Cancer

The world of natural cancer treatment options is changing every day with promising new developments and breakthrough treatments. Stay on top of all the latest news right here on the NorthStar blog on cancer.

  1. Does Coffee Cause Cancer? Busting 7 Common Cancer Myths

    Cancer MythsHave you ever noticed that some myths about cancer just don’t go away?

    Like the common question I hear almost every week, “will drinking coffee give me cancer?”

    They may die down a bit, but inevitably, they resurface with the next generation. I’m sure you've heard most of these theories before – and may even believe some yourself.

    But, after reading this article, you’ll see that you can do things like drink coffee – safely, and without increasing your risk of cancer.

    Today, we’re putting that – and 6 other cancer myths – to rest once and for all.

    1.  Cancer is contagious. It’s amazing how widespread this particular cancer myth is, even in this day and age. Unlike bacteria, which can survive outside of your body long enough to infect someone else, cancer cells cannot continue to exist outside of their “host.” Being in contact with a person who has cancer presents absolutely no risk to you.

    2.  Living in a polluted city will give you lung cancer. This myth probably stems from smokers who live in cities looking for a reason not to quit smoking. The rationalization is that, since living in a polluted city will give them lung cancer anyway, they might as well keep smoking. However, the truth is much different. While living in heavily polluted cities increases other health risks, such as asthma or emphysema, the risk of lung cancer is nowhere close to that faced by smokers. Living in a polluted city only increases a person’s risk of getting lung cancer by 1%, versus the risk from smoking. In other words, no matter how bad the smog, it’s still better than smoke.

    3.  Microwaving plastic gives you cancer. It’s easy and convenient to reheat your lunch in a plastic food storage container – but is it safe? Turns out, if the container is labelled as “microwave safe” then it won’t cause cancer. Same goes for reheating food under plastic wrap. It’s true that when plastic is burned, it releases a dioxin that causes cancer – but the plastic must actually be burned, not just warmed up. Since microwaves don’t burn plastic, your food – and you – aren’t exposed to harmful toxins.

    4.  Wearing an underwire bra can cause breast cancer. Somewhere along the line, word got around that wearing underwire bras constricted the lymph nodes in a woman’s breast, causing toxins to build up in her lymph system Which would then turn into cancer. This is patently false. It is neither how bras work, nor is it how cancer cells are formed – and yet this cancer myth remains. However, there is no link between the type, or tightness, of a bra and breast cancer.

    5.  Cellphone use causes cancer. On the surface, this cancer myth at least seems to make sense. Holding a cellphone to your ear – and having all those radio waves near your brain – seems suspect, and possibly dangerous. However, according to the largest study ever done, cellphones are perfectly safe. The study ran from the 1980s through 2000, and followed 420,000 cellphone users without finding any correlation between cellphone use and cancer.

    6.  Hair dye causes cancer. This cancer myth at least had a basis in fact at one point. Hair dyes that were used prior to 1980 contained chemicals that very well might have increased the risk of cancer. However, since that time, hair coloring products have changed drastically. Modern products are safer, and no longer increase the risk of cancer, even with prolonged, individual use.

    7.  Drinking coffee causes cancer. And finally, back in 1981, a study came out that stated drinking coffee caused pancreatic cancer, and a myth was born. Since then, however, several further studies have shown that to be incorrect. If anything, some of those studies indicated that drinking coffee might actually help reduce the incidence of cancer in some people.

    Even the threat of cancer can be scary, and we won’t deny it. But it doesn't have to be as scary as the cancer myths, rumors, and innuendo would have you believe. It’s okay to be a little skeptical. It’s okay to do your own homework. Learn for yourself if coffee – or any of these other 6 things – cause cancer. A little knowledge can mean a lot of power.

  2. Will Afreeza have you “inhaling cancer”?

    It looks like MannKind Corporation might have a shiny new superstar on its hands. The drug company’s new darling, inhalable diabetes drug Afrezza, certainly looks like a blockbuster waiting to happen.

    It’s got it all, a novel new delivery system (“Look Ma, no needles!”), 25 million potential customers in the United States alone, and—best of all—a brand spanking new “APPROVED”stamp courtesy of the folks over at the Food and Drug Administration.

    You might even say Afrezzas future’s so bright MannKind has got to wear shades.

    But even as investors don party hats, and MannKind breaks out the bubbly, there’s a dark side to Afrezza. An ugly monster lurks in the shadows, and no one wants to talk about it.

    The potential side effects from taking Afrezza are so serious that it’s earned itself a black box warning from the FDA.

    It’s just too bad that black boxes don’t amount to a hill of beans these days.

    Shocked? Don’t be. There was a time when a black box on your label—the most serious warning the FDA can give—was like the kiss-of-death for a new drug. But lucky for MannKind (and unlucky for us) their effectiveness has faded away like a photo left out in the sun too long.

    These days most docs pay little attention to them. Some just ignore them altogether. Top-selling diabetes drug, metformin (Glucophage), carried a black box warning for years. It never hurt sales.

    Blockbusters Warfarin, Abilify, Cipro and even over-the-counter Tylenol are all currently sporting their own ineffective black boxes. And really it’s no wonder. Despite the name, a black box warning amounts to nothing more than an easily-overlooked thin black line drawn around some words on the label.

     Afrezza may be bad news for your lungs

    Afrezza’s black box has to do with the drug’s link to potential breathing problems. The FDA…you know the keystone cops who just gave Afrezza their blessing…has admitted that the drug’s tied to a decline in lung function.

    In fact, Afrezza is linked with potential bronchial spasms similar to those seen with asthma! In some patients the coughing became so bad they stopped treatment. And the drugs prescribing information warns if you have asthma, COPD, are a smoker, or have recently quit smoking, Afrezza’s definitely NOT for you.

    And then there are the questions about just how well the drug actually works.

    In a head-to-head test with injected insulin Novolog, Afrezza didn’t lower blood sugar as well. It also did worse at achieving less than 7 percent or 6.5 percent A1c (an important measure of how well you’re managing your diabetes), and the mean fasting blood glucose level decrease was higher in Afrezza takers.

    But there’s something worse lurking in those shadows…much, MUCH worse. To understand what that is we have to take a look at the history of inhalable diabetes drugs.

    In 2006 Pfizer, another member of the Big Pharma posse, got approval for their own inhaled insulin drug. But Pfizer ended up pulling the product off the market because sales were so poor. (And drug giants Eli Lilly and Novo NorDisk dropped their development of inhaled insulin as well.)

    But wait, what gives? An inhalable diabetes drug seems like a sure winner, right?

    Inhaled insulins could come with a cancer risk

    Well it probably would be if the drug’s potential side effects weren’t worse than the disease it’s being prescribed to treat. It turns out inhaling insulin directly into your lungs may not be such a hot idea after all. You see, insulin is a growth factor which is why Pfizer’s drug was associated with a higher risk of lung cancer.

    Now it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that any other inhaled insulin could come with the same concern.

    Heck, even the numbskulls at the FDA managed to figure that one out. They essentially admitted as much, when they suggested (yup, just a friendly “suggestion”since this is only lung cancer were talking about here) two post-market studies to evaluate Afrezza’s lung cancer risk.

    You know what another name for post-market studies is? Human experimentation, because, let’s face it, that’s exactly what they are. Post-market studies turn US into human guinea pigs, and the cost could be your life.

    I don’t have a crystal ball, so I can’t say for sure what Afrezza’s future holds. Whether or not it’s a blockbuster success for MannKind, and whether or not more serious risks will be revealed in the future, only time will tell.

    But what I can say for sure is that the novelty of a new drug is never worth submitting to being a lab rat. And if your doctor tries to strong-arm you into becoming the next Afrezza guinea pig it’s time to find yourself a new doc, no matter how loudly the old one squeals.

  3. Coca-Cola Life introduced as soda sales plummet

    It’s working! We've got Big Soda -- including new Coca-Cola Life -- on the run, and without a single Nanny State law in sight. All it took was ordinary people like you and me speaking with our wallets. In the last nine years soda sales in the U.S. have plummeted. And that slide has sped up. Last year alone sales dropped 3 percent, more than double the drop from the year before—and for good reason. Continue reading →
  4. Shocking sleeping pill side effects force changes

    In case you’re keeping score, the FDA has been caught asleep at the wheel yet again. After ten years of being on the market, they’ve finally admitted that for more than 11 hours after taking Lunesta, the sleeping pill's side effects may severely impair a user’s memory, coordination and ability to perform everyday tasks. You know… tasks like driving a two-ton car down the same highway your child’s school bus takes.
  5. Is Monsanto’s Roundup Ready GMO soy making you sick?

    I’m what you’d call a conspiracy realist. While I don’t go off on wild goose chases, I DO believe in following the evidence, no matter where it leads me—even if that happens to be smack dab into the heart of a so-called “conspiracy.” After all, you know what they say, “Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you.” And when it comes to the nightmare that is Roundup Ready GMO soy, despite cries of paranoia from the mainstream press, I’ve been warning you about the growing evidence of risk for years.
  6. Health benefits of almonds: The perfect snack food?

    If you’re a regular reader of the Guide to Good Health you know I’m a firm believer in the power of nuts (being a health nut myself!). These delicious nutrition-packed wonders can do everything from boosting your energy levels to helping head off heart problems and fight cancer. In fact, according to one study, just 30 grams of nuts a day (a modest handful) could significantly reduce your stroke risk. A half a cup of mixed nuts a day drove down the blood sugar and cholesterol levels in a group of type-2 diabetics. And the vitamin E found in many nuts may help slash your risk of deadly pancreatic cancer. Now, a stack of new research on the health benefits of almonds—presented at the American Society of Nutrition Scientific Sessions and Annual Meeting in San Diego late last month—points to almonds as a way to help ward off obesity, metabolic issues, and heart problems.

    Better blood sugar with almonds

    A study of over 24,800 adults found that people who eat almonds tend to make better diet choices and have better overall health than non-almond eaters. And in a crossover, randomized clinical trial on the health benefits of almonds, overweight pregnant women who snacked on 2 ounces of almonds felt fuller… and as a result had a reduced appetite. In another analysis on the health benefits of almonds performed at Purdue University, researchers showed that people who eat 1.5 ounces of dry-roasted, lightly-salted almonds daily have better appetite control and healthier blood sugar levels, as well as higher vitamin E and monounsaturated healthy fat intake, than those who skip the healthy snack. But it gets even better with some real world results. The daily almond eaters, who were all at risk for type 2 diabetes, were also able to maintain healthy weight levels despite the fact that they had increased their calorie intake by 250 extra calories a day! And in yet another study, 52 adults with high cholesterol were able to reduce belly fat and slash their risk of heart and metabolic problems just by eating a modest serving (1.5 ounces) of almonds every day.
  7. Vitamin D deficiency could be deadly

    Barely a month goes by when we don’t see yet one more unfounded attack on a vital vitamin or necessary nutrient. It’s become so predictable you can practically set your watch by it. They won’t be satisfied until supplements are removed from the picture completely—and along with them, your freedom to choose. This time it’s vitamin D that’s been placed on the chopping block, a nutrient critical to combatting bone loss, cancer, heart disease, depression, weight gain, inflammation and very likely diabetes, autism, dementia, autoimmune diseases, chronic pain, high blood pressure, and more. In fact, this vitamin is SO critical to our health and wellbeing that frankly this latest review trashing this valuable vitamin—published in the April issue of the British Medical Journal (BMJ)—is downright irresponsible. Even worse, when you consider how many of us have a dangerously low vitamin D deficiency, taking the researcher’s conclusions seriously could be as good as signing your own death warrant. According to the researchers, “Despite a few hundred systematic reviews and meta-analyses, highly convincing evidence of a clear role of vitamin D does not exist for any outcome…” Nonsense! Besides, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that BAD science is going to lead to BAD results. And in the case of this BMJ-published “umbrella review,” they should have seen the bad coming from a mile away. Since the researchers chose to include flawed and poorly executed studies in the mix, it really isn’t surprising that the conclusions they reached are essentially rubbish, too.

    Vitamin D deficiency seriously bad for your health

    Let’s take a closer look at what research has already proven about vitamin D. But we’ll have to just hit some of the highlights, because we’d literally be here all day if I tried to cover EVERYTHING that D is good for. To begin with, despite its poor execution, the umbrella review in question still showed around an 11 percent drop in death risk for those taking a D supplement. In fact, study after study has shown us the value of this vitamin, demonstrating what a deficiency of D can lead to... starting with trouble for your ticker. In a seven-year collaboration, researchers from the University of Colorado and Massachusetts General Hospital uncovered evidence linking heart disease and vitamin D deficiency in men and women 65 or older. Seniors with the lowest levels of D were three times more likely to die from heart disease. And those volunteers who had a vitamin D deficiency at the start of the study were 2.5 times more likely to have died from ANY cause by the end of it. Now a new study confirms that if your vitamin D blood levels fall below 20 ng/mL (or 50 nmol/l), your risk of heart disease shoots up by a third. Even worse, if your levels dip into the dangerously low 10 ng/mL area, your risk for atherosclerosis (the hardening and narrowing of your arteries) doubles! But your heart isn’t the only organ that craves D: your brain is a big fan too. In fact, over the years research has linked D deficiencies to Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and even depression. And just last year, an animal study—published in the journal Free Radical Biology and Medicine—showed us just how critical the vitamin is to cognitive performance and memory.

    D doesn’t just target organ health either… it’s a whole-body elixir that could help to both keep cancer at bay,and drive down your diabetes risk.

    Vitamin D targets whole body health

    Studies have shown an association between vitamin D and cancer risk, and many experts agree that the vitamin likely offers some protection against a variety of cancers including breast, colon, prostate and bladder cancers. Even mainstream medicine organizations, like The National Cancer Institute, agree that there’s epidemiological evidence linking adequate D levels to a reduced risk. Research has also revealed that vitamin D could play an important role in preventing diabetes. For example, a Tufts University study found that higher concentrations of D are associated with a lower diabetes risk. And then there’s the meta-analysis of more than 100,000 people that sheds some light on how it is that D may be driving down diabetes risk. Blood work from 28 different studies revealed that those men and women with the highest D levels tended to avoid the dreaded collection of pre-diabetes symptoms… including high blood pressure, high fasting blood sugars, low HDL cholesterol, high triglycerides, and a large belly... that are commonly known as metabolic syndrome. The truth is that a vitamin D deficiency and diabetes link is so promising that even the mainstream medicine drones couldn’t ignore it anymore. Late last year the VERY mainstream National Institutes of Health (NIH) finally decided to fund a large-scale clinical trial to explore the effects of D on the disease. And those really are just a few of the D highlights. There are literally hundreds of studies linking D to good health. The evidence is so vast that public health guidelines here in the United States, as well as those in many other countries, recognize the critical importance of maintaining healthy D levels. Unfortunately, their D recommendations are entirely too low. That’s why up to 90 percent of us may be walking… or dragging… around with a vitamin D deficiency. Besides trying to spend a little bit of time every day outside in the sunshine, I typically recommend taking 2,000 to 4,000 IU of vitamin D3 daily. Your doctor can run a simple blood test to figure out what your current levels are.
  8. Actos side effects: Dodge this deadly diabetes drug

    The potentially deadly side effects from prescription diabetes drug Actos is liable to cost you a heck of a lot more than just your copay. But the “bill” might not arrive for a couple of years. Oh, and instead of cash you could be paying for it with your life. Now this isn’t the first time you’ve seen me lose my cool over a potentially dangerous diabetes drug… far from it, in fact. But the inexcusable—not to mention immoral—actions of two drug companies… and the blood that appears to be on their hands… has me positively fuming once again. Let me back up just a bit to set the sickening stage. I started warning you about the diabetes drug Actos side effects years ago. It was around this same time of year way back in 2011 that the drug’s maker, Takeda Pharmaceuticals, sent out some pumped up, over-the-top news releases about new research showing that their star of the drug stable, Actos, wasn’t just good for diabetics, it was also good for anyone with elevated blood sugars. They claimed Actos may be able to keep you from ever becoming diabetic. In other words, we should start force feeding this stuff to pre-diabetics too.

    Actos linked to bladder cancer

    Think that’s a bad idea? With stroke, heart failure, trouble breathing, liver problems, bone fractures and cancer (!) eventually finding themselves onto the list of potential Actos side effects, you’re absolutely right it IS a bad idea. In fact, it may be one of the worst ideas EVER. That didn’t stop the New York Times and Time magazine from jumping right on the Actos bandwagon, devoting valuable editorial space to coverage of the drug. But while they were reporting on the “astounding” results showing that Actos “reduces your risk of diabetes by 72 percent!” they totally missed the HUGE elephant standing smack dab in the center of the room. (Or ignored it to tell a more sensational story…you pick.) These findings were based on what amounts to a difference of 35 people. Yes, they were actually proposing that millions of pre-diabetics start popping a potentially risky drug essentially based on 35 people. Click here to read the rest of the ridiculous story here on the NorthStar Blog. Now, skip forward in time a couple of months and the Actos story really started to crumble. As I reported to you at that time, a study analyzing adverse event reports had linked the drug (not for the first time) to bladder cancer in what researchers called a “definite risk.” But the study was soft pedaled, and the news made barely a blip in the American mainstream media. Outside of the United States, countries like France, Germany and India reacted to the shocking cancer news by banning the drug (what I would call a reasonable response). And what did the FDA do? They had the company bury a bladder cancer warning in the labeling insert. (Surprise, surprise.) But I’m willing to bet if you’re already taking this drug you’ve never even noticed that warning, because, let’s be honest, how many of us get out a magnifying glass and actually read all that tiny type? Heck, many doctors aren’t even aware of the cancer connection. Fewer still bother to mention Actos side effects to their patients when prescribing it. And that finally brings me to the news that has steam coming out of my ears today.

    Dangerous Actos side effects kept secret

    A jury has just awarded a bladder-cancer sufferer, and victim of Actos side effects, a huge sum of money for punitive damages, effectively ruling that Takeda Pharmaceuticals and their marketing partner Eli Lilly purposefully withheld vital—potentially life-saving—information about the drug’s cancer risks. And information wasn’t just withheld, files were actually destroyed in what I dare say any sane person would likely see as an attempt cover things up. In fact, the judge in the case said, “The breadth of Takeda leadership whose files have been lost, deleted or destroyed is, in and of itself, disturbing.” Not only did the companies know about the link between their superstar drug and bladder cancer, it would appear that they’ve known about it at least since 2000… eleven years before that weak warning limped its way into the drug’s literature! But that’s not the only thing those rats in suits may have been hiding. According to one brave whistleblower—a former employee of Takeda—the company was likely well aware of at least some of those other serious Actos side effects I mentioned earlier, too. And who knows how many people are now suffering with heart disease or cancer as a result. Or worse, have lost their battles. Sure, we all know that profits before people is practically a mantra in the halls of Big Pharma, but seeing just how far they’re willing to go in pursuit of the almighty dollar, somehow still has the power to shock and anger me. Click here for some advice on how to tackle diabetes without ever going near Actos, or any other potentially dangerous diabetes drug.
  9. Foods with trans fat may increase breast cancer risk by 40 percent

    Make sure you only use real butter (or olive oil) on the turkey this Thanksgiving. Skip the margarine or any foods with trans fat. Researchers from the University of North Caroline recently figured something out about foods with trans fat like margarine -- they‘re bad for you! They may even contribute to the development of breast cancer. For the study, UNC researchers extracted fat samples from 698 European women between the ages of 50 and 74. They found women with the highest amount of trans fats in their cells had a 40 percent greater chance of developing breast cancer than other women. Plus, women who consumed the most trans fats and the fewest polyunsaturated fats (such as those found in fish) were three and a half times likelier to develop breast cancer than their healthy counterparts. The researchers even accounted for other risk factors, such as smoking, weight, and family history of cancer. And still -- they found a 40 percent increase in risk. In fact, it‘s the first study ever to connect the dots between trans fats and breast cancer in women. But it doesn‘t surprise me in the least. Nutritionists like me have been preaching against foods with trans fat for decades. Foods with trans fat include French fries, baked goods, processed snack foods, and margarine. Trans fats are made by adding hydrogen atoms to the fat molecules to make them denser. This raises the melting point of the fat, so that it remains solid at room temperature. Hence, the Crisco and margarine stay solid sitting on your countertop and only melt when thoroughly heated. Foods with trans fat became popular in the U.S. because they don‘t spoil as quickly as regular fats. These products can sit longer on the shelf. That said, a lot of products now tell you if they‘re trans fat free. But the ones that still do contain them often try to hide the fact. They mislead you and tell you their product contains olive oil or DHA. So read all labels carefully. Skip anything that contains any amount of trans fats. Also, keep an eye out for "hydrogenated" or "partially hydrogenated" oils. These are also forms of trans fat.
  10. Prostate health: Don’t become the next victim

    You know what the definition of insanity is, right? It’s doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results. And by that definition, all too often the mainstream approach to medicine strays across the line into insanity. There’s no better example of this than its treatment of prostate health and prostate cancer. Let’s face it, no matter how much of a stoic you are, when you hear the word cancer come out of your doctor’s mouth, it’s like someone dropped a bomb on you. Your head starts spinning and alarm bells begin blaring at full blast. Trust me, I get it. But, the problem is, when it comes to prostate cancer, mainstream medicine has hijacked this natural fear response and turned it into a multi-billion-dollar industry. And countless men are paying a price that goes far beyond dollars and cents (hmm, or maybe that ought to be “dollars and sense”?).

    Impotent and in diapers

    As I’ve explained before, you’re far more likely to die WITH prostate cancer than FROM it. Most prostate cancers are incredibly slow growing, and aren’t a threat to your life. Well, that is until you become the next victim of unnecessarily aggressive mainstream therapies. And becoming a victim is far too easy because, let’s face it, once you hear those terrible words “You’ve got cancer,” one of your first coherent thoughts is likely to be, “What can I do to get rid of it?!?” That’s why I’ve never been a fan of yearly PSA testing. Too many hasty and poor decisions follow in its wake. The twin epidemics of over-screening and over-diagnosis have ruined far too many lives. I shudder to think how many men have been left impotent or in diapers because of a slow-growing tumor that they may never have even known existed for the rest of their long and fulfilling lives. Statistically speaking, by the time we hit fifty, half of us will be experiencing some type of prostate health problems. If you’re finding it hard to sleep through the night without a potty run… or if you’ve taken to mapping out all the rest spots before a road trip these days… you might already be in that group. If you’re lucky enough to reach eighty… and as a Guide to Good Health reader I’m sure you will… then it’s practically a done deal that you’ll be sharing your life with an enlarged prostate.

    Support your prostate health with supplements

    But I’ve got great news! You DON’T have to just grimace and bear it while you make yet another mad dash to the can. There IS another way, and it doesn’t involve risky surgeries or sickening rounds of radiation. If you’re not already experiencing prostate health problems, you may be able to head them off at the pass. And if your prostate has begun to make its presence known, you can tackle those annoying symptoms with some super support brought to you courtesy of nature. A mix of just the right herbs and supplements may even assure you of never again missing the ending of a movie, or having to deal with your buddies ribbing when you have to holdup the poker game for yet another bathroom break. Ready to learn the “secret formula” for a healthy and happy prostate? My team at NorthStar Nutritionals helped me create a killer infographic detailing the 10 Best Supplements for Prostate Health that you NEED to know. Click here to find out what they are. (I bet you’ll be surprised by a couple of them.)
  11. Intravenous vitamin C kills cancer cells and extends lives

    A group of brave researchers at the University of Kentucky Medical Center just dropped a bomb on the medical mainstream. They announced that common vitamin C can kill cancer cells, and that some cancer patients can benefit from high-dose intravenous vitamin C therapy. Not only that, the researchers say that the antioxidant appears to also reduce some of the most devastating and toxic side effects of conventional chemotherapy drugs. As you can imagine, the mainstream is reeling from the news. After all, in their view, nutrition-based therapies like vitamin C may as well be Voodoo. Now to be fair, the Kentucky-based scientist’s announcement really shouldn’t have been that much of a bomb, since their findings are right in line with an ever-growing stack of small, but strong, pro-C studies over the years. In fact, you’ve read about some of them right here in the Guide to Good Health. Not to mention there’s a virtual ton of first hand experiences by doctors who have been using intravenous vitamin C to treat their cancer patients since the 70s, as well as the cancer-patients who have reaped the benefits.

    Vitamin C was blacklisted based on bogus trials

    But mainstream medicine is kind of like a spoiled child with his fingers stuck firmly in his ears. Tell a conventional medicine doc that vitamin C has the potential to kill cancer cells and he’ll respond with, “What’s that? Sorry I can’t hear you. My fingers are in my ears.” But wait, all those doctors must have a good reason for refusing to give this life-saving therapy a try, right? Sadly, that’s just not the case. And wait until you hear what the actual reason is. Incredibly, intravenous vitamin C was blacklisted based on some unsuccessful clinical trials on ORAL vitamin C. Yes, countless people have suffered through (and perhaps even lost) their fights with cancer while the mainstream has turned its back on a perfectly safe, and potentially life-saving therapy, based on irrelevant clinical trials! Even a child could tell you that vitamin C sent directly into a vein is not the same thing as swallowing a pill. Oral doses of the water soluble vitamin could NEVER reach the same concentrations as an intravenous dose can.

    Cancer patients lived longer and better with vitamin C

    Thankfully, the University of Kentucky researchers must have smelled something rotten in Denmark. Despite the blacklisting, they felt intravenous vitamin C was still worth another look. In the lab, they were able to prove that the vitamin does indeed kill human cancer cells. Next they showed that high doses of intravenous vitamin C inhibited the growth of tumors… and in some cases even shrank them… in mice with ovarian cancer. And then it was on to that all-important human trial. The clinical trial tracked 27 volunteers who had just been diagnosed with stage-III or stage-IV ovarian cancer.  Each of the patients received either one of two conventional chemotherapy drugs.  But some of the volunteers were also given high doses of intravenous vitamin C. And the results were stunning. Well, stunning, that is, to the mainstream, anyway. For the rest of us they were impressive, but entirely expected. Those volunteers who had received the intravenous vitamin C experienced significantly less of the notoriously nasty side effects of chemo. There was less toxicity to the brain, bone marrow, and major organs. Not only that, the volunteers who got the intravenous vitamin C also lived nearly 9 months longer than those who didn’t get the therapy! In other words, they lived both better AND longer. So it’s official. Intravenous vitamin C helps kill cancer cells, and we even know why. According to study co-author Dr. Jeanne Drisko, “Vitamin C in the bloodstream helps kill cancer cells because it chemically converts into hydrogen peroxide when it interacts with tumors.” When you raise your C levels up high enough—as you do with intravenous therapy—the vitamin slips into the spaces around the cancer cells and does essentially what your white blood cells typically do… beat the cancer into submission. And unlike harsh chemo drugs it leaves the healthy cells unharmed.
    Are you listening mainstream? It’s time to take those fingers out of your ears!
  12. Compound found in grape seed extract kills cancer cells

    One of my favorite fruits is making health headlines again. Or at least its seeds are. A study on grape seed extract for cancer published in the journal Nutrition and Cancer found that an active component in grape seed extract can kill cancer cells on contact. If you’re a long time NorthStar blog or Guide to Guide Health reader you may recall that way back in 2009 I told you about grape seed extract’s ability to clobber cancer cells. That exciting research was done by University of Kansas researchers, and this new study comes to us from the University of Colorado. By far, the most active component in grape seeds is the compound called B2G2. So, not surprisingly, it’s B2G2 that the scientists focused on. They found that the compound blew away prostate cancer cells by causing them to essentially commit suicide. And, unlike sickening mainstream meds, the B2G2 left the healthy cells alone! The researchers say a human clinical trial is in the future.  Unfortunately, they will be using a synthesized version of the compound for that trial. But you can take the natural whole-food approach yourself, starting today, simply by adding more grapes to your diet. Just be sure you are choosing a seeded variety. Or you can try a real grape-seed extract, which can be found both as a stand-alone supplement and as part of a number of comprehensive anti-aging or multivitamin formulas.
  13. Health benefits of resveratrol: Going grape to fight cancer

    The health benefits of resveratrol, the so-called “red wine nutrient,” are back in the news again. Of course, we’ve been talking about this grape-based anti-aging miracle for years now. This powerful antioxidant could help with everything from hearing loss to heart disease to diabetes. Studies have been stacking up for years that have found that resveratrol may help with insulin regulation, cholesterol control, high blood pressure and even cognitive performance. In other words, it’s good stuff. Now researchers from the University of Missouri studying the health benefits of resveratrol say the grape extract could become an important player in the fight against cancer. In the recent study scientists showed that resveratrol can make certain tumor cells more susceptible to radiation treatment. This study focused on melanoma cells, and a previous similar study showed the same effectiveness against prostate cancer. This means, of course, that shorter, more effective and less damaging treatments could be in the future for cancer patients. But if you’re interested in battling cancer sooner rather than later, resveratrol could already be an important weapon in your arsenal. We know that the grape extract is a natural inflammation fighter, and since inflammation plays an important role in the development of cancer (as well as many other diseases) resveratrol is a no-brainer. In fact, earlier studies on the health benefits of resveratrol have already shown that the extract can kill pancreatic cancer cells, increasing the effectiveness of cancer treatments. And, even better, the resveratrol appeared to protect healthy cells at the same time. I generally recommend 200 mg a day (or around 100 mg if it’s part of a comprehensive anti-aging or heart formula). Check with your own naturopathic doctor to find out what’s the best choice for you.
  14. Vitamin D benefits for your brain and memory

    If you’re not already a D-devotee, a new University of Kentucky (UK) study on vitamin D benefits may very well change your mind. Well, that’s if you don’t end up losing it first. Let me explain. You, of course, already know that D is essential for healthy muscles and bones. In fact, maintaining your levels may even be the key to keeping you out of a nursing home. Click here to learn more on the NorthStar Blog. And as a NorthStar Blog reader you also know about this essential vitamin’s vital role in cancer and diabetes prevention, blood pressure maintenance and heart health.

    This is your brain without D

    I’ve even told you about vitamin D benefits for brain health. The sunshine vitamin may play an important part in warding off Alzheimer’s disease. Deficiencies of D have been linked to Parkinson’s disease. And if you’ve ever experienced the winter blahs you sure don’t need me to tell you how important D is to warding off depression. But now, researchers say the vitamin’s role in brain health could be even stronger than we ever imagined. The animal study, published in the journal Free Radical Biology and Medicine, found that rats that were fed a low D diet for several months developed free-radical brain damage. That’s important because free radicals in your brain can lead to oxidation, memory loss, and even Alzheimer’s disease.

    Low D led to memory and learning problems

    And, in fact, the poor critters in the study did suffer a significant drop in their cognitive performance on memory and learning tests. According to the UK scientists, a number of different brain proteins were damaged by the lack of D. And there’s every reason to believe that something similar happens in our own brains when our D levels drop too low. With some experts saying that up to 90 percent of people are walking around with less than optimal D levels and that means the vast majority of us may be in serious danger of low-D brain damage. But, while experts tend to disagree on just how many of us are D deficient, one thing they DO agree on is that D deficiency is wide-spread among seniors. This means, of course, that those of us who are starting to go gray need to be extra careful about keeping our levels up in order to reap the vitamin D benefits. Now, of course, I’ve been preaching about vitamin D benefits for many years now, but it looks like the mainstream is finally catching on, too. According to Allan Butterfield—lead author on this new study and professor in the UK Department of Chemistry—we need to maintain adequate vitamin D levels to prevent free radical damage in our brains. Welcome to the vitamin D fan club, Dr. Butterfield. I would also add to your solid D advice that maintaining those healthy D levels could also help us avoid Alzheimer’s, cancer, heart attack, stroke, diabetes and more.

    Top off your D levels

    Pretty impressive for a vitamin you can get for free simply by spending 15 minutes or so outside in the sunshine every day. And if cold weather, a busy schedule or disability is keeping you indoors you can always top of your D levels by eating a D-rich diet (fish and fish oil are great sources), or by taking a supplement. I generally recommend taking 2,000 to 4,000 IUs of vitamin D3 daily. Try to take your D with a meal containing healthy fats, such as olive oil or a serving of fatty fish (a fish oil supplement will work too) to help your body better absorb the vital nutrient.
    To find out if you’re D deficient, talk with your doctor. He can run a simple blood test to check your 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels.
  15. Harvard study on health benefits of nuts finds improved longevity

    In my book, it’s hard to beat the health benefits of nuts for a filling and delicious snack. Since they’re packed with protein, good fats, and healthy fiber, nuts aren’t just tasty, their good for you, too. Now Harvard researchers say they’re not just good for you, they could literally add years to your life. More on that exciting new finding in a moment, but first let’s look at what we already know about the health benefits of nuts. Over three years ago, I told you about the humble walnut’s apparent ability to reduce stress levels and lower blood pressure. Volunteers who ate the nuts had improved blood pressure numbers during two different types of stress tests. In 2011, Tuft’s University researchers revealed that nuts could help us control both blood sugar and cholesterol. When a group of type-2 diabetics was given a half- cup of mixed nuts daily for three months, it lowered both their blood sugar, and bad cholesterol. (Click here to read more about the Tuft’s study on the NorthStar Blog.) And a more recent study, published in the Journal of Nutrition, found that snacking on walnuts could drive down a woman’s diabetes risk by as much as 24 percent.

    Live longer and healthier with nuts

    In fact, at least 57 clinical trials have found that nuts may help protect you against heart disease, and a stack of others have linked nut eating with a reduced risk of cancer and diabetes. And with that kind of track record, it’s really no surprise that yet another study has confirmed the health benefits of nuts, one of my favorite snack foods. But what did surprise everyone—including those Harvard researchers, no doubt—was just how impressive the numbers that came out of this massive study were. The carefully designed study, which tracked 119,000 men and women over 30 years, found that those who ate nuts almost daily were an astounding 20 percent less likely to die from any cause during the three-decade long study. And the impressive nut news didn’t stop there… not by a long shot. Regular nut eaters (seven or more times a week) had their risk of dying from heart disease plunge by an incredible 29 percent. They were 20 percent less likely to die from diabetes or lung disease. And their risk of dying from cancer dropped a healthy 11 percent.

    Eats nuts and weigh less

    Oh, and if you’ve been afraid to indulge in nuts because they’re high in fat, I’ve got great news for you. The nut eaters stayed slimmer than the non-nut eaters! That’s right, eating nuts will NOT make you fat, my friend. As I’ve explained before, nuts are rich in the good-for-you monounsaturated fats. Heck, even the very mainstream American Heart Association admits the kind of fats found in nuts are heart healthy and can help you reduce your cholesterol while lowering your risk for heart disease and stroke. And…you might want to sit down for this one… the usually clueless folks over at the FDA even stood up for the health benefits of nuts way back in 2003, when they recommended them as part of a diet to help reduce heart disease. Honestly, with results like these, unless you happen to be allergic to them, you’d have to be nuts to not include nuts in your diet.

    Solid research adds to the nut resume

    I do, however, need to mention two things about the Harvard study that you should keep in mind. First of all, while it was well-designed and solid, this was an observational study. And as I’ve explained many times before, observational studies can only show an association or connection between two things. They’re not designed to prove cause and effect. (For instance, those nut eaters also ate more healthy fruits and veggies.) That doesn’t erase any of the positives about nuts, but it’s good to know. Second, the Harvard researchers made one HUGE misstep with their study. Unfortunately, they accepted some funding from the International Tree Nut Council Nutrition Research and Education Foundation. Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t have anything against the Tree Nut Council folks. They run a fine non-profit organization. But once they forked over some money to Harvard it became much easier for naysayers to try to question the findings. Luckily, nuts already have a ton of solid research backing up their health value, so it’s pretty clear that these latest findings—published in The New England Journal of Medicine—only add to that growing stack.
  16. BPA affects our health at much lower doses than previously thought.

    A new study has found that BPA (bisphenol A) —the nasty chemical that I’ve been warning you about for YEARS now—is affecting us at much lower doses than previously thought.  Well, I should say at lower doses than the mainstream drones thought. In case you’re not familiar with BPA… or it’s potentially devastating side effects… let me bring you up to speed with a recap. When you open up that can of cranberry sauce today to serve with Thanksgiving dinner you’ll be serving up more than just those jellied cranberries. It will come with an unwanted side dish of a creepy chemical that’s used to make plastics called bisphenol A (BPA).

    BPA wreaks havoc with your hormones

    BPA is found in all kinds of plastic materials including water bottles, cash register receipts, and even the inside lining of food cans. It’s what’s known as an endocrine disruptor and it can wreak havoc with your hormones. Even worse, your body has a heck of a time telling BPA apart from estrogen. As you can imagine, this dual disaster can really do a number on your health, kicking off all kinds of unwanted side effects. And the higher the BPA exposure, the greater the hormone disruption is. With most US adults getting conservatively nearly 5 micrograms a day, and our friends elsewhere getting even more than that, it’s a catastrophe that hasn’t been waiting to happen. Men exposed to high levels of the chemical may have significant erectile dysfunction issues as a result. (Learn how BPA could result in ED on the NorthStar blog.) And for women, excess estrogen in the bloodstream is a big risk factor when it comes to breast cancer.

    Creepy chemical drives up your disease risks

    We’ve known for a long time now that high BPA levels in the body are associated with an increased risk of heart disease, diabetes, and even cancer. One Yale study linked the chemical to neurological problems in animals, and found a connection between BPA and disruptions in brain cells linked to memory, learning and mood. And some scientists suspect that the chemical may be playing a key role in the obesity epidemic as well as the troubling turn towards early puberty for young girls. In other words, BPA is nothing but bad news. And yet the yahoos at the FDA refuse to admit that the chemical is even a significant threat.  In fact, beyond finally banning it in baby bottles and sippy cups in 2012 (a good, but FAR too late move), the Big Business loving Feds haven’t done a darn thing to protect you from this chemical. According to them, the levels that we’re being exposed to aren’t enough to worry about. And if you believe that one I’ve got a bridge in Brooklyn I’d like to sell you.

    Low doses still equal HIGH dangers

    That’s why this new research, published in the journal Endocrine Disruptors, is so important. Sure, we already know this stuff is bad for us, but with the FDA burying its collective head somewhere where the sun doesn’t shine, we need as many studies as we can get showing that even at so-called “low” exposures BPA is damaging. A group of scientists that study endocrine disruption set out to build on and refine an earlier 2007 review of the low-dose effects of BPA. What they found was shocking. They were able to confirm reproductive effects in animals after exposure to incredibly low doses of the chemical. We’re talking ten to forty times lower than in the typical studies that have been used to justify keeping BPA on the market. In addition, the researchers identified several dozen “low dose” studies that illustrated the effects that BPA has in amounts that people are being exposed to every single day. In fact, according to the scientists, exposure to BPA likely contributes to a wide variety of health issues including decreased fertility, polycystic ovarian syndrome, behavioral problems, breast tumors, obesity, thyroid dysfunction, brain synapse issues and immune response to allergens. And the problems don’t even end with the human population, either. Scientists say that BPA’s effect on wildlife is widespread, too. The bottom line here is that, once again, the very agencies that supposedly exist to protect our health can’t be relied on. We have to fend for ourselves. That means switching to brands that are packaged in non-BPA packaging (stores that specialize in natural and organic foods and online sources are your best bets) and choosing fresh organic foods over packaged ones whenever possible. And make your voice heard. Write the manufacturers of your favorite brands and demand BPA-free packaging and write your representatives in Washington and demand legislation that removes this toxic chemical from our food supply. Maybe by next year on this day we’ll have one more thing to give thanks for… a BPA-free life.
  17. Health risks of sugar--it could turn you into the walking dead

    Ah, Halloween, the unofficial kickoff to what I like to call Sugar Fest. Sure, it all starts out innocently enough when you sneak a couple pieces of the candy you’ve set aside for the Trick-Or-Treaters tonight. But that’s just the start to an out-of-control sugar binge that doesn’t end until you come up gasping for air at the end of the Christmas season. Now if it was just packing on a few pounds that you needed to worry about, I might share my best advice about not over-indulging over the holidays and call it a day. But the health risks of sugar are much more dangerous than you might realize. In fact, weight gain could turn out to be the least of your worries.

     Sugar habit could be deadly

    According to a study published in the journal Nature Communications, sugar… in supposedly “safe” doses… may in fact be toxic. Researchers found that male mice fed a diet with 25 percent extra sugar… about what you’d find in three sodas or a couple handfuls of Candy Corn… turned into lazy lumps with no libido. They stopped defending their territory and didn’t show the least bit of interest in the girl mice anymore. But far worse than that, the female mice who were hopped up on sugar died at twice the rate of the female mice fed a normal diet. About 35 percent of the females on the high sugar diet died during the study, while only 17 percent of those in the control group kicked the bucket. That means that if you have a full-blown sugar habit, you may already be suffering from the dangerous health risks of sugar, and not even know it. And if you continue to suck down the sugar, one day soon you could find yourself six feet under and pushing up daisies, according to the study conducted at the University of Utah. (Speaking of the health risks of sugar, did you know that downing just one measly can of soda a day could spike your diabetes risk by 22 percent?! Read the rest of the sickening story on the NorthStar blog.)

    Drowning in a sea of sugar

    Now if you’re not carrying around a bunch of extra pounds, it’s easy to dismiss these findings thinking that the health risks of sugar don’t apply to you. But that would be a big mistake. The mice in the study weren’t fat, either. And their diets were regular, healthy mouse diets besides that added sugar.  In fact, according to researchers the sugar eaters would even have passed physicals. Yet the added sugar still had major and even deadly consequences. And it’s a lot easier to hit the 25 percent mark than you probably imagine. A stop at Starbucks for a Cafè Mocha in the morning, a soda with lunch, and a handful of Candy Corn for a snack in the afternoon and you’re already there. Conservative estimates are that an astounding 18 to 25 percent of Americans are already getting a quarter (or more!) of their calories from added sugars. And the picture is getting worse by the day. An easy way to get an idea of how much sugar you’re eating is to keep a food diary for a couple of weeks. Jot down everything you eat, and record the sugar content next to it. There are a number of websites that can help you figure out the approximate sugar content for both restaurant, and home-cooked meals. Let’s face it, we’re drowning in a sea of sugar, and it’s time to grab hold of the life ring and climb out. Start by saying no thanks to the Halloween candy tonight and keep saying no through the entire holiday season and beyond, to really bypass the negative health risks of sugar. Oh, and while you’re working on cutting down on the sugar in your diet, don’t fall into the artificial sweetener trap. Fake sugars are not a solution. In fact, diet sodas have been linked to diabetes.  And for an explanation of how the diet stuff can send your diabetes risk rocketing visit the NorthStar blog. Now don’t get me wrong, an occasional treat’s not going to kill you, but a regular sugar habit very well could. And, at the very least, it could make life not worth living.
  18. How prostate cancer PSA screenings can harm more than help

    Newsflash… hysterically attacking a man’s prostate with a scalpel or damaging radiation is a bad idea. Not only could it leave him impotent, incontinent or both – in many cases it could have zero benefits to boot. A new study, published in the journal Cancer Research, recently confirmed what some of us on this side of the fence have been saying for years. After PSA screening and a prostate cancer diagnosis, watchful waiting… or what I like to call active surveillance… is usually the best choice. And hey, although it may have taken years for them to get the message, it’s such an important one that you’re not going to hear me complain... much. More on that new study in a moment, but first let’s take a look at where the problem really begins… with prostate cancer and PSA screening. In 1994 the PSA (prostate-specific antigen) test was approved by the FDA as a screening tool for prostate cancer and it quickly went into widespread use. Eventually, all men over 40 were being encouraged to get a yearly test. And if you were over 50 and not submitting to one every year you were practically labeled irresponsible. “Early detection and early treatment!” became the battle cry, and the PSA was heralded as a lifesaver as we saw a surge in the detection of tumors. But buried underneath all that enthusiasm lurked some troublesome findings that were being overlooked and even ignored.

    Why you may want to pass on the PSA screening

    The PSA test delivers false positives… lots of them. In fact, by some estimates there’s an astounding 80 percent chance that a positive PSA will turn out to be false! That means that every year thousands of men, and their families, are forced to live through the nightmare of believing they have cancer when they don’t. Thousands of men will also be subjected to painful invasive biopsies as a result. And if a guy happens to have a particularly enthusiastic doctor, he could even suffer through a harsh cancer treatment unnecessarily. You see, lots of things can cause a PSA level to fluctuate, like a urinary tract infection for example. Certain drugs can monkey with your numbers too. And you can even have a high PSA and not have cancer or a low PSA and still have the disease. But wait, you haven’t even heard the worst of it yet. Remember earlier when I said more tumors being detected? Sounds great, right? Unfortunately, appearances can be deceiving. Sure lots of tumors are being found, but many of them are the slow-growing harmless kind that when left alone will never cause a lick of trouble. And if it weren’t for the PSA test a lot of guys with these so called “deadly” prostate tumors would live out their whole lives never even knowing they had one.

    Impotent and in diapers

    The truth is that many prostate cancers grow so slowly that many men shouldn’t be treated at all. And the insistence on regular PSA screening  has backfired on us, leading to over diagnosis and, tragically, overtreatment. When most men hear the word cancer—easily the most frightening word in the English language—they readily submit to the harsh treatments. And really, is it any wonder? After all, they’re scared and they just want the cancer out NOW. And if the procedures were harmless that might be fine. But they’re not. They leave approximately 20 to 30 percent of the guys that get them unable to perform in the bedroom and wearing a diaper. Even the mainstream US Preventive Services Taskforce took a stand against PSA tests last year when their own research found that for every 1,000 guys, only zero to one deaths (yes, ZERO) would be prevented by regular screenings over a 10 year period. But in that same decade 100 to 120 of the men would have a false positive test result, and about 50 would suffer serious treatment complications like impotence. This brings us to that new study that I mentioned earlier. Researchers analyzed the data on over 1,200 men diagnosed with prostate cancer and treated with surgery between 1982 and 2004. They found that PSA screening jumped from 42 percent in 1994 to 81 percent in 2000. (Part of that PSA popularity surge I told you about earlier.) But the really telling finding is that the number of late-stage cancers dropped from 19.9 percent in the 1982 to 1993 group, to just 3 percent in the 2000 to 2004 group. That’s an 85 percent drop in stage at diagnosis. But at the same time there was only a moderate decrease in aggressive cancers. And with a little further digging the researchers figured out that the lower percentage of aggressive cancers was deceiving. Screening hadn’t prevented cancers from progressing, but rather the percentage drop was because of an INCREASE in the diagnosis of the low-grade, often harmless tumors that enthusiastic PSA screening programs were turning up. You see, the experts are starting to suspect that a prostate tumor’s aggressiveness is pretty much locked in when it first hits the scene. In other words, low-grade prostate cancers don’t appear to progress to higher grade ones over time, and we’re hysterically hacking away at prostates for no good reason. If you’re diagnosed with prostate cancer, first take a deep breath, remind yourself that most of these tumors never cause trouble, and then work with a doctor skilled in natural medicine to come up with plan for monitoring, and if necessary, treating your tumor.
  19. Flawed fish-oil study finds bogus link to prostate cancer

    Fish oil is good for your heart, brain, AND prostate Unless you've been in a coma for the last couple of weeks, you've seen them. Those screaming, over-the-top headlines warning men about the danger that fish oil poses to their prostates have been EVERYWHERE. "Fish oil causes prostate cancer!" "Men should shun fish oil!" "Men who take fish oil have a 71% higher risk of prostate cancer!" And everyone I've talked to about it wants to know the same thing, "What should I do now?!" First things first... take a deep breath. Next, let's counteract those panic-inducing headlines with a healthy dose of reality. To begin with it's important to understand that these researchers didn't even actually conduct a study of their own. The authors of the new review, published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, simply dug through some data that had been gathered in an older study by an unrelated team of researchers. That older study--the Selenium and Vitamin E Cancer Prevention Trial, or SELECT study for short--explored whether vitamin E alone, or in combination with selenium, had a preventive effect on prostate cancer. Unfortunately, as I explained when the results of that research were published, the SELECT study was already fatally flawed to begin with. A combination of statistical voodoo and synthetic vitamins, make the results questionable at best. To learn more about it click here. The "fish oil" study that never measured fish oil But not doing the research themselves wasn't even the biggest warning sign that we should view this new review with more than a little skepticism. Would you be shocked to learn that the researchers who conducted the SELECT study didn't even ask the men in the study about their use of fish-oil supplements? Yep, that's right. The study that supposedly has damned fish oil forever didn't even measure fish oil usage in any shape or form. This means, of course, that we have no clue if any of these men ever took a fish-oil supplement in the first place. And if some of the guys did down some fish oil we don't know how much or for how long. In fact, to be perfectly clear the men weren't even asked about how much fish they ate. Assumptions were simply made based on levels of the fish-derived fatty acids EPA, DPA, and DHA found in a blood test. Oh, and that blood test was a one-time deal. Meaning that if a guy had just gotten back from a successful fishing trip... or just happened to have a nice seafood dinner the night before his blood was drawn... his results could very well have been skewed. Not exactly what I would call a solid base upon which to build a witch hunt. And, of course, we must also keep in mind that no experiment was actually performed here. This team's conclusions were built on an association... an assumption they made based on data from another observational study. (And I don't need to tell you what happens when we assume do I?) As I've explained before, observational studies are not always the most reliable form of research and an association doesn't necessarily mean a cause. Suppose, for example, I conducted a study in which I asked a group of guys if they prefer ketchup or mustard. And then I bumped that data up against how many of them got prostate cancer and found that more of the mustard eaters developed the disease. Does that mean I should then conclude that mustard causes prostate cancer? Anyone with half a brain would answer "no" at this point. But unfortunately, judging by the outrageous headlines we've been seeing the past couple of weeks, if you work for the mainstream media it apparently does. Fish oil linked to a REDUCED cancer risk The truth is this review has holes in it so big you could drive a truck through them. And a number of other strong reliable studies have reached the opposite conclusion. For example, the Swedish study that followed a group of men for 30 years and found that those guys who didn't eat fish had a two to three-fold increase in their risk for developing prostate cancer over the ones who were fish fanatics. Or the study out of New Zealand that concluded that higher levels of DHA and EPA were linked to a 40 percent reduced risk of prostate cancer. The omega-3's in fish oil fight the inflammation that's at the root of most diseases including cancer. We already know from other research that both fish and fish oil are good for your heart, joint, and brain health. And that omega 3's could also help fight breast cancer as well. So my recommendation stands. A regular dose of purified omega-3 fish oil from a manufacturer you trust makes good sense. Just be sure to also take a natural mixed tocopherol and tocotrienol vitamin E to zap any free radicals that pop up while you're at it.
  20. Nuts drive down cancer and heart disease risks

    Keep cancer and heart disease at bay with this tasty treat?

    Have you gone nuts yet?

    I sure hope so.

    If you're a regular Guide to Guide Health reader I don't have to tell you that I've been singing the praises of this health-food-in-a-hard-shell for years now. Nuts, no matter the kind, are one of the best snack foods around. They pack a powerful punch of nutrition that's good for you practically from head to toe.

    Like, for example, snacking on walnuts may be able to drop a woman's diabetes risk by a hefty 24 percent, according to a recent report in the Journal of Nutrition. This echoed earlier research from Tufts University that found that trading in your whole-wheat breakfast muffin for nuts could help lower both blood sugar and cholesterol levels.

    Nuts are a good-for-you whole-food snack that has already been associated with heart health, cancer prevention, and improved cognitive function.

    And, as I shared with you way back in 2011, no less than 57 clinical trials have found that regularly chomping on walnuts might help protect us against heart disease: the results of one of those trials was even published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine!

    Penn State researchers showed that snacking on walnuts could lower blood pressure in just six weeks, while improving how your body reacts to stress.

    You're probably starting to see why I called nuts one of the best snack foods around. And that's why I wasn't at all surprised when nuts were in the news again recently not once, but twice.

    Ward off prostate problems

    New research from the School of Medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center has confirmed that walnuts could be a guy's best friend.

    Over three years ago now I told you about a mouse study conducted at UC Davis that found that nuts may slow prostate tumor growth. Now a new study published in the journal Cancer Investigation is providing us with even more evidence that nuts could be a potent weapon in the war against prostate cancer.

    Researchers injected immune-deficient mice with human prostate-cancer cells which typically would produce tumors in a large number of the mice within three to four weeks. But the scientists added a twist... they fed some of the mice a walnut-enriched diet. And sure enough the walnut-eating mice fared better than the non-walnut eaters.

    Only three of the walnut eaters developed tumors compared to the other group's 14. And not only that, the walnut eaters who did get tumors had slower growing ones that were about a fourth of the size of the tumors in the other group.

    (A previous study showed similar findings for breast cancer.)

    According to the researchers it didn't take a boatload full of walnuts to produce these effects either. In fact, for humans about 2 ounces... or two modest handfuls ... of walnuts a day would be the equivalent.

    But the good nut news doesn't stop there. Beat back cancer and heart disease

    In a new study published in the journal BMC Medicine, Spanish researchers were also singing the praises of these nutritional powerhouses... and for good reason. The longitudinal study--meaning the information was gathered over a long period of time--found that those who ate nuts more than three times week were less likely to die from cancer or heart disease.

    And we're talking a HUGE drop in risk here... a 40 percent lower risk of dying from cancer and a 55 percent lower risk of dying from heart disease.

    In addition, in the nut eater's group there were lower body mass indexes (BMIs), smaller waists, and fewer cases of diabetes and high blood pressure.

    If you haven't gone nuts yet, well, clearly it's about time you got started. Replacing two snacks a day with a small handful of nuts could help you fight everything from diabetes to cancer.

    I don't know about you, but to me that sounds like a delicious deal.

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