Updated: Apr 29
Natural supplements or Nutraceuticals - these are umbrella terms for oral vitamins, minerals, nutrients, herbs, and various naturally occurring compounds. For example, Vitamin C, D, Selenium, Turmeric, Green Tea Extract (EGCG), Resveratrol, Turkey tail mushroom, Artemisinin, garlic, melatonin, etc are all nutraceuticals that have cancer-fighting properties.
While I am a big proponent of using natural supplements in cancer patients, too many of them also will do more harm than good. I spend lots of time counseling cancer patients on which supplements should they be taking to help support them through their cancer journey. Also on which of the supplements are not specifically indicated for them and should be taken off.
There is no one size fits all magic bullet. Doing functional lab testing will help us to navigate this through various biomarkers reports and we get to know precisely which specific supplements they need and don’t need. A good general rule of thumb is your daily supplement count should not outnumber your US shoe size.
There is only so much your body can absorb and if you put in too many supplements, it will only cause more confusion than anything. Imaging natural supplements are like chess pieces, each has its specific role and function. You need room on the board for each of them to operate at their full ability. Having 32 pawns clogging up the entire board is no good.
Above all, let food be your medicine as much as possible and utilise natural supplements to address the specific individual gaps and targets. (Preferably based on proper testing) --- not just taking everything someone told you that “it fights cancer”. The bottom line is that best if you can work with an integrative oncology trained doctor who can guide you through this.
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