9

votes

Help convince my dad with cancer to try a ketogenic diet.

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created January 10, 2012 at 4:23 AM

Hey guys, I need your help. My dad's cancer has reemerged once again, it's been many times now, I've lost count. I've tried in the past to get him to change his diet which is woefully high in carbohydrates from grains and such to a ketogenic paleo-type diet. You all know how hard it is to convince your family members though and thus far he hasn't done it. I feel like he might bite though if his doctor tells him to do it.

So, I need your help to find research, hard research, that he could take to his doctor that might convince his doctor to have him try it out. If you can think of anything else that might help as well, please share, including anyone that knows a paleo-oriented or savvy oncologist in the Seattle, WA area. Prayers are welcome too.

A bit of history on his cancer: He had a slow growing colon cancer, which he got removed. It came back, so they gave him a colonostomy, but it had already metastasized to his lungs apparently. Chemo has helped, and has stopped it for periods of time, he's gone on and off chemo for the last few years. He now has multiple small (<1inch) tumors in his lungs.

6714718e2245e5190017d643a7614157

on February 25, 2012
at 08:05 PM

I agree Stabby. Isn't this the reason why we are here on PH because most of the info we get from conventional nutritionist is not very good. The info in PHD has helped many people improve their health.

Be1dbd31e4a3fccd4394494aa5db256d

(17969)

on February 25, 2012
at 07:47 PM

Plenty of non-nutrition scientists know a lot more than plenty of nutrition scientists if they read enough. Look at Walter Willet he basically bases everything in epidemiology even when it is starkly contradicted by randomized controlled trials and all reason. And yet he would be regarded as more qualified to write a book about nutrition than Paul Jaminet who appears to have a very good grasp on it. Coming from a hard science like physics to soft science like nutrition (at least that's how it is treated most of the time) ought to make one more qualified as long as they have done their reading

Be1dbd31e4a3fccd4394494aa5db256d

(17969)

on February 25, 2012
at 07:45 PM

Plenty of non-nutrition scientists know a lot more than plenty of nutrition scientists if they read enough. Look at Walter Willet he basically bases everything in epidemiology even when it is starkly contradicted by randomized controlled trials and all reason. And yet he would be regarded as more qualified to write a book about nutrition than Paul Jaminet who appears to have a very good grasp on it. Coming from a hard science like physics to an egregious soft science like nutrition ought to make one more qualified.

88a669ef87f8138d6bbfbdace533a482

(425)

on January 21, 2012
at 07:58 PM

Agreed. The diet part stinks. I did start taking green tea capsules after reading the book. The author died of cancer last year, 19 years after his initial brain cancer diagnosis.

1a38d3adc2466cbb0ab80aac86cc7597

(88)

on January 21, 2012
at 04:25 AM

He had a slow growing colon cancer, which he got removed. It came back, so they gave him a colonostomy, but it had already metastasized to his lungs apparently. Chemo has helped, and has stopped it for periods of time, he's gone on and off chemo for the last few years.

4781cf8ae1bfcb558dfb056af17bea94

(4359)

on January 11, 2012
at 12:29 AM

Some cancers can survive on glutamine.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25472)

on January 10, 2012
at 07:48 PM

the book is great but the diet is horrendous in this book.

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on January 10, 2012
at 05:29 PM

For me, being very much a non-scientist though, I think that even if nutrition is not a scientist's specialty, they have the training and ability to take that on in a way that is credible to the scientific community if they so choose...

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on January 10, 2012
at 05:22 PM

Thanks for the clarification Matt.

77ef7eaba743037c022c7fd28d5f99e1

(380)

on January 10, 2012
at 03:38 PM

I think many of us are aware of the woeful, even fatal flaws in science journalism, Cliff. Which brings up that I forgot to ask what type of cancer we're talking about. Some are responsive, some are not. The fact that some cancers can use gluconeogenesis to survive doesn't invalidate the concept and what successes there have been. You're painting with some broad strokes.

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on January 10, 2012
at 03:19 PM

And optimal for ccancer would be between 80-100 ng/ml from what I've been reading...

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on January 10, 2012
at 02:06 PM

These articles are classic. Cancer catabolizes your lean mass to use as fuel, if you starve the cancer cells of sugar they just get it from your muscles. We live in such a reductionist society people can't even do real science.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on January 10, 2012
at 01:16 PM

I'm a scientist as well, but that doesn't mean I'm qualified to write a book about nutrition. He's an astrophysicist and she's a molecular biologist.

C00e493393828df34be65ddc25456c7c

(610)

on January 10, 2012
at 10:05 AM

PHD posts on anti-cancer diet: http://perfecthealthdiet.com/?p=4739 http://perfecthealthdiet.com/?p=4637

C00e493393828df34be65ddc25456c7c

(610)

on January 10, 2012
at 09:58 AM

That's what I was going to say depends on the cancer.

D07a525f9021f8d72bf6aaa52893c795

(1011)

on January 10, 2012
at 08:58 AM

This is the best answer wrt ketogenic diet and cancer - low carb and high fat - coconut oil helps with ketogenesis.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on January 10, 2012
at 06:17 AM

And the best link of all, right here to PaleoHacks (Zooko's list): http://paleohacks.com/questions/20342/cancer-and-a-ketogenic-diet/62130#62130

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on January 10, 2012
at 06:14 AM

The calorically restricted ketogenic diet, an effective alternative therapy for malignant brain cance: http://www.biomedcentral.com/content/pdf/1743-7075-4-5.pdf

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on January 10, 2012
at 05:14 AM

Another article here: http://www.diabetesincontrol.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=8810&catid=1&Itemid=17

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on January 10, 2012
at 05:05 AM

I don't have time at the moment to look myself, but here are the people he spoke with: Vuk Stambolic @ U of Toronto. Robert Weinberg @ MIT. Michael Pollak @ McGill University. W. Robert Bruce @ U of Toronto. Rudolf Kaaks (unknown). Lewis Cantley, Harvard Medical School.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on January 10, 2012
at 05:00 AM

Drew, Gary Taubes has an article in the current issue of Science magazine that looks at recent research being done on the connection between insulin and cancer. If you can get hold of the issue at your library (or if you can get behind the paywall), you might try looking up some of the researchers he interviews on PubMed. http://www.sciencemag.org/content/335/6064/28.summary?sid=257c82b3-10e1-47d6-9918-c0c3cce756b1

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11 Answers

6
Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on January 10, 2012
at 06:21 AM

I wonder if he'd read Perfect Health Diet? It's very well researched with footnotes galore. It's written by scientists, and talks about a ketogenic version for a host of ailments, including cancer. I also think that although it's written to be credible to physicians and scientists, it's very readable for a layperson.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on January 10, 2012
at 01:16 PM

I'm a scientist as well, but that doesn't mean I'm qualified to write a book about nutrition. He's an astrophysicist and she's a molecular biologist.

C00e493393828df34be65ddc25456c7c

(610)

on January 10, 2012
at 10:05 AM

PHD posts on anti-cancer diet: http://perfecthealthdiet.com/?p=4739 http://perfecthealthdiet.com/?p=4637

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on January 10, 2012
at 05:22 PM

Thanks for the clarification Matt.

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on January 10, 2012
at 05:29 PM

For me, being very much a non-scientist though, I think that even if nutrition is not a scientist's specialty, they have the training and ability to take that on in a way that is credible to the scientific community if they so choose...

Be1dbd31e4a3fccd4394494aa5db256d

(17969)

on February 25, 2012
at 07:45 PM

Plenty of non-nutrition scientists know a lot more than plenty of nutrition scientists if they read enough. Look at Walter Willet he basically bases everything in epidemiology even when it is starkly contradicted by randomized controlled trials and all reason. And yet he would be regarded as more qualified to write a book about nutrition than Paul Jaminet who appears to have a very good grasp on it. Coming from a hard science like physics to an egregious soft science like nutrition ought to make one more qualified.

6714718e2245e5190017d643a7614157

on February 25, 2012
at 08:05 PM

I agree Stabby. Isn't this the reason why we are here on PH because most of the info we get from conventional nutritionist is not very good. The info in PHD has helped many people improve their health.

Be1dbd31e4a3fccd4394494aa5db256d

(17969)

on February 25, 2012
at 07:47 PM

Plenty of non-nutrition scientists know a lot more than plenty of nutrition scientists if they read enough. Look at Walter Willet he basically bases everything in epidemiology even when it is starkly contradicted by randomized controlled trials and all reason. And yet he would be regarded as more qualified to write a book about nutrition than Paul Jaminet who appears to have a very good grasp on it. Coming from a hard science like physics to soft science like nutrition (at least that's how it is treated most of the time) ought to make one more qualified as long as they have done their reading

5
4781cf8ae1bfcb558dfb056af17bea94

(4359)

on January 10, 2012
at 05:30 AM

What kind of cancer does he have? It works better for some cancers than for others. Look up Dr. Seyfried - he's the most prominent researcher on this right now.

C00e493393828df34be65ddc25456c7c

(610)

on January 10, 2012
at 09:58 AM

That's what I was going to say depends on the cancer.

D07a525f9021f8d72bf6aaa52893c795

(1011)

on January 10, 2012
at 08:58 AM

This is the best answer wrt ketogenic diet and cancer - low carb and high fat - coconut oil helps with ketogenesis.

4781cf8ae1bfcb558dfb056af17bea94

(4359)

on January 11, 2012
at 12:29 AM

Some cancers can survive on glutamine.

4
25b139cc1954456d9ea469e40f984cd3

on January 10, 2012
at 05:56 AM

Is his vitamin d status optimal?

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32564)

on January 10, 2012
at 03:19 PM

And optimal for ccancer would be between 80-100 ng/ml from what I've been reading...

4
77ef7eaba743037c022c7fd28d5f99e1

(380)

on January 10, 2012
at 05:01 AM

Well this in itself is not hard research, but it is compelling and could lead you closer to it http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1662484,00.html "Can a High-Fat Diet Beat Cancer?" Good luck, man.

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on January 10, 2012
at 02:06 PM

These articles are classic. Cancer catabolizes your lean mass to use as fuel, if you starve the cancer cells of sugar they just get it from your muscles. We live in such a reductionist society people can't even do real science.

77ef7eaba743037c022c7fd28d5f99e1

(380)

on January 10, 2012
at 03:38 PM

I think many of us are aware of the woeful, even fatal flaws in science journalism, Cliff. Which brings up that I forgot to ask what type of cancer we're talking about. Some are responsive, some are not. The fact that some cancers can use gluconeogenesis to survive doesn't invalidate the concept and what successes there have been. You're painting with some broad strokes.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on January 10, 2012
at 05:14 AM

Another article here: http://www.diabetesincontrol.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=8810&catid=1&Itemid=17

3
34cf7065a6c94062c711eb16c0f6adc3

on January 10, 2012
at 06:20 AM

Give him the book Anti-Cancer. Its written by a doctor who had cancer, so would probably appeal to your father much more. It is not paleo, but educates avoiding the worst parts of the SAD. Hopefully seeing conflicting information, he might be forced to think hard. Then he might be able to openup more on the issues. The doctor is very much against Omega6, and is against meat because of this reason. If you tell him to eat organic grassfed meat, and show that it does not have more Omega6 he will be more convinced. The education will have to be slow. Most people cannot get the logic of Paleo in a sitting.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25472)

on January 10, 2012
at 07:48 PM

the book is great but the diet is horrendous in this book.

88a669ef87f8138d6bbfbdace533a482

(425)

on January 21, 2012
at 07:58 PM

Agreed. The diet part stinks. I did start taking green tea capsules after reading the book. The author died of cancer last year, 19 years after his initial brain cancer diagnosis.

2
Cf4576cbcc44fc7f2294135609bce9e5

on January 10, 2012
at 06:07 PM

DADs can be weird. My dad thinks my paleo diet is a psychosis. In other words the arthritis i have cured is in my mind. And then in his next sentance he shows me how awful his arthritic hands look all deformed with Rheumatoid arthritis. Sorry your dad has cancer, good luck at getting him to change anything. We all love our dads, we just cant change them and what is meant to be just will happen.

2
1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on January 10, 2012
at 05:26 AM

Other things to try:

Dairy Free
Eat natto
Vitamin D3

Coenzyme Q10:

http://www.cancertutor.com/Cancer/Q10.html

As a note I would go VLC and be dairy free if I was in the same situation. However that is just me. Not any hard evidence. I hope you find some.

My friend goes here for treatment:

http://www.dr-gonzalez.com/treatment.htm

Mercola interviewed Gonzales about his cancer work (7 part series):

http://youtu.be/kZ-diONXCZc

EDIT:

Also if he is on statins they lower your Coenzyme Q10 levels.

Also vegetable oils would be very bad.

2
F02990386b12528111740ad6279ba29d

(1363)

on January 10, 2012
at 05:19 AM

My closest uncle has stage 3 cancer. I gave him my copy of Mr. Wolfs book and recommended some things but in the end I'm not a doctor and he isn't willing to change. I've just tried to give good things to read and not be too forceful. You have a Smart approach on convincing the doctor! Maybe focus on him. Older people don't like to listen to younger people especially if they are related! Good luck.

1
E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on January 10, 2012
at 01:58 PM

He doesn't have to go on some crazy restrictive ketogenic diet necessarily. Depending on what kind of cancer he has he could probably see some benefits by minimizing polyunsaturated fats to as low as possible. High dose aspirin or salycilic acid is also very good for cancer patients.

0
5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on January 10, 2012
at 07:20 PM

If you succeed, let us know what worked. My dad always had a problem with taking advice from "someone who's diapers he changed".

0
0bf4aaa16b8532ca8fb773d86900d153

on January 10, 2012
at 05:53 PM

when i listened to the Cancer World summit from Kevin Gianni. I saw most of the approaches are nealry vegan.some where completly vegan. others only had little or very little animal products. One expert David Getoof has the WAPF approach. Actually he is PricePotenger Foundation.

There is also an TED talk for Cancer and foods. Except Wild Salmon, the most known foods are vegetables. For sure grass fed and healthy fed animlas is better than farm meat. Maybe juicing and cleansing also work. Like Kevin Said listen to different experts and decide wise whats good.

If paleo works for you fine. It might not for a cancer person. I wish youz good luck.

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