The soil determines the fate of the seed.
The seeds of cancers’ potential return are sown early in the original tumor’s development.
According to the Scripps Research Institute: “A considerable body of evidence indicates that tumor cells are shed from a preliminary tumor’s mass at the earliest stages of malignant progression.” – a link is provided at the end of this post. The cells that escape from the primary tumor and settle down at a secondary site are called circulating tumor cells (CTCs).
Circulating tumor cells are escaping from the primary tumor before the tumor is even first detected. Dissemination of these seeds is an early event. These circulating tumor cells are the seeds of metastasis (spread of cancer).
This may seem like a harsh truth to talk about. However, I have found that what cancer sojourners seek most is truth.
Cancer is harsh. Truth is liberating.
Knowing that these seeds are circulating in your body gives the impetus to take the steps needed for prevention. Prevention requires discipline that may seem difficult; but, prevention is far more preferable than going through treatment again.
The harsh truth is: The seeds of cancer remain after remission.
The liberating truth is: These seeds can be neutralized and eliminated.
To do this you must change the terrain!
Ann Chambers, an oncologist at the London Regional Cancer Program in Canada states that circulating tumor cells are “merely seeds.” “To develop they must find the appropriate soil.”
Chambers says that these circulating tumor cells can get into all sorts of places, but to grow they need to find a good match with the growth factors they need – the right soil for metastasis.
Medical and scientific research support Chamber’s theory. She refers to the “soil”, others refer to it as the “terrain” or the “microenvironment.”
In his best-selling book, Anticancer, A New Way of Life, David Servan-Schreiber, M.D., PhD stresses the importance of the “terrain.” “In order to avoid a relapse over the long term, the terrain must be changed: diet corrected, mental attitude altered, and body strengthened by exercise,” he emphasizes.
The American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) in Stopping Cancer indicates that by changes in dietary and lifestyle factors cancer can be prevented.
Where should you start? What action can you take to prevent metastasis?
The AICR endorses a dietary change of limiting refined sugar and highly processed foods. All current medical and scientific research supports this recommendation. Of course, there is not any scientific research that recommends more sugar? You know sugar is bad for you; but, do you know how bad it really is? Unquestionably, it is a root cause of making your “terrain” or “soil” fertile for cancer. This is the soil that circulating tumor cells seek.
Craig G Thompson, M.D., president of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, and leading cancer researcher, believes that many pre-cancer cells turn into malignant tumors because of the signals provided by the high levels of insulin and insulin growth factor that are caused by insulin resistance.
Insulin resistance is caused by refined sugar and highly processed foods.
You may not be familiar with insulin resistance; however, it is extremely important to understand that current medical and scientific research point to insulin resistance as a necessary part of the “soil” needed to germinate the “seeds” of cancer. The villain that causes most insulin resistance is sugar and highly processed foods.
In the bestselling book, The Blood Sugar Solution, Mark Hyman, MD states several times that mild insulin resistance is the leading cause of heart disease, dementia, and cancer. In his words, “This means that it is almost 100% preventable and curable.” An almost 100% reduction in risk factor certainly makes it worthwhile to know how to make the dietary and lifestyle changes needed to halt cancer, its relapse, and metastasis.
A soil that is almost 100% hostile to circulating tumor cells is worth pursuing.
A soil that supports healthy, vigilant immune cells, operating at their optimum, will stop circulating tumor cells from being able to metastasize (to form a cancerous tumor).
The next few posts will detail how to prevent insulin resistance. You must take this step to restore the health of your immune system.
For additional information, I recommend the following articles: Metastasis: The rude awakening (Nature); Circulating Tumor Cells (Scripps Research Institute); Anticancer, A New Way of Life, by David Servan-Schreiber, MD, PhD; The Blood Sugar Solution, by Mark Hyman, MD; and, Stopping Cancer , The American Institute for Cancer Research.