T Nation

Fish Oil and Cancer

I was reading about colon cancer and the need to limit fats in your diet. Does anyone know if this includes Fish Oil?

My mother was recently diagnosed with colon cancer and she had been taking Flameout and I don’t know if she should stop taking the Flameout as it is an additional fat in her diet.

Also, if anyone has any superfoods or miracle cures besides the whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, I would greatly appreciate any input.

This book got me thru cancer a few years ago and I’m still in remission :slight_smile: I wish your mom the best, please keep us posted on her recovery!

I’m sorry to hear about your mother’s situation.

Do you mind if I ask where you read that she should restrict her fat intake? If online, links would be helpful.

I would add that eating fresh fruits and vegetable from a trusted organic source could be of great help. Staering clear of all those nasty chemicals that can be found in some foods could really help her out a lot. The same goes for dairy, there could be some nasty stuff hanging out there that should probably be avoided.

I echo what Hot AZ says. I used the advice in the same book to help my fiance through leukemia. I remember reading a comment in the book saying that the authors couldn’t stress highly enough the importance of fish oil for cancer patients.

[quote]OctoberGirl wrote:
I was reading about colon cancer and the need to limit fats in your diet. Does anyone know if this includes Fish Oil?

My mother was recently diagnosed with colon cancer and she had been taking Flameout and I don’t know if she should stop taking the Flameout as it is an additional fat in her diet.

Also, if anyone has any superfoods or miracle cures besides the whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, I would greatly appreciate any input.[/quote]

Hi,
Actually you need to increase the amount of ‘fish oils’ in your life. It is the bad fats that should be restricted and even eliminated from the diet.

Healthy fats, fish oils, olive oils…etc actually help in cellular repair and protection. We all under estimate the power of healthy fats in our lives. Always remember, there are essential fats, essential amino acids(protein), but not an essential carb.

K.

You may also want to read up on Coconut Oil. Maybe Tampa Terry will drop in (or drop her a PM?) and give the benefits. I know she had sent me info on cancer prevention/eradiction and coconut oil… I just can’t locate it right now!

[quote]OctoberGirl wrote:
I was reading about colon cancer and the need to limit fats in your diet. Does anyone know if this includes Fish Oil?

My mother was recently diagnosed with colon cancer and she had been taking Flameout and I don’t know if she should stop taking the Flameout as it is an additional fat in her diet.

Also, if anyone has any superfoods or miracle cures besides the whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, I would greatly appreciate any input.[/quote]

It was once thought that low-fat diets were part of a PREVENTATIVE strategy, but more recent studies have called this in to question. But, since she has already been diagnosed, she needs to concentrate on improving her overall health and strengthening her immune system. Thus, she NEEDS the whole spectrum of fats in her diet including saturated as well as your mono- and poly-unsaturated fats. Fish oil is a must!

Best of luck to your mother. I truly wish her a speedy recovery.

In case you didn’t already know…lots of Green Tea, Spinach, and Blueberries…? Sorry I can’t be of much help to your situation. The best of luck to your mother.

No reason to stop the omega-3 supplements for colon cancer. Often times, patients with cancer need to get all the calories they can, so I would advise her to eat anything she is hungry for.

Thanks everyone for your responses.

I’ve ordered the book from Amazon as my local Barnes and Noble didn’t have it in stock. Thanks AZ!

About the fish oil I just was looking up on the internet where it was saying to steer clear of fats and the articles weren’t separating good from bad fats which is what made me ask.

Thanks PaulMD about the calories, it is true she has lost weight.

She does like blueberries and spinach thank goodness but then she also will eat a whole box of Cheezits if you make the mistake of leaving them around.

I do very much appreciate the responses.

We go for the presurgery consultation on the 11th so keep your fingers crossed.

Celeste

You may also want to read up on pomegranate.

While I saw reports talking about prostate cancer specifically, it also seems to be implicated in a lot of general health benefits… which to me may imply some type of fundamental impact.

This, from the LEF, may also be interesting…
[i]
Cimetidine (Tagamet?) is an over-the-counter ulcer medication that has beneficial effects in treating colorectal cancer and improving survival. Cimetidine prevents cancer growth and spread by several different mechanisms, including enhancing the immune response via stimulation of natural killer (NK) cells and interleukin-2 (IL-2) production, preventing histamine activity and thus immunosuppression, and reducing cancer-cell adhesion molecule expression (Tang NH et al 2004; Kubota T et al 2002; Kobayashi K et al 2000).

Colorectal cancers secrete histamine in high concentrations, enough to be locally immunosuppressive (Reynolds JL et al 1997; Melmon KL et al 1972). Histamine?s suppression of the immune response (immunosuppression) prevents the body from mounting a desirable attack against the tumor (Rocklin RE et al 1979). Cimetidine helps restore natural killer cells (Bai D et al 1999) and thus prevents this immune suppression (Adams et al 1993,1994a,b; Hansbrough JF et al 1986), resulting in prolonged survival of patients who undergo colorectal cancer surgery (Matsumoto S et al 2002).

In just seven days of treatment with 800 mg of cimetidine twice daily (Kelly MD et al 1999)?five days prior to surgery and two days post-surgery?the three-year mortality rate decreased from 41 percent to 7 percent in colorectal cancer patients (Tavani A et al 1998; Uchida A et al 1993). Furthermore, cimetidine improves survival in patients with noncurative surgery for stage IV colorectal cancer (Yoshimatsu K et al 2003). Indeed, cimetidine used in conjunction with chemotherapy can significantly improve survival rates. Patients with aggressive colon cancer had a remarkable 84.6 percent 10-year survival rate when treated with cimetidine (800 mg per day) together with 200 mg per day of 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) for one year starting two weeks after surgery, compared to a 49.8 percent 10-year survival rate for patients who were not treated with cimetidine as an adjuvant therapy (Matsumoto S et al 2002). Patients who had tumors with high expression of the Lewis antigen and were treated with cimetidine had a 10-year cumulative survival rate of 95.5 percent compared to 35.1 percent for those who had tumors with low expression of the Lewis antigens (Matsumoto S et al 2002).

The FDA, however, has not approved cimetidine for use in cancer treatment, which means that colorectal cancer patients should discuss the off-label use of cimetidine with their treating physician. While cimetidine can be purchased over the counter, it may be covered by insurance if prescribed by a physician.
[/i]
Also, the LEF site talked about eating fried red meat being something that is associated with increased colorectal cancer risk. It might make sense to avoid that and other things that are identified as risk factors, so as not to stress pathways that may already be compromised.

Here’s the page I was reading from… plenty of reading… and decisions whether or not various things might be applicable or helpful.

http://www.lef.org/protocols/cancer/colorectal_01.htm

Vroom thank you!

She even makes pomegranite jelly from the fruit on her tree. Now instead of making jelly Mom can just drink the juice.

It looks as though red and purple are good colors to eat and drink

Ill just add Im very sorry to hear it, that sucks.

A main thing support and stay Positive its a must be proactive and keep going try and NEVER let it get her down. nail a solid diet train yes activity. FUN!!! and never give in never let it stay for long you all are going to do anything but BEAT this

Ill add yes to the fish oils, stay away from refined carbs cancer thrives on it, quality fats, protein, complex carbs fruit etc etc

Stay strong
Phill

OctoberGirl, you are very welcome. Be sure to check into the Cimetidine, as it seems timely based on your original post.

Also, from further along on the same resource…

Resveratrol, a natural polyphenol found in peanuts, seeds, mulberries, grape skin, and red wine (Latruffe N et al 2002), has colon cancer-preventive activity in experimental studies (Aziz MH et al 2003; Stierum R et al 2001). Resveratrol directly interferes with colon cancer cell growth and causes cancer death by damaging the mitochondria (Liang YC et al 2003; Delmas D et al 2002; Mahyar-Roemer M et al 2002; Schneider Y et al 2000) of cells in vitro. Phase I and II clinical trials are studying the effects of resveratrol treatment in colorectal cancer patients (for more information, visit www.clinicaltrials.gov).

Given the timeframe, more information may be available by now concerning the clinical trial results. This tweaked my attention because resveratrol is implicated in lots of positive health effects also… and also because I take Rez-V. :wink:

I’m a big believer in adjuvant therapies, including items that both help prevent and also items that work directly against various cancers.

I wish I could be more helpful…

[quote]Phill wrote:
Ill just add Im very sorry to hear it, that sucks.

A main thing support and stay Positive its a must be proactive and keep going try and NEVER let it get her down. nail a solid diet train yes activity. FUN!!! and never give in never let it stay for long you all are going to do anything but BEAT this

Ill add yes to the fish oils, stay away from refined carbs cancer thrives on it, quality fats, protein, complex carbs fruit etc etc

Stay strong
Phill[/quote]

Thanks Phill,

I do believe the positive attitude is going to be a huge part of things. Luckily the lady is crazy good with life so thank goodness.

She just hardly eats anyways. She is a tiny little birdwoman and this is just kicking her butt. But now that we know what is going on she feels better already so that is a good step.

Thanks Phill!

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All good info! I read the book again last night with specifics for colon cancer. There are several pages on whey protein and how it depletes the cancer cells as well as this from page 164:

"The Importance of Fish Oil Supplements (Again)

We cannot stress enough the importance of utilizing fish oil supplements rich in the omego-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA in cancer patients. Fish oil supplements not only address many of the underlying biochemical features of cancer but also have been shown to address quite effectively the underlyinging features that contribute to cancer cachexia."

The chapter goes on to say “Use fish oil supplements at a daily doseage of 700-1000mg of EPA and 400 to 800mg of DHA.”

I also forgot to mention, in addition to have a great surgeon and oncologist, I had (have) a great naturopath who also assisted in my recovery. He prepped me using supplements pre surgery and my recovery was quite quick based on the type and severity of my surgery.

I hope you’ve found more useful information and that your mom is eating her blueberries :slight_smile:

You may want to try Curcumin also.
I think Cosgrove is taking it now.

Scientists showed that curcumin, the main ingredient of the Indian herb turmeric, restores key immune cells that fight off cancer.

The immune system of patients with advanced cancer is significantly weakened, mostly because the main cells that fight off tumors either cannot proliferate anymore or have died off. Curcumin was previously shown to have anti-tumor activity but its effects on the immune system were unknown - until now.

Gaurisankar Sa and colleagues showed that curcumin boosts the immune system of tumor-bearing mice by restoring key immune cells called CD4 and CD8 T cells. The scientists also showed that curcumin increases the production of proteins that cause immune cells to proliferate and reduces the production of proteins that destroy immune cells.

Article: “Curcumin Prevents Tumor-Induced T Cell Apoptosis through Stat-5a-mediated Bcl-2 Induction” by Sankar Bhattacharyya, Debaprasad Mandal, Baisakhi Saha, Gouri Sankar Sen, Tanya Das, and Gaurisankar Sa

It is also being used at MD Anderson

Curcumin for chemoprevention of colon cancer.
Cancer Lett. 2007 Apr 18; [Epub ahead of print]
PMID: 17448598 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

Johnson JJ, Mukhtar H.
University of Wisconsin, School of Pharmacy, 777 Highland Avenue, Madison, WI 53705-2222, USA; University of Wisconsin, School of Medicine and Public Health, Department of Dermatology, 1300 University Avenue, Madison, WI 53706, USA.

The most practical approach to reduce the morbidity and mortality of cancer is to delay the process of carcinogenesis through the use of chemopreventive agents. This necessitates that safer compounds, especially those derived from natural sources must be critically examined for chemoprevention. A spice common to India and the surrounding regions, is turmeric, derived from the rhizome of Curcuma longa. Pre-clinical studies in a variety of cancer cell lines including breast, cervical, colon, gastric, hepatic, leukemia, oral epithelial, ovarian, pancreatic, and prostate have consistently shown that curcumin possesses anti-cancer activity in vitro and in pre-clinical animal models. The robust activity of curcumin in colorectal cancer has led to five phase I clinical trials being completed showing the safety and tolerability of curcumin in colorectal cancer patients. To date clinical trials have not identified a maximum tolerated dose of curcumin in humans with clinical trials using doses up to 8000mg per day. The success of these trials has led to the development of phase II trials that are currently enrolling patients. Overwhelming in vitro evidence and completed clinical trials suggests that curcumin may prove to be useful for the chemoprevention of colon cancer in humans. This review will focus on describing the pre-clinical and clinical evidence of curcumin as a chemopreventive compound in colorectal cancer.

PMID: 17448598 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

I have printed all these out for Mom and she is now convinced about the fish oil. I printed out Bushy’s list for a shopping trip. We’ll try it all.

Thanks for the article Vroom.

Today she has asked me to take her shopping at Trader Joes for Organic. I remember reading on here that you should use organic butter and coffee if nothing else due to the industry standards of the junk they put in those things.

She’s looking at things in a good way. She is getting over the shock and is back to being mobile on her own now that she is out of the hospital.

Dad is getting into the program of eating better and has enlarged their vegetable garden. He’s helping in manly way, digging the garden, he has been installing floor lighting (don’t really know why) and buying her new sheets and nighties.

Thanks again for all the input