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Nutrition and physical activity during and after cancer treatment

6 REPLIES 6
cornishgirl
Member

Re: Nutrition and physical activity during and after cancer treatment

Unfortunately the promoters of ALT online ,use many scare  tactics  in their efforts of selling their  unproven treatments and therapies  and  what seems like an endless stream of books to cancer patients on the web, often the excuses put forward ,are that "Big Pharma" doesn't want a Cure as of course Cancer is Big Business, the problem with this statement is that Drs/Scientists, and those that work in the Pharmaceutical industry and all their families  get cancer too, so its a bit of a ridiculous statement to make,the diversity of all the people involved would make it impossible to "Suppress a cure"  (there will never be One cure, there are over 200 different types of cancer all with many different subtypes) so another silly statement to make.We also need to remember that  the ALT industry  is an extremely profitable industry too ,  the ALT  industry in fact  makes more money in a year than cancer research does, though the industry  neglects to inform people of that.

The ALT industry actually made 38.8 Billion dollars  in America alone last yr, that's just a fraction of what ALT  actually makes worldwide, that's pretty staggering for treatments that have No clinical evidence to back them up.

 

The Cancer Act 1939  makes it a criminal offence in this country to either advertise,offer to treat or give advice in connection with cancer, however , by ALT websites putting a small "Disclaimer" in small print somewhere on their websites , they think they can get around this act and it dissolves them of all responsibility. It doesn't, but with the age of the internet and the vast amount of mis-information to be found on Dr Google its extremely difficult to regulate.  

Any cancer organization which has a "Shop" should signal a Red Flag , reputable cancer charities will Never try to sell you anything, i.e. books, Supps,Pills and Potions, etc.  There really is no such thing as Alternative Medicines , there are treatments that work ,and there are treatments that don't, when a treatment has been proven to work ,it is called Medicine, therefore no longer Alternative. 

There is a huge difference like you say BlackSwan between complementary therapies ,pleasant, relaxing, stress-reducing, placebo benefits and therapies promoted as alternatives to medical treatment  .

 

Quackwatch also has published " A Special Message For Cancer Patients  Seeking Alternative Treatments" which is very informative also, and covers a lot of the  very dubious and dangerous so called Cancer-Cures online .

http://www.quackwatch.com/00AboutQuackwatch/altseek.html

 

BlackSwan
Member

Re: Nutrition and physical activity during and after cancer treatment

Thanks.  I'd not heard about Sense About Science before, but the website looks excellent.  I have degrees in physics and statistics and  have an interest in evidence and data.

 

I'd also read about people with curable cancer (eg early stage breast cancer) skipping unpleasant but life saving treatments like chemo, surgery and radiotherapy and doing "alternative treatments" instead.

 

There are books  which seem to published by mainstream publishers which actively promote alternative cancer treatments (as alternatives to regular treatment not as extras).  One of my friends recommended a couple to me and I was shocked by one in particular which claimed that regular treatments made cancer worse and that cancer was readily cured by various alternative treatments that were being suppressed by the medical community due to a big conspiracy.  How irresponsible is that?

 

There is a big difference between complementary therapies (pleasant, relaxing, stress-reducing, placebo benefits) and therapies promoted as alternatives to medical treatment  (quackery).

cornishgirl
Member

Re: Nutrition and physical activity during and after cancer treatment

I agree BlackSwan ,the problem is it is often very difficult for a newly Dx cancer patient to be able to separate the fact from the fiction when being bombarded with so much misinformation about cancer online . Most of these websites are aimed at vulnerable and desperate cancer patients who are very frightened and its very easy to get fooled sometimes especially when people are new to cancer.

 

The good news is ,because there is so much dubious and dangerous  nonsense on the internet surrounding cancer these  days ,and which can also be found in the media sometimes, (WDDTY springs to mind ) a very dangerous magazine in my view, there has recently been launched a new national campaign supported by many different medical  charities included many high profile  Drs,Scientists etc etc, etc ,because of the very real harm these websites can cause to those with a serious illness ,Sense about Science has just launched in conjunction with these medical organizations/charities  who have the very same real concerns about the vast amount of dangerous info online, their" Ask For Evidence Campaign "and have also issued a new leaflet entitled "I've got nothing to loose by trying it" this campaign which has also been featured in the national press recently  , hopefully eventuallywill be  supported by all mainstream medical organizations  online  and will go a long way to help in keeping cancer patients and all other patients with serious a life threatening disease safe. 

 

This is a subject that I am very passionate about since my own dx 6 yrs ago , having met many people over the yrs deciding to forgo  proven scientific conventional cancer treatments and deciding to go down the ALT  route instead  because of what they have read online, so I  for one am very glad that at long last  "something" is finallybeing done to help people ,and especially cancer patients, to be better informed and most importantly to keep them safe.

 

http://www.senseaboutscience.org/blog.php/57/miracle-cures-for-cancer-ask-for-the-evidence

 

http://www.senseaboutscience.org/pages/ive-got-nothing-to-lose.html

 

Linda x  Woman Happy

BlackSwan
Member

Re: Nutrition and physical activity during and after cancer treatment

Thanks for the link to Johns Hopkins myth debunking.  I agree about all the misinformation around the internet.  The trouble is anyone can have a website or blog and post their own theories or repeat those they've read on other websites/blogs.  If things are repeated often enough, people start to think they are facts.

 

In my view the websites to trust  are those of mainsteam cancer charities, governments (and public bodies such as the nhs) and reputable hospitals.

 

cornishgirl
Member

Re: Nutrition and physical activity during and after cancer treatment

Hi BlackSwan , I totally agree with you ,there is so much misinformation out there surrounding this disease and its so easy sometimes to get duped by sciency sounding info online that just doesn't have a shred of evidence to back it up, the list is unfortunately endless it seems, from restrictived  diets (which is the last thing a cancer patient needs)to pills and potions,and all manner of wacky treatments and remedies all purported to be the latest Cancer "Miracle Cures" .

 

Sugar feeding cancer is just one of those  Myths  , but sadly there are more than one million websites  capitalizing on the sugar fear with hardly none offering the science,.All food energy  regardless of its source  is converted into identical simple sugars that our bodies use for energy to function. Similarly, our bodies use the same chemical nutrients from foods regardless of their source. Just like healthy cells, cancer cells don’t care where the sugar comes from. And if we stopped eating completely, our bodies would then start tearing down fat and muscle stores for energy, but it wouldn't’t stop the cancer until we died of starvation.  So really just more  silly nonsense!!

 

A few yrs back there was an email doing the rounds about all this stuff , it was purported to be from the eminent Johns Hopkins Cancer Center  ,things got so bad in the end that Johns Hopkins ,along with other cancer organizations  were forced to put a statement up on their websites debunking all these cancer myths.

 

http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/kimmel_cancer_center/news_events/featured/cancer_update_email_it_is_a...

 

 

It really can be a minefield out there sometimes ,in my 6 yrs of living with cancer I can honestly say I've never known another disease with so much hokum surrounding it,  My advice to anyone  for what its worth  always (Ask For The Evidence)

 

Off my soapbox now LOL. 

 

Linda x  Woman Happy

 

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: Nutrition and physical activity during and after cancer treatment

This is a really helpful article Blackswan & challenges a lot of popular theory - thank you for posting.

BlackSwan
Member

Nutrition and physical activity during and after cancer treatment

I've seen all sorts of advice on the subject of nutrition for cancer survivors on various forums and blogs.  Some people hold very firm views about it being absolutely essential to give up this or that food if you want to survive. eg "sugar feeds cancer" etc etc.   This seems to be more prevalent on US forums, but can be found elsewhere as well.

 

Me, I am more interested in evidence-based guidance.  I also find hard motivate myself to give up food I like  unless there is some evidence for doing so.  I've found this article on the website of the American Cancer society: http://www.cancer.org/treatment/survivorshipduringandaftertreatment/nutritionforpeoplewithcancer/nut...

 

Based on this, I intend to take regular exercise, eat a healthy diet and just enjoy life.

 

I hope this doesn't offend anyone who does have strong views on this topic.  I thought it might be useful for people like me who just want to find out what they should or shouldn't do based on whatever evidence is available.