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Editorial Issue 217

by Sandra Goodman PhD(more info)

listed in editorial, originally published in issue 217 - October 2014

Prior to the launch of Positive Health PH Online in 1994 I attended a Conference at the Bristol Cancer Help Centre to discuss Nutritional and Lifestyle Guidelines for Cancer Patients. A paper by that name of which I was the lead author was subsequently published in J Nutritional Medicine, now Journal Nutritional and Environmental Medicine:

I recently re-discovered on my hard drive that Consensus Statement document published in 1994 - Nutrition and Life-Style Guidelines for People with Cancer. I am most impressed at how prescient it was 20 years ago regarding providing more options for cancer patients, and also disappointed in how little cancer treatment has progressed in directions providing patients with more options than merely chemotherapy and radiation therapy as adjunctive treatments.

Some 20+ years on from the publication of that Consensus document, there have been a myriad of Research, Clinical papers and books published regarding many aspects of cancer treatment. These have demonstrated molecular sequelae resulting from toxic conventional cancer treatments, i.e. chemotherapy and radiotherapy, which may be causative factors in the development of multi-drug resistance, cancer stem cells and other gene mutations and which may influence temporary cancer regression and then future recurrence and metastases.

Additionally it has been proposed by some holistic alternative practitioners who utilize integrated alternative protocols that the body may have difficulty recovering from the toxicity of chemotherapy and radiotherapy and may not be responsive to more biological cancer treatments.  Furthermore, perhaps >50% of cancer patients utilize some form of alternative treatments, and such data are not included in standard cancer registries.

A research update describing curcumin and its ability to target cancer stem cells (CSCs) is published in this Issue 217:

“CSCs are proposed to be responsible for initiating and maintaining cancer, and contribute to recurrence and drug resistance. A number of studies have suggested that curcumin has the potential to target CSCs through regulation of CSC self-renewal pathways… and specific microRNAs involved in acquisition of epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT).

“The potential impact of curcumin, alone or in combination with other anticancer agents, on CSCs was evaluated as well. Furthermore, the safety and tolerability of curcumin have been well-established by numerous clinical studies. Importantly, the low bioavailability of curcumin has been dramatically improved through the use of structural analogues or special formulations. More clinical trials are underway to investigate the efficacy of this promising agent in cancer chemoprevention and therapy. In this article, we review the effects of curcumin on CSC self-renewal pathways and specific microRNAs, as well as its safety and efficacy in recent human studies.”

Targeting Cancer Stem Cells by Curcumin and Clinical Applications. - GreenMedInfo

Throughout the 20-year interval since its inception Positive Health has published numerous clinical articles regarding various alternative cancer therapies, reviewed books describing the myriad of alternative cancer treatments. I have followed a number of cancer patients being treated and sometimes who have subsequently died. As the molecular biology science of chemotherapy has revealed how cancer cells form stem cells which contribute to multi-drug resistance and then may contribute to cancer recurrence, it has become apparent to me that these toxic treatments may be responsible for many cancer deaths. However due to the draconian laws proscribing the use of innovative / alternative cancer treatments, it is only legal to treat cancer patients with surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. I have therefore been persuaded of the need to attempt to establish and compare cancer patient survival without toxic chemotherapy / radiotherapy treatments but with robust integrated / alternative protocols. I have compiled this project and uploaded it as an article within PH Online Issue 217- Research Proposal: Cancer Patients’ Survival: Comparing Integrated Alternative Therapies and Chemotherapy / Radiotherapy Treatment

Given the legal constraints in the UK (The 1939 Cancer Act) and USA prohibiting alternative treatments for cancer patients, it is difficult to see how this much-needed research project can progress, as it would require a professional team with technical, medical and ethical experience,  access to cancer patients and the construction of a multi-disciplinary, multi-field database. Initially results would merely compare survival of matched cancer patients who have or have not undergone chemotherapy and radiotherapy with those who have undergone an integrated multi-component alternative protocol. This is a fairly long-term project which would need to be followed up for 5-10 years.

Returning to the present in 2014, an extraordinary article is published in Issue 217 which juxtaposes Chinese and Western Medicine Diagnostic descriptions in the Case Article Cancer and Master Acupuncture. As one reads through this Case one gains an insight of toxicity of the chemotherapy treatments; how would this patient survive without the Chinese medicine treatments? Other editorial features illustrating the power of natural treatments to significantly ameliorate the damage of arthritis and possibility of surviving Ebola virus are also published in this Issue:

Soft Tissue, Detoxification and CranioSacral Approaches to Arthritis and Ageing

Ebola - Saving Lives with Natural Allopathic Medicine

Also happening on 18 September 2014 - publication date for Issue 217 - is the historical Scottish Referendum to determine whether Scotland remains within the UK or becomes a separate country. At this juncture, 2-3 days prior to the referendum, the polls are too close to call. With so many fast-moving events occurring on an almost daily basis, ground-breaking is not an inappropriate word. Perhaps a ‘miracle’ will occur and it will be possible to carry out the research comparing cancer outcomes in patients using conventional versus alternative treatments.


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About Sandra Goodman PhD

Sandra Goodman PhD, Co-founder and Editor of Positive Health, trained as a Molecular Biology scientist in Agricultural Biotechnology in Canada and the US, focusing upon health issues since the 1980s in the UK. Author of 4 books, including Nutrition and Cancer: State-of-the-Art, Vitamin C – The Master Nutrient, Germanium: The Health and Life Enhancer and numerous articles, Dr Goodman was the lead author of the Consensus Document Nutritional and LifeStyle Guidelines for People with Cancer and compiled the Cancer and Nutrition Database for the Bristol Cancer Help Centre in 1993. Dr Goodman is passionate about making available to all people, particularly those with cancer, clinical expertise in Nutrition and Complementary Therapies. Dr Goodman was recently featured as Doctor of the Fortnight in ThinkWellness360.

Dr Goodman and long-term partner Mike Howell seek individuals with vision, resources, and organization to continue and expand the Positive Health PH Online legacy beyond the first 30 years, with facilities for training, to fund alternative cancer research, and promote holistic organizations internationally. Read about Dr Goodman and purchase Nutrition and Cancer: State-of-the-Art.  She may be contacted privately for Research, Lectures and Editorial services via:   and

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