Natural health: Lymphatic leukaemia

One natural product that has tested very well in treating leukaemia is açaí berry (Euterpe oleracea), says Megan Sheppard.

Natural health: Lymphatic leukaemia

Q. My son was diagnosed with lymphatic leukaemia more than a year ago, and is now in recovery.

He seems to be doing very well, all things considered, but I was wondering if there was anything in particular that we should be doing to help him? He is turning 14 in April.

A. It’s wonderful your son is not only in recovery, but also seems to be bouncing back relatively quickly.

I recently wrote about a protocol called Gerson Therapy that has proven to be useful for many of those either using natural therapies for cancer or recovering from chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment.

However, it is important to point out that while Dr Gerson used this method with significant success in cases of lymphoma and melanoma, and also achieved some success with other forms of cancer, it wasn’t found to be as effective with leukaemia and other blood cancers.

One natural product that has tested very well in treating leukaemia is açaí berry (Euterpe oleracea).

In an in-vitro study published in January 2006, extracts from açaí berry triggered a self-destruct response in up to 86% of Leukaemia cells tested.

Several recent in-vitro studies have also clearly demonstrated the antioxidant activity of açaí berries.

Açaí berries contain high levels of anthocyanins, which are thought to prevent cancer by blocking carcinogenesis on a molecular level as well as encouraging tumour cell death.

These amazing berries are also rich in cholesterol-lowering plant sterols, vitamins, minerals, nearly all essential amino acids, along with Omega 6 and Omega 9 essential fatty acids — which is unusual for a fruit.

Research suggests that omega 9 (oleic acid), which is also found in Sea Buckthorn berry, may act as a cancer preventative.

Açaí berries can be consumed in high amounts

without negative side effects, which is why I think they are well worth considering as part of your son’s recovery protocol.

Rio Trading have developed a water-soluble high strength açaí extract which is available in unprocessed 500mg vegicaps.

From Nature Health Store sells bottles of 60 x 500mg açaí for €13.49 074-9125738).

Your son should take two capsules, three times daily, with food.

You will no doubt already be working together with your son and health professionals to ensure that he is eating a healthy diet, rich in plant foods and avoiding processed and junk foods.

The same goes for anything that your son uses on his skin — deodorants, shaving products, skin care, shower and bath gels — all of which should be free of chemicals.

Brightly coloured fruit and vegetables and leafy greens are important as these are high in carotenes, which are a powerful weapon at continuing to keep cancer at bay.

Vitamin C is utilised by the white blood cells to destroy cancer cells, along with toxins and other debris — fortunately, acai berries are a great source of highly bioavailable vitamin C.

Selenium is another important antioxidant mineral to protect against cancer. The recommended daily dose is 200mcg.

Ideally, he should also be supplementing with 30-45g of beta-carotene daily.

This is a higher dose than what I would typically recommend for a boy his age, and he should continue taking them until his skin shows a faint yellowing (due to the high beta-carotene levels in his system, not jaundice or liver issues).

Sona makes a beta-carotene supplement containing 14.28mg per capsule, so he would need to take two to three of these daily. Sona beta-carotene is available from health stores, where 60 capsules costs €13.95.

Pau d’arco tea is useful as an anti-inflammatory, anti-abscess, anti-carcinogenic, anti-viral, anti-malarial, anti-septic and anti-tumour agent, due to the fact that it contains a phytochemical called Lapachol.

It has been shown to have a specific action against leukaemia. Brew this bark using one teaspoon of pau d’arco per cup of boiling water and steep for eight-10 minutes for best effect.

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NOTE: The information contained in this column is not a subsitute for medical advice. Always consult a doctor.

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