Despite decades of research, with billions of dollars spent each year, the war on cancer has been a dismal failure. Most people equate cancer with death, or at least, an excruciating journey back to health filled with physical debilitation and pain. However, just like any disease process, understanding cancer and how it develops are the first steps to conquering it naturally.
What is cancer?
In simplest terms, cancer represents an accelerating process of inappropriate, uncontrolled cell growth – a chaotic process within the order of biology. When examined under a microscope, cancer cells are abnormally shaped, inconsistently formed, and disorganized and contain abnormal internal structures, which is the essence of biological disorder.
Cancer, despite the fear it creates in people, is a natural phenomenon that represents the body’s response to a continuous attack on its balancing and regulatory mechanisms by numerous factors.
Every cell in the body has the ability to turn cancerous, and many do so on a daily basis. Normally, the immune system is able to protect the body by destroying these cells or reprogramming them back to normal functioning. However, if the body’s defense systems have been damaged, this process cannot happen, which allows cancer to establish itself. If the cancer cells do not spread beyond the tissue or organ where they originated, the cancer is considered localized. If the cancer spreads to other parts of the body, it is then said to have metastasized.
Different types of cancer
Among the 150 different types of cancer, five major groups are conventionally recognized:
Carcinomas form in the epithelial cells that cover the surface of the skin, mouth, nose, throat, lung airways, genitourinary tract, and gastrointestinal tract, or that line glands such as the breast or thyroid. Lung, breast, prostate, skin, stomach, and colon cancers are called carcinomas and are solid tumors.
Sarcomas form in the bones and soft connective and supporting tissues surrounding organs and tissues, such as cartilage, muscles, tendons, fat, and the outer lining of the lungs, abdomen, heart, central nervous system, and blood vessels. Sarcomas are solid tumors, but sarcomas are both the most rare form of malignant tumors and the most deadly.
Leukemia forms in the blood and bone marrow and abnormal white blood cells travel through the bloodstream creating problems in the spleen and other tissues. Leukemia’s are not solid tumors as they are characterized by an overproduction of abnormal white blood cells.
Lymphoma is a cancer of the lymph glands. Lymph glands act as a filter for the body’s impurities and are concentrated mostly in the neck, groin, armpits, spleen, the center of the chest, and around the intestines. Lymphomas are usually made up of abnormal lymphocytes (white blood cells) that congregate in lymph glands to produce solid masses. Hodgkin’s disease and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma are the two most prevalent types of lymphoma in the U.S.
Myeloma is a rare tumor that arises in the antibody-producing plasma cells or hemopoietic (blood cell producing) cells in the bone marrow.
A key characteristic of cancer cells is their greatly prolonged life span compared to that of normal cells. It’s ironic, given that cancer can potentially prove fatal to its host, that cancer cells are essentially immortal. As they develop their own network of blood vessels to siphon nourishment away from the body’s main blood supply, it can eventually lead to the formation of a tumor – a swelling caused by the abnormal growth of cells. If this tumor invades adjacent normal tissue or spreads through the lymphatic system or blood vessels to other normal tissues, this tumor is considered malignant.
The pathological character of such tumors stems from their cells’ ability to invade other tissues and travel through the blood and lymphatic vessels to other areas of the body. Most cancer victims die not from the initial multiplication of these abnormal cells, but as a result of the secondary process, metastasis – which is the spread of cancer throughout the body. This represents the cancer cells breaking off from the original tumor, and floating in the bloodstream and infecting other tissues.
Once metastasis has occurred, cancer is more likely to be fatal, unless checked or reversed by successful multimodal alternative therapies. Metastasis can lead to the formation of more tumors, which further sap the body’s energy supply, weakening and eventually poisoning the patient with toxins that make one feel fatigued, aching, depressed, and apathetic. This overgrowth eventually overwhelms other body functions.
Whatever the immediate cause, the cancer-related death is usually produced by metastasis and by the establishment of secondary cancers that grow as a result of metastasis from the primary tumor site.
Many if not most cancer deaths come as a result of infection by bacteria, viruses, and fungi – microbes that normally would be destroyed by the immune system. In the case of cancer, the immune system becomes severely suppressed, partly because of the systemic weakening brought on by the cancer process and partly because of the negative, toxic effects of conventional cancer treatments – chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation.
So what is causing cancer to be so widespread today? There are several factors, and one has to be very mindful of eliminating these causes as much as possible from their lifestyle. Following that, eating cleansing whole foods that focus on those that provide the body with the “weaponry” to dispose of cancer cells is vitally important.
Sources for this article include:
Trivieri, Larry. Alternative Medicine: The Definitive Guide. Ed. John W. Anderson. 2nd ed. Berkeley, CA: Celestial Arts, 2002.