Foods That Help Fight Cervical Cancer

Article Source: https://www.care2.com/greenliving/foods-that-help-fight-cervical-cancer.html

 

Cervical cancer (cancer of the female cervix) is the second most common type of cancer in women, behind only breast cancer. Its most common cause is contraction of high-risk forms of the human papilloma virus – more commonly known as HPV.

Most women will contract some form of HPV at least once in their lives. The body’s immune system typically takes care of the virus before it evolves any further. However, sometimes the infection does not go away. If the virus stays active in the body for a significant period of time the risk of cervical cancer increases.

 

Cervical Cancer

How to Protect Yourself from HPV

Most doctors recommend that women protect their bodies from HPV in these three ways:

  1. Get screened with a Pap test periodically.
  2. Get an HPV test periodically (age 30 or older).
  3. Get the HPV vaccine (ages 9-26).

Lifestyle Changes That Support HPV/Cervical Cancer Prevention

The best thing you can do to protect yourself from cervical cancer is to get regular screenings like those listed above. However, there are many lifestyle changes you can make to reduce your risk altogether. One of which involves your diet.

Foods That Fight Cervical Cancer

Low levels of folic acid (a type of vitamin B) in the body can increase your likelihood of developing HPV; so, it is very important to eat a nourishing, vitamin-rich diet. Folic acid is crucial to the development of healthy DNA and can protect against precancerous changes in the cervix. In fact, dosages of 5 to 10 milligrams of folic acid daily can actually reverse mildly abnormal Pap smears.

Folic acid is most commonly found in dark, leafy greens like spinach and asparagus, citrus fruits, lentils and beans. Most researchers recommend developing a diet that is rich in B vitamins: particularly folic acid, vitamin B6, vitamin C, iron and vitamin B12.

Here are some foods that do this best!

Foods That Fight Cervical Cancer (1)

Cruciferous vegetables like:

  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Cabbage

Antioxidant-rich fruits and teas like:

  • Blueberries
  • Raspberries
  • Papaya
  • Green tea

Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids:

  • Mackerel
  • Salmon
  • Cod
  • Walnuts
  • Chia Seeds

Here are some foods that you should avoid.

Animal products that cause inflammation:

  • Red meat
  • Dairy products

Refined sugars and highly-processed carbohydrates.

  • Processed grains
  • Pre-made boxed foods
  • Bleached flour

Many of these cancer-preventing nutrients found in the list of foods above can also be found in the form of dietary supplements. Do not substitute real foods for supplements as too much of a good thing may become toxic in your body.

Eat well, stay healthy!

Health Notes: Cervical Cancer Awareness

Article Source: http://www.laduenews.com/business/columns/health-notes-cervical-cancer-awareness/article_16981bdf-def0-52d5-97fe-2dc26e88e0cb.html

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With Cervical Health Awareness Month upon us come January, the topic is important, especially in light of the sobering statistics.

“Incidence of cervical cancer has not changed in the last 10 years, with 12,820 new cases estimated in 2017, accounting for 4,210 deaths,” says Dr. Lindsay Kuroki, a Washington University gynecologic oncologist, quoting figures from the American Cancer Society.

Ladue News spoke with Kuroki about cervical health, preventive steps and treatments.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends Pap tests to screen for cervical cancer every three years in women ages 21 to 29 years, and either Pap test screening every three years alone or every five years with human papillomavirus (HPV) testing in women ages 30 to 65 years. Yet many women still have a Pap test every year as part of an annual well-woman exam. What are your thoughts and recommendations regarding Pap test frequency?

The fundamental goal of cervical cancer screening is to prevent morbidity and mortality from cervical cancer. Most Pap abnormalities are related to HPV infections that go away when recognized by women’s immune systems. There’s no benefit to identifying these. Only persistent infections cause cancer. The HPV test is better at detecting these changes so it doesn’t need to be done as often.

Many women and providers want to be safe, so they screen too often. Over-screening leads to harms, such as anxiety, cervical injury and disrupted relationships after diagnosis of a sexually transmitted infection. The USPSTF recommendations are a good balance between benefits and harms.

There continues to be controversy surrounding the HPV vaccine, and some parents who are concerned about side effects decline this vaccine for their adolescent children. What would you advise these parents regarding the benefits versus risks of the vaccine?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration have reviewed the safety information for the prophylactic HPV vaccines and have determined that they are safe and nearly 99 percent effective if administered before first sex, since almost everyone contracts HPV. Serious side effects are rare and similar to other vaccines. Commonly reported symptoms include injection-site reactions such as brief soreness, redness or swelling, dizziness, fainting, nausea, and headache.

Like all vaccines, the HPV vaccine is monitored on an ongoing basis to make sure it remains safe and effective. As a gynecologic oncologist, I advise parents that the HPV vaccine is a rare opportunity to protect their child against HPV-related cancers. HPV causes 30,700 cancers in men and women, and the HPV vaccination can prevent most of the cancers – about 28,000 – from occurring.

For women who are diagnosed with cervical cancer, new treatments have been introduced. What are the most effective new treatments, and how much have they affected cervical cancer survival?

New treatments are exciting, but prevention through vaccination and screening remains the best strategy. The first targeted biologic agent, bevacizumab, plus chemotherapy, helps women with advanced cervical cancer live four months longer. However, considerations of adverse effects, cost and duration of therapy are important to discuss. More recently, immunotherapy research holds promise as a new cervical cancer therapy option.

Are there signs of cervical cancer that women should recognize and see a physician about?

Unfortunately, women with early cervical cancers and pre-cancers typically have no symptoms, which is why adherence to cervical cancer screening is so important. However, those who present with more advanced disease may experience abnormal vaginal bleeding or discharge, odor, pelvic pain, painful intercourse, lower back pain, unintentional weight loss, or difficulty urinating or having bowel movements.

What’s the most important thing you think our readers should know about cervical cancer?

There are things you can do to minimize your risk of cervical cancer.

Obtain the HPV vaccination at the appropriate age, ideally before exposure to HPV. In 2016, Missouri ranked near the bottom for adolescent HPV vaccination. Only 51.6 percent of adolescents age 13 to 17 years in Missouri received at least one dose of the HPV vaccine, and 35.8 percent were up-to-date with the recommended vaccination series of three shots.

Also, avoid cigarette smoking, which is a risk factor for cervical cancer, keep up to date with your Pap tests and don’t ignore abnormal Pap results.

 

January is Cervical Health Awareness Month.

About 79 million Americans currently have HPV. Many people with HPV are unaware that they are infected. And each year, more than 11,000 women in the United States get cervical cancer.

Most deaths from cervical cancer could be prevented by regular screenings and follow-up care. Cervical cancer screenings can help detect abnormal (changed) cells early, before they turn into cancer.

Take the time to learn more about HPV (human papillomavirus) and cervical cancer. 

Here are several helpful links to learn more about HPV and cervical cancer prevention.

Cervical Cancer: What to Know.

HPV Vaccination & Cancer Prevention

 

Keep up with Plasma MedResearch through our facebook page. 

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10 Crohn’s Friendly Recipes

Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week

Cooking-With-Crohns-Recipes-04-1440x810

While what you eat isn’t a surefire way to cause, or cure, Crohn’s disease, certain foods may trigger a flare or make your symptoms worse. Eating a healthy diet can help you manage your nutrition intake, which is especially important during a flare-up. However, knowing which foods to eat or avoid isn’t always easy. Crohn’s disease affects everyone differently, and you’ll need to figure out what works — or doesn’t work — for you. Some common food triggers include spicy, fatty, and gas-producing foods, and many people with Crohn’s need to limit dairy products and high-fiber foods such as whole grains and beans. But that doesn’t mean your diet needs to be bland. Try the following recipes to spice up your meals. If any of the ingredients are known problem foods for you, you can get creative with substitutions.

Click the link below to be transfered to the Everyday Health recipes!

https://www.everydayhealth.com/crohns-disease/diet/crohns-friendly-recipes/#01

What is Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis?

December 1-7: Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week

ulcerative-colitis-crohns-different-tunes

Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative colitis (UC) are both under the umbrella of Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and affect at least 1.6 million Americans and 112 million worldwide. While treatments for these diseases are available, there is not yet a known cure. These diseases are also very tricky because every person’s body reacts differently which means that there is not one treatment, but many different methods and approaches to managing the symptoms of each case. Many people affected by Crohn’s or UC may not even be aware that they have it, as symptoms vary in frequency and severity, and may take several doctor visits to diagnose.

Crohn’s disease was first discovered in 1932 by Burrill Crohn, Leon Ginzberg, and Gordon D. Oppenheimer. At the time, it was only identified as being a “new disease entity”, but was later named by those who discovered it. (CCFA) Reports of this disease date back to the early 1900s. Ulcerative Colitis was first described in 1875 by Wilks and Moxon, two English physicians. Reports of UC date all the way back to before the Civil War, though there are reports of similar symptoms before that when the practice of medicine was less specific.

Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative colitis (UC) are only two of the inflammatory diseases (there are many others) that affect the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Crohn’s disease can affect any of the GI tract, but UC affects only the large intestine and the rectum. When these areas are irritated and inflamed, it inhibits the body’s ability to properly absorb nutrients and water, as well as affecting the elimination of waste, which can then lead to additional health problems. Early symptoms of the disease include abdominal cramps, diarrhea, fatigue, loss of appetite, fever, and blood in your stool.

crohns diagram

One of the reasons why there is yet a cure for these types of IBD is because the diseases themselves are not completely understood. It is known, however, that the genes, immune system, and environmental factors all interact to cause the diseases to present. For people with IBD, the body mistakes the healthy and harmless bacteria in the digestive tract as “harmful invaders” and this causes the body to have an immune response. The immune response is what then causes the inflammation to occur in the gut. The main issue for IBD is that this inflammation then becomes chronic, because the immune response does not stop happening, which can result in ulcers and “thickening of the intestinal wall”. (CCFA)

Types of medical treatment for IBD include medication and surgical. Medications largely stem around anti-inflammatory agents which can help to control the irritation and inflammation. There are also antibiotics which can be used to target infections that occur because of the overgrowth of bacteria and other digestive flora. For people who cannot get control of these diseases with medication, sometimes surgery is needed. Those with Crohn’s are at a greater chance of needing surgery with statistics around 70% of those with Crohn’s. This surgery, however, is only a treatment for the disease and not a cure. As Crohn’s can affect the entirety of the digestive tract, these patients can have a recurrence within 3 years. For UC, around 30% will need surgery which involves the removal of the colon and rectum (the areas affected by the disease). As this is the only area affected by the UC, those patients who have this surgery are cured of their UC.

Cooking-With-Crohns-Recipes-01-1440x810

Interestingly, even though it is the digestive system that is affected dietary treatments for Crohn’s and UC vary widely. Since for Crohn’s, the disease can affect different areas, it is not possible to assign a specific diet to help in the treatment of the whole population of disease. However, there are many recommendations for diet that can be tested per individual as different foods can cause differing bacteria reactions for individuals. For people affected by the disease it can be helpful to start a food diary to track your nutrition and also be aware of what you ingested if something is causing a flair up in your symptoms.

If this is a disease that affects you, do not despair. There are many options for treating and dealing with the symptoms and style of life that comes with having a digestive disorder. The first step to dealing with Crohn’s or UC is to fully accept the diagnosis and move forward with living your definition of a full and healthy life. The biggest deterrent for those diagnosed with these digestive diseases from remission and relief is the attitude and approach to recovery. Those diagnosed who have the greatest success with treating their diseases are those who stay disciplined and focused on their goal of remission.

safe-dental-implants-for-crohns-colitis-patients-300x199

For more information and resources, take a look at the website for the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation included in our sources. Connect with your community, explore the current research, and learn how to help others and yourself!

 

Sources:

http://www.crohnscolitisfoundation.org
http://www.crohnscolitisfoundation.org/resources/facts-about-inflammatory.html
https://www.healthline.com/health/crohns-disease#diet

5 new life-saving cancer developments New studies are paving the way for faster diagnosis, better treatment — and more lives saved.

Article Source: https://www.mnn.com/health/fitness-well-being/blogs/new-life-saving-cancer-developments
Cancer researcer

Cancer is complex, but researchers are breaking new ground in understanding the many types of the disease. (Photo: science photo/Shutterstock)

Cancer. We’re all touched by it in one way or another, whether we are survivors ourselves, or our friends or loved ones have been affected by the disease. But while the statistics are sometimes grim — the number of new cancer cases is projected to rise to 22 million within the next 20 years, according to the World Health Organization— there are also rays of light in cancer research that offers hope for better options when it comes to diagnosis, treatment and a cure.

Here’s a snapshot of four breakthroughs happening right now in cancer research that are certain to save lives in the near future.

1. New tools to fight childhood cancer

Childhood cancerBy creating maps of childhood cancer tumors and sharing them with the world, researchers have opened the door for new breakthroughs in diagnosis and treatment. (Photo: frantab/Shutterstock)

Cancer is complex, as each type causes a unique reaction within the body and reacts differently to treatment. Now, thanks to a team of U.S. scientists at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI), researchers around the world will have models of 12 common types of childhood cancer that they can use to better understand these complex reactions and test how various treatments will affect different cancer cells.

The team grew cells from patient tumors in mice and created nearly 100 models of 12 types of pediatric cancer, HHMI said in a statement. They’re making the samples available for free to the scientific community by publishing their data in the journal Nature. This new wealth of information is predicted to break open many areas of childhood cancer research.

The 12 cancers they modeled are:

  • Neuroblastoma
  • Osteosarcoma
  • Rhabdomyosarcoma
  • Retinoblastoma
  • Wilms tumours
  • Ewing sarcomas
  • High-grade sarcoma
  • Malignant rhabdoid tumour
  • Synovial sarcoma
  • Renal medullary carcinoma
  • Desmoplastic small round cell tumor
  • Epithelioid sarcoma

2. Breakthroughs in immunotherapy treatment

T cells attacking cancer cellIn this illustration, T-cells (gray) can be seen attacking a cancer cell (hot pink). (Photo: royaltystockphoto.com/Shutterstock)

Current treatment options for cancer include chemotherapy, radiation and immunotherapy, which means using the body’s own immune system to fend off the disease. Of the three, immunotherapy is the least devastating to the body as a whole because it relies on targeted cancer destruction rather than attacking all of the cells in the general area of the cancer. So a breakthrough in cancer immunotherapy treatment is a big deal. Recently, there have been two.

The Food and Drug Administration recently approved the use of a new cell-based gene therapy to treat acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), which is a cancer of blood and bone marrow and the most common childhood cancer in the U.S. The treatment involved removing cells from a patient’s own immune system, genetically modifying them to kill cancer cells, and then sending them back into the patient to wipe out the disease.

The drug is called Kymriah, or CAR-T-cell therapy, and it is changing the outcome for patients with this type of cancer. In a clinical study, 63 ALL patients were given the treatment after their cancer failed to respond to other treatment methods. After three months, 83 percent of those patients were in remission.

In another immunotherapy research breakthrough, a team of scientists lead by researchers at the National Cancer Institute have identified the specific genes that can help improve success with the treatment. In the past, doctors have been baffled when certain tumors don’t respond to immunotherapy treatment. This study identified 100 genes that play a role in the immunotherapy process. With this information, doctors can more easily identify issues that could hinder treatment, such as a malfunction in one of the identified genes.

Researchers are hoping this study will serve as a blueprint to help cancer scientists better understand immunotherapy and develop new treatments to circumvent resistant tumors.

3. Advances in melanoma diagnoses

Dermatologist inspecting a new moleNew mole? It’s more likely to be melanoma than a mole you’ve had for a long time. (Photo: Pop Paul-Catalin/Shutterstock)

Check those moles and stay on top of what your skin looks like. A team of Italian and Greek researchers published a study in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology that says new moles are more likely to pop up as the result of melanoma. The team also found that when melanoma does develop from an existing mole, it’s likely to be thinner than those that come from new moles, suggesting a better possible outcome for the patient. Armed with this new knowledge, doctors can make better and more immediate recommendations for their skin cancer patients.

4. A link between breast cancer and heart health

Woman with breast cancer ribbonCould cholesterol medications be a new option for breast cancer prevention? (Photo: Dolores Giraldez Alonso/Shutterstock)

What’s the link between breast cancer and heart health? Researchers recently presented a study at the European Society of Cardiology Congress in Barcelona that found women with a history of high cholesterol tend to have lower rates of breast cancer, suggesting that statin drugs — often prescribed to treat high cholesterol — may also offer protective benefits when it comes to breast cancer.

In a review that included more than 32,000 women — half with high cholesterol and half without — researchers found that women who were taking statin medications to control their high cholesterol were 33 percent less likely to develop breast cancer than those whose cholesterol levels were normal. And the women with high cholesterol who did develop breast cancer were 40 percent less likely to die over the 14-year study period than women who had developed breast cancer but did not have high cholesterol.

The study’s authors don’t know for sure why women with high cholesterol would have a lower incidence and a higher survival rate for breast cancer, but they think it might have something to do with the statin drugs, which not only reduce cholesterol but also have been shown to reduce overall inflammation in the body. This finding could help improve treatment options for women battling the disease.

5. A pen that detects cancer during surgery

This last development in cancer research isn’t as far along as some of the others on this list, but a handheld device called the MasSpec Pen is so revolutionary that it warranted an honorable mention, so to speak.

The pen-shaped device is designed to help surgeons determine if tissue is cancerous, which means they’re able to remove more of a cancerous tumor during a surgery with less risk of leaving any cancerous tissue behind. It takes a small sample of molecules from the tissue through a drop of water at the tip of the pen, then passes them through a mass spectrometer. About 10 seconds later, it tells doctors whether the tissue is cancerous or not, and what kind of cancer it is.

“If you talk to cancer patients after surgery, one of the first things many will say is ‘I hope the surgeon got all the cancer out,’” Livia Schiavinato Eberlin, an assistant professor of chemistry at the University of Texas at Austin, who designed the study and led the team, said in a press release. “It’s just heartbreaking when that’s not the case. But our technology could vastly improve the odds that surgeons really do remove every last trace of cancer during surgery.”

This new invention is much faster than the current process, which UT Austin explains:

The current state-of-the-art method for diagnosing cancers and determining the boundary between cancer and normal tissue during surgery, called Frozen Section Analysis, is slow and sometimes inaccurate. Each sample can take 30 minutes or more to prepare and interpret by a pathologist, which increases the risk to the patient of infection and negative effects of anesthesia. And for some types of cancers, frozen section interpretation can be difficult, yielding unreliable results in as many as 10 to 20 percent of cases.

Though the pen has not yet gone through clinical trials, early tests suggest the pen is accurate about 96 percent of the time.

SLMA September – Cholesterol Awareness

Article Source: https://www.houmatimes.com/health_and_wellness/slma-september—cholesterol-awareness/article_93f7e882-9242-11e7-9f9b-b337abd6dd90.html

 

Back to school is just around the corner, but September is about more than just new books and school clothes, it’s also Cholesterol Awareness Month. Celebrate the start of fall by learning more about cholesterol and how you can help keep your body healthy.

What is Cholesterol?

We often hear and talk about cholesterol but may not know exactly what it means. Cholesterol actually isn’t a bad thing; it’s a waxy, soft, fat-like substance that our bodies need to produce cell membranes and other important substances. The liver produces the cholesterol needed by the body to function properly. But cholesterol also comes from the food we eat, specifically food from animals, like meat and full-fat dairy. These foods also contain saturated and trans fats which signal your liver to produce more cholesterol. This can result in levels that are too high. Nearly one-third of adults in the United States have high cholesterol levels.

Types of Cholesterol

There are two types of cholesterol: low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and high-density lipoprotein (HDL). LDL is known as bad cholesterol because it carries particles of cholesterol around your body in the bloodstream and leaves them on the walls of your arteries. This results in build up along the artery walls so they become hard and narrow. On the other hand, HDL is known as good cholesterol because it works to remove cholesterol from your bloodstream, taking it to the liver so it can be broken down. Having high levels of HDL and low levels of LDL is ideal.

Causes of High Cholesterol

A number of factors can influence your cholesterol levels, including the following:

● Obesity – Extra weight increases LDL levels

● Inactivity – Regular physical activity helps lower LDL and increase HDL

● Poor diet – Diets high in saturated fat and cholesterol increase the level of LDL in the bloodstream

● Family genetics – Your genes can impact how much cholesterol your body produces

● Age – Cholesterol levels rise with age

● Gender – Men often have higher cholesterol levels than women before menopause; after menopause, the levels tend to even out

Managing Cholesterol

Whether you have high cholesterol and want to lower your levels or you just want to prevent high cholesterol from developing, it’s important to focus on lifestyle changes. What you eat is an important part of fighting cholesterol, so work toward consuming a heart-healthy diet. Well-balanced diets focused on fiber-rich foods, fruits, vegetables and whole grains are key. You should also minimize the amount saturated and trans fats you consume, which are found in foods like meat, full-fat dairy, fried food and store-bought baked goods. Here are some examples of heart-healthy foods to include in your diet:

● Barley

● Oatmeal

● Leafy greens

● Avocado

● Nuts

● Salmon

● Beans

● Eggplant

● Soybeans

● Black tea

● Garlic

Regular physical activity is also important. Aim for at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise five days week. Other lifestyle changes can also help lower cholesterol, including reducing stress, losing weight and quitting smoking.

Cholesterol Medication

Managing cholesterol should focus on making lifestyle changes. However, if you are working on changing your lifestyle and are struggling to bring down your cholesterol levels, then talk to your doctor. They may prescribe certain medications, including fibrates, statins and niacin, to help lower cholesterol. These medications may be taken individually or in combination; your doctor will determine what is appropriate for you.

Test Your Cholesterol

Having your cholesterol tested is the only way to know what your levels are like. A simple blood test determines your current levels. The most common cholesterol screening is a lipid profile; it measures the level of fats in your blood, including cholesterol. It’s recommended that people over age 20 get a cholesterol screening at least once every five years, but certain factors make it better for some people to get tested more often. Optimal cholesterol levels are as follows:

● Total cholesterol below 200 mg/dL

● HDL at 60 mg/dL or above

● LDL below 100 mg/dL

Dangers of High Cholesterol

Although it’s usually impossible to determine if you have high cholesterol without a blood test, that doesn’t mean it isn’t impacting your body and health. If left unchecked, high cholesterol can contribute to a number of health problems. The biggest problem is a buildup of cholesterol in your arteries that combines with other substances and leads to the formation of plaque. This buildup of plaque in your arteries is known as atherosclerosis. As the plaque deposits continue to grow, they narrow the space inside your arteries. This restricts the flow of blood. A clot that develops in your bloodstream can easily become stuck in an area where the arteries are narrowed, completely blocking the flow of blood. If your blood can’t carry oxygen to your heart or brain, then a heart attack or stroke will occur.

When to See Your Doctor

It’s important to talk to your doctor about testing your cholesterol levels. Many times you won’t notice high cholesterol until it’s too late. Regular screenings can determine your cholesterol levels so you can take appropriate action if necessary. In addition, if you notice chest pain it’s important to see your doctor right away. This can be a sign that the blood flow to your heart is restricted.

Managing your cholesterol levels is an important part of overall health, particularly heart health. Celebrate Cholesterol Awareness Month by talking to your doctor about getting a cholesterol screening. Then choose a lifestyle change to work on for better heart health.