Conventional cancer treatments are based on the belief that cancer starts as a localized tumor, spreading to other parts of the body, and therefore requiring aggressive invasive treatments. Alternative or unconventional cancer treatments, on the other hand, are based on the belief that a healthy body with a healthy mind is capable of utilizing the immune system to destroy cancerous cells.
Individuals who seek unconventional cancer treatments are those whose health has not improved with conventional treatments, or those who are in the early stage of the disease and who are well educated and informed in alternative medicine. Of course, there are some patients who choose both conventional and unconventional treatments simultaneously.
Nowadays, there is an array of alternative cancer treatments to choose from, including diet, metabolic therapy, and cancer psychotherapy, among others.
The relation of diet and disease is best expressed in terms of the Oriental concept of “yin” and “yang.” The Oriental approach to cancer treatment is very different from that of Western medicine, which focuses on a different biological understanding of the disease, often involving aggressive and invasive procedures to kill, remove, or transform the cancerous cells. The Oriental way, on the other hand, focuses on the overall well-being of an individual, attained by a balanced diet, using “yin” and “yang” foods to balance and complement each other.
For centuries, the Chinese have observed the importance of balance and harmony, which is manifested in the wholesome wellness of an individual. The concept of balance and harmony of “yin” and “yang” is central not only to the Chinese healing methods that use foods and herbs as medicine, but also to the Chinese way of eating and living. The “yin” and “yang” diet is a healthy diet that focuses on the basic principles of foods to restore balance and eliminate imbalance – which is the cause of disease.
Metabolic therapy is based on the concept of detoxification and rejuvenation. Toxins from foods and the environment, and free radicals produced through oxidation processes in the body contribute to cellular stress that causes cancer.
Detoxification is achieved through fasting and other means, such as liver detoxification. After detoxification, the treatment is followed by a vegetarian diet that focuses on raw “live” foods and fresh vegetable juices, to the exclusion of sugar, all white flour products, processed foods, and alcohol.
In addition, vitamins, such as vitamins A, C and E, are used as antioxidants against cellular damage due to radicals. Very often mega doses of vitamins C, are taken in conjunction with proteolytic enzymes to treat cancer. The cancer tumor shields itself from anticancer agents by forming a fibrous coating. However, proteolytic enzymes can digest this protective fibrous coating, and thus instrumental in allowing the body’s white blood cells to attack the cancer.
Cancer psychotherapy is based on the concept that effects of emotional stress can suppress immunity, and thus lowering resistance to cancer. Given that emotional factors play a pivotal role in causing cancer, the remedy is to change the personality through psychotherapy.
Visualization or mental imagery is also used to influence the immune system in cancer treatment. Mental imagery is a self-help technique for the cancer patient who is under stress. Using the mind as a tool to heal cancer may be a starter for other treatments.
Psychological techniques also include deep relaxation and hypnosis. However, most psychological techniques do not replace standard medical procedures; rather, they are used in conjunction with conventional cancer therapies, such as radiation.
Both conventional and unconventional cancer treatments have their pros and cons. Cancer treatment option is a personal choice. Prevention is better than cure. Cancer is a very complex disease, and there are many factors contributing to the disease. Just remember that your lifestyle and the environment play an important role in the development of cancer.