Supplements and Vitamins to Help Chemotherapy
Nothing makes me angrier than bad medical advice. And there’s one particular recommendation that has me fuming….
Cancer doctors are telling their patients to avoid nutritional supplements because they’re dangerous.
And that is simply not true.
If you’re having chemotherapy and your doctor told you nutritional supplements could harm you or interfere with the chemo, here’s my advice: Find a new doctor.
Because I can tell you this notion is not just completely wrong, but dangerous to your health, as well.
First, there’s a substantial body of research showing that vitamins do not interfere with chemotherapy or radiation.
The truth is, vitamins have been shown to increase survival times, kill cancer cells, make chemo and radiation more effective, and even minimize the horrendous side effects of both treatments.
In spite of that, the “vitamins are bad” myth is very popular in mainstream medicine. And that should be a national scandal.
Find out how you can protect yourself from this dangerous practice.
With cancer affecting at least 1 out of every 3 Americans during their lifetime, we’re talking about a significant number of people who are being given terrible, life-threatening advice. How did this happen?
The idea that nutritional supplements were bad for cancer patients began in the late ’90s.
The spark was a single clinical trial looking at the effect of vitamin C on mice being treated for cancer. The author claimed that vitamin C’s antioxidant abilities interfered with chemotherapy and radiation.
Before long, the idea expanded and suddenly cancer patients were being told to avoid all antioxidants.
Traditionally, doctors wait for animal studies to be repeated a number of times, to make sure the original wasn’t a fluke. Then human studies come next, ideally in the form of large clinical trials with thousands of men and women.
But no such thing happened with supplements and cancer. The recommendation was largely a generalization, based on one animal study.
Meanwhile, during the twenty-some years that followed, dozens of studies – human and animal – looked at the relationship between cancer treatments and nutritional supplements. Guess what they found….
Reviewing 280 studies, including more than 8,500 humans, researchers found that those who took supplements did not compromise their cancer therapy or end up with worse results.
In other words, there was no proof that supplements interfered with conventional cancer treatment.
Furthermore, said researchers, supplements actually:
- Protected patients from some of chemo’s and radiation’s worst side effects;
- Enhanced chemo and radiation effectiveness;
- Shielded healthy normal cells from chemo;
- Improved patients’ overall health
- Lengthened survival time.
Other reports emphasize that cancer patients who take supplements while they’re in treatment have more energy, feel stronger, and don’t experience the same drop in white blood cells that often happens to non-supplemented patients.
If you or someone you know is being treated for cancer, you can learn more about the supplements I recommend.
Supplements To Take During Chemotherapy:
My first recommendation to everyone, whether they have cancer or not, is to take a high-quality multivitamin. For best results, look for a brand that’s food-based, as opposed to synthetic.
Next, you need a good source of omega-3 essential fatty acids (EFAs), preferably one that’s been molecularly distilled to remove any toxins. I recommend taking three 1,000 mg doses per day spread throughout the day and preferably with meals.
3. Vitamin D3
Vitamin D3 is third on my list of “must have” supplements, because it’s an outstanding antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, two things we all need. A simple blood test can reveal whether or not you’re deficient in vitamin D (most people are) and give your doctor a better idea of an appropriate dosage. But as a starting point, take at least 1,500 IU per day.
For people over age 40, I recommend at least 120 mg of Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) daily. Like vitamin D3, CoQ10 is a hard-working multi-tasker, with powerful antioxidant abilities that help cells stay healthy.
Last but not least, there’s curcumin. This is my number one recommendation. Curcumin has so many benefits. It fights free radicals, inflammation, viruses, bacteria, and fungus — even cancer! And it does all that with virtually no side effects.
Start with 1,500 mg in three divided doses throughout the day. And be sure to get a product with enhanced bioavailability, so your body can use it properly.
Think of this as the basic list of essential nutrients. There are other supplements that could be added, depending on a patient’s lifestyle and other factors. These nutrients will not interfere with your cancer treatment. In fact, they’ll improve it – you can take my word for that.
Last Updated: April 4, 2019
Originally Published: July 17, 2014