In the past, scientists have believed most cancers result from genetics until recently. Research results now show cancer mostly occurs in individuals with metabolic disease (which includes insulin resistance). According to Dr. D’Agostino, only five to ten percent (5-10%) of cancers are a result of genetics.
A Look at Metabolic Disease
Metabolic disease is a process within the body which interferes with normal metabolism (converting food into energy). The “powerhouse” of each cell is known as the mitochondria; they generate needed energy.
In individuals who ingest large amounts of carbohydrates (glucose), blood sugar levels rise. In a healthy individual, insulin will respond to the increased levels by regulating the usage of energy. When higher levels of insulin are released into the blood stream over time, the body becomes “resistant.”
When the body does not respond appropriately to the need for higher levels of insulin, the individual can develop “insulin resistance.” High blood glucose levels in the bloodstream cannot be removed sufficiently, and the excess is converted to fat. Long-term damage can also occur in various organ systems of the body in individuals with insulin resistance.
The Cancer Connection
In Dr. Riboli’s studies, a connection is seen between cancer risk and insulin resistance within patients. Those with continued insulin resistance have an increased risk of developing:
Concurrent studies conducted by Dr. Fettke reveal cancer growth is tied to the metabolism of glucose in the individual. If an individual does not consume a sufficient amount of glucose, the cancer cells will die. In other words, the cancer needs sugar to grow and survive.
The Ketogenic Diet
The ketogenic diet is a low-carb diet which includes higher amounts of fats. This diet is very similar to the Banting diet, but only includes 25 grams of carbs or less. This regime is successful in treating patients with obesity, diabetes, heart disease, epilepsy, and Alzheimer’s. Dr. Seyfried terms the dietary method as a “single metabolic approach” to improve health in individuals with various disease processes.
The Move to Fat Burning States
In the ketogenic diet, keeping the carb limit to 25 grams or less will bring the body from burning carbs to burning fat. Ketones are created when the body breaks fatty acids down in the liver (which are needed for energy). Ketosis results which also “signals” the body is burning fat stores for energy.
Foods to Avoid on a Keto Diet
Foods eaten on the ketogenic diet should be of high-quality and free from hormones, chemicals, and pesticides. They should also not be genetically modified. The following items should be avoided at all costs:
Foods which Fight Cancer
Including foods which naturally fight cancer is essential to optimal health. They are also great for the ketogenic diet.
Organic Tomatoes – Lycopene is a cancer-fighting antioxidant which gives this fruit bright red coloring. Cooking enhances the properties found in lycopene. Studies in Nutrition & Cancer found endometrial cell growth stopped when including lycopene in the diet.
Berries – Berries contain ellagic acid which is thought to inhibit the growth of tumors. Darker berries are better than lighter berries.
Garlic – Garlic is an effective neutralizer of free radicals and contains selenium. In research studies, selenium is shown to reduce cancers nearly by one-fourth. Garlic also contains phytochemicals which fight against the formation of nitrosamines (carcinogens) in the stomach.
Turmeric – Turmeric contains curcumin which is a powerful substance known to fight oxidants and inflammation. Research studies published in Cancer Research UK reveal its ability to prevent and halt cancer cells, including breast cancer, stomach cancer, skin cancer, and bowel cancer.
Aubergine – Aubergine is rich in antioxidants known as anthocyanins. They are understood to fight against cancer, inflammation, neuro-related diseases, and the aging process.
Mushrooms – These contain amino acid ergothioneine which holds anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Mushrooms can also boost the immune system.
Chilies – Capsaicin is found in chilies which provide spicy flavor. The ingredient is also a natural anti-bacterial, anti-diabetic, and anti-carcinogen.
Cruciferous Vegetables – This includes some of the following veggies: cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, Brussel sprouts, kale, and spinach. Each of these have powerful anti-carcinogens which naturally fight cancer. Broccoli contains sulforaphane which is potent, boosting the body’s enzyme protection and it is known to “flush out” cancer causing chemicals.