If you’re facing a prostate cancer diagnosis, the road ahead will include points along the way where you will make decisions about treatment and about how the diagnosis will impact your life beyond the hospital.
Advances have been made in the treatment and understanding of the underlying biology of Prostate Cancer but there are areas in this field that remain unaddressed.
Integrative Oncology is the future of Cancer Care and I believe that Naturopathic Doctors are at the forefront of blending conventional therapies and alternative medicines with tremendous success.
Let me share with you some scientific research that reiterates the track record of Naturopathic Medicine in the cancer care setting.
Of 7 trials on Lycopene, a red pigmented antioxidant found in tomatoes, 6 showed reduction in the growth of prostate cancer cells. And In 12 studies, a 63% decrease in prostate cancer death was noted in those with high fish consumption so incorporating a Mediterranean diet that is rich in vegetables and seafood bestows protection against prostate cancer.
15 studies suggest a positive association between sleep disruption and prostate cancer risk. Sleep is a basic human necessity and yet so many of us struggle with it. Speak with a naturopathic doctor and they can educate you on proper sleep hygiene and may even prescribe you herbal medicine or a supplement to help with a good night of shut eye.
Other examples include Acupuncture as a promising approach for men with hot flashes or incontinence from prostate cancer treatment, the use of modified citrus pectin to reduce the risk of metastatic spread of prostate cancer after surgeries such as biopsies or the use of Aspirin that was associated with a reduced risk of prostate cancer mortality in men treated with radiotherapy or prostatectomy.
One example that highlights this is a PCA3 test which measures the levels of prostate cancer gene 3 found elevated in prostate cancer cells. Now, unlike a standard PSA Screen, this test isn’t affected by an enlarged prostate, prostatitis or other non-cancerous conditions of the prostate gland. The results from a PCA3 test can determine the aggression of the cancer, be used as a tool for active monitoring and can help you and your doctor decide whether you should take a biopsy of cells from your prostate gland. These are the type of resources you want to have at your side to make sound decisions.
Naturopathic Medicine has scientifically valid tests and treatments available for patients suffering from prostate cancer. Integrating standard cancer medicine with natural therapies such as diet, lifestyle, detoxification, exercise, supplementation and emotional support can greatly impact quality of life.
My belief is that patients should always make decisions from a well-informed, and educated standpoint. Knowledge is power and by understanding the advantages and disadvantages of all your options, including watchful waiting, you have the right to choose those which align with your beliefs without a bias of fear.
My parting advice to you is to marshal all your resources, anticipate what is going to happen next, and consider Naturopathic Medicine not in place of but in conjunction with Conventional Medicine to treat Prostate Cancer.