What Causes Cancer to Spread?


 

When cancer spreads in the body, it is first and foremost due to changes, or mutations, in the DNA of cells. Because of a mutation or other abnormality in a cancer cell’s genome (the DNA stored in its nucleus), the cell may become separated from its neighbors and invade surrounding tissue. Other genomic breakdowns allow the cell to make its way to a nearby blood or lymph vessel, pass through the vessel wall, and ride to another part of the body, where it once again crosses the vessel wall and begins to grow and divide, forming a “secondary” tumor, or metastasis.

The genes that enable tumor cells to break free of their original location and travel to distant sites are part of every cell’s natural endowment. They play a critical role in the early stages of life, allowing cells to move to their assigned positions in the developing embryo or fetus. Eventually, these genes shut down, rendering the cell immobile and helping bind them to their native tissue—be it the lungs, nerves, muscles, or any of the hundreds of other tissue types in the human body. When a mutation or other genetic problem causes the genes to reactivate, tumor cells can gain the ability to move and slip through the spaces between other cells.

Breast cancer cells.
Breast cancer cells.

Even when cancer cells do break free, their ability to metastasize to other parts of the body is not guaranteed. For one, they may be subject to attack and destruction by elements of the immune system. For another, it takes a variety of genetic alterations to equip tumor cells with the skills needed to pull up stakes and survive in distant tissue: to become unanchored from their home tissue, invade and traverse adjacent tissue, pierce the wall of a blood or lymph vessel, survive a trip in the bloodstream or lymph, make landing downstream, root themselves in a new location, attract blood vessels to draw nourishment, and abide among unfamiliar cells.

 

Few cancer cells possess all these abilities; most die during their journey through the body. Even when they succeed in settling at a new site, they often remain inactive for many years before beginning to grow again, if at all.

Because metastatic tumor cells have acquired genetic mutations that enable them to survive beyond their place of origin, they may differ, at a molecular level, from cells in the primary tumor. As a result, they may be less vulnerable to drugs that are effective against the tumor. This is one of the main reasons why metastasized cancers are usually more difficult to treat than primary cancers.

The ability to metastasize illustrates cancer cells’ ability to exploit their genetic equipment and surroundings. Genes normally used during fetal development are subverted to enable tumor cells to take up residence outside the original tumor. Blood and lymphatic vessels that carry nutrients, immune system cells, and other critical agents are appropriated by tumor cells as highways to other parts of the body. Substances that normal cells secrete to gain access to blood vessels are hijacked by tumor cells to feed themselves.

Because metastasis involves cancer cells’ ability to make a home in tissue far from the original tumor, a major branch of cancer research seeks to make other tissues inhospitable to breakaway tumor cells. At Dana-Farber, for example, researchers have identified a compound that can potentially prevent multiple myeloma from metastasizing to the bones in animal models. Other research focuses on arming the immune system to prevent metastasis following cancer surgery.

A New Idea about How Cancer Begins


A New Idea about How Cancer Begins

It appears to happen more readily than we once believed

A New Idea about How Cancer Begins
Dividing cancer cells.

Cells, the units of life that compose our bodies, are able to make copies of themselves to help us grow, fight disease and recover from injuries. Cells have built-in mechanisms that maintain the fidelity of transmission of genetic information from one generation to the next, and to control cell division in a timely manner, allowing our bodies to build or rebuild various tissues.

But as cells divide to generate new cells, errors known as mutations can arise. And if a cell accumulates enough mutations in the genes that control cell growth and maintain the fidelity of the genome from one generation to the next, known as tumor suppressors and oncogenes, it loses its stability and starts dividing faster than normal, which leads to cancer. Some of these genes can mutate to accelerate the speed at which mutations arise (a phenomenon known as genetic instability).

Genetic instability genes may be relics of a time when single-celled organisms needed to adapt to rapidly changing environments; it is possible that these genes evolved secondary functions that are important for multicellular organismal development, and are therefore essential, despite their role in instability.

In the early 1950s, scientists proposed that it took a double hit of mutations to trigger cancer—because we have two copies of each gene, one from our mothers and one from our fathers. Destruction of the tumor suppressors, or mutation of the oncogenes genes that directly cause cancer, is therefore unlikely; both copies would have to be damaged for cancer to arise. But that idea was contradicted by the high rates of cancer incidence we actually see.

Now, however we have discovered that cancer might arise more easily than previously thought. By doing experiments on both yeast cells and on human cells in culture, my colleagues and I have been able to show that just a single mutated gene suffices to accelerate cancer. The experiments mimic an early event during cancer development—the acquisition of genetic instability—which is characterized by a faster accumulation of mutations, and by genomic changes which can themselves disrupt cancer tumor suppressor genes or activate oncogenes.

So far it has been difficult to identify when and where genetic instability arises, either because tumor samples represent a late stage of cancer development and thus carry many different mutations, or because studies with model organisms are focused on inactivation of specific genes. This new work started from a provocative question posed to me by my mentor, Andrew Murray: “If we let cells choose, how do stable cells evolve into cancer cells?” Catching the initial transition from genetic stability to instability was the crucial goal, and this was done by selecting cells that are able to survive different drugs, each survival step requiring the inactivation of a “tumor suppressor” gene.

Mimicking two important aspects of cancer development, the inactivation of cancer suppressors and the acquisition of drug-resistance, we allowed the cells to choose how to evolve accelerated mutation rates. Surprisingly, instead of the predicted two-hits, a single heterozygous mutation (a mutation in one of the two copies of a gene) was the favorite route to evolve instability. This means that, similar to the famous anime show One-Punch Man, where the hero defeats his enemies with a single hit, cancer might start with a single mutation.

This contradicts the prevailing thinking in the field, which, as I noted, states that two inactivating mutations are required for cancer onset. And since a heterozygous mutation in a single gene suffices to trigger genetic instability, and we predict that human cells have 300 such genes, it is very probable that cells turn on the ability to mutate faster. As a result, the chance of hitting tumor suppressors and oncogenes, and genes that favor metastasis or drug resistance, becomes much higher, accelerating cancer development.

Hence, this work suggests that a single heterozygous mutation, in one of a large number of genes, is an easy way for cells to acquire a “super-mutator” power that allows cancer to progress faster. From the basic scientific standpoint: similar to what was shown in bacteria, which dial up their mutation rates in adverse environments, for instance to survive antibiotics, eukaryotic cells also have pedals (genes) that accelerate the speed of evolution, allowing them to escape growth control.

In collaboration with a research group lead by Ricardo M. Pinto at the Center for Genomic Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, we were able to test if the homologs of instability genes we found in yeast worked similarly in human cells. They did: five out of six of the genes tested gave rise to genetic instability when they inactivated. We found a total of 57 human instability genes, 47 of which have not been previously implicated in cancer and require further studies. Moreover, many of these genes do not have a known direct function in genome maintenance, which reveals that other cellular pathways, such as metabolism and protein quality control, can be compromised to cause instability.

Another idea, which I will explore in the future, is that different types of cancer require different instability types (and genes) during different stages of development. Since not all tissues express the same genes, I hypothesize that different targets act locally to initially start cancer, and later during metastasis and treatment resistance.

To test this hypothesis, I will develop experimental evolution systems in organoids (cellular arrays that recreate tissues and organs) and animal models, where I can test the role of instability in different cancers, elucidating for which stages instability is more relevant and how it interferes with different cancer treatments.

Genetic instability also has implications on cellular aging: it is known that as a cell divides, the speed at which its genetic material mutates, as well as chromosomes shorten and structural rearrangements occur, increases. However, the causality of these events is not well established: is it that instability is a consequence of cellular aging and the cellular inability to repair itself, or is instability triggering aging? During my doctoral work I discovered that unicellular organisms are able to replicate without exhibiting aging, and it might be that further studying how these cells maintain genetic stability is key.

Therefore, I plan to establish my own research group using experimental evolution systems to explore genetic instability in the context of aging and cancer development, which are two fast-increasing human malignancies with a heavy individual and societal burden. In the long term, findings on what controls the speed of cellular evolution might lead to targeted therapies that delay genetic instability in specific cancer types and prolong human healthy lifespan.

New Study Reveals Many Cancer Patients Are Killed By Chemotherapy & Not The Cancer


  • Up until recently, chemotherapy and radiation have been the only two approved treatment methods for treating cancer by mainstream medicine, but as more research emerges, light is being shed on just how damaging these treatment methods can be and how often they are the cause of death and not the cancer itself. Upon this discovery, many doctors are starting to see how this is not always the best treatment method.

Researchers from Public Health England and Cancer Research UK recently performed a groundbreaking study, which examined the number of cancer patients who died within 30 days of beginning chemotherapy showing how the treatment, and not the cancer itself, was the cause of death.

When looking at those death rates across hospitals in the U.K., the researchers found an alarming mortality rate that was directly associated with the chemotherapy treatment.

“England around 8.4 per cent of patients with lung cancer, and 2.4 per cent of breast cancer patients died within a month,” the Telegraph reported.

“But in some hospitals the figure was far higher. In Milton Keynes the death rate for lung cancer treatment was 50.9 per cent, although it was based on a very small number of patients.”

Results of the study showed the one-month mortality rate at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals for those undergoing palliative, rather than curative chemotherapy was 28%. One in five patients receiving palliative care for breast cancer at Cambridge University Hospitals died from treatment.

In other areas including, Blackpool, Coventry, Derby, South Tyneside, Surrey, and Sussex, saw that deaths from lung cancer patients receiving chemotherapy were much higher than the national average.

Cancer Lead for Public Health England, Dr. Jem Rashbass, requested the study and said, according to the Telegraph: “Chemotherapy is a vital part of cancer treatment and is a large reason behind the improved survival rates over the last four decades.”

“However, it is powerful medication with significant side effects and often getting the balance right on which patients to treat aggressively can be hard.”

“Those hospitals whose death rates are outside the expected range have had the findings shared with them and we have asked them to review their practice and data.”

All women with breast cancer and all men and women with lung cancer residing in England, who were 24 years older and who started a cycle” of chemotherapy in 2014 were included in the analysis by the researchers of the study.

Could This Signify The End Of Chemo?

Finally, chemotherapy has been looked at with a skeptical eye, had this been studied sooner, it is easy to see how this method of treatment cannot distinguish between healthy cells and cancerous cells, therefore there are more ideal patients for this method of treatment and less ideal patients. The study published by the Lancet shows how the cell destroying property of chemo can eventually lead to death as there aren’t enough healthy cells to survive.

Because of these important findings, researchers have now advised physicians to exercise more caution in the process of vetting which patients should in fact receive chemotherapy and which, ideally should not. Older, infirm patients could potentially be better off without receiving palliative care.

“The statistics don’t suggest bad practice overall but there are some outliers,” noted Professor David Dodwell of the Institute of Oncology at St. James Hospital in Leeds.

“It could be data problems, and figures skewed because of just a few deaths, but nevertheless it could also be down to problems with clinical practice,” he continued.

“I think it’s important to make patients aware that there are potentially life threatening downsides to chemotherapy. And doctors should be more careful about who they treat with chemotherapy.”

It’s important to realize that doctors aren’t intending to harm their patients by prescribing this method of treatment, this is what they have been taught during their extensive years of schooling and education, this is the curriculum, so it’s the widely accepted treatment method for cancer even though it often doesn’t help at all and can make things worse as mentioned above.

The hospitals involved maintain their stance, after reviewing the information that chemotherapy is safe, with the caveat patient selection for the treatment should be more discretionary. Chemo does seem to work for many, but there is a more ideal patient for this method and it shouldn’t be prescribed to every cancer patient that walks through the door.

Professor David Cameron of the Edinburgh Cancer Centre at West General Hospital in Edinburgh, Scotland, noted,

“The concern is that with some of the patients dying within 30 days of being given chemo probably shouldn’t have been given the chemo. But how many? There is no easy way to answer that, but perhaps looking at those places/hospitals where the death rate was higher might help. Furthermore, if we give less chemo then some patients will die because they didn’t get enough chemo. It’s a fine balance and the more data we have the better we can be t making sure we get the balance right. “

U.S. Doctors, Take Note

Unfortunately, in the United States many patients are forced to undergo chemotherapy despite what they want for themselves. This has happened with many children whose parents are opting to seek out alternative cancer treatments.

One example involves, 17-year-old Cassandra C., who has Hodgkin lymphoma, has been denied her desire to pursue alternative treatment methods when it comes to her cancer treatment. The Connecticut Supreme Court ruled, on January 8th, that Cassandra (who declined chemotherapy treatment) will be forced to undergo the treatment anyway. She cited chemotherapy’s adverse health effects as her main reason for refusing.

Cassandra expressed that being forced into surgery and chemo has traumatized her, that it should be a given human right to decide what you want and don’t want for your own body.

Alternatives?

The most frustrating part about this whole thing is that there are in fact many alternative methods to treating cancer that are not recognized, accepted or provided with enough funding for thorough studies to be considered as an option in the first place.

Successful alternative methods that have been used to treat cancer is an entirely separate topic that involves a lot of research, but success has been reported using vegan methods, fasting methods, and more. Clinical trials have been conducted in these areas, but we don’t hear much about it. The science on this that’s emerging is fascinating, and we encourage all who are interested to look into it a little deeper if interested.

Below is a great clip from The THRIVE movement that gives us all something to thing about.

Obesity to Blame for Almost 1 in 20 Cancer Cases Globally


Excess body weight is responsible for about 4 percent of all cancer cases worldwide and an even larger proportion of malignancies diagnosed in developing countries, a new study suggests.

As of 2012, excess body weight accounted for approximately 544,300 cancers diagnosed annually around the world, researchers report in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians, December 12. While overweight and obese individuals contributed to just 1 percent of cancer cases in low-income countries, they accounted for 7 to 8 percent of cancers diagnosed in some high-income Western countries and in Middle Eastern and North African nations.

“Not many people know about excess body weight and its link to cancer,” said lead study author Hyuna Sung of the American Cancer Society in Atlanta.

“Trying to achieve healthy weight and maintaining it is important and may reduce the risk of cancer,” Sung said by email.

But the proportion of people who are overweight and obese has been increasing worldwide since the 1970s, the researchers note. As of 2016, 40 percent of adults and 18 percent of school-age children were overweight or obese, for a total of almost 2 billion adults and 340 million kids worldwide.

While the proportion of people with excess body weight has increased rapidly in most countries and across all population groups, the surge has been most pronounced in some low- and middle-income countries that have adopted a Western lifestyle with too little exercise and too many unhealthy foods, the study team writes.

“The simultaneous rise in excess body weight in almost all countries is thought to be driven largely by changes in the global food system, which promotes energy-dense, nutrient-poor foods, alongside reduced opportunities for physical activity,” Sung said.

Overweight and obesity has been definitively linked to an increased risk of 13 cancers affecting the breast, colon and rectum, uterus, esophagus, gallbladder, kidney, liver, ovary, pancreas, stomach, and thyroid, brain and spinal cord, and blood cells.

More recently, some research has also tied excess weight to risk for prostate tumors as well as cancers of the mouth and throat.

National wealth is the most apparent systematic driver of population obesity, the study authors note.

The economic transition to a wealthier economy brings with it an environment that precipitates obesity; each $10,000 increase in average per capita national income is associated with a 0.4 increase in body mass index among adults, the study authors note.

However, obesity is uncommon in some high-income Asia-Pacific countries, which is likely a result of consuming healthier foods like lean fish and veggies and eating fewer calories, as well as active transportation and walking as part of daily activity, the authors point out.

Still, the report offers fresh evidence of the need for policies that promote healthy eating and exercise habits as a way to battle obesity and reduce the global burden of cancer, the authors argue.

Dietary interventions might include eliminating trans-fats through the development of legislation to ban their use in the food chain; reducing sugar consumption through effective taxation on sugar-sweetened beverages; implementing subsidies to increase the intake of fruits and vegetables; and limiting portion and package size to reduce energy intake and the risk of excess body weight.

Activity interventions might include encouraging urban planning that promotes high-density housing with sidewalks, accessible public transportation and widespread availability of open spaces, parks and places to walk and cycle.

“Based on cancer alone, this report makes the case for allotting significant resources to addressing the global obesity epidemic, and those efforts have to address multiple factors that are creating ‘obesigenic’ societies,” said Dr. Graham A. Colditz of Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

“The actions of individuals are important when it comes to weight – eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly, for example,” Colditz, who wasn’t involved in the report, said by email. “But unless those actions are supported by policies, infrastructure, schools, and employers, they’re less likely to take hold and be broadly successful over time.”

Largest Ever Clinical Study on Vitamin D Shows We’re Wrong About a Crucial Benefit


We are still in love with vitamins a century after they were discovered, with half the US and UK population taking a supplement.

Vitamin D – the sunshine vitamin – is the favourite and is believed to have the most proven benefits.

main article image

Governments, including the UK government, have said that the evidence for vitamin D’s health benefits is so overwhelming that every adult should take it as a supplement for at least six months of the year.

It was first used to cure rickets in Victorian children living in urban poverty and is now routinely given to prevent and treat brittle bone disease (osteoporosis) and fractures.

It has been associated with a reduced risk of over a hundred common diseases in observational studies, ranging from depression to cancer.

The largest ever clinical study on the benefits of vitamin D in preventing fractures has been reported in the BMJ, with over 500,000 people and around 188,000 fractures from 23 cohorts from many countries.

As vitamin D levels are strongly influenced by genes, the researchers used genetic markers for vitamin D blood levels (called Mendelian randomisation or MR) to avoid the normal biases of observational studies, such as confusing cause and consequence of disease and the effects of other related health behaviours (so-called “confounders”).

 

The results showed no association between vitamin D levels over a lifetime and the risk of fracture. This latest study contradicts the UK government’s recent view, but not a host of earlier clinical trials.

In 2014, a review and meta-analysis of 31 vitamin D supplement trials found no effect on all fractures. Much of our strong belief in the benefits of vitamin D came from studies of supplements in care homes in the 1980s, which were never replicated and were probably flawed.

In a more recent meta-analysis of 33 randomised trials of over 50,000 older adults, supplementation with calcium or vitamin D had no effect on the incidence of fractures. There were also no clear benefits on muscle strength or mobility.

So, if all the data points to vitamin D failing to prevent fractures, why worry about all the people with low blood levels of the vitamin? Vitamin D deficiency has become a modern epidemic with a fifth of the UK and US populations reported to have low levels. Will they be more susceptible to other diseases and cancer?

No consensus on deficiency

There is little agreement on what vitamin D deficiency is. Deficiency levels are arbitrary with no international consensus and confusion caused by different units in the US. A “normal” level can vary from 50 to 80 nanomole per litre of blood, but recent studies suggest 30nmol is quite enough.

While clinical deficiency (<10nmol) is often clear cut, wrongly labelling millions of people as vitamin D deficient causes stress and over-medicalisation. Most people assume calcium and vitamin D are safe, and the more you take the better. My clinical practice changed when studies showed calcium supplements, as well as being ineffective against fractures, may cause heart disease. Prescriptions are now dropping.

Vitamin D is fat soluble, so high levels can build up in the body. While recommendations for supplements are usually with modest doses (10 micrograms or 400 international units (IU)), these will inevitably be overdone by some people taking other sources in cod liver oil tablets or in fortified milk, orange juice or bread. More worrying, people increasingly buy high-dose supplements of 4,000-20,000IU on the internet.

Patients with very high vitamin D blood levels (over 100nmol) are becoming routine in my clinic and elsewhere, and toxic overdoses are increasingly being reported. Several randomised trials have shown that patients with high blood levels or taking large doses of vitamin D (above 800IU) had an unexpected increased risk of falls and fractures. Vitamin D is far from safe.

It can no longer be recommended for use in other conditions; the vast majority of the positive published studies in 137 diseases were reviewed as spurious. It was widely believed that vitamin D supplements prevented cardiovascular disease, but meta-analyses and large-scale genetic MR studies have ruled this out.

Pseudo-disease

We have created another pseudo-disease that is encouraged by vitamin companies, patient groups, food manufacturers public health departments and charities. Everyone likes to believe in a miracle vitamin pill and feels “they are doing something”.

Vitamin D, despite its star status, would not be called a vitamin today, as the doses needed are too large, the body can synthesise it from skin, and it is a steroid precursor. Instead of relying on this impostor, healthy people should get vitamin D from small doses of sunshine every day as well as from food, such as fish, oil, mushrooms and dairy products.

We should also trust that thousands of years of evolution would cope with a natural drop in vitamin D levels in winter without us snapping our limbs. About half the population take vitamins daily, despite zero benefits, with increasing evidence of harm. The worldwide trend of adding unregulated vitamins to processed food has now to be seriously questioned.

While vitamin D treatment still has a rare medical role in severe deficiency, or those bed bound, the rest of us should avoid being “treated” with this steroid for this pseudo-disease and focus on having a healthy lifestyle, sunshine and importantly save your money and energy on eating a rich diversity of real food.

The Worst Laundry Detergent Brands with Ingredients Linked to Allergies and Cancer


Laundry detergent can be a lot like a rich, decadent dessert. You can smell it from down the street and it’s baked to absolute perfection. But, deep down inside, you know that those refined ingredients and cups of sugar can have both short-and-long-term effects on your health. In the same way, just because laundry detergent can smell lemony fresh and make your clothes snow-white clean, does not mean they are necessarily safe.

People – yourself included – want safe, effective, cost-efficient ways to clean their clothes. Yet the very laundry detergent brands that promise all those things are the same ones that pose both environmental and health risks. Chemicals in laundry detergent can affect you directly, causing skin reactions like contact dermatitis, or indirectly through drinking water and chemicals that aren’t quick to degrade.

The Worst Ingredients Found in Laundry Detergent

In the past, we have said that if you can’t pronounce the ingredients, don’t buy the product. Well, these are some of those ingredients. By no means is this an exhaustive list, however, if you see any of these chemicals staring back at you from the laundry detergent label, you may want to stay away from it after reading this…Advertisement

1) Nonylphenols and Nonylphenol Ethoxylates

Also referred to as NE/NPEs, manufacturers use these detergent-like chemicals in latex paints and lawn care and automotive products. What’s worse, nonylphenols and nonylphenol ethoxylates also exist in personal hygiene products and consumer laundry detergents. According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), there is evidence that NPEs are linked to cancer, DNA damage, skin allergies and irritation, asthma and respiratory problems, and hormone disruption. (1,2)

“NP has been detected in human breast milk, blood, and urine and is associated with reproductive and developmental effects in rodents,” says the Environmental Protection Agency. (1)

2) 1,4-Dioxane

This toxin is a known (possible human) carcinogen, yet it remains one of the most widespread chemicals in personal hygiene products and laundry detergent. 1,4-dioxane is actually created in a process – ironically – that is supposed to reduce skin irritation risk in petroleum-based ingredients. Although the EWG describes its cause for concern about cancer as moderate, high concerns include skin, eye, or lung irritation and non-reproductive organ toxicity. (3)

“Though 1,4-dioxane can easily be removed from products before they are sold, its widespread presence in products indicates that many manufacturers fail to take this simple step.”

In addition to hiding in laundry detergent and dishwashing soap, EWG found the carcinogen in the drinking water supplies of almost 90 million Americans’ in September 2017. (4) This helps put into perspective just how widespread 1,4-dioxane is and that it’s not just in store-bought products, but the water we use every day.

3) Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES) and Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS)

You can find one or both of these ingredients in numerous shampoos and dishwashing soaps, and many laundry detergent brands. Manufacturers mainly use it as a bubbling or foaming agent, but also as a detergent. Depending on the manufacturing processes, sodium laureth sulfate can be contaminated with 1,4-dioxane and another human carcinogen called ethylene oxide. (5)

When these chemicals are washed down the drains and run through pipes, they do not easily degrade and thus pose an environmental risk that affects both animals and humans. The longer these chemicals remain, the more likely people are to have an increased risk of skin, eye, or respiratory irritation and nervous system problems. (5,6)

4) Artificial Fragrances

Laundry detergent is not the only thing in which you’ll find fragrances. As we mentioned above, fragrance is present in countless household cleaners, personal care products, and cosmetics. Technically, it’s not even a single ingredient and can contain hundreds or thousands of chemicals that are mixed to create a given fragrance. In fact, according to the International Fragrance Association, “3,999 materials have been reported as used in fragrance compounds.” (7)Advertisement

Studies have revealed that exposure to fragrances can have negative side effects, according to EWG. Described as a moderately high hazard, the health concerns of fragrance can include respiratory distress, dermatitis, and red, itchy, or watery eyes, as well as potential effects on the reproductive system. (8,15)

Almost All Laundry Detergent Brands Are a Cause for Concern

High-efficiency (HE) laundry detergent refers to products that boast their stain-removing or fabric-softening capabilities. Many people use HE detergents because they can be cost-efficient but, unfortunately, that doesn’t mean they are safe. EWG reviewed 269 high-efficiency laundry detergents and found that over 60 percent couldn’t score above a D. Believe it or not, 36 percent of them received a failing F. (9)

How about general-purpose (GP) laundry detergents? When EWG reviewed 434 GP laundry detergents, more than 65 percent of scored a D or worse, with 37.6 percent getting an F. (10) It’s important to recognize that this “laundry list” is not exhaustive, but still emphasizes how poor and arguably unsafe many of these popular laundry detergents are. That said, there are brands that have multiple products, some of which received A-grades while others received poorer ones. So, don’t write off a brand right away – make sure you check the grades of their individual laundry detergents because you could have one of the safe ones.Advertisement

A Brief List of Laundry Detergent Brands That Scored ‘F’

  • Ajax
  • All
  • Arm & Hammer
  • Boulder Clean
  • Cheer
  • Dreft
  • Era
  • Fab Ultra
  • Gain
  • Kirkland
  • Persil
  • Tide

Don’t be fooled by some “natural” and “organic” brands either. Even Babyganics, Green Works, and Whole Foods’ 365 Everyday laundry detergent were on that failing list. (11) To be extra safe when cleaning your clothes, you might always want to skip the fabric softeners as well. In addition to even more fragrances, they can also contain quats (or “quaternary ammonium compounds”) as well as artificial colors and preservatives that have been linked to skin allergies, difficulty breathing, reproductive problems, and even cancer. (12)

If you didn’t see your laundry detergent brand in the list above, visit EWG’s website for a full list of reviewed products and their grades. (13)

The Dirty Truth About Cleaning Your Clothes

Now that you’re well aware of all the toxic chemicals in laundry detergent and the accompanying health concerns, we hope you seek out truly safe products that aren’t likely to harm you or your loved ones.

Some of these A-grade laundry detergent brands include Attitute, Better Life, biokleen, Dr. Bronner’s, Fit Organic, GrabGreen, Green Shield, Lion Bear Naked Soap Co., Meliora Cleaning Products, Nature Clean, and Seventh Generation. (14)

Source: https://theheartysoul.com

TRUE CAUSES of the top 6 preventable diseases – plus remedies


 

Image: TRUE CAUSES of the top 6 preventable diseases – plus remedies

Do you realize that all of the preventable diseases that U.S. medical doctors can’t seem to cure are ones they now refer to as genetic, meaning you inherited them? But that’s next to impossible, since those same diseases barely existed in America just five generations ago. It all started with chemical medicine made in laboratories, then came processed, canned food, then fluoridated water, then vaccines, and now GMOs. It’s all one big formula that feeds the chronic sick care system of disease and disorder. What most people fail to realize is that most of it is NOT inherited, but rather preventable and even reversible. Consider this:

The American allopathic system of medicine relies on two major platforms in order to remain in business. Part one: Never cure anything, but only address and manage symptoms of disease and disorder with lab-made concoctions and surgery. Part two: Tell all patients that any serious disease or disorder they have is genetic and has been inherited from their parents’ or grandparents’ genes, so the “victim” (allopathic patient for life) won’t ever figure out that they can prevent (and often reverse) these diseases and disorders with nutritional remedies.

Want to prevent (and cure) conventional food diseases? Limit your “junk science” intake and focus on nutrients. Here are the top six preventable diseases with information on how to remedy them, naturally.

#1. Cancer

Hardly any type of cancer is inherited or contagious. Almost all types of cancer are caused by chemical consumption, and conversely can be prevented and even reversed by ending chemical consumption. Cancer is not actually a disease. It’s called that to scare Americans into going to medical doctors for prescriptions, surgery, chemotherapy and radiation treatments. This is big business. Doctors and surgeons get paid hundreds of thousands of dollars yearly, whether you get better or whether you suffer more and die at their hands. More people die each year from chemotherapy than from cancer, by the way.

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Cancer is a disorder of the cells that feeds off chemicals in food, including artificial food colorings, artificial sweeteners, bleach (think of all white foods), fluoride (tap water), nitrates, and chemicals in cooking oils. You can reverse cancer by alkalizing the body with organic produce, properly filtered water, and a daily handful of the right supplements.

Look into garlic, licorice root, cool cayenne, oil of oregano, aloe, vitamin C, vitamin D, medicinal mushrooms, hemp seed oil, blackcurrant seed oil, and even CBD oils. The answer will then be “in your hands.”

#2. Heart Disease and Strokes

Most cases of heart disease and strokes are caused by blood becoming clogged, preventing blood from flowing properly, thus limiting the right amount of oxygen from reaching the rest of your body, including your brain. Top causes of these totally preventable and curable “diseases” are canola oil (yes, even organic), animal fat from meat and dairy products, vegetable shortening, and America’s beloved margarine.

Switch to a mainly plant-based diet immediately and engage in moderate exercise and watch those problems dissipate within months, if not weeks.

#3. Dementia

The main causes of dementia are foods that coagulate and heavy metal toxins, including aluminum and mercury. Refer to the “food stuff” covered in #2 above. Toxic amounts of aluminum are commonly found in antacids, vaccines, deodorants, antiperspirants, and tap water. Mercury is found in shockingly high amounts in multi-dose flu vaccines that are recommended by the CDC for 6-month young infants and pregnant women, even though the CDC lied and said mercury was “removed from all childhood vaccines” nearly two decades ago.

Medical doctors never warn their patients about vaccines causing dementia because vaccines are the “holy grail” of the Western chronic sick care “management” Ponzi scheme. Eat clean (organic, non-processed foods) and look into evidence-based “brain foods” and nutrients like coconut oil, avocados, kale, dark chocolate, berries, vitamin B12, and omega 3s.

#4. Anxiety and Depression

Make no mistake, most anxiety and depression are caused by consuming dangerous chemicals found in common, conventional foods today, including aspartame, MSG (monosodium glutamate), and pesticides. Pesticide is the “mother” name for all chemicals engineered into food (GMOs) and all chemical insecticides and herbicides sprayed onto crops and produce, including Roundup.

Nearly all medical doctors and psychiatrists blame all anxiety and depression on genes so they can continue to medicate their patients for life. Easy money. Look into Mucuna Pruriens (raise dopamine levels naturally), St. John’s Wort, and dark organic chocolate.

#5. Chronic Inflammation

Got that constant ringing in your ears? Got achy joints? Got excess mucus and chronic congestion? Got arthritis? Got irritable bowels? You’re suffering from chronic inflammation. Get off all that conventional gluten and switch to an organic, plant-based diet immediately. Make sure you drink lots of properly filtered water (or spring water).

#6. Obesity

Another disorder that M.D.s love to say is genetic is obesity. Visit a naturopathic physician instead of those allopathic quacks who never studied a lick of nutrition in medical school. No amount of surgery or chemicals could ever cure your junk food disorder. Switch to an organic, plant-based diet and exercise for 20 minutes a day.

Berries are some of the best anti-cancer foods you’ll ever find


Image: Berries are some of the best anti-cancer foods you’ll ever find

If you’re constantly on the lookout for ways to reduce your cancer risk, welcome to the club. With so many different types of cancer to worry about and so few safe and effective treatments, prevention really is better than cure. Most natural foods possess anti-cancer benefits to some degree, but if you want to get the most benefits, you should head straight for the berry aisle at your grocery store or farmer’s market.

Your first clue that berries possess remarkable properties is their color. Many fruits that are deep purple, red and blue get their shade from anthocyanins. These powerful antioxidants help fight free radicals and curb the oxidative stress and inflammation at the heart of many types of cancers as well as degenerative diseases.

While they boast a lot of useful benefits, like preventing the buildup of plaque in arterial walls that can lead to heart disease, anthocyanins’ crowning achievement is their ability to prompt various types of cancer cells to kill themselves. They also have the power to interfere with tumors’ abilities to resist chemotherapy, helping make this often-ineffective treatment that much more useful.

It’s no surprise, then, that acai berries, with their incredible antioxidant content, have been shown in studies to inhibit cancer. They can be especially useful when fighting colon cancer; a study in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that acai could suppress the growth and reproduction of colon cancer cells in humans by a remarkable 90 percent.

That doesn’t mean you should seek acai at the expense of other berries, however. Bilberries might not be as glamorous as other superfoods, but they are still worthwhile, especially in those who have breast or intestinal cancer cells as studies have shown they can cause cell death in these cancers. Also known as the European blueberry, they are like smaller versions of the typical blueberry and can be used in any way you would use the more familiar fruit.

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Another more obscure berry, the chokeberry, puts many other fruits to shame. According to a 2012 study in Oncology Reports, the berries were able to cause malignant brain tumor cells to die. That study looked at the combination of these berries and curcumin. While curcumin fared well when it came to inducing cell death, chokeberries were completely lethal to the cancer cells while also inhibiting the expression of genes that help cancer to spread.

Raspberries, meanwhile, offer a double-pronged approach to fighting cancer. In addition to their high anthocyanin content, they also have a high amount of ellagitannins, enabling them to limit colon cancer cells’ invasiveness and spur cell death in prostate, breast, oral and cervical cancer. Ellagic acid attacks cancer from several angles, acting not only as an antioxidant but also helping to slow cancer cell reproduction and deactivate carcinogens.

Berries’ benefits extend beyond their antioxidant abilities

The American Institute for Cancer Research points out that berries are also excellent sources of vitamin C, which has been shown to help protect against esophageal cancer. They also contain a lot of fiber, which can lower your risk of colorectal cancer.

When you consider all these benefits, combined with the fact that berries happen to be delicious, it might be tempting to get as much of them into your system as possible. Eating berries is unlikely to hurt you, unless you happen to be allergic to them. However, it’s important to keep in mind that berries contain astringent tannins, so taking high doses of very concentrated berry extracts could be damaging over time. Use common sense and talk to a naturopath if you’re concerned about striking a healthy balance.

Sources for this article include:

NaturalHealth365.com

AICR.org

Naturalpedia.com

Olanzapine for the prevention and treatment of cancer-related nausea and vomiting in adults.


BACKGROUND: Olanzapine as an antiemetic represents a new use of an antipsychotic drug. People with cancer may experience nausea and vomiting whilst receiving chemotherapy or radiotherapy, or whilst in the palliative phase of illness.

OBJECTIVES: To assess the efficacy and safety of olanzapine when used as an antiemetic in the prevention and treatment of nausea and vomiting related to cancer in adults.

SEARCH METHODS: We searched CENTRAL, MEDLINE and Embase for published data on 20th September 2017, as well as ClinicalTrials.gov and World Health Organization International Clinical Trials Registry Platform for unpublished trials. We checked reference lists, and contacted experts in the field and study authors.

SELECTION CRITERIA: We included randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of olanzapine versus any comparator with or without adjunct therapies for the prevention or treatment, or both, of nausea or vomiting in people with cancer aged 18 years or older, in any setting, of any duration, with at least 10 participants per treatment arm.

DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: We used standard Cochrane methodology. We used GRADE to assess quality of evidence for each main outcome. We extracted data for absence of nausea or vomiting and frequency of serious adverse events as primary outcomes. We extracted data for patient perception of treatment, other adverse events, somnolence and fatigue, attrition, nausea or vomiting severity, breakthrough nausea and vomiting, rescue antiemetic use, and nausea and vomiting as secondary outcomes at specified time points.

MAIN RESULTS: We included 14 RCTs (1917 participants) from high-, middle- and low-income countries, representing over 24 different cancers. Thirteen studies were in chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting. Oral olanzapine was administered during highly emetogenic (HEC) or moderately emetogenic (MEC) chemotherapy (12 studies); chemoradiotherapy (one study); or palliation (one study). Eight studies await classification and 13 are ongoing.The main comparison was olanzapine versus placebo/no treatment. Other comparisons were olanzapine versus NK1 antagonist, prokinetic, 5-HT3 antagonist or dexamethasone.We assessed all but one study as having one or more domains that were at high risk of bias. Eight RCTs with fewer than 50 participants per treatment arm, and 10 RCTs with issues related to blinding, were at high risk of bias. We downgraded GRADE assessments due to imprecision, inconsistency and study limitations.Olanzapine versus placebo/no treatmentPrimary outcomesOlanzapine probably doubles the likelihood of no nausea or vomiting during chemotherapy from 25% to 50% (risk ratio (RR) 1.98, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.59 to 2.47; 561 participants; 3 studies; solid tumours; HEC or MEC therapy; moderate-quality evidence) when added to standard therapy. Number needed to treat for additional beneficial outcome (NNTB) was 5 (95% CI 3.3 – 6.6).It is uncertain if olanzapine increases the risk of serious adverse events (absolute risk difference 0.7% more, 95% CI 0.2 to 5.2) (RR 2.46, 95% CI 0.48 to 12.55; 7 studies, 889 participants, low-quality evidence).Secondary outcomesFour studies reported patient perception of treatment. One study (48 participants) reported no difference in patient preference. Four reported quality of life but data were insufficient for meta-analysis.Olanzapine may increase other adverse events (RR 1.71, 95% CI 0.99 to 2.96; 332 participants; 4 studies; low-quality evidence) and probably increases somnolence and fatigue compared to no treatment or placebo (RR 2.33, 95% CI 1.30 to 4.18; anticipated absolute risk 8.2% more, 95% CI 1.9 to 18.8; 464 participants; 5 studies; moderate-quality evidence). Olanzapine probably does not affect all-cause attrition (RR 0.99, 95% CI 0.57 to 1.73; 943 participants; 8 studies; I² = 0%). We are uncertain if olanzapine increases attrition due to adverse events (RR 3.00, 95% CI 0.13 to 70.16; 422 participants; 6 studies). No participants withdrew due to lack of efficacy.We are uncertain if olanzapine reduces breakthrough nausea and vomiting (RR 0.38, 95% CI 0.10 to 1.47; 501 participants; 2 studies; I² = 54%) compared to placebo or no treatment. No studies reported 50% reduction in severity of nausea or vomiting, use of rescue antiemetics, or attrition.We are uncertain of olanzapine’s efficacy in reducing acute nausea or vomiting. Olanzapine probably reduces delayed nausea (RR 1.71, 95% CI 1.40 to 2.09; 585 participants; 3 studies) and vomiting (RR 1.28, 95% CI 1.14 to 1.42; 702 participants; 5 studies).Subgroup analysis: 5 mg versus 10 mgPlanned subgroup analyses found that it is unclear if 5 mg is as effective an antiemetic as 10 mg. There is insufficient evidence to exclude the possibility that 5 mg may confer a lower risk of somnolence and fatigue than 10 mg.Other comparisonsOne study (20 participants) compared olanzapine versus NK1 antagonists. We observed no difference in any reported outcomes.One study (112 participants) compared olanzapine versus a prokinetic (metoclopramide), reporting that olanzapine may increase freedom from overall nausea (RR 2.95, 95% CI 1.73 to 5.02) and overall vomiting (RR 3.03, 95% CI 1.78 to 5.14).One study (62 participants) examined olanzapine versus 5-HT3 antagonists, reporting olanzapine may increase the likelihood of 50% or greater reduction in nausea or vomiting at 48 hours (RR 1.82, 95% CI 1.11 to 2.97) and 24 hours (RR 1.36, 95% CI 0.80 to 2.34).One study (229 participants) compared olanzapine versus dexamethasone, reporting that olanzapine may reduce overall nausea (RR 1.73, 95% CI 1.37 to 2.18), overall vomiting (RR 1.27, 95% CI 1.10 to 1.48), delayed nausea (RR 1.66, 95% CI 1.33 to 2.08) and delayed vomiting (RR 1.25, 95% CI 1.07 to 1.45).

AUTHORS’ CONCLUSIONS: There is moderate-quality evidence that oral olanzapine probably increases the likelihood of not being nauseous or vomiting during chemotherapy from 25% to 50% in adults with solid tumours, in addition to standard therapy, compared to placebo or no treatment. There is uncertainty whether it increases serious adverse events. It may increase the likelihood of other adverse events, probably increasing somnolence and fatigue. There is uncertainty about relative benefits and harms of 5 mg versus 10 mg.We identified only RCTs describing oral administration. The findings of this review cannot be extrapolated to provide evidence about the efficacy and safety of any injectable form (intravenous, intramuscular or subcutaneous) of olanzapine.

You know air pollution is dangerous, but what about the air INSIDE your home?


Image: You know air pollution is dangerous, but what about the air INSIDE your home?

You might want to get your homes checked to see if you’re harboring an invisible killer in the air. According to Dr. Aaron Goodarzi of the University of Calgary, houses may have well over the safe exposure limit of radon gas.

In an article in the Daily Mail, Dr. Goodarzi writes that at least one in 15 homes in the U.S. contain the invisible gas.

Radon, a radioactive, invisible, and colorless gas, is a major cause of lung cancer after cigarette smoke. In Canada, at least 4,000 new cases of lung cancer are attributed to radon exposure, while experts estimate 15,000 to 22,000 lung cancer deaths in the U.S. are linked to the gas.

He and his research team have been testing well over 2,300 homes in Canada for radon for years. According to the results of the testing, at least one in eight homes that were tested contained radon levels that are higher than acceptable levels. Interestingly enough, newer houses have the largest problem with radon levels.

However, the problem lies, according to Dr. Goodarzi, with people’s lack of awareness on the effects of radon gas.

Radon is a radioactive gas that’s invisible and contains no odor. While it naturally occurs from the breakdown of radium in the soil, the gas can seep into a building through cracks in the foundation as well as other openings.

It can be mostly found in the basement or cellars of homes, schools, and offices. There is no distinction with radon exposure: It can seep in any building, both old and new, in about all places where there is housing structure.

The correlation between radon gas and lung cancer was made in the 1970s after abnormally high cancer rates were detected in uranium miners in Elliot Lake in Ontario, Canada.

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Currently, studies have already established that long-term exposure to radon gas can cause irreparable harm to the DNA and lead to gene mutations that ultimately will lead to cancer. Next to smoking, radon exposure is the leading cause of cancer in non-smokers. (Related: Radon in Homes is the Second Leading Cause of Lung Cancer.)

Dr. Goodarzi writes that radon exposure is now a major public health concern in Canada. In his location in Alberta alone, he estimates that many patients in Alberta who have never smoked a day in their life, are faced with a high risk for lung cancer.

Still, radon-induced lung cancer can be avoided completely with testing and proper management. Health care costs will be saved by avoiding radon cancer, not to mention a decrease in human suffering.

However, a person who smokes and also lives in a home with radon gas puts him at a much greater hazard, with a one in four chance of developing lung cancer later on. Meanwhile, the percentage of smokers who may have avoided cancer if they were not also exposed to radon gas remains uncertain.

With the advancement of scientific studies regarding the dangers of radon gas, Dr. Goodarzi opines that this will translate to additional legislation to regulate the gas, especially since children have the greatest risk of radon exposure throughout their lives.

As the harmful effects of radon are now gaining ground, the team hopes that this will make radon testing for homes a normal requirement, especially in cases wherein the home was just purchased after a major home repair.

Sources include:

DailyMail.co.uk

Canada.ca

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