Volume 2 Issue 5

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Page 34 | Abby's Magazine - Over the past 100 years, scientists and researchers have explored the possibility that the disease-fighting immune system can also be used as a fortress to protect against cancer. Clinical support for the idea that the immune system might wall off the development of cancer first emerged in the 1800's when physicians noticed that tumors sometimes regressed in cancer patients who contracted bacterial infections. The immune system incorporates a complex interaction of blood cells and proteins that protect us from infections and cancer cells that develop in the body. "Cancer is considered to be basically a process of invasion," says John Katanzaro, ND, founder and director of the Health and Wellness Institute in Mountlake Terrace, Washington. "The immune system gets that message that there are cells that are misbehaving and they need to be stopped." Your thymus gland is thought to coordinate the battle against cancer, viruses, and bacteria. Immune cells called B lymphocytes (B cells) originate in your bone marrow. Proteins called antibodies are formed by B cells when they meet suspicious substances in the body. These antibodies are chemically structured to recognize future invasions of the same substances. "It's a kind of lock and key relationship; there's really a lot of specificity to that formation of antibodies which are then capable of reacting and rendering [invaders] harmless," says Tom Slaga, MD, president and CEO of the AMC Cancer Research Center in Denver. Antibody Production Cancer cells can stimulate anti-body production. These antibodies summon white blood cells or complement proteins to destroy the cancer by penetrating cell membranes. "…Portals of entry: your digestive system, oral cavity are tied to the immune system. For instance if something enters your oral cavity, through saliva, the stomach with its tremendous acid, tries to kill (these) things. When things enter, you launch these specific antibody antigen-type reactions. For example, if you have a cancer cell being formed you have very specific cells called natural killer cells that try to destroy that cell," says Dr. Slaga. Boost Immunity with Nutrients "There are many factors involved in cancer. Genetic factors, environmental factors, emotional and spiritual factors. Diet is a big part. If your food is not your medicine then your food is your foe. Eating food that is pure and of the best quality, having a good diet, these (stimulate) healing energy," says Dr. Katanzaro, author of Cancer, An Integrative Approach (Health and Healing Press). "If you eat a very healthy diet, very rich with fruits and vegetables, emphasizing whole grains and legumes," says Dr. Slaga, "you have a base to have a healthy detoxification system as well as a healthy DNA repair system and an enhanced immune system." The minerals zinc and selenium also help support immune function. The nutrient known as CoQ10 is "an excellent anticancer agent," says Dr. Katanzaro. "It actually works on a cellular level to strengthen the cell's function." Moving Around And Around Exercise helps, too. "If you overeat, even good things, and don't exercise, you can end up with some free radical formation that has to be detoxified," says Dr. Slaga. "A moderate degree of exercise will increase your ability to use those calories so you have less side effects with free Cancer Immunity

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