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Comprehending the complexities of the individual’s biological terrain is akin to a gardener understanding the ideal conditions for growing vegetables. A successful gardener knows it takes more than a piece of land and a packet of seeds to grow a bountiful harvest. It requires a knowledge of soil biochemistry, the planting requirements of all the various types of seeds, proper balance of nutrients, fertilizing agents, and the right amount of water and sunlight. It also requires insight into how pests, insects, weeds, molds, and fungi can impact the soil or plants. The ten terrain elements we’ve identified are like systems within that garden. Regulating a healthy human biological terrain is similar to raising a healthy, thriving garden. When the body is fed a diet that provides adequate amounts of macro- and micronutrients, vitamins, and minerals; is exposed to a variety of microbes; and has adequate amounts of exercise, sleep, fresh water, sunlight, love, and attention; then the body, like a healthy garden, will flourish. Conversely, if it is fed antinutrients and chemicals, receives insufficient sunshine, and endures too much stress, it will wither.
So the key is this: Since cancer consists of cells gone awry in response to toxic diets and environments, we must optimize the body’s healing mechanisms instead of waging war on them. We need to treat the terrain, not the tumor. We must build the body up instead of attacking it. Our strategy works: The only side effect of the metabolic approach is feeling better. Much better. In fact, for over a decade Dr. Nasha has seen hundreds of stage IV cancer patients who have lived far beyond their “expiration date” because they have followed this model. As we will explain, each terrain element is optimized using the oldest form of medicine: food. It sounds simple, yet in the modern world of medicine, it’s about as radical and “unfounded” as it can be.
The Terrain TenTM
The core of our approach is dedicated to the science of using therapeutic nutri- tion to positively impact metabolism, creating an inhospitable environment for cancer while simultaneously removing dietary and lifestyle factors that provoke it. What is astonishing to realize—yet for the most part ignored—is that dietary agents have been shown to impact each of the ten hallmarks of cancer.1 From decreasing the spread (metastasis) of cancer cells to promoting cancer cell death (apoptosis) and inhibiting growth factors—believe it or not, the right food is cancer’s fiercest enemy. In 2015 cancer specialist Dr. Keith Block, along with an international task force of 180 scientists, published a capstone paper titled “Designing a Broad-Spectrum Integrative Approach for Cancer Prevention and Treatment.” The article identified dozens of non- toxic phytonutrients that affect the ten hallmarks of cancer and the pathways known to be significant for the genesis and spread of cancer.
What this means is that eating well is not just a good idea, but that the specific phytonutrients we discuss throughout this book exert proven medicinal action against cancer. And while there are many cancer diets out there, we debunk several—vegetarian, vegan, acid-alkaline, and the Budwig Diet, to name a few—within this book. Certainly the intentions behind these diets are commendable, but each is fundamentally flawed, and we will explain how. While certain foods can act as powerful anticancer agents, other foods can be cancer’s strongest ally. This book teaches you the difference between the two. By incorporating the ten terrain elements we’ve developed alongside the deep nutrition and nontoxic lifestyle approaches we recommend in this book, your ability to prevent or survive cancer will increase exponentially. The ten terrain elements (we call them the Terrain Ten) we have identified are the physiological and emotional human elements that require balance and optimization in order to halt and prevent the cancer process.
The ten make up the complete ecosystem that is an individual’s terrain, and each one cross-pollinates the others. All systems are connected, and as throwing
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The Terrain TenTM
- Genetic, epigenetic, and nutrigenomic modifications
- Blood sugar balance
- Toxic burden management
- Repopulating and balancing the microbiome
- Immune system maximization
- Modulating inflammation and oxidative stress
- Enhancing blood circulation while inhibiting angiogenesis and metastasis
- Establishing hormone balance
- Recalibrating stress levels and biorhythms
- Enhancing mental and emotional well-being
A rock in a still lake creates ripples over the entire surface, disrupting one terrain element negatively affects all the others. For example, high stress levels lead to hormonal and blood sugar imbalances. In turn, high blood sugar levels suppress the immune system. The point is that cancer can capitalize on imbalances found within any of the ten terrain elements. Our therapeutic model therefore addresses the whole person, not just the tumor. A tumor is merely a side effect that occurs when a person’s terrain is out of balance, when too many big rocks are thrown into a still pond. As we’ve said before, cancer doesn’t just show up one day at random, it doesn’t just “happen” to you, and it is not bad luck. Just as the weed in the garden alerts the gardener to mineral or other deficiencies in the soil, cancer is a messenger telling you that some element within you—emotional, spiritual, or physical—is not in harmony.
Within each terrain chapter, we illustrate how elements of modern living and the American food pyramid, overconsumption of sugar, GMO foods, modern agriculture practices, processed soy, grains and gluten, pesticides, antibiotics, low-fat diets, vegan diets, processed foods, nutrient deficiencies, sedentary lifestyles, stress, and more directly contribute to imbalances in the terrain and contribute to the cancer process. There are so many insults to our terrain every day, and our objective is to educate you on how to avoid or at least minimize them. You can eat “perfectly,” but if you don’t clean up your external environment you won’t get very far in changing your internal terrain. Even the most intelligent, well-read people don’t consider the impact our day-to-day exposures to the toxins in our food, air, water, products, stressors, relationships, and attitudes have on our terrain. We aim to bring awareness to this, and we also want to acknowledge that at times what you read might feel overwhelming. It is for all of us. But knowledge is power, and you have a lot more power and control over this disease than you may realize: 95 percent of it is related to the diet and lifestyle factors we identify in this book!
About the Authors:
Dr. Nasha Winters, ND, FABNO, L.Ac, Dipl.OM, has been working in the health care industry for 25 years and is a nationally board certified naturopathic doctor, licensed acupuncturist, practitioner of oriental medicine, and is a fellow of the American Board of Naturopathic Oncology. Initially motivated by a terminal cancer diagnosis 25 years ago, she now lectures all over the world and trains physicians in the application of mistletoe therapy, consults with researchers on projects involving immune modulation via mistletoe, hyperthermia, and the ketogenic diet. She lives in Durango, CO.
Jess Higgins Kelley, MNT, is a consultant, educator and writer. She is the founder and CEO of Remission Nutrition, a global oncology nutrition consulting enterprise that supports clients in the prevention and management of cancer. After teaching for almost ten years, Jess also created and founded the Oncology Nutrition Institute which trains professionals in the latest advances in complimentary oncology nutrition. With an undergraduate degree in journalism, Jess has written health and nutrition pieces for newspapers, magazines and is also the co-author of Bioregulatory Medicine: An Innovative Holistic Approach to Self-Healing (Chelsea Green Publishing, 2018).
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Titles of Similar Interest:
- Cancer, Nutrition & Health, by Jerry Brunetti
- Minerals for the Genetic Code, by Charles Walters
- Nourishment, by Fred Provenza
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