During my research into health, nutrition and disease prevention, I came across many “truths” preached by the alternative and conventional medicine fields.
Luckily, I’ve learned that you can’t take anything at face value. You have to dig deeper, ask more questions, and get the real truth. And boy have I found some doozies.
Let’s get to it:
I talked about this in another post. It’s almost a universally accepted, unquestioned truth in the natural medicine community that “cancer cannot survive in an alkaline environment”.
This is true, actually. But, and that’s a big but, food cannot alter the pH of your blood.
Researchers found that in vitro (test tubes and petri dishes), that cancer cells died when exposed to alkaline elements.
But that’s in a test tube. Cancer lives in or near blood, and blood pH is a different story.
Your blood’s pH is tightly regulated to 7.4 – anything below or above that is life-threatening. Alkaline “remedies” won’t move your blood’s pH needle.
So it looks like it’s time to put down the alkaline water.
Eating 3 Times a Day
They say “breakfast is the most important meal of the day”, but the research says otherwise.
By now you’ve probably heard of intermittent fasting (IF). IF reduces inflammation, helps you lose weight, restores insulin sensitivity, recycles old cells, and repairs gene expression. The 2016 Nobel Prize was even awarded for discoveries of IF’s main benefit – autophagy.
Autophagy is an amazing system the body uses during a fasted state. When you’re fasting, it stresses the body out a little bit, and signals the body to initiate autophagy.
Once initiated, autophagy recycles old cells, creates new ones, and corrects mutated gene expression. If these old, dead cells aren’t cleared out and genes stay mutated, they can cause a whole bunch of bad stuff to happen – including cancer.
And if you think about it, this makes sense from an evolutionary point of view. Our ancestors likely didn’t have enough food to eat 3 meals a day, 7 days a week, like clockwork. Our bodies adapted so it could repair itself in times of food scarcity.
Many natural cancer treatments like the Gerson protocol, and nutrition-junkies in general, sing the praises of juicing in an effort to “overdose on nutrition”.
But, juicing can have negative effects.
This is because when you juice, you’re removing much-needed fiber from your fruits and veggies. Fiber is essential for proper gut health, cancer prevention, maintaining a healthy weight, and preventing diabetes.
This may not be as big of a deal with veggies. But it is with fruit, because they have more sugar.
You’re basically processing the fruit to not only extract all the nutrition, but the sugar too. And without fiber, that sugar is being absorbed very quickly – possibly leading to insulin resistance and inflammation, two of the things most health nuts like me are trying to avoid.
Think of it this way – you probably know not to eat white bread, right? That’s because white bread gets its fiber stripped away during processing, making those carbs super easy to absorb.
Why do the same thing with fruit?
Fighting Cancer by Not Eating Sugar
Some cancers can even become more aggressive when deprived of sugar (glucose), and fatty acids can also feed cancer, so there’s no macronutrient that cancer cannot use. But cancer does seem to prefer some macronutrients over others.
Thinking Frozen Fruit Has No Nutritional Value
I’m guilty of this one.
Frozen fruit does actually lose some nutrient content during processing. But, “Fruits and vegetables that will be frozen are generally picked at peak ripeness, when they’re the most nutritious” – making them still incredibly nutritious.
Eating Like Our Ancestors
The trouble with eating Paleo or any other ancestral diet, is that there’s no universal ancestral diet.
Our Stone Age ancestors ate differently based on where they lived and what they had available.
Most had fruits and vegetables and we adapted well to eat such foods – they became functional and essential for human health. Sometimes they could get their hands on meat, sometimes not. They usually didn’t eat meat 3 times a day, 7 days a week.
The Paleo diet also doesn’t take into account any adaptations our bodies have made since the Stone Age. For instance, recent lactose tolerance mutations in Europeans.
Trusting Doctors to Know How You Should Eat
They usually don’t, unfortunately. The sad fact is that doctors usually only get less than 20 hours of nutrition training over 4 years.
Since I got diagnosed with cancer, I came across many science-backed causes of cancer – processed meats, alcohol, stress, and more. All things that were a part of my life.
Unfortunately, my oncologist didn’t ask me any questions about my stress level or what I’ve been consuming in recent years. You’d think a doctor would want to get to the bottom of things, find out the root cause of why you got cancer. I know sometimes it’s hard to tell because there are so many factors, but I think a doctor should still at least be curious.
Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate doctors – they saved my life. But my personal opinion is that they are excellent at some things, but not at others. Surgery and other procedures? Yeah, they’re a boss at those. Cancer treatment and nutrition? They have some work to do.
Our hospitals are getting way too big. Many diseases, including cancer, are preventable by nutrition and lifestyle. Yet those diseases are what brings in revenue for hospitals, pays doctors, and makes patients’ lives financial hell for those diagnosed.
I hope this article helps you stay healthy for many years to come. Knowing the truth about these myths can help you stay out the hospital and have a critical mind about nutritional advice, no matter where it comes from – including me.