Breast Cancer Gene – Surgery Defense?
When someone tests positive for a breast cancer gene- is the best defense to remove their breasts?
If you have a family history of heart disease, should you cut out your heart? If you have a gene for liver cancer, should you have your liver removed? Slicing off body parts to avoid cancer seems like absurd reasoning!
Cancer is actually a SYSTEMIC illness, and there is ample scientific evidence showing that natural interventions, including state of mind, exercise, diet, nutrients and herbs can vastly decrease your chances of getting cancer.
In addition, removing body parts certainly does nothing to reduce your risk of developing other cancers, such as uterine, lymph, colon, lung, blood disorders or any other kind of cancer.
If a person is tested and discovers that they have a gene that puts them at higher risk for developing any kind of cancer, such as the BRCA 1 (breast cancer type 1 susceptibility protein) , the best approach is to actively lead a life style that inhibits the activation of this gene. Cutting your body parts off is NOT the answer, and does not protect you against cancer!
Lets look at the normal function of BRCA 1 (breast cancer type 1 susceptibility protein). This gene is important in the normal repair of DNA in the cell. If an individual tests positive to a BRCA 1 mutation, it means that their body may not be as efficient in terms of repairing DNA. DNA that is not repaired may begin to develop into cancer. If someone has this particular gene mutation, it means that they should take greater care to avoid substances, such as environmental toxins that break down DNA, since they may be less able to repair damaged cells. (Friedenson B ,November 2011,”A common environmental carcinogen unduly affects carriers of cancer mutations: carriers of genetic mutations in a specific protective response are more susceptible to an environmental carcinogen”. Med. Hypotheses 77 (5): 791–7. doi:10.1016/j.mehy.2011.07.039. PMID 21839586.)
In addition, there is scientific evidence that specific healthy eating patterns offer high levels of protection against the development of Breast Cancer in people who have a genetic mutation in BRCA1 and BRCA 2. In one study, entitled Diet quality and BRCA-associated breast cancer risk, (Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2007 Jul;103(3):361-9. Epub 2006 Oct 25.), the researchers concluded “dietary guidelines reflected by the DQI-R(Diet Quality Index Revised) and CHEI ( Canadian Healthy Eating Index) may constitute preventive strategies for reducing BRCA-associated BC risk.” In addition, natural substances such as resveratrol have been specifically shown to silence the expression of the genetic mutation to BRCA, and thereby inactivate the process that may lead to cancer. (Resveratrol prevents epigenetic silencing of BRCA-1 by the aromatic hydrocarbon receptor in human breast cancer cells. J Nutr. 2010 Sep;140(9):1607-14. doi: 10.3945/jn.110.123422. Epub 2010 Jul 14.) Specific foods, such as cabbage, Brussel sprouts and Broccoli contain indole-3-carbinol, which has been shown to suppress the development of breast cancer due to BRCA 1 mutations. (Suppression of breast cancer invasion and migration by indole-3-carbinol: associated with up-regulation of BRCA1 and E-cadherin/catenin complexes. J Mol Med (Berl). 2000;78(3):155-65. PubMed PMID: 10868478.) Therefore, due to both COMMON SENSE and science, a much more prudent and effective approach to decreasing the risk of developing cancer, whether or not a person has any specific genetic mutation, is to become more aggressive at avoiding known cancer causing agents, such as chemicals in food and the environment, and including a lot of vegetables such as cabbage in their daily diet, along with supplements known to have a protective effect- or is it better to cut off body parts and hope for the best????
Ellen Kamhi PhD RN, The Natural Nurse®, can be heard on radio daily. She is the author of several books, including ARTHRITIS, the Alternative Medicine Definitive Guide. Dr. Kamhi has been involved in natural health care for over 4 decades. She offers Natural Health Certification Courses, and private consultations. www.naturalnurse.com