Natural Therapies for Cancer
Many people with cancer turn to natural therapies to help them deal with their health. This can be for a few reasons. One is that some people find out that exposure to “environmental factors” can contribute to cancer’s development. The American Cancer Society lists the following environmental factors on its website:
- “Lifestyle factors (nutrition, tobacco use, physical activity, etc.)
- Naturally occurring exposures (ultraviolet light, radon gas, infectious agents, etc.)
- Medical treatments (radiation and medicines including chemotherapy, hormone drugs, drugs that suppress the immune system, etc.)
- Workplace exposures
- Household exposures
After realizing that certain ingredients in food, cleaning or personal care products (shampoos, toothpastes, etc.), or workplace materials (e.g. pesticides, chemicals, etc.) can contribute to the growth of cancerous cells, many patients try to lower their toxic load by using natural therapies as much as possible. These natural therapies may include natural health products (herbs, supplements, teas, homeopathic remedies, etc.), drug-free bodywork (acupuncture, acupressure, massage, physiotherapy, exercise therapy, yoga, osteopathy, etc.), as well as nutrition and dietary counselling.
There are two goals that people tend to have in considering natural therapies for cancer: (1) to minimize discomforts from both the cancer and cancer treatments, and (2) fight the growth and development of cancer itself. At Oncology Acupuncture Toronto, we encourage people to exercise caution in taking natural therapies whose sellers make extravagant claims on the internet or in advertising. While scientific research cannot possibly cover all the traditional therapies that exist out there, and while research into natural therapies tends not to be well-funded, it’s still possible to use the information we have available to us to make the most informed choices we can. It is important work with a health professional who has cancer-specific training and experience with cancer patients, to help you sort out the risks and benefits of different natural therapies from an informed point of view.
Just because a therapy is natural does not mean that it has no risks or potential side effects. Sometimes natural therapies can interact with our other medications, or have effects on other health conditions (for example high blood pressure, depression, etc.). This is why we always recommend working closely with trained and informed health professionals, and not taking supplements or natural health products purchased over the internet or from unregulated sources. Please contact us if you would like to have a free 15 minute consultation or need recommendations for regulated natural health therapists, such as Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners, naturopathic doctors, holistic nutritionists, or others in your area.
Oncology Acupuncture Toronto offers the following natural therapies for cancer patients in Toronto, Vaughan, Richmond Hill, Etobicoke, King City, Brampton, Aurora, North York, and the rest of Greater Toronto Area: Traditional Chinese Medicine diagnosis, nutritional guidelines, acupuncture, acupressure, cupping, guasha, moxibustion/ heat therapy, and more.
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