Here’s another good reason for you to
EAT YOUR VEGETABLES!
December 30th, 2012 by Holly Cornish
According to research published in the journal Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, a plant nutrient called sulforaphane is highly selective in its battle against cancer.
Unlike traditional chemotherapy drugs, this nutrient has been shown to target and destroy prostate, breast and other cancer cells—while leaving healthy cells untouched! You don’t want to miss this natural miracle from the produce section. . .
Continued below. . .
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Sulforaphane is part of the group of compounds called isothiocyanates (ITC). These compounds are ABUNDANT in broccoli and other cruiciferous vegetables such as:
- Brussels sprouts
- Collard and kale greens
These vegetables don’t contain a dusting of ITCs on their skins! You have to actually chew or chop them to break down their cell membranes.
This brings their sulfur-containing chemicals in contact with certain enzymes that occur in the vegetables themselves AND in your own digestive tract. These enzymes are essential to releasing the sulforaphane/ITC nutrient. Without the enzymes, it doesn’t matter how much broccoli and cabbage you eat.
Some folks prefer to cook their vegetables to help get ’em down the hatch. But you should know that the greatest cancer-fighting benefits come with eating them raw.
This is because cooking at high heat will deactivate the enzyme that helps produce cancer-killing ITCs! Raw or lightly cooked vegetables will deliver the greatest health benefits.
If you don’t know about enzymes, it’s time you did! Everyone needs to take them as supplements AND eat enzyme-rich foods as well. Enzymes are every bit as important as vitamins and minerals. I wrote the book on this subject, called The Missing Ingredient for Good Health.
Like many plants, cruciferous vegetables are rich in the very enzymes you need to digest them. Besides sulforaphane, they’re also rich in vitamins A, C, and K, and in other compounds that help make them mean, green cancer-fighting machines.
Vitamin K is a wonder all by itself. I take it as a supplement in addition to eating large amounts of broccoli, cabbage, kale, cauliflower and watercress (watercress is a super addition to a salad). I could go on for a very long time about all the natural “medicines” in cruciferous vegetables, but let me get back to sulforaphane.
Exactly how does it work its magic against cancer? Well, numerous study results show that this health defender carries out…
A multi-pronged attack against deadly cancer cells!
Essentially, sulforaphane uses several highly effective strategies to protect you from cancer. This includes actions that:
- Block damaging enzyme reactions—sulforaphane blocks phase 1 enyzmes that can activate carcinogens in your body
- Inhibit cancer cell growth—cancer cells grow and multiply quickly until they get a dose of sulforaphane; it has a unique ability to shut ’em down
- Promote cancer cell suicide—not only does it stop them from growing, but sulforaphane also induces apoptosis (natural cell death) in various types of cancer cells
- Rev up beneficial enzyme action—increasing phase 2 antioxidant enzymes helps reduce harmful inflammation that can promote cancer cell growth and prevent apoptosis
Sulforaphane also provides protection against several types of bacteria, including E.Coli, Salmonella and Staphylococcus aureus.
Its antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties have many folks interested in using sulforaphane as a topical cosmetic.
It’s a wonder drug in a plant — and you don’t need a prescription.
Now this isn’t pie-in-the-sky fantasy! These conclusions come from documented clinical research and observation.
Respected physician and medical writer, Dr. Ray Sahelian endorses sulforaphane as a product that can help detoxify your body and protect against a variety of cancers.
Dr. Sahelian’s website cites numerous scientific studies that prove its healthful benefits.
Here’s what some studies have shown so far…
Scientists have noted amazing results when studying the inhibiting effects of sulforaphane on chemically-induced cancers in a variety of animal studies.
Here are just a few examples:
- Breast—researchers at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center studied mice with breast cancer to document the number of cancer stem cells in breast tumors. They injected the mice with different concentrations of sulforaphane. The investigators found that sulforaphane 1) significantly reduced the number of cancer stem cells, 2) left ordinary cells unharmed, and 3) stopped breast cancer cells from producing new tumors
- Colon —investigators at the State University of New Jersey found that mice given a diet supplemented with sulforaphane for three weeks developed significantly fewer and smaller polyps in their small intestines
- Lung—Beijing University scientists found that 9 days after implanting tumor cells in the lungs of mice, those treated with sulforaphane injections had tumors weighing more than 70 percent less than those in control mice!
- Prostate—2011 studies concluded by scientists in the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University demonstrated that sulforaphane selectively targeted cancerous prostate cells and left normal cells unharmed
This is merely a sampling of the many positive anti-cancer properties of this powerhouse broccoli nutrient. Research teams are continuing to monitor human clinical trials and animal studies for additional evidence.
So are YOU convinced that broccoli and its cousins are one of Mother Nature’s kick-butt cancer cures?
The evidence abundantly shows this to be true. But no one expects you to develop an overnight fondness for this group of vegetables. Whatever the reason, many folks just can’t stomach the idea of chomping on broccoli. The first President Bush famously announced he refused to eat it. I can’t stand Brussels sprouts myself.
The good news is some manufacturers have developed supplements that extract the healthy sulforaphane from vegetables and make it available in pill form.
So if broccoli, cauliflower, kale and turnips just don’t appeal to you—you can still benefit from their anti-cancer strength without holding your nose before each bite!
Meanwhile, we wrote about something so interesting in the last issue, I want to make sure you didn’t miss it. It’s about the effect our thoughts have on our health — and how just thinking you’re being cured can cause you to get well. Scroll down and take a look.
Has Your Doctor Ever Fooled You
with Fake Medicines?
You go see your doctor and he writes you a prescription…
You fill it, pay for it, bill it to insurance, and take it as prescribed. Several months later, you realize the pills aren’t doing a thing for you.
So did your doctor misdiagnose you — or lie to you?
The truth is darker than you may imagine…
Continued below. . .
Hidden epidemic picking off
Baby Boomers in their prime
Leg cramps that wake you up out of a sound sleep.
Fingers so cold you’re embarrassed to shake hands at church.
Unsightly circles under your eyes–no matter how much sleep you get.
Bruises that appear after the slightest bump…and take WEEKS to go away.
These aren’t just minor annoyances. They’re the first signs of the hidden epidemic picking off Baby Boomers like flies. So deadly, it claims another new victim every 30 seconds. And yet–most M.D.s are completely overlooking it.
Which is why it’s absolutely critical for you to watch this special presentation right now. It will tell you everything you need to know about this sweeping threat. Including the solution so stunningly simple, it puts modern medicine to shame. Please, don’t miss it.
If your doctor prescribed “Obecalp” or “Cebocap” to calm your headache, reduce your stomach upset, or relieve your pain… did it help?
Obecalp and Cebocap are placebos — a fancy name for a fake drug. Obecalp is “placebo” spelled backwards. “Cebocap” is a pill made from sugar.
Does your doctor pass this off as real medicine?
This isn’t exactly new news, but that doesn’t make it any less disturbing.
An international survey reported that more than half of all doctors in the U.S. regularly prescribe placebos to their patients — without telling them, of course.
Ditto for doctors in England, Israel, New Zealand, Sweden, and Denmark.
A study of all Chicago area primary care doctors saw 45% of them admit they prescribed placebos for their patients.
So, how do they manage to dismiss their patients with the brush of a hand and a fake med?
- 34% introduce placebos to the patient as “a substance that may help and will not hurt” (technically, this is true; many people do experience relief from placebos)
- 19% said, “It is medication.”
- (Only) 9% called it a placebo.
One-third of doctors gave their patients other info such as, “This may help you but I am not sure how it works.”
Your doctor may even think you’re the fake
Doctors admit to prescribing placebos to try to find out who’s faking their symptoms, or who’s a hypochondriac.
This is worse than ironic — you doctor lies to you to see if you’re lying.
The doctor might say something like, “This is a medicine not typically used for your condition but [that] might benefit you.” It sounds like an off-label use of a prescription drug, but it’s a placebo.
This is particularly common for pain med prescriptions. The chronic pain disorder fibromyalgia has had doctors baffled and flustered for years because many of them think it’s psychosomatic (i.e. it’s all in your head). So they prescribe dummy pills and send the patient off into the wild blue yonder.
Shockingly, a recent study in the British Medical Journal showed that nearly two-thirds of all doctors thought it was permissible to give fake medicine without telling you.
The website HealthDay quotes a Stanford psychiatrist as saying, “The basic rule is: First, do no harm. If there is no toxicity and it does some good, evidence supports its use… You can tell people that the treatment might benefit them.”
Your doctor’s hired accomplice
Not surprisingly, your doctor could never pull this off without a willing accomplice. And they have just the partner they need — your pharmacy. And behind them, the major drug companies.
Can fake meds really be prescribed and purchased from your local pharmacy? You bet! CVS, Walgreens and others have them listed.
With half the doctors pushing fake meds and using pharmacies as their accomplices you have to wonder — has YOUR doctor done this to you?
This atmosphere of distrust between doctors and their patients exposes an insidious problem in Western medicine. Wouldn’t you rather your doctor told you he had to do a little more research and get back to you about an issue, instead of just telling you to pop a sugar pill?
Maybe we should ask our doctors about their thoughts on these issues…
- How do they expect your health to improve with fake sugar pills?
- Does absence of toxicity justify them lying to you?
- If your doctor can’t diagnose your problem, does he default to thinking your symptoms are in your head?
- What if you really are having a heart attack but get sent home with a fake prescription?
- Are they liable for malpractice if they misdiagnose or fail to diagnose, and you die?
In my opinion, placebo prescriptions are a medical cop-out, and do nothing to help trust between doctors and patients.
True, sometimes they help a patient. But whether real or imagined, pain is pain, and ALL symptoms should be looked into… not just cast aside as inconsequential or all in the head.
But as I said…
Some placebos really help patients
Even when no real medicine is consumed, some patients feel better. Their pain or symptoms do go away.
In carefully controlled studies with placebos as a control, certain patients progress just because they think they’re getting real medicine.
That’s why “the placebo effect” is now front and center in discussions on the mind-body connection popularized by Eastern medicine. Even many adherents of Western medicine are starting to embrace the mind-body connection for its therapeutic value.
I love one study we came across: Researchers gave runners tap water, claiming it was oxygenated. The runners with this “special” water ran faster and longer than their counterparts.
Does that make the “placebo effect” legit?
An estimated one third of all people can improve via the placebo effect…
Studies now show that sugar pills work as well as antidepressants to beat depression. And with far fewer side effects!
Even sham knee surgery was equal to the real thing! In this rare surgery-related placebo study, 180 participants were randomly assigned to have arthroscopic surgery for osteoarthritis, or sham surgery with incisions.
Tests of knee function showed that those who had the placebo surgery reported feeling just as good as those getting the real operation. While the surgery worked for many people, the sham did also.1
Upon discovering these startling results, one of the doctors involved said, “I hate to tell you this, but surgery may have the biggest placebo effect of all.”
This is rather amazing testimony to the power of your thoughts to bring about healing changes in your body. Just think how much money you’ll save replacing a $5,000 surgery with your brain’s healing power!
In fact, brain scans do suggest the placebo effect is the work of endorphins — your body’s natural pain killers.
But some people experience the opposite. . .
Sometimes you get the reverse effect — unpleasant “side effects” like headaches, nervousness, nausea, or constipation, to name a few. The improvement is called the “placebo effect“. The reverse is the “nocebo effect“.
Researchers think the nocebo effect can be partially explained by a substance that sends messages through your nerves to your brain. When you’re anxious, this substance is activated, making you feel more pain than someone who’s calm.
The resulting nocebo effect shows up in brain scans too. Brain imaging studies suggest your pain is more intense when you expect more pain versus if you expect less pain.
Together they comprise the expectation effect… what you expect will happen. You expect to feel better, so you do. Or you get this giant pill and imagine it’s a very strong medicine, so you get “side effects”.
I find it very easy to understand the nocebo effect because I’ve experienced side effects from quite a few drugs and supplements. The most common for me are feeling hyper and having trouble sleeping. So I tend to be nervous and to anticipate a problem when trying a new supplement, and my fears may bring on the problem.
In controlled studies ALL drugs and supplements induce side effects in some of the participants. The most common side effect is stomach or intestinal upset. I suspect that in most cases it’s all in the patient’s head — the result of feeling nervous or apprehensive about taking a substance.
Conventional medicine and placebos
According to the medical literature, placebos do not cure, at least permanently. In fact, the placebo effect doesn’t last very long for most patients, and they go back to experiencing the same symptoms that got them to go to the doctor in the first place. (Yet doctors willingly lie with placebos on the grounds that they “help.” Hmmm…I guess short term relief is better than none.)
In studies on tumor shrinkage, placebos seem to have little or no effect (conventionally speaking)… but may still offer symptomatic relief, calm the patient’s anxiety, reduce pain, and improve sleep.
Some people think placebos work because certain illnesses improve over time without treatment. Or maybe people take better care of themselves while they think they’re receiving a doctor’s care…
Can “remembered wellness” heal you?
Certain research shows your brain may also respond to an imagined scene as it would to something actually seen. Your imagination may help you recall a time before symptoms, evoking a chemical change — a theory called remembered wellness.2
Some doctors call alternative therapies placebos. In reality, what you believe in can help for awhile and sometimes for a long while.
Certain health problems may also improve on their own — including the so-called Stage Zero Breast Cancer.
So, can you talk yourself into getting well?
Some people get the placebo effect without any pills, shots, or procedures, just by visiting someone they think can help.
Incredibly, scientists now believe patients can benefit from sham drugs even when they’re told there are no active ingredients in them. Meaning doctors can skip the deceit.
To test these limits, Harvard Medical School ran a test3…
They divided 80 patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) into two groups — one received no treatment and the other got dummy pills twice a day.
The “dummy pill” group was explicitly told:
- They were getting placebo pills with no active ingredient (sugar pills)…
- That these pills were clinically proven to give significant improvement in IBS symptoms through the mind-body self-healing process…
- That they didn’t have to believe in placebo effect at all — just take the pills…
And the word “placebo” was even printed on the bottle!
The patients were monitored for three weeks. Here are the amazing results, published in the scientific journal PLoS ONE.
- The placebo group experienced improvement both at the midpoint and end point compared to the non-treatment group.
- By the end point, nearly twice as many placebo patients had adequate symptom relief compared to the non-treated group.
- Patients in the placebo group doubled their average rate of improvement compared to those given the most powerful IBS medications.
The researchers were surprised and encouraged, and hope it’ll discourage deception in clinical practice. However, they also warn that more study is necessary due to limitations in the size and length of this study.
Lead author Prof. Ted Kaptchuk says, “…these findings suggest that rather than mere positive thinking, there may be significant benefit to the very performance of medical ritual… Placebo may work even if patients know it is a placebo.” (Emphasis mine.)
Makes me think of primitive shamans or medicine men or “witch doctors”: just performing an elaborate ritual can make a patient feel better.
The bottom line
The mind-body connection and the placebo effect are hot topics in medicine today. As for hard and fast answers, we’re not there yet. But still, here’s what you can do today:
- Don’t throw out the baby with the bath water. Your brain is very powerful, and just because we don’t know “everything” doesn’t mean a placebo can’t work for you. However…
- Your key strategy is always to stay as healthy as possible so you don’t need the placebo. Eat organic raw foods daily, exercise 30 minutes a day, slash stress… and all the basics you’ve heard before. Oh, wait! Maybe those are all placebos. . .
- If your doctor prescribes medicine, ask if it’s a placebo. Look it up online or in the Physicians’ Desk Reference to be sure it’s “real”. Then ask your pharmacist if it’s a placebo. This isn’t a carte blanche approval for prescription meds, but a plug for honesty in medicine.
- Become a better informed medical consumer. Aggressively research and evaluate your own medical care — or find a trusted person to help you. No one cares more about your health than you do. Not even your doctor!
Lee Euler, Publisher