Forks Over Knives

What has happened to us? Despite the most advanced medical technology in the world, we are sicker than ever by nearly every measure. Cases of diabetes are exploding, especially amongst our younger population. About half of us are taking at least one prescription drug and major medical operations have become routine.  Heart disease, cancer and stroke are the three leading causes of death in the USA, even though billions are spent each year to “battle” these very conditions.  Millions suffer from a host of other degenerative diseases.

Could it be there’s a single solution to all of these problems? A solution so comprehensive but so straightforward, that it’s mind-boggling that more of us haven’t taken it seriously?

Forks Over Knives (2010) examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the socalled “diseases of affluence” that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods.  The major storyline in the film traces the personal journeys of Dr. T. Colin Campbell, a nutritional scientist from Cornell University, and Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, a former top surgeon at the world renowned Cleveland Clinic.

Inspired by remarkable discoveries in their young careers, these men conducted several groundbreaking studies, one of which took place in China and is considered among the most comprehensive health-related investigations ever undertaken.  Their separate research led them to the same startling conclusion: degenerative diseases like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and even several forms of cancer, could almost always be prevented—and in many cases reversed—by adopting a whole foods, plant-based diet. Despite the profound implications of their findings, their work has remained relatively unknown to the public.

In addition, cameras follow “reality patients” who have chronic conditions from heart disease to diabetes.  Doctors teach these patients how to adopt a whole foods plantbased diet as the primary approach to treat their ailments—while the challenges and triumphs of their journeys are revealed.

The film features leading experts on health and tackles the issue of diet and disease in a way that will have people talking for years. Read More

 

Watch the full documentary

More Evidence That Spicing Up Broccoli Boosts Its Cancer-Fighting Power

Teaming fresh broccoli with a spicy food that contains the enzyme myrosinase significantly enhances each food’s individual cancer-fighting power and ensures that absorption takes place in the upper part of the digestive system where you’ll get the maximum health benefit, suggests a new University of Illinois study.

“To get this effect, spice up your broccoli with broccoli sprouts, mustard, horseradish, or wasabi. The spicier, the better; that means it’s being effective,” said Elizabeth Jeffery, a U of I professor of nutrition.

In the study, when fresh broccoli sprouts were eaten with broccoli powder, the scientists were able to measure bioactive compounds in the blood 30 minutes later. When these peaked at three hours, they were much higher when the foods were eaten together than when either was eaten alone. Urine samples corroborated the blood results, said Jenna Cramer, lead author of the study.

It’s no secret that many people cook the benefits right out of broccoli instead of steaming it lightly for two to four minutes to protect its healthful properties, she said.

“However, this study shows that even if broccoli is overcooked, you can still boost its benefits by pairing it with another food that contains myrosinase,” she said.

Myrosinase is the enzyme necessary to form sulforaphane, the vegetable’s cancer-preventive component, co-author Margarita Teran-Garcia explained.

Note what happened with the fresh broccoli sprouts and broccoli powder eaten in this experiment. The powder doesn’t contain myrosinase, but it does contain the precursor to the anti-cancer agent sulforaphane. Eaten together, the sprouts were able to lend their myrosinase to the powder. As predicted, both foods produced sulforaphane and provided greater anti-cancer benefit, Jeffery said.

Other foods that will boost broccoli’s benefits if they are paired together include radishes, cabbage, arugula, watercress, and Brussels sprouts.

“Here’s another benefit of protecting and enhancing the myrosinase in your foods,” Jeffery said. “If myrosinase is present, sulforaphane is released in the ilium, the first part of your digestive system. Absorption happens well and quickly there, which is why we saw bioactivity in 30 minutes.”

An earlier Jeffery study showed that microbiota are capable of releasing sulforaphane in the lower gut, but absorption happens more slowly in the colon than in the upper intestine, she said.

Scientists say that as little as three to five servings of broccoli a week provide a cancer-protective benefit.

“But it pays to spice it up for added benefits and find ways to make it appealing so you don’t mind eating it if you’re not a broccoli fan. I add fresh broccoli sprouts to sandwiches and add them as one of my pizza toppings after the pie is out of the oven,” Cramer said.

 

Reference

Cramer JM, Teran-Garcia M, Jeffery EH. Enhancing sulforaphane absorption and excretion in healthy men through the combined consumption of fresh broccoli sprouts and a glucoraphanin-rich powder.  Br J Nutr. 2011 Sep 13:1-6. [Epub ahead of print].

 

Plant Compound Reduces Breast Cancer Mortality

Phytoestrogens are plant compounds which, in the human body, can attach to the receptors for the female sexual hormone estrogen and which are taken in with our daily diet. A number of findings have attributed a cancer protective effect to these plant hormones. At the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ), a team headed by Prof. Dr. Jenny Chang-Claude summarized the results of several studies in a meta-analysis last year and showed that a diet rich in phytoestrogens lowers the risk of developing breast cancer after menopause. Now the Heidelberg researchers wanted to find out whether phytoestrogens also have an influence on the course of breast cancer. Prior investigations on this topic had provided contradictory results.

The most important type of phytoestrogens in our Western diet are lignans, which are contained in seeds, particularly flaxseeds, as well as in wheat and vegetables. In the bowel, these substances are turned into enterolactone, which is absorbed by the mucous tissue and which was determined by the Heidelberg researchers as a biomarker in the patients’ blood.

From 2002 to 2005, the DKFZ researchers used the MARIE study to take blood samples of 1,140 women who had been diagnosed with postmenopausal breast cancer. After a mean observation time of six years, they related enterolactone levels to clinical disease progression.

The result: Compared to the study subjects with the lowest enterolactone levels, the women with the highest blood levels of this biomarker had an approximately 40 percent lower mortality risk. When the scientists additionally took account of the incidence of metastasis and secondary tumors, they obtained a similar result: Women with the highest enterolactone levels also had a lower risk for such an unfavorable disease progression.

“We now have first clear evidence showing that lignans lower not only the risk of developing postmenopausal breast cancer, but also the mortality risk,” says Jenny Chang-Claude. There had been prior studies to determine the lignan intake by means of dietary surveys. But the results of such surveys are often unreliable and, in addition, there are big differences in the way individuals actually process the plant substances into effective metabolic products. Therefore, the Heidelberg team chose the more reliable measurement of biomarkers.

However, Chang-Claude narrowed down the result: “The result was significant only for the group of tumors that have no receptor for the estrogen hormone (ER-negative tumors). This gives reason to suspect that enterolactone protects from cancer not only by its hormone-like effect.” Indeed, studies of cells and animals had already provided evidence suggesting that the substance also has an influence on cancer growth irrespective of estrogen. Thus, it promotes cell death and inhibits sprouting of new blood vessels.

“In order to find out whether enterolactone also inhibits the aggressiveness of estrogen receptors in estrogen-positive tumors, we would need to expand this study to include much larger groups of women,” said Jenny Chang-Claude. Moreover, the scientist firmly emphasized: “By eating a diet that is rich in wholemeal products, seeds and vegetables, which is considered to be health-promoting anyway, everybody can take in enough lignans. At the present time, we can only discourage people from taking any food supplements.”

Phytoestrogens have been the subject of intense scientific debates in past years. On the one hand, the results of several studies of cells as well as epidemiological findings suggest that they have a cancer protective effect. Another observation that may be interpreted in this direction is that Asian women are less frequently affected by breast cancer. Their soy-rich diet contains large amounts of another type of phytoestrogens, isoflavones. On the other hand, scientists fear that isoflavones might imitate the growth-promoting properties of real hormones and, thus, accelerate hormone-dependent tumors such as breast cancer and prostate cancer. “It has not yet been finally determined whether lignans in the body imitate the hormone effect or, on the contrary, counteract it,” says Jenny Chang-Claude. “Our studies will help achieve more clarity in this important question, which also concerns our daily diet.”

 

Reference

Buck K, Vrieling A, Zaineddin AK, Becker S, Hüsing A, Kaaks R, et al. Serum Enterolactone and Prognosis of Postmenopausal Breast Cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2011 Sep 6. [Epub ahead of print].

 

Vitamin D And Cancer Campaign Launched

SAN LUIS OBISPO, CA – The Vitamin D Council, a nonprofit educational corporation based in California, launches their “Vitamin D and Cancer” campaign today, presenting 20 detailed summaries of the evidence on the role of vitamin D in preventing cancer. Epidemiologist Dr. William Grant prepared the evidence-based summaries. He is the founder of the nonprofit organization, Sunlight, Nutrition and Health Research Center (SUNARC) and serves as the Science Director for the Vitamin D Council.

Some researchers believe the link between vitamin D sufficiency and a decreased risk in cancer is promising. A randomized controlled trial found a 77% reduction in all-cancer incidence when the study group supplemented with 1100 IU/day of vitamin D plus 1450 mg/day calcium. Says Dr. Grant, “Based on various studies of UVB, vitamin D and cancer to date, it appears that global cancer burden can be reduced by 15-25% if everyone had vitamin D blood levels above 40 ng/ml.”

The summaries can be found under the “Health conditions” tab on the Vitamin D Council website, or more specifically at http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/health-conditions/cancer/. The Vitamin D Council hopes the campaign will spread more awareness about the importance of vitamin D sufficiency and the dangers of vitamin D deficiency.

Top ten facts about vitamin D and cancer (presented in the summaries)

  1. Many studies have found solar ultraviolet-B (UVB) and vitamin D associated with reduced risk of breast, colon, and rectal cancer.
  2. randomized controlled trial with 1100 IU/day vitamin D3 plus 1450 mg/day calcium found a 77% reduction in all-cancer incidence.
  3. Geographical studies have found reduced risk in mortality rates for 20 types of cancer in regions of higher solar UVB doses.
  4. Observational studies have found that the risk of breast, colon, and rectal cancer fall as vitamin D blood levels rise at least up to 40 ng/mL (100 nmol/L).
  5. Mechanisms have been proposed to explain how vitamin D acts to reduce the risk of cancer from starting, growing, and spreading.
  6. Those who develop nonmelanoma skin cancer may have produced enough vitamin D to reduce their risk of internal cancers.
  7. Those with higher vitamin D blood levels at time of cancer diagnosis had nearly twice the survival rate of those with the lowest levels.
  8. African-Americans have an increased risk of cancer in part due to lower vitamin D blood levels because of darker skin.
  9. Higher UVB exposure early in life has been found associated with reduced risk of breast and prostate cancer.
  10. Those diagnosed with breast, colon and prostate cancer in summer in Norway had higher survival rates than those diagnosed in winter.


Role Of Soy In Menopausal Health Reported

Discussion of a scientific review of soy protein, soy isoflavones and soy metabolites for peri- and postmenopausal women at North American Menopause Society (NAMS)/Wulf H. Utian Translational Science Symposium:

 

Soy has recently been reviewed and supported for introduction into general medical practice as a treatment for distressing vasomotor symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes, but its use in other medical areas, such as heart health, requires further research, according to a new report reviewing the risks and benefits of soy protein, isoflavones and metabolites in menopausal health from The North American Menopause Society (NAMS)/Wulf H. Utian Translational Science Symposium, published in the July Menopause, the peer-reviewed NAMS journal.

“Although a significant amount of scientific research about soy and soy isoflavones exists, the adoption of soy isoflavones into the care of women in menopause has to date been recommended mainly by physicians and health care practitioners involved in integrative medicine. We believed that facilitating a robust review of the current scientific evidence about the benefits and risks of soy could yield a document useful to physicians to help them make decisions about soy use with their patients, particularly those in menopause,” said Belinda H. Jenks, Ph.D., director of Scientific Affairs & Nutrition Education at Pharmavite LLC. Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd., Pharmavite LLC and the Allmen Foundation supported the development of the symposium and report via an unrestricted educational grant.

The report focuses on a review of soy’s mechanism of action and processing within the body (bioavailability and pharmacokinetics), as well as on several therapeutic areas, concluding that use of soy isoflavones for hot flashes is reasonable and that soy food consumption is associated with lower risk of breast and endometrial cancer. The report also recommended more research to further characterize the effects of soy isoflavones on bone and cardiovascular health as well as cognition, which involves thinking, reasoning, or remembering.

The report, approved by the NAMS Board of Trustees, was authored by 22 clinicians and well-respected scientific research experts in women’s health and botanicals who participated in the symposium in October 2010. They examined basic and clinical research findings from more than two hundred key published controlled trials as well as laboratory studies of the soy isoflavones genistein and daidzein and the daidzein metabolite, S-equol. A supplement containing Natural S-equol for the management of menopausal symptoms is in development by Pharmavite LLC, the makers of Nature Made® vitamins and minerals and a subsidiary of Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.

About Soy Isoflavones and S-Equol

Soy isoflavones are compounds that can bind to estrogen receptors. The isoflavones genistein and daidzein are primarily found in whole soybeans and soy products. S-equol [7-hydroxy-3-(4′-hydroxyphenyl)-chroman] is a compound resulting — when certain bacteria are present in the digestive tract — from the metabolism, or conversion, of daidzein.

S-equol binds to the same estrogen receptors as naturally occurring, endogenous estrogen, but with a stronger affinity for the estrogen beta receptor. On binding to these receptors, S-equol mimics some, but not all, activities of endogenous estrogen. Because of these actions, it has been proposed that S-equol alleviates some of the symptoms caused by diminished estrogen production during menopause.

However, not everyone can produce S-equol after soy consumption, as the production depends on the types of bacteria present in the large intestine and may be influenced by the amount of soy consumed. About 50 percent of Asians and 20 to 30 percent of North Americans and Europeans, who in general consume less soy than Asians, have the ability to produce high levels of S-equol. Controlled clinical trials have documented that a supplement containing Natural S-equol reduces the frequency of hot flashes as well as muscle discomfort associated with menopause, in women both in Japan and the United States.

Soy Isoflavone Bioavailability and Pharmacokinetics

Not all soy foods or supplements contain the same amount or percentage of the three primary isoflavones genistein, daidzein or glycetein. Soyfoods and supplements can vary in soy isoflavone amounts and forms which, in turn, may impact the way the body will metabolize the isoflavones and subsequently can impact their effectiveness in health care, the report states.

For example, the rates of absorption in the body of the isoflavones daidzein and genistein depend on their form. As glycosides, which have an attached sugar molecule, both isoflavones can reach a peak plasma concentration in four to 10 hours. However, the human body cannot use this form, and during digestion the sugar is removed. This resulting aglycone form can be absorbed faster. When consumed as aglycosides, both daidzein and genistein can achieve peak concentrations in just one hour, or up to three hours if eaten with a meal. When the daidzein metabolite S-equol is consumed, its peak plasma rate rapidly occurs in just one to two hours.

The time needed for the total plasma concentration of either isoflavone to decrease by half typically is six to 12 hours and for S-equol, six to eight hours. However, genistein takes significantly longer to leave the body than daidzein. S-equol is excreted almost exclusively in urine, with 75 percent excreted within 12 hours after consumption.

Soy-isoflavones Reasonable for Menopausal Symptoms

The NAMS report advises that in postmenopausal women with distressing vasomotor symptoms, such as hot flashes, initial treatment with soy isoflavones is reasonable because of demonstrated modest effectiveness in early post-menopausal women who have at least four hot flashes daily. The report recommends a starting dose of 50 milligrams (mg) or more daily for at least 12 weeks. If a woman responds, the treatment can continue with monitoring for side effects, but for women who do not respond after 12 weeks, other treatment options should be discussed, the authors suggest.

However, the report points to increasing evidence that women whose gut bacteria have little or no capacity to covert daidzein to S-equol may continue to suffer from severe hot flashes despite daidzein supplementation. The report suggests that dietary supplements providing higher proportions of genistein or S-equol may provide more relief of menopausal symptoms than the modestly effective relief recognized by soy isoflavones alone. Also, the report recommends a supplement containing natural S-equol may be effective for some women who do not have the capacity to produce S-equol, which occurs only when certain bacteria are present in the digestive tract.

The authors’ menopause symptom treatment recommendations were based on a review of 14 studies that included data on soy isoflavone content and dosing, at least 12 weeks of treatment, women who experienced natural (not induced) menopause and the women’s average age, their prevalence of hot flashes at study start and their magnitude of symptom improvement.

Potential Protection for Breast and Endometrial Cancer

Soy foods, in populations that typically consume them, appear to protect against breast cancer. Therefore, the NAMS report advises that moderate life-long dietary soy consumption is recommended as part of a healthy lifestyle. The best evidence indicates that there are no adverse effects from this diet and it has potential for prevention of breast and endometrial cancer, the report states.

However, the authors note that specific recommendations regarding soy food or soy isoflavone consumption by breast cancer survivors cannot be made at this time, although such studies in humans indicate either no effect or a protective effect, but in contrast laboratory and rodent studies indicate a potential for risk.

The authors recommend studies of endometrial risk should focus on long-term, postmenopausal exposures to soy. The authors’ breast and endometrial cancer recommendations were based on a review of at least 18 studies.

 

Further Research about Soy Effects on Women’s Health

The NAMS report identifies several areas for further research on soy in midlife women. Specifically, the authors call for more studies that compare outcomes among women whose intestinal bacteria have the ability to convert daidzein to S-equol with those that do not to determine if equol producers derive greater benefits from soy supplementation. Also, larger studies are needed in younger postmenopausal women, as is more research to understand soy isoflavone supplement use in women. The authors also propose studies on the relationships of other dietary components as well as prescription and over-the-counter medications on soy isoflavones, consumed as a part of the diet or as a supplement, and S-equol production. And finally, the authors request greater standardization and documentation of clinical trial data regarding soy.

 

References

North American Menopause Society. The role of soy isoflavones in menopausal health: report of The North American Menopause Society/Wulf H. Utian Translational Science Symposium in Chicago, IL (October 2010). Menopause 2011; 18 (7): 732-53.

Natural S-equol. A scientific advancement for menopause therapy.

 

Burzynski, the Movie: Cancer Is Serious Business

Burzynski, the Movie (2010) is the story of a medical doctor and Ph.D biochemist named Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski who won the largest and possibly the most convoluted and intriguing legal battle against the Food an Drug Administration in American history.

His victorious battles with the United States government were centered on Dr. Burzynski’s belief in and commitment to his gene-targeted cancer medicines he discovered in the 1970′s called Antineoplastons, which have currently completed Phase II FDA-supervised clinical trials in 2009 and could begin the final phase of testing in 2011-barring the ability to raise the $25 million to fund the first one.

When Antineoplastons are approved, it will mark the first time in history a single scientist, not a pharmaceutical company, will hold the exclusive patent and distribution rights on a paradigm-shifting, life-saving medical breakthrough. Antineoplastons are responsible for curing some of the most incurable forms of terminal cancer. Various cancer survivors are presented in the film that chose his treatment instead of surgery, chemotherapy or radiation – with full disclosure of original medical records to support their diagnosis and recovery.

One form of cancer – diffuse, intrinsic, childhood brainstem glioma has never before been cured in any experimental clinical trial in the history of medicine. Antineoplastons hold the first cures in history – dozens of them. Burzynski takes the audience through the treacherous, yet victorious, 14-year journey both Dr. Burzynski and his patients have had to endure in order to obtain FDA-approved clinical trials of Antineoplastons.

However, what was revealed a few years after Dr. Burzynski won his freedom, helps to paint a more coherent picture regarding the true motivation of the U.S. government’s relentless prosecution of Stanislaw Burzysnki. Get the DVD & more info http://www.burzynskimovie.com

 

 

 

Healing Cancer From Inside Out

If you think conventional treatments cure cancer...
If you think diet cannot cure cancer...
Think again!

Healing Cancer From Inside Out (2008) by Mike Anderson is a must watch film for all those who have been diagnosed with cancer or have a family member with cancer. The film is divided into two parts:


 

Part 1, Curing Cancer

The first half of this film deals with the failings of conventional cancer treatments and shows how conventional medicine wildly – and deceptively – exaggerates the benefits of treatments, while minimizing the risks. It will provide you with the information you need to accurately assess the risks and benefits of any treatment and speak intelligently to your doctor about such treatments. There is also a section on the ‘Cancer Industry’ which explains the history behind cancer treatments, the suppression of alternative treatments and why chemotherapy, radiation and surgery are the only treatments available to mainstream medicine.

 

 

Part 2, Healing Cancer
Shows how cancer can be successfully healed with dietary treatments and natural supplementation. It explains common misconceptions about cancer; shows how diets designed to fight cancer are more successful than conventional treatments, discusses startling cancer research findings with T. Colin Campbell (The China Study) and has interviews with people who have reversed cancers using diet. It also discusses supplementation and why attitude is important in reversing not only cancer, but any disease.

 

 

 

Dying to Have Known

Master filmmaker Steve Kroschel, intrigued by a stunning statement from his last documentary, sets out to find hard evidence of the effectiveness of the Gerson Therapy, a long-suppressed natural cancer cure. His travels take him across both the Atlantic and the Pacific Oceans, from upstate New York toSan Diego to Alaska, from Japan and Holland to Spain and Mexico. In the end, he presents the testimony of patients, scientists, surgeons and nutritionists who testify to the effectiveness of the Gerson Therapy in curing cancer and other degenerative diseases, and show the hard scientific evidence to back up their claims. The question that remains is, “Why is this powerful curative therapy still suppressed, more than 75 years after it was clearly proven to cure degenerative disease?”

In his film, Dying to Have Known (2006), Mr. Kroschel interviews top nutritional and agricultural experts, two surgeons, a Japanese medical school professor who cured himself of liver cancer over 15 years ago, a lymphoma patient who was diagnosed as “terminal” over 50 years ago, as well as noted critics of this world-renowned healing method who dismiss it out of hand as “pure quackery.” The viewer is left to decide for himself which is the truth. (Excerpt from the website of the Gerson Institute)

 

 

 

The Beautiful Truth

Raised on a wildlife reserve in Alaska, 15-year-old Garrett was interested in the dietary habits of the farm animals. After the tragic death of his mother, Garrett’s father decided to home-school his son and assigned a book written by Dr. Max Gerson that proposed a direct link between diet and a cure for cancer.

Fascinated, Garrett embarks in this documentary, The Beautiful Truth (2008), on a cross-country road trip to investigate The Gerson Therapy. He meets with scientists, doctors and cancer survivors who reveal how it is in the best interest of the multi-billion dollar medical industry to dismiss the notion of alternative and natural cures. Some of the topics in this film: Gerson Therapy, cancer, dental amalgam, mercury, fluoride, GSM, and aspartame.

 

 

 

The Gerson Miracle

A cure for cancer and most other chronic and degenerative diseases has been available since 1928. The therapy was developed by Max Gerson, MD, a German Jewish physician, hailed by Nobel Laureate Albert Schweitzer as, “the most brilliant medical genius ever.”

This film, The Gerson Miracle (2004),  examines many of the elements of the Gerson Therapy, and explains how and why it has been healing the most advanced cases of cancer for over 75 years using Nature’s own materials and processes.

Nine Gerson patients relate stories of recovery from the most deadly cancers (liver, ovarian, pancreatic) up to nineteen years ago. Their inspiring testimonies are powerful evidence of the Therapy’s effectiveness. Charlotte Gerson also describes her lifelong efforts to keep the Therapy alive despite powerful opposition. (Excerpt from the website of the Gerson Institute)