My 80-year-old father was recently diagnosed with prostate cancer.
Q. Dear Terry, “My 80-year-old father was recently diagnosed with prostate cancer. Fortunately, the cancer has not spread outside of his prostate. The doctor would like to start treatment ASAP, but I’m worried about my dad going through chemo or radiation at his age. What do you think?” — Nathan B., Skokie, IL
A. Dear Nathan, Studies have shown that over 50% of men between 70 and 80 years old have some abnormal changes to cells in their prostate. Fortunately, prostate cancer is manageable and many doctors choose a watchful waiting approach for men over the age of 80. While I do not know all of the circumstances with regards to your father’s recent diagnosis, I do believe there are some natural ingredients that can help.
You may already know that curcumin is at the top of my list as one of the most beneficial anticancer botanical compounds ever known. And that holds true for prostate cancer as well. What I find most fascinating about curcumin is that it can stop the multitude of conditions that lead to prostate cancer: inflammation, oxidation, DNA damage, and the cell-signaling that makes tumors form and spread. Of course, not all curcumins are created equal, and the type of curcumin you use makes a difference. I recommend a clinically studied curcumin that is blended with turmeric essential oil for better absorption, plus enhanced benefits from the turmerones in the extract.
Another powerful ingredient in the fight against prostate cancer is pomegranate. Scientific studies have shown that pomegranate juice can significantly decrease PSA levels (often used as a marker of prostate cancer). But if you’re only drinking the juice of pomegranate, you’re missing out on some of its most important compounds: omega-5 fatty acid, also called punicic acid, which is found in the seed oil. Current research finds that omega-5 from pomegranate inhibits PSA and stops the growth of blood vessels that feed tumors.
Scientific studies on grape seed extract show that it can kill prostate cancer cells by stopping the inflammatory pathways that set them up to become cancerous. Other research points to an additional way grape seed extract stops tumors: by preventing cancer cells from connecting to blood vessels, and depriving them of oxygen and nutrients. Like any nutrient, the key compounds need to be absorbed before you’ll see any difference. I recommend a French grape seed extract that is tannin-free and provides only low-molecular weight oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPCs). They absorb best so you actually get the prostate protection you need.
Many people are familiar with milk thistle for liver health, one of the key compounds – silybin – also has amazing abilities as a potential preventative and treatment for prostate cancer.
Lastly, vitamin D3 is crucial for optimal health, especially for the prostate. In a Harvard Medical School clinical study, 14 percent of the participants (all of European descent) had genes associated with less efficient use of vitamin D, and as a result were more susceptible to prostate cancer. In fact, the combination of low vitamin D levels and a slight genetic difference associated with poorer use of vitamin D meant they were more than twice as likely (2.5 times) to develop aggressive prostate cancer.
I would have your father take all of these ingredients twice per day.
Terry . . . Naturally