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If you knew someone with pancreatic cancer...

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  • If you knew someone with pancreatic cancer...

    ... what would you suggest?

    I am not asking this because of one specific case. I've stumbled over a forum where relatives of people with pancreatic cancer support and comfort each other. They are, quite understandably, desperate and willing to try anything in addition to the standard treatment. Pancreatic cancer is one of the worst cancers, with dismal survival rates and horrible suffering, and it is probably irreversible. Still, do you think paleo/PB/VLC could prolong the life of patients but not at the expense of its quality? Or is simply too late?

    By the way, Steve Jobs is not very relevant here. As far as I know, he did not have the usual version of pancreatic cancer.

  • #2
    I have breast cancer and although it isn't the same, I don't eat any sugar or things that act like sugar (grains, natural sweeteners) if I need to sweeten something I choose stevia or erythritol as they don't have the same effect on blood glucose and therefore don't feed cancer cells.
    Cancer requires glucose to grow, anything you eat that converts to sugar feeds the cancer. I eat under 10grams of fructose a day and often I don't even eat that much, a few berries here and there. I try not to have lactose so I don't drink milk and if in my coffee I use double thick cream, and I eat hard cheese but sparingly. It has also been proven that exercise drastically increases chances of survival from cancer, so if they are up to it they shouldn't stop exercising. I had surgery to remove the tumour but went against medical advice when they wanted me to have chemo, radiation and hormone therapy (yep all 3 I was supposed to have). For me I just couldn't subject my body to such nasty treatments that also caused cancer, for me the risk wasn't worth it and I researched and researched and the more I did the less I wanted treatment.


    • #3
      My mother died of pancreatic cancer.

      My dad's best friend died of pancreatic cancer.

      My next door neighbor died of pancreatic cancer.

      My husband's aunt died of cancer that started in her pancreas.

      Believe me, I am very familiar with the disease.

      First off, not every pancreatic cancer patient wants to hear that their diet may help prolong their life. Sometimes it's hard to accept that our unhealthy habits are what led to our sickness. It always feels like a cruel twist of fate, even to lung cancer victims who smoked their whole life.

      Second, I would say that diet suggestions are best given to people who caught their pancreatic cancer in the very early stages. My mom was lucky: she caught it early because of a routine scan, and survived an additional 2 years. In my experience, this is quite rare. A change in diet may have helped her, though, and possibly prolonged her life a little bit longer. (Unfortunately, at that time doctors suggested your basic CW diet to her.)

      Most pancreatic cancer victims live about 3-6 months after their diagnosis. And the last month or two isn't pretty at all. Although I am not a medical doctor, I doubt a diet change would have made a significant difference. The cancer is just too far advanced when it's typically diagnosed. And, often, it's already started to spread to other parts of the body.

      The last month or two of pancreatic cancer are terrible. Just horrible. If I were at that stage, I wouldn't want to do anything to prolong my life. (And, typically, people don't want to eat anything at that point anyway.)
      Female, 40 yrs old, 5', 120 lbs (post-pregnancy)
      Went Primal January 2, 2012!

      Paleo Cooking for Cavekids cookbook


      • #4
        We just buried a coworker that was dead within 3 weeks of diagnosis. I would suggest nothing, these people need to be solaced not be given unsolicited advice. Thread after thread over the years here have suggested that if you do X you will control/cure cancer. Get back to me after you get the call from Stockholm.
        Wheat is the new tobacco. Spread the word.


        • #5
          If I had pancreatic cancer I would not want any unsolicited advice. I would quit my job and go travel as long as I could. Probably eat more ice cream or whatever local deliciousness is avialable. Try to eek out as much enjoyment as possible for my remaining time. Everyone I've ever known who got such a diagnosis went pretty quickly.
          Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.


          • #6
            Hug them, love them, support them however you can. Help make sure their pain is properly managed. If you want to make them real foods go ahead, but I'd think getting them to take in any nutrients, in any form, can be difficult. If someone wanted to make really healthy smoothies for their loved one (easier to swallow for some) I'd say go ahead, but don't preach, don't count on it, and honor whatever the wishes are of that person, as much as possible.
            My Before/After Pics
            Are you new here? Be sure to check these links FIRST, before reading anything on the forum! Succeed & PB 101

            "I am a work in progress." -Ani DiFranco


            • #7
              I'd point them to Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez's site, since he has a good track record of helping pancreatic cancer cases, but I'd leave it at that. People are funny when it comes to cancer- some don't want any advice (unlike my best friend who has breast cancer- she's getting all the advice/info/support she can gather!)
              Pancreatic Cancer and Enzyme Therapy


              • #8
                My maternal grandmother died from pancreatic cancer in her late 60s. My Mum survived bowel cancer last year in her early 60s. There's enough cancer on that side of the family to bring out my fighting spirit!

                Dennis Potter said it all about fighting pancreactic cancer - I found his observations of 'the blossemist blossem' very moving.
                F 5 ft 3. HW: 196 lbs. Primal SW (May 2011): 182 lbs (42% BF)... W June '12: 160 lbs (29% BF) (UK size 12, US size 8). GW: ~24% BF - have ditched the scales til I fit into a pair of UK size 10 bootcut jeans. Currently aligning towards 'The Perfect Health Diet' having swapped some fat for potatoes.


                • #9
                  Originally posted by huckie View Post
                  For me I just couldn't subject my body to such nasty treatments that also caused cancer, for me the risk wasn't worth it and I researched and researched and the more I did the less I wanted treatment.
                  IMO, those who survive chemo/radiation survive *in spite of,* not because of, the treatments. They survive with a permanently compromised immune system and an increased likelihood of re-occurrence, because the treatments themselves are carcinogenic.

                  A cancer diagnosis is a symptom of a failed immune system. Our immune systems are designed to destroy cancer cells and do so every single day *in a healthy organism.* Standard cancer treatment starts by destroying the immune system, which is the only really effective weapon we have against cancer. This just doesn't make any sense to me. The sad truth is, most cancer patients die not from their cancer but from malnutrition or pneumonia or heart failure, all directly attributable to their treatment and its devastating effects on the human body.