The Return of the Metabolic Theory of Cancer
By Travis Christofferson
Entertainment Value: 6/10
Life Value: 10/10
Read If: You know anyone touched by cancer, or have even the slightest fear of this disease for yourself.
Do Not Read If: You are devoted to only paying attention to the happier side of life, or lack a basic understanding of human biology.
If this were simply a book on the history of cancer it would be worth the read. The fact that it reads like a murder mystery, eventually unmasking the truth about the killer along with clear actionable steps to prevent and eliminate cancer makes this one of the most important books of our time. Period. And Robb Wolf, Tim Ferriss, and Dr. Mercola agree.
This truth revealed is that cancer is a metabolic disease (metabolic meaning that it pertains to the energy production within the cell). What is tragic is that we’ve known this. Dr. Otto Warburg discovered in the early 1900’s that there are a few factors common amongst all types of cancer. The most important of which is that cancer ferments glucose (sugar) in the presence of oxygen to produce energy. This is known simply as the Warburg effect. The book then goes on to demonstrate extraordinarily compelling evidence that the reason cancer converts to this ancient, low-oxygen adaptation of the cell is because of malfunctioning or damaged mitochondria (the cellular respiration system).
Despite noting this anomaly, scientists and doctors have spent years attempting other means to cure cancer. It began with an accidental poisoning of our own troops with mustard gas in WWII. When doctors examined infected tissue samples of our soldiers, they noticed a stark depletion of white blood cells, the same cells that feverishly divide in lymphoma patients. The idea for chemotherapy was born, and the first form of this treatment was mustard gas, the same biological warfare agent featured in the horror story that was the first World War.
This set up the framework for the concept of the war on cancer. Cancer is horrible on its own, but the chemotherapeutic treatment for cancer is so grotesque, calling it ‘war’ is the only thing that makes sense. Kill everything and hope that only the good cells survive.
With the mapping of the human genome came another wave of attempted cures. It was hoped that by identifying certain genetic traits, targeted drugs could be used to eliminate cancer. But unfortunately decades after the human genome was mapped, survival rates across the board are only moderately better than in the 1950’s. We are losing the war on cancer.
But what if instead of a war, we looked at why cancer cells abandoned normal cellular respiration? What if we tried to restore the body rather than destroy it? The book details the success and ultimate mismanagement of a few experimental drugs attempting to do this. But ultimately it makes the case that maybe you don’t need these experimental drugs to restore yourself. Based on the evidence at hand, and some key anecdotal successes they put forward what they call the press pulse strategy. Using a ketogenic diet with intermittent fasting principles, you starve the cells of glucose and provide energy through the production of ketones. This puts pressure on the cancer. Then as a pulse, you utilize metabolic boosters like hyperbaric oxygen, which floods the cells with additional oxygen. While this method has yet to be proven, the evidence is mounting, and the theory appears sound. What’s even better is that this method has shown efficacy even in conjunction with conventional treatments, making chemotherapy and radiation more effective.
Cancer is one of the most devastating diseases of our epoch. We have all known someone who has been touched by cancer. Seeing my uncle courageously fight this disease to the bitter end instilled a deep-seated fear and hopelessness I rarely acknowledged. To now understand the disease and have a plan that makes sense is a gift that came too late for my uncle, but one I personally will cherish. I hope that in sharing this you will be able to receive this same gift and pass it on to those who need it.
To learn more check out the author’s blog at http://www.singlecausesinglecure.org/author/travisc/
Theories are ephemeral things. They are only our closest approximation of the truth at a fleeting moment in an otherwise infinite continuum of discovery.
The beautiful thing about science is that no matter how bumpy the ride, eventually, because of the process itself, the truth is slowly inevitably, mapped out.
From the moment of our birth our bodies are thrust into a losing battle; compelled, with never a moment's rest, to create energy just to keep the relentless force of entropy at bay.
Summarized in a few words, the prime cause of cancer is the replacement of the respiration of oxygen in normal body cells by a fermentation of sugar.
The origin of carcinogenesis resides with the mitochondria (source of cellular respiration) in the cytoplasm, not with the genome (source of DNA) in the nucleus.
Consumptions of the (Ketogenic) diet was not a major limitation for the patients, but if we could have developed a ketosis-compliant Oreo cookie, it would have been a big hit.
Cancer is an ecosystem, complete with interwove relationships and Darwinian selection pressures. As any ecologist would tell you, the best way to alter an ecosystem is to change the entire environment rather than targeting an isolated variable.
The (ketogenic) diet gently “presses” on the cancer, weakening it and rendering it vulnerable. Metabolic therapies then provide the “pulse” pushing the weakened cells over the edge. They term the overall approach “mitochondria enhancement therapy”.
In Seyfried and D’Angotinos vision, a cancer center would be a clinic where patients went to restore or “enhance” their damaged mitochondria and, in a nontoxic and orderly manner, kill off the diseased cells. There would be no buckets to throw up in and no bald patients with lifeless expressions, shells of their former selves. There would be no medical bankruptcies or families scrambling to pay for drugs that cost more than $100,000 for a single treatment course that was of almost no benefit. There would be no radiation burns or subversion of healthy cells to cancerous ones cast forth by the treatment itself, no massive increase in acquiring cancer later in life from dripping war gas into people’s veins.