Suzy Cohen, from Dear Pharmacist, was asked about how to reduce the risk of getting cancer when it runs in the family.
She says that an estimated 1.5 million people were diagnosed with "cancer" in 2008. With cancer, you have to be mindful of the "free radicals" in your body. You want as few as possible. Free radicals are molecules that damage innocent cells. They are normally neutralized in a healthy body.
But she says that if you smoke, expose yourself to pesticides, sun damage or pollution, maintain a poor diet, or eat artificial sweeteners and preservatives, you severely reduce your body's defenses against those free radicals which cause "oxidative" damage.
Neutralizing it is the 'anti'-oxidants, such as vitamins A, C, E, D, selenium and ubiquinol.
Free radicals trigger the release of bad chemicals in your body such as IGF-1, IL6, C-reactive protein, homocysteine, and TNF-a.
These chemicals increase pain, inflammation and the growth of cancer. Foods that increase inflammatory chemicals include processed meats (like hot dogs), red meat and eggs which are high in arachidonic acid, dairy protein (casein) and wheat protein (gluten).
Suzy Cohen recommends that if you cut down on foods that trigger immune reactions and eat more organic fruits and vegetables, you can improve immune function.
She also talk about the natural supplements and foods that increase vitality, energy and immune function. These include rosemary, broccoli, olives, ground flaxseed, probiotics, cat's claw, curcumin, omega 3 fatty acids, ginger, N-acetylcysteine, spirulina and finally, clinically tested brands of modified citrus pectin (MCP). Anecdotal evidence suggests some ingredients in Essiac supplements can strengthen the immune system too.
Suzy Cohen Dear Pharmacist