Is Fasting Fighting Cancer?
Cancer has become a widespread health problem that has grown throughout the years. It was back then when cancer was an uncommon occurrence. But now, it seems like cancer is just a regular walk in the park in terms of our health as almost every family has one member that has or is at risk for developing cancer. Because of its seriousness, physicians, researchers and healthcare practitioners have been conducting several studies on solutions in preventing and treating cancer. As of late, fasting has become a trend when it comes to cancer research. There have been speculations on the connection between fasting and cancer. But how does it work? How can fasting help the battle against cancer?
What is Fasting?
Fasting is a method in which you don’t consume food regularly or limit it to a certain extent. There are various types of fasting which may involve consuming only juices, eating only light foods like crackers, limiting yourself to water only without any food and eliminating any food in your diet completely for a set couple of days.
There are a number of reasons why people fast. Commonly, fasting is associated with religious beliefs and practices which involve spiritual connection through fasting. However, fasting can also be attributed to reasons like dieting.
Fasting is also associated with health reasons. For example, a patient who is about to undergo a surgery or a particular diagnostic procedure is instructed to fast or not to consume food or even water during a specific duration which can last for a couple of hours to a day. Abdominal conditions that warrant observation also lead to fasting since eating or drinking can worsen their conditions.
Fasting and Cancer
When it comes to cancer, fasting is still being researched on its effects in preventing, treating or slowing down the progress of cancer. Though a lot of people express their concern in fasting for cancer patients, there have been people contradicting this belief because of potential theories which support the health benefits of fasting.
Metabolic Therapy is a type of alternative therapy which is promoted by practitioners who support fasting. This stems from the belief that toxins and other harmful substances in the body can be eliminated through fasting since it is a form of detoxifying the body. Claims have been made that fasting involves cleansing the body and promotes the natural healing capacity of the body while also improving energy levels. According to them, fasting strengthens the immune system’s functions which improves the circulation of white blood cells and oxygen throughout the body, burn fat effectively and enhance other healing functions naturally. Some people also claim that fasting can “starve” a malignant tumor which may lead to its cell death.
Though there have been claims and studies on the effects of fasting on cancer, there still aren’t sufficient evidence to support this practice. This is because a lot of health practitioners are concerned on malnutrition, one of the many primary problems associated with cancer. Though evidence hasn’t been strong to prove fasting can bring benefits for cancer patients, studies are still continuing about this.