The conventional approaches for treating breast cancer include chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and surgery. There are natural treatments that breast cancer patients use to help in managing the symptoms and for dealing with side effects occasioned by the effects of the conventional approaches. These methods are collectively known as complementary and alternative medicine.
They have been found to promote better overall health, which in turn, makes the patients feel that they are proactive to the cancer treatments. While you consider these alternative breast cancer treatments, however, you need to know that not all of them are safe, and they should never be used as a replacement for the treatment method approved by your doctor. With that said, here is a look at some of the best alternatives for breast cancer treatments-:
A special diet is vital for the treatment of any form of cancer, including breast cancer. You must eat well whether or not you are using traditional treatments or conventional approaches because a healthful, balanced diet will not just bring overall good health, but also will support the immune system to withstand the effects caused by aggressive cancer treatments.
When using diet as part of your remedy for breast cancer, you should reduce or limit your intake of foods with high-fat content, salty foods, charred or smoked foods, and all forms of processed meats. It is also a good idea to increase your uptake of foods rich in minerals and vitamins such as whole foods, fruits, and vegetables. These are essential to help boost your immune system.
Tai chi and qi gong
Tai chi and qi gong are movement-based exercises whose origin can be traced back to China. Their main focus is to move and balance the natural flow of energy in the human body. According to the Chinese, when the natural flow of energy in the body is hindered or altered for any reason, the result will always be a disease. It implies that by correcting this natural flow, then cures can be found for diseases.
These movement-based exercises primarily focus on breathing and meditation. As one of the alternative breast cancer treatments, tai chi qi gong have been used effectively to reduce stress and pain, as well as improve mobility among breast cancer patients. The two have also been used in cancer treatment centers to reduce the aftermath of radiation and chemotherapy.
Acupuncture has its roots embedded deeply in traditional Chinese medicine, and it has been adopted in many regions around the world as a remedy for several body ailments. It may relieve the symptoms and side effects associated with the conventional treatment of breast cancer. With acupuncture, very thin needles are placed at very specific pressure points on the skin to stimulate the brain, improve the nervous system, and reduce pain and stress. Several clinical studies have concluded that acupuncture can be used to relieve nausea and vomiting usually associated with chemotherapy treatments. This is why it is considered among the alternative breast cancer treatments today.
Massage therapy has been used for years to boost immunity, reduce pain, fatigue, and anxiety. In a study published in 2003, it was discovered that massage therapy not only helps to reduce pain and anxiety in women suffering from breast cancer, but it also reduces their need for pain medication. Another study revealed that progressive muscle relaxation and massage therapy increase the production of protective blood cells in women with stage 1 and stage 2 breast cancers.
If you choose to incorporate massage therapy as part of your breast cancer treatment, you must work with a professional masseur who is experienced in handling breast cancer patients. This is because the techniques applied are different and will be determined by the stage of cancer and the current treatment being administered. Such specialized massage will not be possible with the kinds of massage you get at your local beauty parlors.
In addition to adhering to a healthy diet, incorporating certain supplements may also be used as one of the alternative breast cancer treatments. Currently, there is no evidence to suggest that supplements will treat or cure breast cancer, but they can be used to reduce specific symptoms or diseases associated with conventional treatments of breast cancer. According to a study published in 2016, some herbal supplements that may be beneficial as part of breast cancer treatment regime include-: green tea, garlic, ginseng, turmeric, and black cohosh. Before you take these supplements, however, you should be aware that some may have side effects while others may conflict with whatever cancer medications you may be taking. Talk to your doctor before you resort to the use of any of these supplements alongside any conventional cancer treatment.
Biofeedback training is primarily used to combat the side effects of chemotherapy. With this method, your body is connected to electrical sensors to detect any slight changes in your body. It is used to help cancer patients to gain conscious power over their bodies which in turn helps them to control certain actions that are normally done subconsciously or involuntarily such as the heart rate, blood pressure, and muscle tension. There are various types of biofeedback, and your doctor which biofeedback to use should you decide to use it as some of your preferred alternative breast cancer treatments.
The use of medical marijuana is gaining popularity with each passing day and has received a lot of attention as one of top alternative breast cancer treatments today. It contains an active chemical known as cannabinoid which has been proven to kill certain cancer cells. Though several studies are still on, cannabinoid oils can help to reduce some of the side effects occasioned by therapies such as radiation. Currently, more than half of the states in the US have passed legislation to legalize the use of medical marijuana, and it is believed that it is just a matter of time before it gains national and worldwide recognition.