyme Q10

Now an even more interesting product, Co Enzyme Q10. [Suggested: 150mg after morning and evening meal]

I have written about this wonder supplement in the past and I consider it the “mother of all supplements”. None comes close to it in effectiveness and health boosting ability. And to top it off, it is a significant pain suppressant. To such an extent that many doctors are now at long last starting to subscribe CQ10 to their migraine patients.

Coenzyme Q10 is a mitochondrial energizer that has shown remarkable effects against common heart ailments and neurological disorders. In just the past year, scientists have uncovered specific mechanisms indicating that CoQ10 may have a role in fighting certain cancers. Most surprising, however, are new studies that show how CoQ10 guards against a wide array of common age-related disorders. In this article, we summarize recent discoveries that significantly broaden the clinical utility of CoQ10.

Guarding the Brain After Cardiac Arrest

People who survive cardiac arrest often suffer irreversible brain damage as a result of the disruption of oxygen to the brain. European researchers recently investigated whether combining CoQ10 with mild hypothermia—a technique proven to reduce neuronal damage and increase survival—might enhance the effects of that treatment.

Forty-nine patients who had suffered cardiac arrest and then received cardiopulmonary resuscitation were randomly selected to receive hypothermia (reduction of body temperature) treatment plus CoQ10 or hypothermia plus placebo. The hypothermia treatment involved the patients being placed on a body-surface-cooling mattress.

The patients were then administered either liquid CoQ10 (250 mg followed by 150 mg three times daily for five days) or a placebo through a nasogastric tube. The remarkable findings showed that three-month survival in the CoQ10 group was 68%, compared to only 29% in the placebo group. Coenzyme Q10 thus helped reduce the death rate from cardiac arrest by an astounding 57%. The researchers also found that 36% of patients in the CoQ10 group had a good neurological outcome at three months, versus only 20% in the placebo group.

Preventing the Onset of Migraine

Migraine headaches are a debilitating, all-too-common affliction. Because mitochondrial dysfunction may play a role in migraines by limiting oxygen metabolism, researchers recently explored the use of CoQ10 in preventing these headaches. Published in the February 2005 issue of Neurology, the research describes a placebo-controlled trial of 42 patients in Switzerland.

Patients who had suffered migraines for a year or more, with two to eight attacks per month, were randomly assigned to receive either 100 mg of CoQ10 or placebo, three times daily. At the end of the three-month trial, the CoQ10-treated group had lower attack frequency and fewer headache days and days with nausea than did the placebo group. The mean number of monthly migraine attacks dropped from 4.4 to 3.2 in the CoQ10 group, compared to a negligible decrease from 4.4 to 4.3 in the placebo group.

In this study, supplemental CoQ10 reduced migraine frequency by 27%.

Slowing Early Macular Degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration is the most common cause of vision loss in people over 60. With the deterioration of the macula (a tiny cluster of highly specialized cells in the retina) central vision progressively begins to blur. As the disease worsens, central vision loss may increase until it becomes impossible to perform tasks that require detailed vision, such as driving and reading.

In recent years, researchers have focused on how oxidative damage affects age-related macular degeneration. The eye, one of the body’s most metabolically active organs, not only generates an enormous amount of free radicals through normal function, but also incurs additional oxidative damage from ultraviolet radiation and air pollution. In recent trials, the use of antioxidants has been shown to counter age-related macular degeneration. For example, in an 11-center, double-blind clinical trial conducted by the National Eye Institute (a division of the National Institutes of Health), a combination of antioxidants plus zinc slowed macular degeneration progression in people with intermediate or advanced disease by about 25%.

Hungarian scientists are now exploring a metabolic rather than an antioxidant approach to managing macular degeneration. Citing findings that mitochondrial dysfunction might also play a role in the development of the disease, the researchers designed a clinical trial to evaluate intervention in early age-related macular degeneration with a combination of compounds—including CoQ10—that have demonstrated the ability to improve mitochondrial metabolism. The researchers reported results of their double-blind, placebo-controlled trial last year in the journal Opthalmologica. More than 100 patients with early age-related macular degeneration were randomly assigned to receive either two capsules per day containing 200 mg of acetyl-L-carnitine, 780 mg of omega-3 fatty acids, and 20 mg of CoQ10, or capsules containing an equal quantity of soy oil.

At the end of the 12-month treatment period, the researchers found statistically significant improvement in the treatment group as measured by all four parameters of visual function studied. In addition, only one of the 48 patients (2%) in the treatment group showed clinically significant worsening in visual field mean defect (blind spots in the visual field), the primary study endpoint, compared to 9 of 53 patients (17%) in the placebo group. The decrease in drusen—tiny yellow retinal deposits associated with macular degeneration—of the treated eyes was also statistically significant compared to placebo when either the most-affected eyes or the less-affected eyes were considered. In the less-affected eyes, the drusen-covered area decreased by 23% in the treated group, but increased by 13% in the placebo group. These findings suggest that intervention with an appropriate combination of nutrients that affect mitochondrial lipid metabolism may stabilize and even improve visual functions in early age-related macular degeneration.

New Applications in Fighting Cancer

Research on CoQ10 and cancer has focused on two lines of inquiry: CoQ10’s ability to improve immune response and its ability to decrease the cardiotoxicity caused by a common class of anti-cancer chemotherapeutic agents.

Patients with cancer often exhibit low levels of CoQ10,6,7 and researchers have shown that CoQ10 can increase immune response in humans.

Based on these findings, Danish researchers investigated CoQ10’s effects alone and in combination with other nutrients as an adjunctive therapy for breast cancer.

In one case report, the researchers describe three breast cancer patients with metastasized cancer. The women underwent conventional cancer treatment and supplemented with a daily dose of 390 mg of CoQ10. All three women demonstrated tumor regression and decreased incidence of metastasis.

In another study, the same research team investigated 32 high-risk breast cancer patients whose malignancy had spread to the lymph nodes. In addition to conventional therapeutic interventions, this group of patients received a daily combination of nutrients (vitamin C: 2850 mg; vitamin E: 2500 IU; beta-carotene: 32.5 IU; selenium: 387 mcg; and secondary vitamins and minerals), essential fatty acids (1.2 grams of gamma linolenic acid and 3.5 grams of omega-3 fatty acids), and 90 mg of CoQ10. At the end of the 18-month trial, six patients showed apparent partial remission, none of the patients showed signs of additional metastases, and their quality of life improved. None of the patients died during the study period, though four deaths were expected based on the patients’ disease stage. In one of the six patients with partial remission, the dose of CoQ10 in the nutritional protocol was increased to 390 mg. After two months, that patient’s tumor had disappeared completely, as confirmed by a mammogram.

While chemotherapy drugs can be highly effective, their use can also be limited by toxic side effects. This has been noted in the case of anthracyclines, a class of drugs widely used in cancer chemotherapy. These drugs have demonstrated efficacy in the treatment of leukemia, lymphomas, and solid malignancies, and are often used to treat breast cancer, with higher doses yielding greater clinical responses. These higher doses of anthracyclines, however, can produce toxic effects on heart tissue, possibly leading to cardiomyopathy and heart failure that are not responsive to conventional pharmacological interventions. In fact, anthracyclines selectively damage mitochondria in the heart, but not in other organs. Since coenzyme Q10 supports both heart tissue and mitochondria, researchers conducted human trials to determine whether CoQ10 might prevent cardiotoxicity during the administration of anthracyclines.

Two recent review articles addressed CoQ10’s potential as an adjunctive therapy during chemotherapy with anthracyclines. Writing in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, researchers summarized five reviewed studies in which CoQ10 was given along with anthracyclines. They report that in three of the studies that measured heart rhythm, patients who received CoQ10 showed favorable changes suggesting that CoQ10 might have a stabilizing effect on the heart. They also note that supplementation did not interfere with anthracycline treatment, and that no adverse effects were reported in any of the trials. The authors concluded that although coenzyme Q10 demonstrates potential for reducing cardiotoxicity, larger and more rigorous investigations are needed.

Slowing Neurodegenerative Disease Progression

Many investigators have conducted preclinical studies examining how oxidative stress and impaired mitochondrial function may contribute to neuronal cell death, a characteristic of Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and other neurodegenerative diseases. For example, a recent journal article in Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology reported on the effects of the herbicide paraquat on neuronal cell death in the laboratory. The researchers found that this toxic chemical damaged mitochondria and increased free radical production, eventually resulting in the death of neuronal cells. Pretreatment of the cell cultures with CoQ10, however, inhibited both mitochondrial dysfunction and free radical generation. The researchers postulated that coenzyme Q10 may prove useful in preventing and treating neurodegenerative conditions related to environmental toxins.

While published research on the use of CoQ10 in slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s disease has been limited to preclinical studies, investigations of CoQ10 and Parkinson’s disease have moved into clinical trials, including randomized controlled studies. This work has been led by Clifford Shults, MD, professor of neurosciences at the University of California at San Diego School of Medicine. In Parkinson’s disease, brain cells that produce the neurotransmitter dopamine progressively die. Research in animals has shown that CoQ10 can protect the substantia nigra, the area of the brain where these cells reside. Studies by Dr. Shults and others have shown that mitochondrial dysfunction and diminished mitochondrial CoQ10 levels frequently occur in Parkinson’s sufferers.

With funding from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders (a division of the National Institutes of Health), Dr. Shults and his colleagues undertook the first double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter clinical trial of CoQ10 in patients with early untreated Parkinson’s disease. In this phase II, dose-finding study, 80 patients were randomly assigned to receive one of three different CoQ10 doses (300 mg/day, 600 mg/day, or 1200 mg/day) with vitamin E, or a placebo containing vitamin E alone. The patients were followed for 16 months or until the participants required levodopa, a standard drug treatment for managing disease symptoms.

The results, reported in the Archives of Neurology, showed that patients who received the largest dose of CoQ10 (1200 mg/day) had 44% less decline in mental function, movement, and ability to carry out activities of daily living than those who received the placebo.19 Patients who received CoQ10 doses of 300 mg/day and 600 mg/day also showed some slowing in decline compared to the placebo group, but not as much as those who took the highest dose. The authors concluded that CoQ10 was safe and well tolerated at doses up to 1200 mg/day.

A clinical trial has also been undertaken in patients with Huntington’s disease, a neurodegenerative genetic disorder. This trial, conducted by the Huntington Study Group, randomly assigned 347 patients with Huntington’s disease to receive CoQ10 at 600 mg/day, remacemide hydrochloride at 600 mg/day, a combination of both, or placebo. Over the 30-month trial, the CoQ10 treated patients showed a 13% decrease in overall functional decline and beneficial trends in some secondary measures. However, the difference between the CoQ10 group and the other groups did not reach statistical significance.

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METFORMIN

Now on to the last miracle supplement. Metformin [suggested 500mg daily]

This is actually not a supplement but a prescribed medicine for diabetics. However it seems to do much more than just treating diabetics and all of it is good, very good news!

Let me give you the rundown…

[From the US National cancer institute]

“In 1957, the first results from a clinical trial of the diabetes drug metformin in patients were published. Yet, it would take nearly 40 years for the drug to be approved in the United States as a treatment for type 2 diabetes.

Now researchers want to know whether this decades-old drug may have additional uses in another disease—cancer. Based on findings from a number of large epidemiologic studies and extensive laboratory research, metformin is being tested in clinical trials not only as a treatment for cancer, but as a way to prevent it in people at increased risk, including cancer survivors who have a higher risk of a second primary cancer.

Numerous early-stage clinical trials are currently under way to investigate metformin’s potential to prevent an array of cancers, including colorectalprostateendometrial, and breast cancer. Several of these trials are being funded by NCI’s Consortia for Early Phase Prevention Trials. And NCI is collaborating with the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) to study participants from the landmark clinical trial, the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP), to investigate metformin’s impact on cancer incidence.

Some of the early-phase prevention trials of metformin are enrolling participants who are at increased risk for cancer and who are obese, have elevated glucose or insulin levels, or have other conditions that put them at risk for diabetes.

“With the obesity epidemic, these studies are applicable to a substantial portion of the U.S. population and, increasingly, of the world population,” said Brandy Heckman-Stoddard, PhD, MPH, of NCI’s Division of Cancer Prevention.

Expanding the Data Pool

Much of the human data on metformin and cancer has come from epidemiologic studies of people with diabetes. In many, though not all, of these studies, people with diabetes who were assigned to take metformin had a lower incidence of cancer than those taking other diabetes drugs.

Completed in 2002, the original DPP enrolled more than 3,200 people at increased risk of developing diabetes and randomly assigned them to one of three groups: one group received metformin, one took part in an intensive diet and physical activity program, and one received a placebo. Participants in the metformin arm had a substantially lower risk of developing diabetes than the general population; participants in the exercise and diet regimen fared even better.

With NCI’s involvement, the program’s extension, called the DPP Outcomes Study, will allow investigators to document cancer incidence and death among study participants. Those observations should provide some of the strongest data available to date on metformin’s anticancer effects in people without diabetes, explained Dr. Heckman-Stoddard. The first data on cancer outcomes in study participants, which will be based on 15 years of follow-up, should be available in 2014.

“Once we have that data, there are a host of other questions we can ask,” she said. For example, Dr. Heckman-Stoddard and her colleagues plan to study metformin’s impact on certain blood biomarkers that studies have suggested are associated with cancer risk. They will also study the drug’s mechanism of action—that is, how metformin may work to prevent changes in cells that can lead to cancer.

For Prevention, Small Biomarker-Driven Trials

The smaller prevention trials being conducted are very different from the DPP Outcomes Study. These trials are not designed to determine whether metformin prevents cancer. Prevention trials must generally have a large number of participants and span many years to show whether a drug or some other intervention reduces the risk of cancer.

Instead, these short, 3- to 6-month trials are investigating whether the drug has an effect on specific proteins and/or signaling pathways that have been implicated in cancer development and that laboratory studies have shown are affected by metformin.

At the University of California, Irvine Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, for example, Jason Zell, DO, MPH, is leading an early-phase clinical trial that is testing metformin’s effect on the mTOR signaling pathway in obese people who have previously had precancerous growths removed from their colons.

Numerous studies have implicated the mTOR pathway as an integral hub in cancer development and progression, and laboratory studies have consistently shown that metformin can blunt mTOR signaling.

“The key point of the trial is to get at the mechanisms of action … to see if metformin is behaving in the expected manner” based on the lab findings, Dr. Zell explained.

Numerous early-stage clinical trials are currently under way to investigate metformin’s potential to prevent an array of cancers, including colorectal, prostate, endometrial, and breast cancer.

Dr. Zell and his colleagues chose to study obese patients “because of the interesting side-effect profile of metformin, which can include weight loss,” meaning it may not be suitable for underweight, nondiabetic individuals, he continued.

If this first trial shows that metformin is having the expected effects on mTOR signaling, the next trial would be similar but would measure a clinical outcome, such as whether metformin decreases the number of colorectal polyps that return.

phase II trial at the University of California, San Diego Moores Cancer Center is testing metformin’s effects on a host of biomarkers in postmenopausal breast cancer survivors who are obese.

Funded by NCI’s Transdisciplinary Research on Energetics and Cancer (TREC) program, the trial, called Reach for HealthExit Disclaimer, will involve treatment with metformin alone and in combination with an exercise program. The study will examine the effect of 6 months of metformin treatment, with or without exercise, on a host of biomarkers associated with cancer risk. The change in biomarker measurements before and after treatment will be compiled into a score that predicts the risk of dying from breast cancer.

This is all part of the trial’s novel “biomarker bridge” design, the lead investigator, Ruth Patterson, PhD, explained. The biomarkers and the risk score are being derived from an analysis of tissue samples collected as part of an NCI-supported phase III trial called the Women’s Healthy Eating and Living (WHEL) study. This study found that a diet low in fat and high in fruits and vegetables did not reduce the risk of cancer returning in survivors of early-stage breast cancer compared with survivors who maintained their normal diet. Researchers have continued to follow the health of WHEL participants to document their health outcomes, including death from breast cancer.

“The WHEL trial is over, and we have a freezer full of blood samples, and we know participants’ breast cancer recurrences, mortality, and other outcomes,” Dr. Patterson said. “So we’re hooking together a short-term trial with a long-term cohort study by means of blood biomarkers.”

The Dose Is the Question

Most of the cancer clinical trials of metformin use the same doses typically used to treat diabetes. That makes sense, because all of the epidemiologic data suggesting a cancer benefit came from studies that used those doses, said Michael Pollak, MD, of McGill University in Montreal, who has extensively studied metformin and its anticancer potential.

“We already know that those doses are safe, so why not study them?” Dr. Pollak continued. “But then you have to realize that virtually all of the lab studies [of metformin] have been done using drug concentrations that are as much as 100-fold higher than those found in the serum of diabetic patients. So the lab studies do not directly justify the clinical trials that are using conventional antidiabetic doses.”

With the obesity epidemic, these studies are applicable to a substantial portion of the U.S. population and, increasingly, of the world population.

—Dr. Brandy Heckman-Stoddard

Although laboratory studies suggest that larger doses of metformin “deserve study” for cancer treatment, Dr. Pollak noted that “for cancer prevention, we can only consider the hypothesis that the antidiabetic dose, or even lower doses, will be clinically useful.”

Dr. Zell agreed. “In the realm of cancer prevention, where side effects are less acceptable than they are in the realm of cancer treatment, the conventional dose for treating diabetes or something close to it may be the limit.

“I don’t imagine that prevention researchers will be looking to use [significantly larger] doses of metformin,” he continued. “In a healthy population, even a low risk of side effects could be extraordinary when applied to a larger population…. That’s why trials like ours are important. At the end of this 12-week intervention, we’ll have a good idea of whether the standard dose of metformin can affect cancer signaling pathways.”

Early Days

It’s still far too early to tell whether there is any future for metformin as a means of preventing or treating cancer, several researchers said.

Despite the very strong epidemiological evidence, there’s a chance that, even if metformin has some ability to prevent cancer, its efficacy may be limited to just several cancer types, Dr. Pollak noted. For example, metformin is not absorbed very well by the body and is absorbed differently by different tissues, he explained, which could limit how effective it might be against particular cancers.

Although the drug in its current form has certain limitations, some investigators are working on developing more potent derivatives of metformin. At the 2012 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, for example, Italian and U.S. researchers reported that several metformin derivatives they had developed potently blocked the growth of breast cancer cells in the laboratory, including cell lines of triple-negative breast cancer, and caused the cells to die.

To be used for cancer prevention, any metformin derivative would have to be safe, with few side effects, Dr. Heckman-Stoddard stressed. As for the original metformin formulation, she added, current trials should help to map the way forward for its use in prevention.

“It’s important that we identify the right populations in which this is most likely to be an effective agent,” said Dr. Heckman-Stoddard. “We need to look at the evidence from all of these early-phase trials as a whole,” she continued, including examining the population groups exhibiting the strongest suggestions of efficacy “so we can design efficient phase III trials.”

Examples of Clinical Trials Testing Metformin for Cancer Prevention

Trial Phase Measured Endpoints Sponsor
Exercise and Metformin in Colorectal Cancer Survivors II Insulin levels and other biomarkers Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
An Endometrial Cancer Chemoprevention Study of Metformin [and Lifestyle Intervention] III Biomarkers in the endometrium and insulin levels University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Metformin as a Chemoprevention Agent in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer II Progression of potentially precancerous bronchial lesions (secondary endpoint) in patients who have undergone surgery for lung cancer Mayo Clinic
Prostate Cancer Active Surveillance Metformin Trial II Progression of prostate cancer in men undergoing active surveillance for low-risk disease University Health Network, Toronto
Metformin Hydrochloride as Chemoprevention in Patients with Barrett Esophagus II Changes in the levels of the signaling pathway protein pS6K1, thought to play important role in progression to esophageal cancer Mayo Clinic”

 

The bottom line is that Metformin has already proven to be a powerful tool against some of the most common cancers.

Here is a article by Medscape on whether everyone should be taking Metformin due to it’s incredible benefits: http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/835676

 

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https://gertlouw.com/my-transformation-secrets/

 

Metformin has been proven to be very safe even for non-diabetics. But since it is a prescription drug you will have to twist your doctor’s finger to get a prescription. Ask him to look at the anti-cancer and weight-loss properties of Metformin…this might change his mind.

So here you have it – 5 powerfull tools in your arsenal for good health, anti pain and anti cancer. As the Vulcan say “Life long and prosper!”

Happy Training

Gert Louw

Gert Louw video cover

Fighting CANCER to SURVIVE

So many peoples life’s are affected by cancer that I felt compelled to write an investigative article on how to prevent/fight cancer to survive.

(Important: read the whole article to the end to get a correct understanding…)

So many emails and documents appear on internet on the subject that the first step is to separate the hoaxes from the truth.

 

Click here to watch video – “LIFE inspiration – Faith and Hope”

 

The following email has been doing the rounds for the past 2 years – Interesting info with a bit of a twist.

AFTER YEARS OF TELLING PEOPLE CHEMOTHERAPY IS THE ONLY WAY TO TRY AND ELIMINATE CANCER, JOHNS HOPKINS IS FINALLY STARTING TO TELL YOU THERE IS AN ALTERNATIVE WAY …

[Cancer Update from Johns Hopkins ]

  1. Every person has cancer cells in the body. These cancer cells do not show up in the standard tests until they have multiplied to a few billion. When doctors tell cancer patients that there are no more cancer cells in their bodies after treatment, it just means the tests are unable to detect the cancer cells because they have not reached the detectable size.
  2. Cancer cells occur between 6 to more than 10 times in a person’s lifetime.
  3. When the person’s immune system is strong the cancer cells will be destroyed and prevented from multiplying and forming tumors.
  4. When a person has cancer it indicates the person has multiple nutritional deficiencies. These could be due to genetic, environmental, food and lifestyle factors.
  5. To overcome the multiple nutritional deficiencies, changing diet and including supplements will strengthen the immune system.
  6. Chemotherapy involves poisoning the rapidly-growing cancer cells and also destroys rapidly-growing healthy cells in the bone marrow, gastro-intestinal tract etc, and can cause organ damage, like liver, kidneys, heart, lungs etc.
  7. Radiation while destroying cancer cells also burns, scars and damages healthy cells, tissues and organs.
  8. Initial treatment with chemotherapy and radiation will often reduce tumor size. However prolonged use of chemotherapy and radiation do not result in more tumor destruction.
  9. When the body has too much toxic burden from chemotherapy and radiation the immune system is either compromised or destroyed, hence the person can succumb to various kinds of infections and complications.
  10. Chemotherapy and radiation can cause cancer cells to mutate and become resistant and difficult to destroy. Surgery can also cause cancer cells to spread to other sites.
  11. An effective way to battle cancer is to STARVE the cancer cells by not feeding it with foods it needs to multiple. What cancer cells feed on:
  • a. Sugar is a cancer-feeder. By cutting off sugar it cuts off one important food supply to the cancer cells. Note: Sugar substitutes like NutraSweet, Equal, Spoonful, etc are made with Aspartame and it is harmful. A better natural substitute would be Manuka honey or molasses but only in very small amounts. Table salt has a chemical added to make it white in colour. Better alternative is Bragg’s aminos or sea salt.
  • b. Milk causes the body to produce mucus, especially in the gastro-intestinal tract. Cancer feeds on mucus. By cutting off milk and substituting with unsweetened soy milk, cancer cells will starved.
  • c. Cancer cells thrive in an acid environment. A meat-based diet is acidic and it is best to eat fish, and a little chicken rather than beef or pork. Meat also contains livestock antibiotics, growth hormones and parasites, which are all harmful, especially to people with cancer.
  • d. A diet made of 80% fresh vegetables and juice, whole grains, seeds, nuts and a little fruits help put the body into an alkaline environment. About 20% can be from cooked food including beans. Fresh vegetable juices provide live enzymes that are easily absorbed and reach down to cellular levels within 15 minutes t o nourish and enhance growth of healthy cells. To obtain live enzymes for building healthy cells try and drink fresh vegetable juice (most vegetables including bean sprouts) and eat some raw vegetables 2 or 3 times a day. Enzymes are destroyed at temperatures of 104 degrees F (40 degrees C).
  • e. Avoid coffee, tea, and chocolate, which have high caffeine. Green tea is a better alternative and has cancer-fighting properties. Water–best to drink purified water, or filtered, to avoid known toxins and heavy metals in tap water. Distilled water is acidic, avoid it.

12. Meat protein is difficult to digest and requires a lot of digestive enzymes. Undigested meat remaining in the intestines will become putrified and leads to more toxic buildup.
13. Cancer cell walls have a tough protein covering. By refraining from or eating less meat it frees more enzymes to attack the protein walls of cancer cells and allows the body’s killer cells to destroy the cancer cells.
14. Some supplements build up the immune system (IP6, Flor-ssence, Essiac, anti-oxidants, vitamins, minerals, EFAs etc.) to enable the body’s own killer cells to destroy cancer cells. Other supplements like vitamin E are known to cause apoptosis, or programmed cell death, the body’s normal method of disposing of damaged, unwanted, or unneeded cells.
15. Cancer is a disease of the mind, body, and spirit. A proactive and positive spirit will help the cancer warrior be a survivor.

Anger, unforgiving and bitterness put the body into a stressful and acidic environment. Learn to have a loving and forgiving spirit. Learn to relax and enjoy life.

16. Cancer cells cannot thrive in an oxygenated environment. Exercising daily, and deep breathing help to get more oxygen down to the cellular level. Oxygen therapy is another means employed to destroy cancer cells.

Now for the bad news…

Above is a hoax email and was never released by the claimed author. The following statement released by Johns Hopkins:

Cancer Info From Johns Hopkins Hoax Email

Outline
Emailed collection of cancer related tips and information claims to originate from world-renowned medical research facility, Johns Hopkins.

Brief Analysis
None of the claims in the message were published or in any way endorsed by Johns Hopkins. In fact, Johns Hopkins has released a statement denying any involvement. While some of the anti-cancer tips may contain elements of truth, the fact that they are not supported by Johns Hopkins as claimed in the message robs them of credibility. Many are anecdotal, oversimplified and in no way endorsed by the medical establishment.

My view of the content of the hoax email?

Cancer is not something to take lightly – it is a wake up call and you have but one choice to deal with it…correctly. Many (many) people have survived chemo.

I must admit, I HATE hoaxes and hate it even more when they steal identity of a trusted source to prove their validity.

That said – I do believe that some of the points in the hoax email is actually valid, whether it is preferred above chemo…that is a choice each has to make for him/herself…I would still go the trusted and proven path that is backed up by medical science. But prevention is better than cure and by following some of the hoax email suggestions will add GREATLY to a preventative situation.

A detailed analysis of some key points in the HOAX email:

The Hoax: Everyone Has Cancer Cells

The Truth:  Cancer is a genetic disease resulting from a variety of mutations and alterations either inherited from our parents or, more commonly, acquired over time due to environmental exposures and behaviors, such as smoking and poor diet. These alterations turn off important cell growth regulators allowing cells to continually divide unchecked, explains Luis Diaz, a clinician-scientist in Ludwig Center for Cancer Genetics at the Kimmel Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins. This type of cell is called a malignant or cancer cell.  Among the trillions of cells in the human body, inevitably everyone has some abnormal or atypical cells that possess some of the characteristics of cancer cells, most resolve themselves and never result in cancer, says Diaz.

There is no single or standard test for cancer. There are ways to screen for certain cancers with tests such as colonoscopy for colon cancer, mammography for breast cancer, PSA for prostate cancer, and the Pap smear for cervical cancer, and these tests can detect cancers in a very early and curable stage.  For many cancers, there currently are no screening tests, and they are diagnosed when they begin to cause symptoms.

Diaz and other Kimmel Cancer Center researchers are working on new tests that detect abnormal DNA shed by cancer cells into blood and body fluids and have the ability to find cancers before they cause any symptoms.  Approaches like this could lead to a broad-based screening test for cancer.

Tests like these also are being used to detect cancer recurrences and malignant cells left behind following surgery, and can find cancers that are not detectable under the microscope or in x-rays.

Other researchers are studying cancer stem cells.  They are stealth cells that make up just a tiny fraction of a tumor.  While small in number, investigators believe they may be the cells that drive certain cancers and lead to cancer recurrence. Therapies that target these cells are now being tested in clinical trials.

A team of our breast cancer researchers has developed a method that could make it possible to detect breast cancer from the DNA contained in a single drop of blood.

But, while evasive cancer cells are a challenge and the focus of ongoing research, it does not mean, as the email contends, that all patients, even those treated successfully for cancer, have cancers-in-waiting—undetectable but still there.  People are treated and completely cured of cancer everyday.

The Hoax: A Strong Immune System Destroys Cancer

The Truth: When it comes to cancer and the immune system, it is not a matter of strong or weak as the fictional report contends, but rather an issue of recognition.  “The immune system simply does not recognize cancer. In its complexity, the cancer cell has learned to disguise itself to the immune system as a normal, healthy cell.  Cells infected with viruses or bacteria send out danger signals setting the immune system in action.  But cancer cells do not, explains Elizabeth Jaffee, co-director of cancer immunology and leading expert on cancer and the immune system.”   By deciphering the methods cancer cells use to make them invisible to the immune system, Jaffee and team have developed cancer vaccines that have successfully triggered immune reactions against prostate cancer, pancreatic cancer, leukemia, and multiple myeloma.

The Hoax: Cancer is caused by Nutritional Deficiencies and Supplements Will Correct Them

The Truth: Dietary habits and lifestyle choices, such as smoking, contribute to the development of many human cancers, says Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center director William Nelson. Our experts recommend a balanced diet as a way of reducing cancer risk.  In terms of supplements, Nelson points out that while they may help mediate vitamin deficiencies, taking doses above what the body needs provides no added benefit.

The Hoax: Chemotherapy and Radiation Therapy Harms Normal Cells. Surgery Causes Cancer to Spread

The Truth: Chemotherapy and radiation therapy kills cancer cells with remarkable selectivity, says Nelson.  There are some temporary and reversible side effects common to cancer therapies, including hair loss and low blood counts.  Limiting and managing these side effects is an integral part of treatment.

Surgery is the first line of treatment for many types of cancer. It does not cause cancer to spread. Cancers spread to other tissues and organs as a tumor progresses and cancer cells break away from the original tumor and travel through the bloodstream to other body sites.

The Hoax: Cancers Feed on Certain Foods

The Truth: The premise is that cancer cells feed on certain foods, and if a person refrains from eating these foods, the cancer will die. According to our experts, a poor diet and obesity associated with a poor diet is a risk factor for the development of cancer.  However, there is no evidence that certain foods alter the environment of an existing cancer, at the cellular level, and cause it to either die or grow.

While there is such a thing as tumors that produce mucus, the mucus made by a tumor does not result from drinking milk.  And, eating less meat, while a good choice for cancer prevention, does not free up enzymes to attack cancer cells, explains cancer prevention and control expert Elizabeth Platz.

Moderation is key, says Platz. As part of a balanced diet, sugar, salt, milk, coffee, tea, meat, and chocolate—the foods the “Update” calls into question—are all safe choices, she says.  The real concern with many of these, particularly sugar, is that it adds calories to a diet and can lead to obesity, and obesity is a major risk factor for cancer. A balanced nutritious diet, healthy weight, physical activity, and avoiding alcoholic drinks may prevent as many as 1/3 of all cancers. Platz recommends eating at least five servings of fruits and vegetables per day and limiting red and processed meats, like hot dogs.

Several Johns Hopkins experts participated in the World Cancer Research Fund – American Institute for Cancer Research report Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity, and the Prevention of Cancer: A Global Perspective, published in November 2007, which is considered by cancer prevention experts to be an authoritative source of information on diet, physical activity and cancer. Their recommendations for cancer prevention and for good health in general are:

  1. Be as lean as possible without becoming underweight.
  2. Be physically active for at least 30 minutes every day.
  3. Avoid sugary drinks. Limit consumption of energy-dense foods (particularly processed foods high in added sugar, or low in fiber, or high in fat).
  4. Eat more of a variety of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and legumes such as beans.
  5. Limit consumption of red meats (such as beef, pork and lamb) and avoid processed meats.
  6. If consumed at all, limit alcoholic drinks to 2 for men and 1 for women a day.
  7. Limit consumption of salty foods and foods processed with salt (sodium).
  8. Don’t use supplements to protect against cancer.

Our experts recommend that people meet their nutritional needs through their food choices. While vitamin supplements can be helpful in people with nutritional deficiencies, evidence suggests that supplementation above what the body can use provides no added health benefit.

The Hoax: Cancer is a Disease of Mind, Body, and Spirit

The Truth: Cancer is a disease caused by genetic alterations.  Many times, these alterations occur through our own behaviors—cigarette smoking, a poor and unbalanced diet, virus exposures, and sunburns, says cancer prevention and control expert John Groopman.

How stress, faith, and other factors influence this is largely unknown.  We would like people to be happy, loving, and stress free, simply because it is a nice way to live and can contribute to an overall feeling of well being, says Platz.  There is no evidence, however, that a person prevents or causes cancer based on his or her state of mind.

Read more about Cancer Genetics in “A Genetic Revolution”

The Hoax: Oxygen Kills Cancer Cells

The Truth: Platz recommends regular exercise as a part of any healthy lifestyle, but says there is no evidence that breathing deeply or receiving oxygen therapy prevents cancer.

On its Web site, the American Cancer Society includes the following statement about oxygen therapy, “Available scientific evidence does not support claims that putting oxygen-releasing chemicals into a person’s body is effective in treating cancer. It may even be dangerous. There have been reports of patient deaths from this method.”  Read more

The following extract from: http://pcrm.org/health/cancer-resources/diet-cancer:

Diet and Cancer Research

What we eat and how we treat our bodies on a daily basis have a very powerful effect on our health and quality of life. Although cancer can affect many different parts of the body, the foods that prevent cancer and deter cancer growth are generally the same. Fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes all have important nutrients and other cancer-fighting substances like phytochemicals and pectin that strengthen immune function and destroy cancer-causing substances before they cause harm. Research has shown that people who eat a diet free of animal products, high in plant foods, and low in fat have a much lower risk of developing cancer.

Foods for Cancer Prevention

Of the many diseases that affect people these days, cancer is among the most feared. But despite a wealth of scientific data, most people remain unaware of how they can reduce their risk of developing cancer. According to the National Cancer Institute, as much as 80 percent of all cancers are due to identified factors, and thus are potentially preventable. Thirty percent are due to tobacco use, and as much as 35 percent to 50 percent are due to foods. It is easy to control these and other risk factors.

What Is Cancer?

Cancer begins as a single abnormal cell that begins to multiply out of control. Groups of such cells form tumors and invade healthy tissue, often spreading to other parts of the body. Carcinogens are substances that promote the development of cancerous cells. They may come from foods, from the air, or even from within the body. Most carcinogens are neutralized before damage can occur, but sometimes they attack the cell’s genetic material (DNA) and alter it. It takes years for a noticeable tumor to develop. During this time, compounds known as inhibitors can keep the cells from growing. Some vitamins in plant foods are known to be inhibitors. Dietary fat, on the other hand, is known to be a promoter that helps the abnormal cells grow quickly.

Fiber Fights Cancer

In 1970, British physician Dennis Burkitt observed that a high-fiber diet reduces diseases of the digestive tract. He observed that in countries where diets are high in fiber (that is, plant-based diets), there were fewer cases of colon cancer. Around the world, this has proven true. The highest fiber intakes are found in nonindustrialized nations where meat is scarce and plant foods fill the menu. Animal products contain no fiber. The United States and other Western nations whose diets are based upon animal products have the highest rates of colon cancer.

While no one is certain exactly how fiber protects against digestive tract disorders, there are several possibilities. By definition, fiber cannot be digested by humans early in the digestive process. It moves food more quickly through the intestines, helping to eliminate carcinogens. It also draws water into the digestive tract. The water and fiber make fecal matter bulkier, so carcinogens are diluted.

Bile acids are secreted into the intestine to help digest fat; there, bacteria can change the acids into chemicals that promote colon cancer. Fiber may bind with these bile acids and evict them from the intestines.1 Also, bacteria in the colon ferment the fiber creating a more acidic environment which may make bile acids less toxic.

Fiber is also protective against other forms of cancer. Studies have shown that stomach cancer and breast cancer are less common on high-fiber diets.2,3 Fiber affects levels of estrogens in the body. Estrogens are normally secreted into the intestine, where the fiber binds with the hormone and moves it out of the body.4 Without adequate fiber, the estrogen can be reabsorbed from the intestine into the bloodstream. High levels of estrogen are linked to a higher risk of breast cancer.

In the U.S., the average daily fiber intake is 10 to 20 grams per day. Experts recommend 30 to 40 grams per day. The best sources of fiber are whole grains, beans, peas, lentils, vegetables, and fruits. Foods that are closest to their natural state, unrefined and unpeeled, are highest in fiber.

Fat Raises Cancer Risks

Cross-cultural studies have revealed that the populations with the highest levels of fat consumption are also the ones with the highest death rates from breast and colon cancer. The lowest rates are in groups with the lowest consumption of fats.5 Migration studies help to rule out the influence of genetics.6

Many studies indicate that fat in foods increases one’s risk for cancer, and it may also adversely affect breast cancer survival rates for those who have cancer.7

Although the total amount of fat one eats is of concern, there is evidence that animal fat is much more harmful than vegetable fat. One study noted a 200 percent increase in breast cancer among those who consume beef or pork five to six times per week. Dr. Sheila Bingham, a prominent cancer researcher form the University of Cambridge, notes that meat is more closely associated with colon cancer than any other factor.8 Meat and milk are also linked to both prostate and ovarian cancers.9

How Fat Affects Cancer Risks

Fat has many effects within the body. It increases hormone production and thus raises breast cancer risks. It also stimulates the production of bile acids which have been linked to colon cancer.

The average diet in the United States is about 37 percent fat. The National Cancer Institute suggests that people lower that percentage down to 30 percent; however, studies have shown that fat intake should be well below 30 percent to have an anti-cancer affect. Ten to 15 percent is more likely to be helpful.

The Importance of Vegetables

Not only are vegetables low in fat and high in fiber, they also contain many cancer-fighting substances. Carotenoids, the pigment that gives fruits and vegetables their dark colors, have been shown to help prevent cancer. Beta-carotene, present in dark green and yellow vegetables, helps protect against lung cancer and may help prevent cancers of the bladder, mouth, larynx, esophagus, breast, and other sites.

Vegetables such as cabbage, broccoli, kale, turnips, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts contain flavones and indoles which are thought to have anti-cancer activities.

Vitamin C, found in citrus fruits and many vegetables, may lower risks for cancers of the esophagus and stomach. Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant, neutralizing cancer-causing chemicals that form in the body. It also blocks the conversion of nitrates to cancer-causing nitrosamines in the stomach.

Selenium is found in whole grains and has the same antioxidant effects as vitamin C and beta-carotene. Vitamin E also has this effect. Caution is advised in supplementing selenium, which is toxic in large doses.

Alcohol

Excessive intake of alcohol raises one’s risks for cancers of the breast, mouth, pharynx, and esophagus. When combined with smoking, these risks skyrocket. It also raises risks for stomach, liver, and colon cancers.10

Vegetarians Are Better Off

All the evidence points to a low-fat, high-fiber diet that includes a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and beans, as being the best for cancer prevention. Not surprisingly, vegetarians, whose diets easily meet these requirements, are at the lowest risk for cancer. Vegetarians have about half the cancer risk of meat-eaters.11

Vegetarians have higher blood levels of beta-carotene. They consume more vitamin C, beta-carotene, indoles, and fiber than meat-eaters. Vegetarians also have stronger immune systems. German researchers recently discovered that vegetarians have more than twice the natural killer cell activity of meat-eaters.12 Natural killer cells are specialized white blood cells that attack and neutralize cancer cells. Also, vegetarians tend to eat more soy products than meat-eaters. Soybeans contain many substances that are anticarcinogens, including lignans and phytoestrogens. A diet that is rich in soybeans may be one reason for the lower incidence of breast cancer in Asia.

Conclusion

A cancer prevention diet is one that is high in fiber, low in fat (especially animal fat), and includes generous portions of fruits and vegetables. It also minimizes or excludes alcohol. The best diets are pure vegetarian diets.

The Roles of Exercise and Stress Management

Healthy foods, physical activity, and reducing stress are increasingly recognized as vital ingredients of cancer prevention and survival. While genetics play a role in predisposing some people to cancer, other factors play a much greater role. In fact, much of what appears to “run in the family” results from shared exposure to environmental factors, such as cancer-promoting chemicals or dietary patterns.1,2 Many factors, including diet, physical activity, viral and bacterial infections, radiation, and exposure to carcinogens all influence one’s risk of developing cancer.3,4

In the past two decades, a wealth of research has revealed that emotional factors and a lack of exercise can alter the body’s resistance to cancer. Changing exercise patterns and how we handle “stress” could therefore play a powerful role in preventing or surviving the disease—a role no less important than making appropriate dietary changes. This page will tell you how to protect your body through stress management and exercise.

Immunity Against Cancer

Cancer begins with a major change in a normal, living cell. The transformation from a normal cell to a cancer cell is triggered by damage to the DNA, for example, by radiation or a carcinogenic chemical. These cells generally undergo cellular division more rapidly than the cells from which they originate. When a cancer cell divides, it forms two new cancer cells. The process continues until a mass of cells is created, called a tumor. The dangerous nature of cancer stems from the abnormal cells’ ability to invade other tissues and travel through the blood and lymphatic vessels to other areas of the body, a process called metastasis.

Each of us is constantly exposed to carcinogens in our food, air, and water, resulting in the production of cancer cells within the body. Ordinarily, however, our immune system recognizes and destroys these cells before they have a chance to multiply. (The same thing happens to the vast majority of viruses and bacteria entering our bodies.) Given this fact, simply having abnormal cells develop is not the only factor in determining the course of cancer. The primary threat of cancer may result instead from the body’s inability to eliminate the abnormal cells.

The immune system provides the body with a way to seek out and destroy cancer cells. Among the main anti-cancer components of this system are specialized white blood cells, known as T-lymphocytes (T-cells), which travel throughout the body to detect unusual cells. Some lymphocytes can produce various anti-cancer chemicals, such as tumor necrosis factor, interleukin, and interferon. These are the body’s equivalent of chemotherapy, except they don’t harm healthy cells.

The body’s most immediate and powerful protection against cancer, however, results from the action of natural killer cells (NK cells), a specialized form of lymphocyte. NK cells descend directly on a microscopic tumor and begin devouring and disintegrating the tissue. As a consequence, many tumors never make it beyond the early stages.

Stress and Immunity

Stress affects us physically and psychologically. In the case of a perceived threat, the body undergoes a build-up of internal tension characterized by increased heart rate, blood pressure, and muscular tension, to prepare for swift and powerful action. In primitive times, these bodily changes probably helped us adapt to dangerous situations, such as sudden storms or attacks. In many cases, however, these aspects of the stress response are inappropriate in the context of modern society. You don’t need tight muscles and a rapid heart rate, for example, when trying to resolve a business dispute or a conflict at home.

Under stressful circumstances, the brain signals the adrenal glands to produce corticosteroids, hormones which weaken the immune response. Corticosteroids exert such a powerful immune-suppressive effect that synthetic steroids (e.g., cortisone) are widely used as drugs to suppress immunity in allergic conditions and the rejection of transplanted organs. Cancerous processes, most notably breast cancer, are accelerated in the presence of large amounts of corticosteroids because they alter estrogen metabolism boosting an unfavorable hormonal response.5

Although the evidence is still evolving, emotional factors which influence stress may play some role in cancer resistance. Depression and helplessness, for example, may be detrimental to cancer prognosis and decrease quality of life.6-9 There seems to be a connection between stress and lowered immune function, particularly in T-cell and NK function. Long-term stress may be even more detrimental to cancer resistance, and emerging evidence suggests that certain cancers, such as breast and melanomas, may be more readily influenced by stress than others, especially early in their development.5,10

Managing stress and improving psychological well-being may not only decrease one’s risk of developing cancer, but improve chances for survival if cancer has been diagnosed.6 Improved immunity during cancer allows better recovery from difficult treatments and may decrease the incidence of complications, improving the patient’s overall health and well-being.

Findings from a large meta-analysis indicate that a lack of social support is associated with increased cancer incidence and mortality rates.11 Those who have a strong social support system have a 50 percent increased likelihood of survival.12 Knowing that there are others around to whom you can turn in tough times affords a sense of emotional stability, a context for dealing more effectively with feelings and the problems of life.

No scientific evidence has yet found that stress and emotions can directly cause cancer. The most plausible link is an indirect effect via the immune system. When immunity is weakened by stress, particularly in the presence of biological stressors such as a fatty diet or environmental pollution, then cancer can thrive and grow.

The Anti-Cancer Personality Is Hopeful and Expressive

In recent decades, a number of laboratory studies have provided evidence in support of the concept that stress-related factors can influence malignant disease. These studies have encouraged the use of therapeutic strategies for patients with cancer that rely on psychological and psychoneuro-immunological principles to accompany traditional medical treatments.13

Our responses to stress—or any life change—are individualized. What appears threatening to one person may seem harmless to another. How a person copes may be partly a function of age and experience.14 A study found that melanoma patients with the most “major life stress” in their backgrounds showed a greater will to confront and fight their cancer and less avoidance of the disease’s frightening aspects.15 Those patients with less experience with major stresses tended to harbor a defeatist attitude and expected a poor prognosis. More recent studies help confirm these findings, where women with early life stressors and lack of social support were more prone to developing breast cancer, compared with those who tackled their stress and had more social support.5

When people feel that a major life upheaval is overwhelming or hopeless, their subsequent risk of cancer increases. A recent review of studies examining the link between personality and cancer survival determined that cancer patients who exhibit a high degree of neuroticism and low optimism tend to have a poorer chance of survival.16 Neuroticism generally describes an individual’s tendency toward worry and anxiety. This same review suggested that neurotic individuals also experience more stress and have a lower quality of life during treatment.16 For such individuals, and all cancer patients, managing stress may not only increase well-being but has the potential to improve health and survival.

Strengthening the Anti-Cancer Mind

Studies of various relaxation techniques suggest that the mind can enhance our immunity against cancer. In his book Psychological and Behavioral Treatments for Disorders Associated with the Immune System,17 Steven Locke, M.D., director of the Psychoimmunology Research Project at Harvard Medical School, describes more than 200 studies on the treatment of cancer by “mind/body” methods. Among the methods most often used by cancer patients are those which reduce anxiety, such as meditation relaxation techniques. A reduction in the anxiety, depression, and helplessness that often accompany the disease can make it easier to make decisions about treatment. Sharing one’s fears and frustrations with a psychotherapist or members of a cancer support group can provide invaluable emotional stability and relief. Being around healthy and positive people is also important. Healthy children, with their playful, spontaneous nature, are particularly good companions in times of sickness.

Based on his extensive work with cancer patients, Bernie Siegel, M.D., notes that cancer survivors who enjoy a high quality of life tend to express their anger and other negative emotions freely, thereby avoiding a build-up of such emotions. He encourages friends and family members of cancer patients to help create positive expectations in the healing process.18

Telomeres: How Mindfulness Works to Reduce Cancer Risk

In our bodies, stretches of DNA called telomeres protect our genes and make it possible for cells to divide. Telomeres are important because they relate to how we age and develop cancer. You may imagine telomeres as the plastic tips on shoelaces, because they work in a similar fashion, preventing chromosome ends from fraying and sticking to each other.

Each time cells go through normal division the telomeres get shorter. When they get too short, however, the cell can no longer divide and becomes inactive or dies. This process of telomere shortening is associated with aging, cancer, and a higher risk of death.

As we know, telomeres play an important role in genome protection. Studies try to identify how certain nutrients or exercise patterns can prevent telomere shortening. The Long Island Breast Cancer Study Project explored the relationship between the telomere length of white blood cell DNA and breast cancer risk, determining whether dietary intake of antioxidants would have any effect. In more than 1,000 women tested, a shorter telomere length was associated with a significant increased breast cancer risk. Women with lower intakes of β-carotene, vitamin C, and vitamin E all had shorter telomere lengths, compared with women who consumed more.24 Women who use exercise as a coping tool for stress have longer telomere lengths, compared with those who are not exercising.25

Research indicates that incorporating meditation or other mindfulness into your daily routine may help to slow telomere shortening. In recent studies where anxiety and stress were assessed, those with higher levels of anxiety were prone to greater telomere shortening.26,27 These simple interventions may reduce stress and increase hormonal factors that support telomere maintenance, which in turn may decrease cancer risk.28

Managing Stress

Reducing stress helps cut your risk of cancer and other health conditions, strengthens your immune system, and reduces anxiety. If you are relaxed, you are more likely to stick to a healthful lifestyle and less likely to depend on poor food choices that many people use to deal with stress.

Surefire Ways to Help Eliminate Stress:

  • Practice meditation, yoga, or tai chi. You can do this by attending classes or purchasing instructional DVDs.
  • Eat healthfully. Focus on antioxidant and fiber-rich foods like legumes, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. Your mind and body will feel more focused and balanced.
  • Break a sweat. With regular exercise, your body will become a stress-fighting machine.
  • Learn time-management skills.
  • Set limits for yourself. Learn to say no to things that can add unwanted stress to your daily routine.
  • Enjoy yourself. Set aside time for hobbies and interests.
  • Catch enough Zzz’s. Your body needs rest in order to recuperate from stress.
  • Say no to alcohol, drugs, and compulsive behaviors. These things provide only short-term relief and can be harmful to your health.
  • Spend time with loved ones and seek out other means of social support.
  • Learn to manage stress the healthful way. Make an appointment with a psychologist or other mental health professional trained in stress management.

Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM)

CAM does not have one definition. It consists of methods of medicine that are alternatives to common therapies in Western medicine. That is not to say they are “better” than traditional or conventional approaches, but that they can provide additional benefits to standard medical treatments. CAM can include spinal manipulation, prayer, herbal medicine, natural foods, supplements, aromatherapy, hydrotherapy, etc.

CAM modalities have been associated with improved NK cell function and immunity in some studies. For example, intake of green tea and some kinds of probiotics enhance NK cell activity. Administration of extracts from ginseng, aged garlic, Echinacea purpurea root, Chinese herbs, and some kinds of mushrooms significantly improve NK cytotoxicity (NK’s power to kill mutated cells) or restore NK cell activity in some immune-suppressive conditions.29 Some of these agents even show inhibition of metastasis (spread) of cancer. Moreover, acupuncture, skin rubdown, relaxation, massage therapy, music, laughter, and hypnotherapy enhance NK cell activity and/or NK cell numbers.29

One study showed practical improvements in immune function in cancer patients being treated with CAM: Cancer patients who were treated with CAM in conjunction with conventional treatments had an 18 percent decreased incidence of infection and a 13 percent drop in hospitalizations due to infection.30 Use of CAM during cancer treatment has also been associated with improved quality of life and decreased stress in cancer patients.31,32 Although it is important to discuss all forms of treatment with your doctor, incorporating CAM techniques into your treatment may offer some benefit to health and cancer resistance.

Another medication that came to the foreground in a large study (180 000 people) is Metformin (a diabetic medication). It has shown to have rather impressive anti cancer prevention benefits. Of all the anti-cancer medications out there this is probably at the top of the list.

 

Exercise Against Cancer

The evidence that exercise may play an effective role against cancer is accumulating. Regular exercise has been associated with a reduced risk of cancers of the colon, breast, prostate, lung, and lining of the uterus (endometrium).33,34 A 2012 study published in the Lancet found that physical inactivity was responsible for 10 percent of colon and breast cancer diagnoses worldwide.35 The good news? Individuals have the ability to make informed decisions, alter lifestyles, and help fight cancer by using activity to their advantage. Let’s see what the research says and what type of exercise is best.

Exercise can contribute to cancer prevention and survival by improving immune system function. A position paper by the International Society for Exercise and Immunology shows that regular exercise may decrease the risk of developing cancer and also improve cancer survival after diagnosis. Physical actvity appears to increase NK cell activity while decreasing cellular inflammation, both very important factors in the development and progression of many cancers.36

But how much do we really need and for how long? Even a simple behavior such as walking may improve chances of cancer survival. A study published by the American Association for Cancer suggested that patients with prostate cancer could significantly improve their chances of survival by including regular walks in their lives. Researchers found that men who walked at a brisk pace for at least three hours per week had a 57 percent lower rate of cancer progression, compared with men who walked at a leisurely pace for less than three hours per week.37 Walking pace in particular seemed to be highly correlated with a decreased mortality risk, regardless of exercise duration.

The National Cancer Institute suggests that physical activity can have a similarly beneficial effect in women. A history of moderate, recreational exercise is associated with a reduced risk of breast and endometrial cancers.33 Recreational physical activity at any intensity reduces breast cancer risk in both pre and postmenopausal women.38 In the Harvard Nurses’ Health Study II, premenopausal women who were physically active had a 23 percent reduced risk of breast cancer, compared with those who exercised the least. The strongest evidence for prevention was seen in physically active women 12-22 years old. However, researchers concluded that exercising in both adolescence and adulthood may derive the most benefit.39

Numerous studies have assessed the effects of physical activity on endometrial cancer risk. Women who are physically active have a 20-40 percent reduced risk of developing endometrial cancer, and those who were most physically active experienced the greatest reduction in risk.40

For hormonally mediated cancers like breast and endometrial cancers, exercise may decrease the risk by changing body weight and metabolism of sex hormones, such as estrogen, which help to decrease cancer risk.33,34 For all cancer patients, regular exercise may help improve symptoms of physical and mental fatigue caused by cancer treatments, like chemotherapy. Typically, 90-120 minutes of moderate exercise weekly was enough to see improvements in fatigue, depression, and anxiety for women undergoing cancer treatment.41 A study review of 56 trials with more than 4,800 participants going through cancer treatment found significant improvements in their quality of life when exercise was included.42

Many cancer patients undergoing treatment have severe fatigue and depression. Being physically active can counter these negative effects and give patients more energy,43 which can be used to keep a healthy immune system and ward of cancer recurrence. However, for cancer survivors or those going through treatment, it is important to note that exercise regimens must be individualized. The type of cancer, degree of severity, and medications and treatments used will all help determine what exercise pattern is best. Therefore, one should exercise within the body’s needs and limitations because overexertion can result in immune dysfunction.44

A few words of caution should be added here. First, exercising every day will not cancel out the health-negating effects of emotional stress or a poor diet. All aspects of lifestyle should be considered as integral to the total picture of health. High-intensity exercise may be contraindicated for individuals whose immune function is already compromised, who are unwell, or who are at high risk of cardiovascular or other diseases. Most of the health benefits of exercise can be achieved with a moderate program designed with the individual’s specific needs in mind. Any decision to include exercise in the course of cancer therapy should take this into consideration. It is strongly advised that you check with your physician before beginning any exercise program, particularly if you are more than 40 years of age, are overweight, or have any pre-existing medical condition.

Use Your Body

Physical activity is great for your heart, your waistline, and your sense of well-being.

Our bodies are designed for physical activity: walking, dancing, biking, participating in games, and playing with children. These activities can get your heart moving and can burn calories. But we do them for fun, not to burn calories. The key is to remember what it was like to move your body—to enjoy a walk in the woods, a game of volleyball or touch football, or a night on the dance floor.

For starters, try something very simple. Just take a walk for a half hour per day or one hour three times per week. If you are feeling energetic, walk briskly. This is easy and gives you plenty of exercise. And, by all means, smell the roses along the way. Pick a place to walk that is enjoyable for you, with interesting sights, sounds, and smells.

If you prefer, pick any other activity. To give you an idea of how quickly your body can part with calories, here are some activities people enjoy and the number of calories they burn per hour for a 150-pound adult:

Activity Calories Burned Per Hour
Bicycling 400
Canoeing 180
Cooking 180
Dancing, ballroom 240
Gardening 480
Golf 345
Jumping rope 570
Ping-Pong 285
Playing piano 165
Racquetball 615
Swimming 525
Tennis, doubles 270
Tennis, singles 435
Volleyball 330
Walking, brisk 360

Fun is the key. And bring a friend along.

A word of caution: Do not push yourself too hard. If you are more than 40 or have any history of illness, medication use or joint problems, talk over your plans with your doctor before you begin.

The bottom line for men and women looking to prevent cancer or reduce the risk of a cancer recurrence. Get out there and move!

THE CANCER SURVIVORS GUIDE

(by Neal D. Barnard, MD • Jennifer K. Reilly, RD)

Excellent FREE downloadable book with many tips and information on how to survive and prevent cancer.

Click the following link to download free copy of the book:  Cancer_Survivors_Guide

gert5gert

References

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12. Malter M. Natural killer cells, vitamins, and other blood components of vegetarian and omnivorous men. Nutr and Cancer. 1989;12:271-8.

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4. Wogan GN, Hecht SS, Felton JS, Conney AH, Loeb LA. Environmental and chemical carcinogenesis. Seminars in Cancer Biology. 2004;14:473-486.
5. Antonova L, Aronson K, Mueller CR. Stress and breast cancer: from epidemiology to molecular biology. Breast Cancer Res. 2011;13:208.
6. Reiche EM, Morimoto HK, Nunes SM. Stress and depression-induced immune dysfunction: implications for the development and progression of cancer. Int Rev Psychiatry. 2005;17(6):515-527.
7 Reiche EM, Nunes SO, Morimoto HK. Stress, depression, the immune system, and cancer. Lancet Oncol. 2004;5:617-625.
8. Lutgendorf SK, Sood AK. Biobehavioral factors and cancer progression: physiological pathways and mechanisms. Psychosom Med. 2011;73:724-730.
9. Conti CM, Angelucci D, Ferri M, et al. Relationship between cancer and psychology: an updated history. J Biol Regul Homeost Agents. 2011;25:331-339.
10. Missiha SB, Solish N, From L. Characterizing anxiety in melanoma patients. J Cutan Med Surg. 2003;7:443-448.
11. Nausheen B, Gidron Y, Peveler R, Moss-Morris R. Social support and cancer progression: a systematic review. J Psychosom Res. 2009;67:403-415.
12. Holt-Lunstad J, Smith TB, Layton JB. Social relationships and mortality risk: a meta-analytic review. PLoS Med. 2010;7:e1000316.
13. Smith N, Fuhrmann T, Tausk F. Psychoneuro-oncology: its time has arrived. Arch Dermatol. 2009;145:1439-1442.
14. Gibertini M, Reintgen D, Baile WF. Psychosocial aspects of melanoma. Ann Plastic Surg. 1992;28:17-21.
15. Funch DP, Marshall J. The role of stress, social support and age in survival from breast cancer. J Psychosomatic Res. 1983;27:77-83.
16. Dahl AA. Link between personality and cancer. Future Oncology. 2010;6:691-707.
17. Locke S. Psychological and Behavioral Treatments for Disorders Associated with the Immune System. Institute for the Advancement of Health. 1986.
18. Siegel B. Peace, Love, & Healing. New York, NY: Harper & Row, 1989, p. 12.
19. Elkins G, Fisher W, Johnson A. Mind-body therapies in integrative oncology. Curr Treat Options Oncol. 2010;11:128-140.
20. Borysenko J. Minding the Body, Mending the Mind. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley Publishing Co., Inc.,1988, p. 47.
21. Galantino ML, Greene L, Archetto B, et al. A qualitative exploration of the impact of yoga on breast cancer survivors with aromatase inhibitor-associated arthralgias. Explore (NY). 2012;8:40-47.
22. Hoffman CJ, Ersser SJ, Hopkinson JB, Nicholls PG, Harrington JE, Thomas PW. Effectiveness of mindfulness-based stress reduction in mood, breast- and endocrine-related quality of life, and well-being in stage 0 to III breast cancer: a randomized, controlled trial. J Clin Oncol. 2012;30:1335-1342.
23. Oh B, Butow PN, Mullan BA, et al. Effect of medical Qigong on cognitive function, quality of life, and a biomarker of inflammation in cancer patients: a randomized controlled trial. Supportive Cancer Care. 2012;20:1235-1242.
24. Shen J, Gammon MD, Terry MB, et al. Telomere length, oxidative damage, antioxidants and breast cancer risk. Int J Cancer. 2009;124:1637-1643.
25. Puterman E, Lin J, Blackburn E, O’Donovan A, Adler N, Epel E. The power of exercise: buffering the effect of chronic stress on telomere length. PLoS One. 2010;5:e10837.
26. Okereke OI, Prescott J, Wong JY, Han J, Rexrode KM, De Vivo I.High phobic anxiety is related to lower leukocyte telomere length in women. PLoS One. 2012;7:e40516.
27. Parks CG, Miller DB, McCanlies EC, et al. Telomere length, current perceived stress, and urinary stress hormones in women. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2009;18:551-560.
28. Epel E, Daubenmier J, Moskowitz JT, Folkman S, Blackburn E. Can meditation slow rate of cellular aging? Cognitive stress, mindfulness, and telomeres. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009;1172:34-53.
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43. Brown JC, Huedo-Medina TB, Pescatello LS, Pescatello SM, Ferrer RA, Johnson BT. Efficacy of exercise interventions in modulating cancer-related fatigue among adult cancer survivors: a meta-analysis. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2011;20:123-133.
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HIV positive and bodybuilding

Every time I visit my gym there is this guy I always greet. He is always smiling and always on time for his training. Everytime I see him I feel something in me wanting to reach out to him. He is just this bag of bones. Month after month this little muscle he has is withering away even further. He tries his best to train hard, but in vain…I don’t know for sure, but I have a strong feeling he is fighting against HIV infection. My heart goes out to this guy and many times he has been in my prayers.

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I am not blessed with my mouth, it is the most difficult thing for me to talk to a stranger. My blessings are in writing and researching subjects objectively. I just so hope that this article somehow lands on his computer or the very least someone else’s where it can make a difference…

HIV infection is all around us, we just don’t know about it. No-one wants to talk about it. Those that have it can even talk less about it…in fear. It is a lonely and heavy burden for any person to carry and a painful one.

Many people in the past used to point a finger…”they deserve it!”, but remember how Christ treated the woman who has just been caught with adultery and where brought in front of Him? For the one finger you point to someone, 10 will point back to you. Let those without sin cast the first stone…

Seeing that guy at my gym day after day and me failing to have the ability to go and chat to him to help him, I decided I need to write an article for HIV+ people who don’t know where to turn too.

I did a lot of personal research, spoke to many doctors who specialize in HIV treatment and have also spoken to some people who are positive. What I say here can make a big difference for the HIV sufferer.

But before I start with the article, let’s get one thing straight. No matter who tells you what, or who makes what claim, THERE IS NO ALTERNATIVE to taking HIV medication.

You don’t have time to experiment with your life…the line has been drawn. NOTHING can substitute your HIV medication. So the assumption I make with this article is that you will be on HIV medication and you are taking it EXACTELY as prescribed. Yes the medication has sometimes some serious side effects. You must work through those side-effects together with your doctor. Do NOT stop the medication unless your doctor instructs you to. On this note: You MUST make sure you get a very skilled HIV treatment doctor. Talk around, call universities medical departments, search on internet, but make sure your doctor is VERY skilled. Your life will depend on it.

I am available on Skype for those that feel everything is getting too much for them. Life is beautiful and I will be your friend and guiding hand helping you finding your way to a GREAT life. Email me on gertlouwljc@hotmail.com then we can setup a specific time for a video chat.

Later on in the article I will cover one particular side effect – Lipodystrophy and will briefly touch on others.

Click here to watch video “LIFE inspiration – Faith & Hope”

My main aim with this article will be to show the HIV positive person how to lead a quality life…one even waaay better than before.

The article will be divided in the following 2 sections:

  1. I am aware of death now…
  2. How to increase the gap as wide as possible between awesome living and death.

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I am aware of death now…

Suddenly death is a close reality for you. Time cannot be wasted anymore. Every moment must be spent rejoicing in life.

You cannot live irresponsible anymore. You received a wakeup call.

My friend, 10 years ago I had my own unique wakeup call and nearly died – fighting against severe kidney and liver damage. I used that opportunity to change EVERYTHING in my life.

  • time is precious,
  • my wife is precious,
  • my child is precious,
  • my family is precious,
  • every day is precious,
  • I will NOT waste it anymore.

I changed my eating habits, I started training intensely and I changed the person who I am on the inside. Seeing my reflection in that mirror, I can truly say I like what I see, outside and inside.

I settled my bill with God and has walked a long road with Him since. This is YOUR opportunity.

Do you realize not many people get such a great opportunity…a wake up call?

You have been blessed my friend – you just don’t know it yet, you can change what need to be changed and you can become the best you can be on ALL levels. Grab this opportunity with everything you have and you WILL live a life truly worth living.

This is THE most important point you must accept. You have received a great blessing. How you are going to use this blessing will decide what person you will become.

You CAN have an awesome live, a life where you’ve made right with God, a life where you look the best you looked ever, a life where you start seeing the people in need and start making a difference, a life truly WORTH living!

Surround yourself with people who only adds to your goal post. Cut those out that break you down and pull you in the wrong direction…just make sure your aim is in the right direction.

Don’t surround you with people who make you just feel good. Life is not about feeling good, it is about a life WORTH living.

Listen to music that built you up, read books that feed your soul, care for your neighbour…

So you might be married and want kids oneday? Nothing is stopping you. Many married couples have conceived naturally under the guidance of a doctor. Under hiv medication your viral load becomes undetectable and with a high CD4 the risk is VERY LOW when penetration is done once at time of ovulation. (Risk less than 1 in 10 000 for woman to become infected…that is very low).

 

As with ALL things in life…the choice is yours. If you are reading this article then you are already busy making that choice…

dONATION BANNER

How to increase the gap as wide as possible between awesome living & death.

After making the choice of will in point one I will move on to more practical points for obtaining an awesome life for the HIV positive person.

The aspects to be covered:

a) growing muscle – why?

b) eating for survival.

c) supplement for healthy immune system

d) anabolics and human growth hormone

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A) Growing muscle – why?

Ok, first of all you gonna look kick-ass! (I refer to my post “Get motivated for training” http://gertlouw.com/2013/02/01/get-motivated-for-training/ )

Secondly, the bottom line is, the more muscle mass you carry as a hiv+ person, the better your chances of survival.

Let me explain: Due to a compromised immune system hiv+ people can get more frequent and sometimes very severe bacteria infections. This can happen anywhere, anytime. You can go white water rafting and get thrown over in the water and take just one mouthful of water and you can potentially become very (very!) sick ending up in hospital for 2 weeks due to bacteria infection.

Obviously the higher your CD4 count the less your risk.

Everytime such a sever bacterial infection occurs, you will lose anywhere from 2- 10 kgs in muscle weight. Since the muscles carry the primary energy source for you immune system (Glutamine), it is critical that a HIV+ person has very healthy muscle mass and the more he has the better his long-term changes of survival.

When a HIV+ person lose too much muscle weight, his body cannot provide Glutamine to feed the immune system. Sadly this is one of the MAIN reasons of death for HIV+ people.

It is thus not for “looks” but CRITICAL that every hiv+ guy start doing bodybuilding.

In my research I ran across quite a few highly skilled hiv doctors who unashamedly support any safe means for the hiv+ person to increase muscle size to above average levels even with the help of anabolic steroids where necessary…but more on that later.

Don’t listen to the average house doctor telling you there is no need for a hiv+ person to have more than average muscle size. With much respect, he does NOT know what he is talking about. It is basic common sense that, the more muscle mass a hiv+ person carries the better his/her long-term survival ability – full stop!

Doing regular exercise will further enhance the immune system.

Some research have shown that severe excise might actually hamper the immune system.

But you should enter in the bodybuilding arena in a step by step fashion. Slowly increase intensity and duration. It helps the body get accustomed to the exercise and builds up endurance and stamina. Feeding the body for growth and supplement with all the listed supplements will keep the body and immune system healthy (+ taking your HIV medication). In such a scenario there is no reason why you cannot do fairly strenuous workouts for muscle growth.

Those interested in the program I’ve developed specifically for hiv+ individuals – It is available now fully customised on all levels, just for you. Every little secret, every hard-earned practical fact, every scientific study that actually support the (very) few supplements between all the thousand ridiculous advertisement claims have been filtered en incorporated into one system that MAKES A DIFFERENCE. And the whole system designed to support GREAT HEALTH. click here: https://gertlouw.com/my-transformation-secrets/

Hiv+ bodybuilders might find it slightly more difficult to build muscle than hiv- people…but the differences is very slight. Obviously the stronger the immune system the lesser the impact.

Go for it and built those muscles!

Having a strong good-looking body will further help you feel positive and good about yourself.

Excercise is well-known for releasing all the feel good hormones…you need it!

Excercise is also a great way to release stress. Having the constant reminder of being hiv+ will be taking its toll, working out will help you to mentally cope better.

Here is a video that can help you getting a decent training program on the road:

Click here to play video “How to start a transformation from scratch – for the novice”

 

Lastly, some HIV sufferers might already lost so much size that they are afraid to go to gym’s to train because they are afraid that people might stare. My friend, there will ALWAYS be people who hate (for whatever reasons). This is YOUR life, take charge, ignore those starers and DO something about your situation. I have never seen anyone being nasty to this “bag of bones” guy at my gym I referred to earlier in my article. In fact I see a lot of people going up to him and chat to him and they are all caring people.

b) Eating to survive.

The general thought is that the hiv+ person need a higher calorie diet because of the strain the infection puts on the body and resulting energy required to fight it.

Though this might be true for the hiv+ person who have a highly compromised immune system (below 300 CD4 count) it is not really applicable to the hiv+ person with a strong immune system and undetectable viral load. For such people they can pretty much stick to the eating guidelines I’ve already laid down in my previous articles:

Diet is for LOSERS http://gertlouw.com/2013/01/27/diet-is-for-losers/

My Transformation Program http://gertlouw.com/2010/12/30/hello-world/

 

A cutting diet to protect muscle mass and loose fat for the hiv+ individual:

Click here to play video “Cutting phase diet video”

 

A building phase diet video to add as much muscle as possible:

Click here to play video “Building phase diet video”

 

The key is to feed your body every 3-4 hours with a small balanced meal containing a clean protein source. See above articles for eating regimen details.

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C) Supplements for healthy immune system

A supplement which must be avoided at all costs for the hiv+ individual is echinacea. Echinacea “feeds” the hiv virus and will result in a massive increase in your viral load.

 

L-Glutamine:

A critical supplement for the HIV+ person. Suggested dosages: 4 x 5g spread out during day.

Glutamine feeds the immune system. Without Gutamine our immune system cannot function.

Since Glutamine is primarily stored in the muscles, one can easily see why it is critical for the HIV+ person to have a healthy muscle mass…in fact, the more the better.

This extract from www.thebody.com gives the best accounts of glutamine

Normally, nutrition provides enough antioxidants to combat “oxidative stress” and neutralize the “free radicals.” But under continuous siege by HIV, the need for anti-oxidants begins to grow beyond what a regular diet can provide. Wasting is one result — muscle tissue is rich in glutamine. The body starts breaking down muscle to fight the “oxidative stress.” Another result is a higher viral load, because HIV thrives in an environment rich in free radicals. Some nutritionists have begun to call glutamine a “conditionally essential” nutrient.

A recent study of about 100 PWAS, mostly men with less than 200 T-cells, done by Drs. Leonore and Leonard Herzenberg at Stanford University, found that glutathione levels are directly linked to survival. 85% of those who started the study with high glutathione levels survived the three-year-long study while only 18% with low levels did. It isn’t known whether low glutathione levels cause or quicken disease progression or if they are a symptom of some other process — however supplementation to increase glutathione levels in cells is increasingly popular. Glutathione is also crucial for liver health.

Some recent studies have suggested that taking glutathione itself can raise the glutathione levels in immune cells.

A recent study in the Lancet, for example, reported that glutamine supplementation significantly decreased the incidence of pneumonia, and other life-threatening infections like bacteremia and septicemia, for patients with multiple traumas and who were being fed intravenously. In the study, only 17% of patients on glutamine got pneumonia, compared to 45% of the participants who were not on glutamine. 7% on glutamine contracted bacteremia, while 42% of the non-glutamine group did. Finally, 3% (one person!) of those in the glutamine group experienced sepsis, compared to 26% of the non-glutamine group.

The effect of glutamine on the gut is pretty well documented because supplementation has been found useful not only for people with HIV, but with other conditions that require intravenous feeding like severe bums and intestinal surgery.

Studies of people with other conditions have found that glutamine supplementation speeds recoveryand can even restore firm, healthy stools to people who have only inches (of a former 21 feet!) of intestine remaining.

Most people think the intestine is just an organ needed for the elimination of waste, but in fact, it is a crucial part of the immune system. Like people with HIV, cancer patients on chemotherapy often suffer severe diarrhea. Charles Smigelski, RD, a nutritionist and researcher at Harvard University, reports seeing a cancer chemo patient who had disabling diarrhea for six months. Within a week on glutamine, his bowel movements were normal.

Smigelski is high on glutamine and other antioxidant supplements for people with HIV. He has about I 00 HIV patients in his practice that are supplementing with glutamine and says, “Most people report that they feel better on every level. It improves their energy, it reduces diarrhea, and it’s hugely useful in wasting and dealing with oxidative stress. A ton of people swear by it.”

Smigelski believes that such supplementation may be able to prevent or reduce lipodystrophy (“Crix belly”), thought to be a side effect of protease inhibitors. His patients find it useful for diarrhea caused by protease inhibitors as well. “A very common experience is that someone will have protease related diarrhea. Immodium will stop the explosive diarrhea that often comes before people can get to the bathroom, but it won’t firm the stools or reduce frequency. Glutamine, which I use in combination with probiotics (natural gut bacteria like acidophilus, lactobacillus, etc.), firms the stools. It really improves quality of life.”

Body builders also tout glutamine because it is anabolic (builds muscles). A poster presented by Dr. Shabert at this year’s International Conference on AIDS in Geneva reports that patients with wasting given 40 grams a day of glutamine (along with NAC, vitamins C and E, selenium and beta-carotene) gained an average of 1.7 kilograms (3.75 lbs) in lean body mass in 12 weeks. Patients in the control group were given glycine (another amino acid protein) and a multivitamin and they did not gain similarly.”

 

POTENT Multi – Vitamin:

Your body is under much more pressure due to the HIV infection. A “normal” multi vitamin for hiv- individuals will not do. You need a daily POTENT one. The only one’s really sufficient I know off is: Animal Pak Multi Vitamin and OPTI-MEN Multi Vitamin (Take one dosage daily with meals). There may be more but make sure they contain significant more RDA dosages than the average multi vitamin. Must be taken with food for good absorption.

Vitamin C:

Vitamin C is one of the cornerstone supplements for the HIV+ individual. It ‘s benefits in fighting of infections is well documented. Take a slow release version not less than 2000mg per day. 1G after morning meal and 1g after evening meal. Must be taken with food for good absorption.

Alpha Lipoic Acid:

Recommend dosage: 200 mg. lipoic acid capsule three times per day

The following extract from www.hepatitiscfree.com gives a good overview of the importance of ALA.

Alpha-lipoic acid is an antioxidant used in Europe to restore liver health. It confers protective benefits against oxidative processes involved in degenerative diseases. It is more potent than vitamins C, E, and Co-Q10, and according to Dr. Ester Packer, professor of molecular biology at UC Berkley, alpha-lipoic acid may be the most important antioxidant ever discovered:

Vitamins C, E and glutathione work together to deactivate and prevent free radicals from causing uncontrolled damage in the body. But at this stage we run into a limiting factor regarding availability of glutathione, which is an important free-radical deactivator offering protection against cataract formation, as well as immune enhancement, liver protection, cancer protection, and heavy-metal detoxification.When taken orally like Vitamins C and E, glutathione is broken down in the stomach before it reaches the bloodstream. What does end up being absorbed can raise serum levels, but the effect inside of the cells is minimal.Alpha-lipoic acid is the missing link. Not only is ALA a powerful antioxidant in its own right, but it also regenerates glutathione, giving cells a double dose of antioxidant protection. In addition, it is easily absorbed when taken orally, and once inside cells it is quickly converted to its most potent form, dihydrolipoic acid, which is an even more potent free-radical neutralizer than ALA. Because both alpha-lipoic acid and dihydrolipoic acid are antioxidants, their combined actions give them greater antioxidant potency than any other natural antioxidant now known.Scientists have also found that lipoic acid can inhibit replication of HIV-1 and other viruses through its ability to bind directly to DNA. (47)

Dr. Packer and Chandan K. Sen, a researcher from Finland, have described how alpha-lipoic acid regulates aspects of the immune system, and in particular, immune cells called T-lymphocytes. These two researchers, along with other scientists, have reported how alpha-lipoic acid may help people with HIV:

ALA inhibits growth of HIV more effectively than NAC (N-Acetyl Cysteine) ….alpha-lipoic acid completely inhibited activation of a gene in the AIDS virus that allows it to reproduce. “

d) Anabolic steroids and Human Growth hormone.

If ever, for any group of people the use of anabolic steroids and HGH is recommended, then it is for HIV+ people.

Some medical doctors do not really support this notion, but talk to any highly skilled hiv physician and he/she is much more open to the idea. Simply because due to the nature of the disease having excess muscle mass will have a great positive effect on your long-term survival. Remember our earlier discussion about Glutamine and bacterial infection?Thus, although some doctors might still not support the idea, I will stick my neck out here and blatantly claim that the correct use of anabolic steroids can have a great positive effect for the hiv+ person. I refer to my article “To Steroid or Not” http://gertlouw.com/2013/01/31/to-steroid-or-not/

Remember this guy I saw training at my gym who is just a bag of bones…? Anabolic Steroids could be a LIFESAVING tool for him!

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Some of the “safer” anabolic steroid cycles for HIV sufferers are as follows:

(you MUST do resistance training – weight training when HIV positive):

“Safe” cycle ONE:

  • Once a week injections in bum (upper right corner of bum) for 12 weeks of 200mg testosterone enanthate + 2 x 100mg Primobolan Depot.
  • After 12 weeks you might consider a short course of Nolvadex for 21 days to restore your natural testosterone production.

“Safe” cycle TWO:

  • Alternatively for those afraid of the self injecting and also a slightly cheaper solution: 4 x 20mg tablets (spread out over day) daily for 8 weeks of Anavar. (not longer, Anavar is Alpha 17 steroid and longer cycles can influence liver values).
  • With Anavar only, no post cycle treatment with Nolvadex or Clomid is required.

You MUST check your liver and kidney values before starting (check you blood pressure regularly and also for safety get your cholesterol checked) and you should do above with the approval of your HIV doctor. If your HIV doctor is against the use of anabolic steroids, you should get a new doctor. You cannot put your life in the hands of a HIV doctor whose eyes are closed to non-mainstream HIV therapies, he need to be open-minded and truly understand the challenges and problems the HIV sufferer is facing…I’ve already made my point earlier about why and how important anabolics and muscle growth is for the HIV sufferer.

Hiv medication side Effects

A common side effect when hiv+ people start medication is nausea/vomiting/diarrhea. This can go on for months before the body get used to the medication. During this time the person can lose a rather severe amount of muscle mass (something that must be avoided at all cost). It is very difficult to prevent it. However a certain anabolic steroid, Primobolan Depot (one of the safest steroids available), has been known to protect muscle wasting when the body experience a very low-calorie intake. Taking this anabolic during the side effect period might just help you losing a lot of your precious muscle mass.

HGH or human growth hormone is mostly use in cases where a hiv+ individual develop a hiv medication side effect, lipodystrophy. (However a new drug called TESMORELIN is available to treat the “hiv+ tummy” that many guys get and it is fairly successfull in melting the fat away around the organs. Although a very expensive drug especially in Canada it is cheaply available on the black market). Usually when hiv+ people develop this side effect they have to stop or alter their medication. HGH might help get the lipodystrophy fat layer down slightly but in most cases it has only but a mild effect to get the condition under control.

Other important tools for the HIV+ person

  • BPC 157 – peptide that can help with to better the quality life for the hiv+ sufferer on many levels. Super fast joint / tendon / ligament / muscle /wound healing. Skin healing and repair, repairing gut and gastro intestinal problems and also gum infection. Plays important anti-inflamatory role in the body.
  • Epithalon – Peptide that plays various anti aging roles. Potential for enhancing life span. Increases melatonin releases which means much better sleeping pattern and deep sleep. Advances healthy heart. Fights cancer. Improve eye health. Improves immune system and fighting of various viruses include the flu. Increase anti-oxidant levels in body.
  • Tesamorelin – Peptide important for hiv+ sufferers to help fight the internal bloated belly look that many times is a result of hiv medication.
  • Myostatin – Peptide blocking myostatin in the body and thus result in muscle size increases. This is a safer alternative to anabolic steroids. (see also peptide ACE 031)

All above and more can be ordered rather easily and cheaply on the black market. For those in South Africa, it can be ordered via: RESEARCHPEPTIDES.CO.ZA

So how should your daily actions look like if you want to live a GREAT life and you are hiv+ ?

  1. 4-6 small healthy meals spread out evenly throughout the day with a roughly 40/40/40 split in calories for protein/fat/carbs containing lots of fresh veggies and fruit. Don’t be scared of a little body fat. It is healthy and good for the hiv+ person.
  2. Resistance training to build muscles at least 4 times a week but not more than 5 times.
  3. Use of Alpha Lipoic Acid, Co Enzyme Q10, Potent Multi Vit, Slow releasing Vit C, Omega 3 and 6.
  4. Use of Whey protein, BCAA and L-Glutamine (very important).
  5. Strongly consider using BPC 157, Epithalon and Myostatin/ACE 031.
  6. If typical hiv+ large tummy develops consider Tesamorelin…but never let lipodystrophy go too far. Work with your doctor to rather change meds.
  7. Educate yourself for possible future use of Anabolic Steroids or HGH as a last resort to keep/built muscle mass.
  8. Good sleep patterns essential for strong immune system.
  9. Start living a quality life focussing on things that build you up. Stop doing what is risky behaviour. NO DRUGS! No sleeping around. You need a long term fixed loving and supporting relationship.
  10. Finding faith can be and extreme comforter…build your relationship with God.
  11. Reach out to others and help people…this makes life worth living.

 

If you have a specific question, please contact me and I will try my best to help: http://gertlouw.com/contact-me/

Alternatively, I also offer life and fitness coaching online for hiv+ individuals. I have dealt with MANY hiv+ individuals and have helped many to cope mentally and to just have someone trusted to talked too. I provide a total confidential environment with unlimited support (via email) through my hiv+ coaching to help you, not just coping with hiv, but to live an awesome life you never dreamed possible…you can signup here

Please use the form below to contact me (It is confidential and will not be post on my site – I will receive it as private email in my inbox):

 

Should you just wish me to pray for you…let me know.

Wish you a healthy living

Gert Louw

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Fibromyalgia and training

Severe muscle pain from the tip of your finger to the tip of your big-toe…struggling to do just about anything and have to live with constant pain 24 hours a day year in year out…this is the people suffering from Fibromyalgia (plus fatigue, stiffness, sleep disturbances, headaches and mood disorders, such as depression or anxiety).

It is so common that I felt it necessary to give some insight into how sufferers can make life bearable.

Up to 1 in 50 people struggle with the condition of Fibromyalgia and it is the 2nd most common ailment affecting the musculoskeletal system after osteoarthritis.

Between 80%-90% of sufferers are women.

Most men only get it due to a traumatic episode or the likes.

Due to how common Fibromyalgia is, I thought it warrants attention in my fitness blog.

Medical science struggles to explain the real origin of why people have Fibromyalgia and as such also struggle to treat it effectively. It is however a clear defined condition that can very easily be determined by specific pain pressure points of the muscle system.

Some have it worse than others…some to the degree that they truly cannot get out of bed.

A lot of women get it straight after pregnancy.

Click here to watch the video – “LIFE inspiration – Faith & Hope”

Medication

Effective medication is scarce and doctors struggle to find tools to treat the pain. Yes, you can drink an anti-inflamatory but for how long before the liver or your stomach lining is damaged…not a good solution. Some doctors even reverted to anti-depression drugs which has shown to have a safe long-term pain relief effect. But I don’t know about you…anti-depressents alter brain chemistry and I for one would use that as an absolute last resort and those I know said it had little to no effect.

There just is not an effective long-term pain reliever for Fibromyalgia sufferers.

Some sufferers even went as far as starting to use Marijuana/Dagga. They claim it helps making the pain manageable. Well, I for one must be close to my deathbed before I will start using street drugs or the likes to treat pain.

But sometimes it is easy for us non-sufferers to talk. The pain for the sufferers is very real.

Other routes treating Fibromyalgia

However, there are alternatives to deal with Fibromyalgia and it slots in nicely with making a lifestyle change.

The following “treatment” is safe and can relief more pain then all the conventional and unconventional treatments for Fibromyalgia.

Granted, due to the medical science struggling to determine the exact cause Fibromyalgia can possibly be a diverse type of illness that is not necessarily the same for every person and thus a “standard” treament might not have the same effect for everyone.

However, the following treatment regimen has been followed by some Fibromylagia sufferers with good to great results (although no specific scientific research has been done to verify the success level of these strategies). Either way, great success has been reached by following it and it may just make a huge difference in the sufferers life. Note, it is rather the combination of the “total attack”, than any specific aspect of the following that makes the difference for the sufferer:

  1. Start a dedicated, 4-5 day a week intense training program.
  2. Start using Co-Enzyme Q10, Ecklonia Cava Extract and Omega 3.
  3. Follow a lifestyle change in your eating program (+ lots of water and potent multi vitamin).gert7

Training for Fibromyalgia.

Yes it will be painful. To get past the first two weeks or so you might consider anti-inflamatories.

But training will be your most powerful tool in dealing with Fibromyalgia…any sufferer who train intensely will confirm this. Being very fit makes it MUCH easier to cope with the pain. The workouts also helps you cope mentally and emotionally much better with Fibromyalgia. Training also relieves all those feel good hormones that puts Fibromyalgia in the backseat.

The more intense the training the better. I would clearly suggest a good mix between resistance and cardio type training.gert1

Co Enzyme Q10 for Fibromyalgia

Scientists in Sevilla, Spain (2010), demonstrated increased oxidative stress and reduced coenzyme Q10 levels in the cells of some fibromyalgia patients. But they also demonstrated that coenzyme Q10 does not prevent or cure fibromyalgia.

Coenzyme Q10, or CoQ10, is synthesized by your cells using the same metabolic pathway that produces cholesterol. CoQ10 can also be obtained from foods, such as fish, organ meats and whole grains, or from supplements. CoQ10 serves two critical purposes in your body: it acts as a cofactor for the enzymes that produce high-energy molecules called adenosine triphosphate, or ATP, in your mitochondria, and it functions as an antioxidant in your tissues. CoQ10’s ability to simultaneously do these two functions could prove beneficial for some people with fibromyalgia.

(Read more: http://www.livestrong.com/article/466161-q10-for-fibromyalgia/#ixzz2KPYQ6eJC)

I personally know of quite a few Fibromyalgia sufferers who had good success with CQ10 at dosages varying between 200mg to 300mg per day spread out to 3 times a day after meals. They mentioned that within 48 hours after stopping the CQ10, the intense pain of the Fibromyalgia returned. Your local pharmacy should have various over the counter CQ10 available.

Ecklonia Cava Extract for Fibromyalgia

“In an eight-week, double-blind, placebo controlled study, Ecklonia Cava Extract demonstrated profound benefits in a group of established fibromyalgia patients. It reduced the time it took participants to fall asleep, and increased overall nighttime sleep. It improved soundness of sleep and boosted energy levels. Study participants also reported more good days per week, reduced pain, and an improvement in their general condition.”

For the Fibromyalgia sufferer, it is a must have supplement, a super antioxidant.

Suggested dosages 800mg after morning, midday and evening meal.

Together with CQ10 it provides a powerful weapon for the sufferer.

Omega 3 for Fibromyalgia

Omega-3 fatty acids inhibit inflammation and may reduce the amount of pain suffered in fibromyalgia. 2 x 2g after each meal 3 times a day. In combination with CQ10 & Ecklonia Cava it attacks the Fibromyalgia symptoms on various levels.

Lifestyle eating change for Fibromyalgia

A lifestyle eating change will not necessarily cure of relief pain, but due to its healthy eating habits it will make sure the body is feed correctly and as such give the body with a lot of tools needed to fight the condition. Part of this lifestyle eating plan is to get a potent daily multi vitamin as well as LOTS of water (2L-4L). The water is required to “flush” your system and help remove the bad stuff from your body. As you start loosing fat in your new lifestyle endeavour, the body will be faced with larger than normal amounts of “bad stuff” that was stored with the fat. Good daily water intake help to get this out of your system effectively.

The CQ10, Ecklonia Cava, Omega 3 and lifestyle eating change with intense training can potentially change the life of Fibromyalgia sufferers.

Anabolics and other banned substances for Fibromylgia

Ahhh, the sorted topic of anabolics, but the truth is some people with Fibromyalgia (especially men), have experimented with Anabolic Steroids and Human Growth Hormone (HGH) in treating Fibromyalgia and they swear by it, but some doctors are sceptical although I have spoken to a few that say they can see a possible link due to the fact that both anabolics and HGH primarily stimulates muscle growth, add a feel good factor and positive feeling with enhanced energy levels, etc…

What must be noted here is that nearly no scientific research has been done about Fibromyalgia and anabolics/HGH.

I have personally spoken to people who claim that a combination of anabolics and HGH makes the pain and other Fibromyalgia symptoms much more bearable and also give them a new lust for life.

It is an expensive route which might have some bad pitfalls for the user who do not know the substances and its side effects well. So it must be used with caution.

Although the lack of medical research and some scepticism from some medical doctors raise a question mark, it does sound not too far-fetched that these substances might have some positive effect in treating Fibromyalgia since both these substances have a direct impact and effect on the musculature structure of the body and energy levels. For those at the end of the road struggling to cope with the pain, it might just be a last option to try. But again…take care. I can suggest the safest route to you with these substances (there are many anabolics and many behaves differently and have different danger levels) but I would strongly suggest it being done under doctors supervision. Contact me if you need some help.

Some unconfirmed routes for fibromyalgia treatments are multiple “life bee stings” and medical marijuana.

I truly hope this article may help some Fibromyalgia suffers out there…and if you know of someone, please pass on the info. I know some of these sufferers and it is not something I wish on my enemy.

Happy training without pain!

Gert Louw

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