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By Lee Euler
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Mother Goose points the "whey" to fight cancer
If she survived the spider, Little Miss Muffett's good eating habits may have given her a lifetime of protection against cancer and a host of other diseases.
The "curds and whey" she was eating in the Mother Goose rhyme are cottage cheese. Curds are the solid pieces and whey is the liquid. It turns out that whey protein contains a powerful health-giving substance with so many benefits you'll want to rush to the nearest health-food store to stock up.
The whey ingredient I'm talking about is called lactoferrin. It first came to my attention through Health Sciences Institute, which calls it "a major medical breakthrough" and "a powerful tool in the fight against serious diseases."
We checked out the HSI reports and found they were on the money. Japanese researchers showed that lactoferrin stopped the growth of some solid tumors in laboratory mice. They also found it prevents the spread of cancer cells in these animals.
The researchers studied the effects of bovine-derived lactoferrin on cells intended to mimic either skin cancer or leukemia. Mice were injected with the experimental cancer cells, which are known to spread easily from tumors to other organs and tissues.
When researchers administered lactoferrin just after tumors formed—lactoferrin went to work on suppressing tumor growth.
What's more, they found that the spread of cancer cells to the lungs and liver was significantly less than in control animals that did not receive lactoferrin1 ! So you get a double-whammy: it suppresses cancer where it exists AND it helps keep cancer from spreading to other organs.
So just what makes lactoferrin a cancer-fighting superhero?
Here's How Lactoferrin Starves Hungry Cancer Cells...
Lactoferrin is a glycoprotein—that is, a protein with a glucose molecule attached. Its name combines the Latin words "lacto", which means "milk", and "ferrin" which means "iron".
Lactoferrin is highly concentrated in human breast milk, as well as in the so-called "new milk" or "first milk" of cows that have just given birth, and indeed in the milk of most mammals. The lactorferrin in mother's milk provides powerful immune protection to the newborn. Actually, the substance is found in ALL milk, but "new milk" has the highest concentration.
The key to lactoferrin's cancer-fighting properties is its amazing ability to bind with iron. It forms a bond with iron that's 100 times stronger than transferrin—your body's major iron transport protein.
Studies show that excessive amounts of iron in your diet may increase your risk of developing certain types of cancer. Researchers believe many diseases and cancers need iron to reproduce and grow.2 3 By starving cancer cells for iron, lactoferrin helps deprive them of life.
If you're healthy, your own body can produce large amounts of lactoferrin to battle a specific infection or tumor. This molecule binds with excess iron in that area—and prevents the bacteria or the tumor from feeding on it.
Very high concentrations are found in the saliva in our mouths, where it probably serves the function of killing off microbes in our food and drink.
Yes, you heard right: besides being a godsend in fighting cancer, lactoferrin is a powerful, broad-spectrum microbe-killer, too! It helps fight bacteria, fungi, viruses and even protozoa.
Lactoferrin Doubles As a Germ-Fighting Superhero!
Numerous studies prove that lactoferrin by itself or in whey protein boosts your immune system.
Studies show lactoferrin supports your immune system by:
Scientists believe that when lactoferrin binds with iron, it chokes the supply to pathogens that feed on it. But it manages to do this without harming the good bacteria such as Lactobacillus acidophilus in your stomach 4 !
Laboratory experiments prove this superstar protein can weaken and defeat some of the heartiest germs, including:
Numerous anecdotal reports suggest lactoferrin has an astonishing ability to clobber these and many other germs that make you sick.
One of the books we offer also recommends lactoferrin as a bone-builder that can help prevent osteoporosis. The book I'm talking about is The Encyclopedia of Medical Breakthroughs and Forbidden Treatments (click here for more info). This 384-page tome is a remarkable compendium of cures for hundreds of different ailments. If you don't have it on your bookshelf, you should. I refer to it all the time. You can look up almost anything.
A priceless immune-system booster
Lactorferrin is an essential part of a healthy, adult immune system. When you take the supplement, you're just helping out Mother Nature. This is critical for cancer patients, because the disease itself—and many conventional cancer therapies—tend to damage or suppress the immune system.
Lactoferrin is NOT a magic cure-all for cancer all by itself. It's one of a number of immune-enhancing and tumor-fighting therapies you can employ. According to Health Sciences Institute, cancer patients can safely take large doses of 500 to 1500 mg. per day. That's the range found in case histories of human cancer patients ( I don't know of any large-scale studies on human cancer patients; the evidence is based on individual case histories and on animal studies).
From what I can learn, lactoferrin can be safely used along with chemotherapy and radiation, for those patients who aren't willing to depend on alternative treatments alone.
If you're like me and you want to take lactoferrin to PREVENT cancer and other diseases, Health Sciences Institute recommends 100 mg. per day. Frankly, that sounds like a low dose to me, but that's what they say. There's no toxicity to it. If you have a bad reaction to milk, you might be safer skipping lactoferrin and trying one of many other immune boosters.
You can purchase lactoferrin supplements in most health food stores or from online sources. Another source — also available in supplement shops — is dried and powdered whey protein, which you can mix into a drink. Athletes like to use whey protein to build muscle mass, but it can benefit the rest of us, too. Many nutritional supplements include whey protein because of its ability to help build muscle mass.
Readers ask me about sugar. . .
My article about "Sugar, Cancer and the Devil" in issue #13 sure got people's attention. Much thanks to everyone who wrote (and, of course, everyone who's written in response to other issues, as well).
Regarding sugar, the two most common questions were, "What sweetener can I use as a sugar substitute?" and "Is it safe to eat fruit, or does fructose, the type of sugar found in fruit, feed cancer cells, too?"
The two sugar substitutes I hear the most about are stevia and xylitol. They're mentioned all the time by experts on alternative health. You can easily buy them at health food outlets. I don't use either one, not feeling the need for a sugar substitute, but those are the two I'd try.
When it comes to the second question, fruit sugar and cancer, I don't have a definitive answer. Some cancer caregivers advocate no fruit at all for cancer patients and some say fruit is okay. Alternative cancer treatment is like the Wild, Wild West, and you'll seldom find one hundred percent agreement about anything. Caregivers evolve their own treatment protocols on the basis of what works in their real-life patients.
The most famous (and probably the most tested) cancer diet, the Gerson therapy, allows fresh, organic fruit. In fact, it's required. I think caregivers who say "no fruit for cancer patients" are a small minority, but I respect their opinion.
The fructose found in fruit is bound in with fiber and all kinds of other nutrients including vitamins and minerals. The body digests and absorbs it more slowly than refined cane sugar or high-fructose corn syrup, so it doesn't cause a sudden spike in blood sugar. There's a world of difference between eating whole fruits and vegetables and just extracting the pure sugar out of cane or corn and throwing away everything else (i.e. the stuff that's good for you).
I eat tons of fruit myself — so you'll be in good company, I guess!
1 Tsuda H, Sekine K, Nakamura J, Ushida Y, Kuhara T, Takasuka N, Kim DJ, Asamoto M, Baba-Toriyama H, Moore MA, Nishino H, Kakizoe T. "Inhibition of azoxymethane initiated colon tumor and aberrant crypt foci development by bovine lactoferrin administration in F344 rats." Adv Exp Med Biol 1998;443:273-84.
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