Steve Jobs, Swayze and Landon’s Cancer Deaths Avoidable?

18 02 2019

Updated: 2/17/2019, Marc Woodard

Florida a popular place to retire – with the second highest state cancer cases nation wide.

Years ago I  was motivated to learn more about Pancreatic Cancer after hearing of Patrick Swayze’s diagnosis. Eighteen years earlier I recalled how shocked I was to hear about Michael Landon’s death from the same type of cancer in 1991.  And Steve Jobs in 2011.  I thought “what a loss of such talented and productive people.”

These events highlighted the insidious nature of cancer in general.  But especially brought national attention to pancreatic cancer. I wondered, “was the cause of cancer brought about by cultural-geographic, genetic, environment and/or a combination of various lifestyle risk factors.”

Initially when I wrote on this topic in 2009, I wasn’t able to deduce the exact cause that led to Swayze and Landon’s pancreatic cancer diagnosis. However today I feel the cause has narrowed down to a handful of likely possibilities relevant to behavior, habits and environmental health risk factors.

After Jobs death I became more aware of certain habits, genetic predisposition, stress, diet and environment that may hold the answers to identifying likely causes of cancer in general.  Today I’m more confident in saying, “pancreatic cancer is ‘likely’ related to a combination of environmental and lifestyle factors, whereas risk dramatically increases when genetically predisposed to acquire it.”

Steve Jobs lifestyle was different from the two actors [he wasn’t a smoker or drinker].  But had a dietary obsession with certain foods. Aside from this distinction all three of them lived in a dense area population… Los Angeles California, “the #1 cancer producing state (American Cancer Society, 2017).”  These famous people also appeared to be Type-A personalities [workaholics, competitive drivers and short fused, etc.,].  Type-A people are more likely to develop obsessive behaviors and habits to cope with stress which doubles the risk of coronary heart disease.

What is it about Alaska that makes it the 3rd lowest cancer producing state?  Number 1 – Wyoming, Number 2 – District of Columbia.

“Apparent links between psychological stress and cancer could arise in several ways. For example, people under stress may develop certain behaviors, such as smoking, overeating, or drinking alcohol, which increase a person’s risk for cancer [National Cancer Institute, 2017].”

Next I wanted to know how could anyone prevent, or remit cancer naturally from the body once it took hold?

First I needed to know a little more about these famous people lifestyles and could they have done anything different to prevent or change their cancer story?

California has the highest cancer cases… and significantly higher than the three other highest cancer producing states: FL, TX, NY

First, we’ll look at the two Hollywood legends to see what habits they had in common. Then compare lifestyles with Steve Jobs – Man behind Apple computers and iPhone.

Thereafter, review past and current national cancer statistics to draw a conclusion based on likely factors that contributed to their cancer and shortened lifespans.

Like most of you I was an avid follower and admirer of Michael Landon. My favorite childhood shows were Bonanza, Little House on the Prairie and Highway to Heaven series.

Michael Landon was diagnosed with adenocarcinoma at the age of 54 – on 5 April 1991 and immediately underwent chemo therapy. His cancer had spread to his liver at first causing stomach cramps. Thereafter his pancreatic cancer was diagnosed 7 weeks later. The cancer became inoperable due to spreading within the liver and lymph nodes. Only 1% of patients with a metastasized cancer combination like this survive a five year period. He died in Malibu, CA on 1 July 1991. It was reported he drank heavily and had a four pack per day smoking habit.

“Pancreatic cancer is one of the faster spreading cancers; only about 4% of patients can expect to survive five years after their diagnosis (Park 2011).”

I also followed Hollywood legend Patrick Swazye. Three movies and one series in particular that memorialize his acting and physical abilities, “Dirty Dancing, Next of Kin, Roadhouse and the Beast series.”   Swayze was diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic cancer in March 2008 and underwent chemo therapy with new experimental drugs (vatalanib/gemcitabine) to shrink the tumor and prevent the development of new blood vessels that would otherwise nourish it.

“He’s a strong guy, and he’s got a great attitude,” says Ron Wise, a Cedars-Sinai spokesman, “in my experience, that has a lot to do with how things go.” Patrick Swayze’s biggest regret was his smoking which he continued to do until his death. Doctor’s agreed, even if he quit at the time of diagnosis would have no bearing on his outcome … 

High-temp charred foods especially meat absorb carcinogens from fuel source.

After more than a year of cancer, Swazye completed 13 episodes of the beast without pain medication.  Swayze Died, 14 Sept 2009 at the age of 57. The cancer ultimately spread to his liver. His life expectancy after diagnosis was 5 months.  He lived 20 months after diagnosis.

Steve Jobs founder of Apple Computer and arguably one of the most brilliant innovators and businessmen of all time had an uncommon form of pancreatic cancer diagnosed in Oct 2003 (Park 2011).

It was reported throughout his life he was a vegan with an addictive and obsessive fructose [fruit] habit that rarely included the macro-nutrient protein [exception – he infrequently ate sushi and eel]. His food obsessions often limited him to apples, carrots, smoothies and fruit drinks for extended periods of time.

[He named the company after his fondness for apples.

“Research published in the November 2007 issue of American Journal of Clinical Nutrition concluded there was “evidence for a greater pancreatic cancer risk with a high intake of fruit and juices but not with a high intake of sodas.”

“Although the UCLA findings are preliminary and more research needs to be done, the Reuters headline “Cancer Cells Slurp Up Fructose” is fair warning to all of us addicted to fruit and fruit juices (Daniel 2012).”

It was also reported he smoked marijuana and used LSD during his college years. It is likely he smoked weed during his battle with prostate cancer. This was not acknowledged by Jobs, but suspect by colleagues. Whether these things had anything to do with his cancer, I could not make that connection.

Nine months after diagnosis, Jobs underwent surgery to remove a tumor. In 2009 he underwent a liver transplant, a procedure appropriate for only a small number of patients with this type of rare pancreatic cancer. On October 5, 2011, due to complications from a relapse of his previously treated islet-cell – neuroendocrine pancreatic cancer … at the age of 56, Jobs died at his Palo Alto, California home around 3 p.m. (PDT).

There was an Interesting Self-Treatment Decisions Made by Jobs – He postponed surgery to remove a neuroendocrine tumor against his doctors advisement. Instead his controlling obsessions, including bazaar dietary habits led to self-treatment using alternative medicines. Had he chose to go through surgery 9 months earlier – it is likely the cancer would’ve been removed [as in other similar cases – Early removal of this type of cancerous tumor often cured the cancer]. His form of cancer was not as deadly or aggressive as the most common form.

Not until the cancer reached the late stage 9 months later did he agree to use conventional treatment to stop it from spreading. Unfortunately by this time the cancer had spread to other surrounding tissues. He also never quit his obsessive high fructose dietary habit after diagnosis. Even after being warned by his personal physician – the body would have a better chance of fighting cancer by adding more protein to the diet – THIS was the opinion of medical experts. Many believe Jobs would still be alive today if he had the surgery and chemotherapy and radiotherapy immediately after diagnosis. For whatever reason, Jobs believed alternative medicines was his best bet to beat cancer.

Later in his autobiography, it is mentioned he regretted the decision to self-treat his cancer.

Can location be a cancer causing factor? 

I believe “unhealthy lifestyle factors which include environment increases the risk of  DNA gene string mutation and cancer cell growth and metastasis.” 

State Cancer Statistics 2002 – 2017

State cancer statistics show an increasing and concerning rise in cancer cases over the last 17 years.  Note: Per Capita [population] as a percentage of state cancer cases have not been evaluated within this article.

States with highest cancer population diagnosis during year 2000  (California 113,200), Florida (88,100), Texas (76,100), NY (81,500), US diagnosed “All” Cancer Totals – 1,220,100

States with highest cancer diagnosis during year 2008  (California 156,530), Florida (101,920), Texas (96,320), NY (97,130), US diagnosed “All” Cancer Totals – 1,437,180.

States with highest cancer diagnosis during year 2017 – (California 176.140), Florida (124,740), Texas (116,200), NY (107,530), US diagnosed “All” Cancer Totals – 1,688,780.

“In 2017, there will be an estimated 1,688,780 new cancer cases diagnosed and 600,920 cancer deaths in the US (American Cancer Society, 2017).”  Get All Cancer Stats Now.

Comparing 2009 – 2017 Pancreatic Diagnosis and Cancer Deaths

Pancreatic Cancer estimates in 2009 ~42,700 people will be diagnosed resulting in ~35,420 deaths will result making it the fourth deadliest cancer (American Cancer Society).

Pancreatic Cancer estimate in 2017 ~53,670 people will be diagnosed resulting in ~43,090 deaths will result making it the fourth deadliest cancer (American Cancer Society).  Deaths are evenly split between male and female. See Pancreas Statistics at a Glance

Pancreatic Cancer Risk factors,

“Factors that may increase your risk of pancreatic cancer include:
Chronic inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis), Diabetes, Family history of genetic syndromes that can increase cancer risk, including a BRCA2 gene mutation, Lynch syndrome and familial atypical mole-malignant melanoma (FAMMM) syndrome
Family history of pancreatic cancer, Smoking, Obesity, Older age, as most people are diagnosed after age 65.

A large study demonstrated that the combination of smoking, long-standing diabetes and a poor diet increases the risk of pancreatic cancer beyond the risk of any one of these factors alone (Mayo Clinic, 2017).”

Conclusion

It’s interesting to make comparisons of national cancer statistics to see if research and treatment progression has been made in reducing cancer cases nationally – Most specifically pancreatic cancer deaths.

Eight years later after my first article on this topic, I find it alarming – medical science has not identified the exact physiological cause of pancreatic cancer, or any other form of cancer for that matter. All types of cancer are on the rise. However medical research is narrowing down connected lifestyle, genetic, environment and other illness causing identifiers that increase risk.

Hawaii places 9th in the lowest producing cancer states. Hawaii is also known to have a consistent 73-80 degree days year round.

I believe, “anyone can improve the odds of activating cancer cells within the body – even if genetically predisposed. Simply by making better lifestyle and environmental choices.T

CONSUMER HEALTHY LIFESTYLE KNOWLEDGE IS POWERFUL – Apply Healthy Lifestyle Habits to Reduce Cancer Risk

  • The four states with the highest cancer cases increased significantly from 2002-2017.
  • Pancreatic Cancer is still the 4th deadliest cancer.
  • National Cancer cases are on the rise.
  • No one [male/female] is immune from pancreatic cancer, or any cancer for that matter.
  • Genetic predisposition [BRCA2 gene mutation]and Lynch syndrome increases cancer risk.
  • Prevent or Manage diabetes – it increases cancer risk.
  • A high body mole-count may be symptomatic of gene mutated cells. See a dermatologist or oncologist.
  • Bad cancer causing habits: alcohol, smoking, restricted-fad diet and sedentary lifestyle.
  • Avoid high fructose diet as research has exposed a likely cancer connection.
  • Balanced diet include all 3 macro-nutrients: proteins, carbs and fats to nourish the body.
  • If you have a dietary obsession with any food(s) or fads, seek behavioral therapy.
  • There are no conclusive studies that show pancreatic cancer is caused by any specific food type [high-fructose diets are suspect].
  • There are studies that show processed food chemicals have cancer causing agents.
  • Unhealthy relationships & environment alter hormone & Cellular DNA & function and cause physiological stress which can cultivate cancer cells.
  • Sedentary lifestyle often leads to obesity, diabetes and heart disease and known to increase cancer risk.
  • Low-impact aerobic exercise at minimum is needed to sustain healthy immune system and remove toxins that would otherwise nourish cancer cells.
  • Whole foods diet reduces processed food chemical intake and cancer risk.
  • Avoid artificial sweeteners, especially hyper-palatable sodas, syrup & coffee creamers.
  • Bad air environments have high Pro-Oxidants [toxic CO pollutants] – Dense city development with high smog levels is toxic to respiratory-immune systems.
  • Barbecue – high temp smoke and char temps – are known to be carcinogenic.
  • High-energy radiation from the sun, x-rays, gamma rays, alpha particles, beta particles, and neutrons, can damage DNA and cause cancer.
  • Breast cancer tops Prostate Cancer in top 4 cancer states by ~135-190%.
  • Melanoma cancer cases is higher in top 4 cancer states, which are also sunshine states.
  • If cancer runs in family within any of the top 4 cancer states – location may be a factor.
  • If diagnosed with cancer the best odds of beating it – aggressive surgery regardless of stage of cancer – seek chemotherapy and radiotherapy upon medical recommendation.
  • 10 Lowest-Cancer Producing States in Order: Wyoming (1), Dist. of Columbia (2), Alaska (3), Vermont (4), North Dakota (5), South Dakota (6), Delaware (7), Rhode Island (8), Montana (9), Hawaii (10). Note: Per Capita [population] as a percentage of state cancer cases have not been evaluated within this article.

MOST RECENT PROSTATE CANCER MEDICAL BREAKTHROUGHS

“One huge step forward was the use of radiation to reduce the impact of prostate cancer that spreads to bones. Another was the development of better diagnostics, including PSA tests, which mean that most men are diagnosed while their prostate cancer is still curable (Elster 2017).”

CONCLUSION

“Bottom line: There is no definite technique to prevent pancreas cancer. However, not smoking, exercising, and eating a proper diet is the best lifestyle choice for overall health (WebMD, 2017).”

Moderation in everything we do is key to healthy longevity, living life to the fullest and staying well.

Good Health to You and Your Family.

References

  1. American Cancer Society, Cancer Facts and Statistics.  2017 American Cancer Society, Inc. https://www.cancer.org/research/cancer-facts-statistics.html
  2. American Cancer Society, Cancer Facts and Figures 2017. 2017 American Cancer Society, Inc. https://www.cancer.org/research/cancer-facts-statistics/all-cancer-facts-figures/cancer-facts-figures-2017.html
  3. Bang Show Biz. Patrick Swayze’s Biggest Regret Was Not Having Kids. Sept 22, 2009. 2017 – Livingly Media, Inc. Zimbio Entertainment.
  4. Brownstein, Joseph. Swayze: Outlived Most With Pancreatic Cancer. Sept. 16, 2009. World Wide Web. ABC News. 2017.
  5. Daniel, Kaayla T. Ph.D., C.C.N. iVegetarian: The High Fructose Diet of Steve Jobs. Jan 19, 2012.  Psychology Today. 1991-2017 Sussex Publishers, LLC | HealthProfs.com © 2002-2017 Sussex Directories, Inc. World Wide Web 8/12/2017.
  6. Mann, Denise. Patrick Swayze Dies of Pancreatic Cancer.  Sept 15, 2009. 2005 – 2017 WebMD, LLC.
  7. Mayo Clinic. 2017. Pancreatic Cancer. 1998-2017 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER).  http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pancreatic-cancer/symptoms-causes/dxc-20268506
  8. Michael Landon. Broken Permalink. 2009. 11 Aug 2017. http://www.people.com/people/archive/article/0,,20114945,00.html)
  9. Michael Landon. Broken Permalink.  2009. 11 Aug 2017. http://www.hollywoodusa.co.uk/HillsideObituaries/michaellandon.htm
  10. MirrorAthlete Articles Repository.
  11. Naomi Elster. Cancer treatment: sorting the good news from the hype. 14 Aug 2017. theguardian, 2017.
  12. Park, Alice.  The Pancreatic Cancer that Killed Steve Jobs.  5 Oct 2011.  Time. 2017 Time Inc.
  13. WebMD. 2017. Pancreatic Cancer Diet and Prevention. 2005 – 2017 WebMD, LLC.

 Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET2019 Copyright.  All rights reserved, MirrorAthlete Publishing @: http://www.mirrorathlete.com,  Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.





Steve Jobs, Swayze and Landon’s Cancer Deaths Avoidable?

18 08 2017

Florida a popular place to retire – with the second highest state cancer cases nation wide.

Updated: Aug 2017, Marc Woodard

Years ago I  was motivated to learn more about Pancreatic Cancer after hearing of Patrick Swayze’s diagnosis.  Eighteen years earlier I recalled how shocked I was to hear about Michael Landon’s death from the same type of cancer in 1991.  And Steve Jobs in 2011.  I thought “what a loss of such talented and productive people.”

These events highlighted the insidious nature of cancer in general.  But especially brought national attention to pancreatic cancer.  I wondered, “was the cause of cancer brought about by cultural-geographic, genetic, environment and/or a combination of various lifestyle risk factors.”

Initially when I wrote on this topic in 2009, I wasn’t so sure about the exact cause that led to Swayze and Landon’s pancreatic cancer diagnosis.  But today I feel the cause has narrowed down to a handful of knowns when applied relative to behavioral and environmental risk factors.

After Jobs death I became more aware of certain habits, genetic predisposition, stress, diet and environment that may hold the answers to identifying likely cause.  Today I’m more confident in saying, “pancreatic cancer is ‘likely’ related to a combination of environmental and lifestyle factors, whereas risk dramatically increases when genetically predisposed to it.”

Steve Jobs lifestyle was different from the two actors [he wasn’t a smoker or drinker].  But had a dietary obsession with certain foods.  Aside from this distinction all three of them lived in a dense area population… Los Angeles California, “the #1 cancer causing state (American Cancer Society, 2017).”  They also appeared to be Type-A personalities [workaholics, competitive drive, short fused, etc.,].  Type-A people are more likely to develop obsessive behavioral habits to coup with stress which also doubles the risk of coronary heart disease.

What is it about Alaska that makes it the 3rd lowest cancer producing state?  Number 1 – Wyoming, Number 2 – District of Columbia.

“Apparent links between psychological stress and cancer could arise in several ways. For example, people under stress may develop certain behaviors, such as smoking, overeating, or drinking alcohol, which increase a person’s risk for cancer [National Cancer Institute, 2017].”

Next I wanted to know how could anyone prevent, or remit cancer from the body once it took hold?

First I wanted to know a little more about these famous people lifestyles and could they have done anything different to prevent or change their cancer story?

California has the highest cancer cases… and significantly higher than the three other highest cancer producing states: FL, TX, NY

First, we’ll look at the two Hollywood legends to see what habits they had in common.  Then compare lifestyles with the computer innovator-businessman.

Thereafter, review past-current national cancer statistics to draw on further data and conclude by identifying likely factors that contributed to their cancer cases.

Like most of you I was an avid follower and admirer of Michael Landon.  My favorite childhood shows were Bonanza, Little House on the Prairie and Highway to Heaven series.

Michael Landon was diagnosed with adenocarcinoma at the age of 54 on 5 April 1991 and immediately underwent chemo therapy.  His cancer had spread to his liver at first causing stomach cramps.  Thereafter his pancreatic cancer diagnosis was made 7 weeks later.  The cancer became inoperable due to spreading to the liver and lymph nodes.  Only 1% of patients with a metastasized cancer combination like this survive a five year period.  He died in Malibu, CA on 1 July 1991.  It was reported he drank heavily and had a four pack per day smoking habit.

“Pancreatic cancer is one of the faster spreading cancers; only about 4% of patients can expect to survive five years after their diagnosis (Park 2011).”

I also followed Hollywood legend Patrick Swazye.  Three movies in particular that memorialize his acting and physical ability that stood out, “Dirty Dancing, Next of Kin, Roadhouse and the Beast series.”   Swayze was diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic cancer in March 2008 and underwent chemo therapy with new experimental drugs (vatalanib/gemcitabine) to shrink the tumor and prevent the development of new blood vessels that would otherwise nourish it.

“He’s a strong guy, and he’s got a great attitude,” says Ron Wise, a Cedars-Sinai spokesman, “in my experience, that has a lot to do with how things go.”  Patrick Swayze’s biggest regret was his smoking which he continued to do until his death.  Doctor’s agreed, even if he quit at the time of diagnosis would have no bearing on his outcome after diagnosis. 

High-temp charred foods especially meat acquire more carcinogens in them.

After more than a year of cancer, Swazye completed 13 episodes of the beast without pain medication.  Swayze Died, 14 Sept 2009 at the age of 57.  The cancer ultimately spread to his liver.  His life expectancy after diagnosis was 5 months.  He lived 20 months after diagnosis.

Steve Jobs founder of Apple Computer and arguably one of the most brilliant innovators and businessmen of all time had an uncommon form of pancreatic cancer diagnosed in Oct 2003 (Park 2011).

It was reported throughout his life he was a vegan with an addictive and obsessive fructose [fruit] habit that rarely included the macronutrient protein [exception – he infrequently ate sushi and eel]. His food obsessions often limited him to apples, carrots, smoothies and fruit drinks for extended periods of time [He named the company after his fondness for apples].

“Research published in the November 2007 issue of American Journal of Clinical Nutrition concluded there was “evidence for a greater pancreatic cancer risk with a high intake of fruit and juices but not with a high intake of sodas.”

“Although the UCLA findings are preliminary and more research needs to be done, the Reuters headline “Cancer Cells Slurp Up Fructose” is fair warning to all of us addicted to fruit and fruit juices (Daniel 2012).”

It was also reported he smoked marijuana and used LSD during his college years.  It is likely he smoked weed during his battle with prostate cancer.  This was not acknowledged by Jobs, but suspect by colleagues .  Whether these things had anything to do with his cancer… I could not make that connection.

Nine months after diagnosis, Jobs underwent surgery to remove a tumor.  In 2009 he underwent a liver transplant, a procedure appropriate for only a small number of patients with this type of rare pancreatic cancer.  On October 5, 2011, due to complications from a relapse of his previously treated islet-cell neuroendocrine pancreatic cancer… at the age of 56, Jobs died at his Palo Alto, California home around 3 p.m. (PDT).

Interesting Self-Treatment Decisions Made by Jobs – He postponed surgery to remove a neuroendocrine tumor against his doctors advisement.  Instead his controlling obsessions, including bazaar dietary habits led to self-treatment using alternative medicines.  Had he chose to go through surgery 9 months earlier – it is likely the cancer would’ve been removed [as in other similar cases.  Early removal of this type of cancerous tumor often cured the cancer]. His form of cancer was not as deadly or aggressive as the most common form.

Not until the cancer reached the late stage 9 months later did he agree to use conventional treatment to stop it from spreading.  Unfortunately by this time the cancer had spread to other surrounding tissues.  He also never quit his obsessive high fructose dietary habit after diagnosis.  Even after being warned by his personal physician – the body would have a better chance of fighting cancer by adding more protein to the diet.  It was the opinion of medical experts, Jobs would still be alive today if he had the surgery and chemotherapy and radiotherapy immediately after diagnosis.

For whatever reason,  Jobs believed alternative medicines was his best bet to beat cancer.  Later in his autobiography, it is mentioned he regretted the decision to self-treat his cancer.

Can location be a cancer causing factor? 

I believe “when combined with other unhealthy lifestyle factors, it increases the risk DNA is susceptible to a mutation process – capable of  growing cancer cells and spreading.” 

State Cancer Statistics 2002 – 2017

State cancer statistics show an increasing and concerning rise in cancer cases over the last 17 years.  Note:  Per Capita [population] as a percentage of state cancer cases have not been evaluated in this article.

States with highest cancer diagnosis during year 2000  (California 113,200), Florida (88,100), Texas (76,100), NY (81,500), US diagnosed “All” Cancer Totals – 1,220,100

States with highest cancer diagnosis during year 2008  (California 156,530), Florida (101,920), Texas (96,320), NY (97,130), US diagnosed “All” Cancer Totals – 1,437,180.

States with highest cancer diagnosis during year 2017 – (California 176.140), Florida (124,740), Texas (116,200), NY (107,530), US diagnosed “All” Cancer Totals – 1,688,780.

“In 2017, there will be an estimated 1,688,780 new cancer cases diagnosed and 600,920 cancer deaths in the US (American Cancer Society, 2017).”  Get All Cancer Stats Now.

Comparing 2009 – 2017 Pancreatic Diagnosis and Cancer Deaths

Pancreatic Cancer estimates in 2009 ~42,700 people will be diagnosed resulting in ~35,420 deaths will result making it the fourth deadliest cancer (American Cancer Society).

Pancreatic Cancer estimate in 2017 ~53,670 people will be diagnosed resulting in ~43,090 deaths will result making it the fourth deadliest cancer (American Cancer Society).  Deaths are evenly split between male and female. See Pancreas Statistics at a Glance

Pancreatic Cancer Risk factors,

“Factors that may increase your risk of pancreatic cancer include:
Chronic inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis), Diabetes, Family history of genetic syndromes that can increase cancer risk, including a BRCA2 gene mutation, Lynch syndrome and familial atypical mole-malignant melanoma (FAMMM) syndrome
Family history of pancreatic cancer, Smoking, Obesity, Older age, as most people are diagnosed after age 65.

A large study demonstrated that the combination of smoking, long-standing diabetes and a poor diet increases the risk of pancreatic cancer beyond the risk of any one of these factors alone (Mayo Clinic, 2017).”

Conclusion

It’s interesting to make comparisons of national cancer statistics to see if research and treatment progression has been made in reducing cancer cases nationally.  And most specifically pancreatic cancer deaths.

Eight years later after my first article, I find it alarming – medical science has not identified the exact physiological cause of pancreatic cancer, or any other form of cancer for that matter and all types of cancer are on the rise.  However medical research is narrowing down connected lifestyle, genetic, environment and other illness causing identifiers that increase risk.

Hawaii places 9th in the lowest producing cancer states. Hawaii is also known to have consistent 73-80deg temps year round.

I believe, “you can improve your odds of never activating cancer cells even if genetically predisposed.  Simply by making better lifestyle and consumer choices.

To help identify and make healthier lifestyle choices take heed of what scientific studies and facts have revealed thus far.  Apply healthy lifestyle change relative to:  relationship(s), workplace, habits, behavior, environment, medical condition, fitness levels and diet.

 

CONSUMER AWARENESS KNOWLEDGE IS POWERFUL – Apply Healthy Lifestyle and Consumer Decisions Based on Proven Facts to Reduce Cancer Risk

  • The four states with highest cancer cases increased significantly from 2002-2017.
  • Pancreatic Cancer is still the 4th deadliest cancer.
  • National Cancer cases are on the rise.
  • No one [male/female] is immune from pancreatic cancer, or any cancer for that matter.
  • Genetic predisposition [BRCA2 gene mutation]and Lynch syndrome increases cancer risk.
  • Prevent or Manage diabetes – it increases cancer risk.
  • A high body mole-count may be symptomatic of gene mutated cells. See a dermatologist or oncologist.
  • Bad cancer causing habits: alcohol, smoking, restricted-fad diet and sedentary lifestyle.
  • Avoid high fructose diet as research has exposed a likely cancer connection.
  • Balanced diet include all 3 macronutrients proteins, carbs and fats to nourish the body.
  • If you have a dietary obsession with any food(s) or fads, seek behavioral therapy.
  • There are no conclusive studies that show pancreatic cancer is caused by any specific food type [high-fructose diets are now suspect].
  • There are studies that show processed food chemicals are cancer causing agents.
  • Unhealthy relationships & environment alter hormone & Cellular DNA & function and cause physiological stress which can cultivate cancer cells.
  • Sedentary lifestyle often leads to obesity, diabetes and heart disease and known to increase cancer risk.
  • Low-impact aerobic exercise at minimum is needed to sustain healthy immune system and remove toxins that would otherwise nourish cancer cells.
  • Whole foods diet reduces processed food chemical intake and cancer risk.
  • Avoid artificial sweeteners, especially hyper-palatable sodas, syrup & coffee creamers.
  • Bad air environments have high Pro-Oxidants [toxic CO pollutants] – Dense city development with high smog levels is toxic to respiratory-immune systems.
  • Barbeque – high temp smoke and char temps – are known to be carcinogenic.
  • High-energy radiation from the sun, x-rays, gamma rays, alpha particles, beta particles, and neutrons, can damage DNA and cause cancer.
  • Breast cancer tops Prostate Cancer in top 4 cancer states by ~135-190%.
  • Melanoma cancer cases is higher in top 4 cancer states, which are also sunshine states.
  • If cancer runs in family within any of the top 4 cancer states – location may be a factor.
  • If diagnosed with cancer the best odds of beating it – aggressive surgery regardless of stage of cancer – seek chemotherapy and radiotherapy upon medical recommendation.
  • 10 Lowest-Cancer Producing States in Order: Wyoming (1), Dist. of Columbia (2), Alaska (3), Vermont (4), North Dakota (5), South Dakota (6), Delaware (7), Rhode Island (8), Montana (9), Hawaii (10). Note: Per Capita [population] as a percentage of state cancer cases have not been evaluated.

MOST RECENT PROSTATE CANCER MEDICAL BREAKTHROUGHS

“One huge step forward was the use of radiation to reduce the impact of prostate cancer that spreads to bones. Another was the development of better diagnostics, including PSA tests, which mean that most men are diagnosed while their prostate cancer is still curable (Elster 2017).”

CONCLUSION

“Bottom line: There is no definite technique to prevent pancreas cancer. However, not smoking, exercising, and eating a proper diet is the best lifestyle choice for overall health (WebMD, 2017).”

Moderation in everything we do is key to healthy longevity, living life to the fullest and staying well.

Good Health to You and Your Family.

References

  1. American Cancer Society, Cancer Facts and Statistics.  2017 American Cancer Society, Inc. https://www.cancer.org/research/cancer-facts-statistics.html
  2. American Cancer Society, Cancer Facts and Figures 2017. 2017 American Cancer Society, Inc. https://www.cancer.org/research/cancer-facts-statistics/all-cancer-facts-figures/cancer-facts-figures-2017.html
  3. Bang Show Biz. Patrick Swayze’s Biggest Regret Was Not Having Kids. Sept 22, 2009. 2017 – Livingly Media, Inc. Zimbio Entertainment.
  4. Brownstein, Joseph. Swayze: Outlived Most With Pancreatic Cancer. Sept. 16, 2009. World Wide Web. ABC News. 2017.
  5. Daniel, Kaayla T. Ph.D., C.C.N. iVegetarian: The High Fructose Diet of Steve Jobs. Jan 19, 2012.  Psychology Today. 1991-2017 Sussex Publishers, LLC | HealthProfs.com © 2002-2017 Sussex Directories, Inc. World Wide Web 8/12/2017.
  6. Mann, Denise. Patrick Swayze Dies of Pancreatic Cancer.  Sept 15, 2009. 2005 – 2017 WebMD, LLC.
  7. Mayo Clinic. 2017. Pancreatic Cancer. 1998-2017 Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER).  http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pancreatic-cancer/symptoms-causes/dxc-20268506
  8. Michael Landon. Broken Permalink. 2009. 11 Aug 2017. http://www.people.com/people/archive/article/0,,20114945,00.html)
  9. Michael Landon. Broken Permalink.  2009. 11 Aug 2017. http://www.hollywoodusa.co.uk/HillsideObituaries/michaellandon.htm
  10. MirrorAthlete Articles Repository.
  11. Naomi Elster. Cancer treatment: sorting the good news from the hype. 14 Aug 2017. theguardian, 2017.
  12. Park, Alice.  The Pancreatic Cancer that Killed Steve Jobs.  5 Oct 2011.  Time. 2017 Time Inc.
  13. WebMD. 2017. Pancreatic Cancer Diet and Prevention. 2005 – 2017 WebMD, LLC.

 Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET2017 Copyright.  All rights reserved, MirrorAthlete Publishing @: http://www.mirrorathlete.com,  Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.





Doomed to Get Cancer

22 02 2015

IMG_20120517_174946Originally Published: May 1, 2008, Updated:  Feb 22, 2015

It is a fact that environmental toxic agents, poor dietary and exercise habits and poor consumer choices can cause cell mutation that may lead to the formation of cancerous tumors.   It is also a fact, cancer mortality rates throughout the globe have increased over the last decade. “7.6 million People died of cancer in the world during 2007.  13% of all deaths are due to cancer (American Cancer Society).”   And since then, cancer cases have risen globally.

Unfortunately “Cancer is among the leading causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide, with approximately 14 million new cases and 8.2 million cancer related deaths in 2012 [World Health Organization, 2015].”

Are we all doomed to get cancer?  The risk of getting cancer is greatly reduced if one learns to pay attention to environment, lifestyle and consumer safety information and applies good lifestyle practices.

What do I believe is causing this increased rate?  I believe it has a lot to do with the lack of consumer safety and healthy habit lifestyle practices and environment awareness knowledge and education.

And since cancer cells can take many years to mutate and change into cancerous ones; none of us have any ideal, or believe this could occur within our bodies.  Or most don’t consider the possibilities of getting cancer, therefore don’t take the environmental and lifestyle risk factors seriously.  So lifestyle and environment don’t change until illness and disease have taken their course.

How do we get cancer?  There are many possible carcinogenic agents and toxins hidden within our environment and foods.  One must also consider genetic predisposition possibilities [does cancer run in the family].   If a biological family member has had cancer, suspect your body is more susceptible and sensitive  to similar types of cancer causing agents.  Also a neighbor who was born and raised in the same environment and without a history of cancer in the family will likely not be as sensitive to the agents that effect your family.  But this does not mean they are immune to cancer.

The American Cancer Society defines cancer as a disease which differs widely in cause and biology.  There are approximately 9 risk factors leading to cancer:IMG_0279  Tobacco smoking, alcohol, diets low in fruit and vegetables, limited physical exercise, unsafe sex, urban air pollution, domestic use of solid fuels and contaminated injections (Hep B & C).

Once cancerous tumors form they continue to grow and divide at a cellular level [metastasis].   Which can spread through the immune-lymph and circulatory blood systems, etc.  Tumors once malignantly formed, effect other healthy cells surrounding them.  Whereas these cancerous cells have the ability to target other tissues and organs throughout the body, spread and infect, grow and further divide.

Unless medical treatment is received in a timely manner to stop a malignant growth, spread and further cellular mutation, remission may not be possible.  It is for this reason, if diagnosed with Stage 2-3 cancer, it becomes very risky to put off proven cancer treatment that offers the best odds at survival and puts cancer into remission.  Opposed to trying new and untested treatments.  Once cancer reaches stage 4, the odds of remission and survival are greatly reduced even when conventional treatment is applied.

Our body is a filter and is capable of removing many toxins through our lymphatic system including carcinogenic agents.  This system has 3 basic functions.  1)  To clean the blood and remove waste from the body.  2)  It absorbs and transports fatty acids from the intestine and digestive system.  3) The lymph node cells called lymphocytes provide immunological defenses against disease-causing agents. When you increase cancer risk factors these lymphatic and circulatory filter system(s) become less functionally efficient.

And if unhealthy lifestyle, habits and/or environment don’t change within a period of time, the spread of cancer and tumor growth becomes more likely.   By unnecessarily exposing oneself to poor diet and unhealthy environment or continued bad habits and behavior, toxins in the body increase in concentration.   And these toxins may not cause cancer, but something worse.  For example, acute to chronic body-brain neurological, circulatory, and/or respiratory, etc., illness and disease.

How to Reduce Cancer Risk 

  1. Obesity increases risk of developing cancer.  Reduce body weight through diet and exercise. See a doctor to help you lose weight and control diabetes.1390168824371
  2. Reduce refined sugars, excessive fats and reduce carbohydrates.  Increase plant based foods in diet to decrease risk of prostate and breast cancer (men/women).
  3. Studies have linked stomach cancer, colon cancer, breast cancer and pancreatic cancer with “any” grilled meat and/or overconsumption of red meats.  Ingestion of meats alone is not the only problem.  Carcinogens are also released through the burning of the aromatic hydrocarbon which often occurs when you overheat and burn fats, fryDSC01339 and sauté oils.  Then inhale their carcinogenic burnt smoke fumes.  If you burn your cooking oils, open the windows, exhaust the air and dump the oil.  When burning oil, avoid inhaling the burnt smoke and refresh the oil before cooking.
  4. Cancer trials suggest that vitamin supplementation and/or consumption of fruitsIMG_20130405_175321 and vegetables will reduce cancer risks.  Take a daily vitamin & mineral supplement daily.  Especially if you’re not getting 3-4 servings per day of plant foods.
  5. Give up artificial sweeteners (Aspartame).  Read your food labels carefully.  There are now 6000 food products under various labels that list Aspartame as “other sweetener, sugar substitute and as a healthy sweetener alternative.  Sodas, flavored water, specialized coffee’s, processed baked deserts, candy and even IMG_20130405_175235some diet foods have high concentrates of Aspartame in them.  Be sure to Read MirrorAthlete’s publication, “Aspartame the Silent Killer.” Aspartame in the diet is highly suspect of causing cancer and a known obesity and diabetes causing chemical agent.
  6. If you live in a heavily carbon monoxide or chemical producing environment and/or your city drinking water requires high chemical concentrate treatment [chemical smells & tastes occur often in tap water]; and/or suffer from respiratory problems, consider moving from the area if possible.  If not possible, filter your water, improve indoor air systems and exercise outside on low smog days and exercise indoors on high smog days.  Also don’t burn wood or other heating fuels in unvented or uncirculated room space areas.   Remove toxic home use products and replace with natural cleaning products.
  7. The sun and manmade sources produce UV (Ultraviolet) rays.  These UV rays areDCIM100GOPRO known as electromagnetic radiation.  The sun is our main source of this radiation.  Manmade UV radiation is produced by tanning beds, x-rays and welding torches for example.  Limit exposure to electromagnetic radiation and cover up and use sunscreen to avoid overexposure of the sun’s rays when possible.
  8. Stop smoking and consuming alcohol.
  9. Practice safe sex and never use a shared or unsterilized needles.

The incidence of cancer rises dramatically with age.  And even more so when unhealthy lifestyle, habits, environment and other risk factors are ignored and not practiced.

Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ANG MSC, CPT, RET. 2015 MirrorAthlete® Copyright, All rights reserved.  Sign up for your free Newsletter www.mirrorathlete.com





41 Drugs to Die For

24 10 2010
Prescription Drugs “Can” be a Bit Like Rolling the Dice in Vegas

    I’ve stated before, “Anything manmade and outside of God’s natural organic order, can/will cause ill-health medical conditions.”  And there is nothing more true to this statement and applicable relative to the plethora of FDA approved drugs that are causing great harm to those with medical conditions and dependent on pharmaceuticals.

     Although I believe there is no manmade drug (including long-storage processed/restaurant, fast-foods) that is entirely good for us, I would concede there are medical conditions where specific types of drugs given to patients far outweigh the health risk consequences than going without.

     My biggest concern with our FDA (Federal Drug Administration) approved drugs process is the sheer number of products coming to market.  Recall, before these drugs come to market there is an extensive FDA safety-approval process that also equates to billions of R&D (Research & Development) dollars where investors demand a ROI (Return on Investment) by bringing product to market.  And it is also true that that much of the FDA’s budget is greatly dependent upon the pharmaceutical products and services industries.  These industry resources also equate to 10’s of thousands of government, private sector and special interest jobs, within our health care industry.

     It is my opinion, the drug companies know full well how to fudge research data and the FDA knows how to give a free pass.  Folks this is a dangerous combination for the unknowing patient in need of safe effective drugs with minimal side effects.  We already know anything manmade is going to create additional risk for our health.  However, how much unnecessary risk should the “unknowing” patient take?  Are drugs that create high risk health conditions with “little-to-no” health benefits really necessary?  And has our drug approval process “now” incorporated increased health risk conditions and acceptable death rate into the cost-of-doing business?  And is litigation and class action lawsuits now factored into the cost of doing business as well?

     It would appear, “patients” have become a part of the “rat” lab program included into the cost or R&D “in our open markets!” Human studies now are disguised through a “free pass to market” process that incorporates reuse of the same drug(s); “pulled from consumer use,” and then relabeled  under different names (read below “Off-Market Labels”) to treat conditions that were not initially approved by the FDA.  I submit… The cost of doing business in expediting drug-to-market approval for use on humans is more cost effective with better correlated data than animal lab studies.

     It seems the paradigm shift is “now” Humans are an expendable commodity where the cost of doing business is settled through class action lawsuits to appease suffering families by compensating financially.  Also more research animals are saved, simultaneously keeping activist at bay; investors also make huge fortunes; government and private sector jobs and special interests continue to thrive and grow.

     Have we become the little white rats supporting the Off-Market Label drug trials as drug products are expedited for use in the marketplace?  And is this why our prescription drugs have a ridiculously high cost:  “Factor cost of class action lawsuits; off-label product marketing costs and FDA blind-eye policy and underwriter kickbacks to give a green light on a free pass to market.”  Are Off-Market Label drug policies breaking our healthcare systems back?  Is there anything that can be done about it?

     American greed knows no boundaries.  Those without a moral compass care only about their here and now.  Think about it.  I don’t know the entire solution in how to resolve this particular crux.  My only thought is, without moral leadership at the helm of any private, corporate, or government regulatory agency, these types of things will change little because of a corrupt soul.

     What can we the consumer do about this.  We the people “do” have the power to change consumer regulatory control.  “Vote the vermin out of government office and fill the seats with good guys.”  How do you know who the good guys are?  Simple, they have an undeniable morale leadership character and honorable past with little interest in lining their pockets (look for the money trail which is a dead giveaway).  Also, look for agenda motive and who endorses them.  Good guys also don’t seek recognition for doing the right things, it just comes to them.  And they only seek to rise higher in the leadership hierarchy to do greater good serving the people and appointing “moral good guys/gals.”  They are also responsible and accountable for their actions and to the people under which they serve.

     I’ve listed 5 of the 41 most dangerous class action lawsuit prescription drugs below.  All of these drugs have caused serious health problems for patients and even death.  The lawsuits are an indicator that even with inception of new drug products to market; this “quick product to market” approach is not going to stop anytime soon.  It has only gotten more complicated with Off-Market Labels and class action lawsuits.  As long as the FDA continues to turn a blind eye to R&D data, and class action lawsuits data statistics, etc.  Consumers will continue to experience more ill-health side effects and prescription induced “early” death through the off-label drug to market process.

     Even the fines issued by the FDA are only a slap on the wrist to hundreds of billion dollar companies.  Fines do not incentivize these companies to change the way they do business, but instead provides a “pay-per-play” drug policy which gives the appearance of our Federal government doing something about malicious business practices.  If our government really cared, they’d slap an injunction to stop distribution-to-market and remove any drug label that is deemed to have caused significant medical harm and death.  And if they were serious about consumer protection, fine these companies in a way that hurts their bottom line and require these companies to begin the R&D approval process over from start to finish.   But this won’t happen, why?  Federal regulatory agencies are in bed with these deep pocketed special interest companies and addicted to the money.

     However, it is now obvious the FDA drug approval process trust is being challenged by many consumer class action lawsuits with no end in sight.  The FDA is under a tremendous amount of pressure from the government oversight committees, consumer watch dogs and other advocates against the current drug-to-market protocols that is releasing bad drugs into the market.  If this “business as usual” approach does not change, further erosion of Obama care mandates will occur because policy will prove to be “cost unsustainable.”  And if health reform does not control the “status quo” drug approval process, these governmental policies will crumble and take our economy with it.  As to continue forward with such drug approval processes will cause irreversible harm to our health care services and economy.

 Five out of 41 Most Dangerous Drugs in Class Action Lawsuits.  See following Link: http://www.legallawhelp.com/safety_and_health/defective_drugs.html

 “Accutane:   Lawsuit 2010-09-30 – This was an approved FDA, “award winning” vitamin A derivative to treat various forms of cancer highly effective at mitigating and killing the spread of cells in the pancreas, brain and nevoid basal cell carcinoma syndrome.  There are now many problematic side-effect and deaths as a result of use.  Some of the serious side-effects include but not limited to:  Bowl disease, psychosis, hepatitis, pancreatic, myalgia, raised blood glucose, etc., And birth defect rates are extremely high when proper screening before prescription occurred.   Legal action is the result of either party(s) wrongly prescribed, or misunderstood use of, or detailed information of potential risks/brochures, or a signed consent form of understanding of pharmacist was not accomplished per prudent protocols.”  http://accutanelawsuit2010.net/

 “Vioxx and Bextra:  Approved by the FDA – A new study links certain painkillers to High Cholesterol, 13 Feb 2007.  Pain killers known as COX-2 inhibitors (Vioxx and Bextra) at the time of the study were shown to increase excess cholesterol for lack of purging it from the body.  This increased the possibilities of blood clot and stroke.  Lipid loads in the body when using this anti-arthritic pain alleviation drugs were shown to increase leading to cardiovascular issues with pain patients.”  http://vioxx.pharmaceutical-lawsuits.com/

 “Ketek:  An anti-biotic was linked to liver failure and other problems.  Originally Ketek was approved by the FDA to treat sinusitis and bronchitis.  Because of the problems it was no longer allowed for use by the FDA as originally intended.  However, in 2004 was approved to treat pneumonia outside of a hospital or nursing home.  The statements made by former physician David Ross who worked on pre-approval for FDA at Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) after 10 years stated “his superiors forced him to soften his unflattering review of the drugs.” http://www.newsinferno.com/legal-news/ketek-lawsuit-filed-in-illinois-says-sanofi-aventis-knew-of-liver-failure-side-effects/

 “Zyprexa:  Approved in 1996 and has been used for years to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.  Clinical trials have shown this drug to cause weight gain and diabetes.  The CDER is known by prominent medical clinical research professional(s) regards the pharmaceutical industry as the FDA’s(agency) main client.  Off-label marketing (specific falsities as to the side effects of a drug) for anti-psychotic drugs used to sedate nursing home patients kills approximately 15,000 a year.  However there is evidence that off-label marketing is not as strong as it use to be.  Off-label use also means that prescription drugs may be used to alleviate other symptoms or conditions but not approved for use by the FDA.”  http://www.coreynahman.com/atypical-antipsychotic-lawsuits.html

 “Rosiglitazon (Avandia):   Approved by the FDA – A type 2 diabetes drug approved for diabetes 2 use in 1999 caused some patients to have heart attacks.   Rosiglitazon is an oral anti-diabetic drug that increases insensitivity to insulin.  After patients experienced, heart problems, liver failure, weight gain, low blood sugar and fractures the FDA put out a warning on the drug.  In 2005 the Canadian Medical Association Journal reported that Rosiglitazon caused partial blindness in 7 patients.  In 2007 a press release stated women that used Avandia showed increased signs of upper arm, feet and hand fractures.  In 2009, there is “no increase” in hospitalizations or death in comparison to those taking metformin with sulfonylurea.   But there were increases in heart failure and deaths for those taking Avandia.  The drug is still in use today and some patients are beginning to file lawsuits.”  http://www.avandia-injury-lawyer.com/index.php?gclid=CKbgwZyUr6QCFQsSbAodPibP0w

 “OFF-Label Plus,”

     It appears the drug industries are now focused on “Off-Label Plus” meaning to reduce or minimize false statements, or kickback incentives that would cause serious risk to patients.  In many cases some patients that have no other choice get treated with drugs that were originally intended and approved for a completely different use “without FDA approval!”

     The individual drug companies run these off-label research programs in a research setting funded by our government and “more than it should!”  This creates quite a lengthy mess during off-label prosecutions.  Research programs are causing our government to pay for more uses of drugs than it should through numerous individual Medicaid State agencies.  This off-label product-to-market channel is creating a complicated medical lawsuit nightmare for all parties involved.

     There are literally multiple-billion dollar; multi-national Companies with millions of “Off-Label Plus” claims throughout our nation.  In lawsuits, a heavy emphasis in the decision making process appears to be “patient harm versus patient benefit.”  Another major consideration in lawsuit cases is if research and development centers, physicians and/or sales reps have mislead the public trust, or the FDA in any serious way.  While in many other cases, if the off-label process were to be put to a halt, many patients may lose their life, while at the same time many lives may be saved. http://www.policymed.com/2010/07/pharmaceutical-marketing-lawsuits-slowing-considerably.html

Recommendation:  If you are taking any prescription drugs, and especially if that drug is one of the 41 class action lawsuits drugs found at the link I’ve provided above…  Learn all you can about the drug(s) and lawsuits, talk to your doctor and determine if there are better alternatives out there.  All too often, many of us tend to continue taking the same drugs for many years without physician follow up consultation to determine if health risk outweighs the benefits of using any particular, or combination of pharmaceuticals (annual physician consultations are a “good” ideal).  And through time, health condition, prescription formulation, dosages, may require prescription change; reducing risk while increasing health benefits. 

 Moderation and medical self-advocacy and due diligence is key in optimizing health benefits while reducing health risk.  This is especially true if you consume “any” product altered, or manufactured by man! 

 Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET.  2010 Copyright, All rights reserved.  Mirror Athlete Enterprises Publishing @: www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your free eNewsletter.





Is Pancreatic Cancer on the Rise?

24 10 2009

                                MAE VIDEO – Marc Compares Swayze & Landon\’s Pancreatic Disease Deaths      Marc MAE Fitness & Pain Management Consultant               

 I  was motivated to know more about Pancreatic Cancer after the death of Patrick Swazye.  But I was most impacted in 1991 by Michael Landon’s death.  However at that point, I was in a different time and place with my life.  Instead of realizing the seriousness of this insidious death sentence, I thought “how unfair and what a loss to all that admired his work “and the person.”  I figured this was an isolated and unfortunate rare occurrence. Then the news of Patrick Swazye’s pancreatic cancer story came and went some 18 years later.  He too was someone I admired like many of you out there.  This left me to ponder… Is pancreatic cancer or cancer in general on the rise?  Is it a geographical thing?  After all, both of these actors lived in Southern California.  Is there any way to prevent, or remove this cancer from the body once it takes hold?  I had so many unanswered questions in my head at this point in time.  These two people I greatly admired for their work.  This drew upon my curiosity as a health conscious individual to know more about their lifestyles and could they have done anything differently to change their outcome?  I decided to write this piece as a two part article.  First, let’s look at these two individual’s to see if we can determine some commonalities.  In the second piece (part2), we’ll review the statistical cancer information to draw on some presumptive conclusions in answering these questions.

 Like most of you I was an avid follower of Michael Landon.  My favorite shows as a kid were Bonanza, Little House on the Prairie and Highway to Heaven series.  Michael Landon was diagnosed with Aden Carcinoma at the age of 54 on 5 April 1991 and immediately underwent chemo therapy.  His cancer had spread to his liver at first causing stomach cramps receiving his diagnosis 7 weeks later.  The cancer became inoperable due to the cancer spreading to the liver and lymph node system.  Only 1% of patients with this combination survive the full five year period.  He died in Malibu, CA on 1 July 1991.  Potential cause of cancer for this patient, heavy alcohol consumption and a four pack per day smoking habit.   I also followed many Hollywood movies that Patrick Swazye appeared in.  Three of his movies I can think of immediately, “Dirty Dancing, Next of Kin and Roadhouse.”   Swayze was diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic cancer in March 2008 and underwent chemo therapy with new experimental drugs (vatalanib/gemcitabine) to shrink the tumor by preventing the development of new blood vessels that would otherwise nourish it.   After more than a year of cancer, Swazye completed 13 episodes of the beast without pain medication.  Swayze Died, 14 Sept 2009 at the age of 57.  Since the cancer spread to his liver surgery would help him.  His life expectancy after diagnosis was 5 months.  He lived 20 months after diagnosis.  He’s a strong guy, and he’s got a great attitude,” says Ron Wise, a Cedars-Sinai spokesman, “in my experience, that has a lot to do with how things go.”  Patrick Swayze’s biggest regret was his smoking which he continued to do until his death.  Doctor’s agreed, even if he quit at the time of diagnosis would have no bearing on his outcome after diagnosis.  See part two of this article continuation, “Pancreatic Cancer Statistics and Recommendations.”

 World Wide Web References:

  1. http://abcnews.go.com/Health/PatrickSwayze/patrick-swayzes-death-shows-tough-pancreatic-cancer/story?id=8583819
  2. http://www.people.com/people/archive/article/0,,20114945,00.html)
  3. http://www.hollywoodusa.co.uk/HillsideObituaries/michaellandon.htm
  4. http://www.webmd.com/cancer/pancreatic-cancer/news/20090915/patrick-swayze-dies-of-pancreatic-cancer
  5. http://www.aol.com.au/lifestyle/story/Patrick-Swayze-Admits-His-Biggest-Regret/2042631/index.html

 Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET2009 Copyright.  All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Publishing @: http://www.mirrorathlete.com,  Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.





Medical Marijuana & Pain Relief, Scientific Support Data

19 05 2009

    Below are citations with appropriate references to give credit to those that have provided medical marijuana research data information with unique supporting and correlated data.  It appears obvious, or apparent within these controlled studies and citations, cannabis shows a unique medicinal composition with unique pain blocking properties that could replace in part, or whole other pain management prescriptions without the additional pharmaceutical health risks.  Standard prescription medications or outpatient services that ease pain, spasms and inflammation may be accomplished through medical marijuana use at a fraction of the cost.  The Compassionate Use Act, 1996 was established to provide physicians the ability to recommend chronic pain patients medical marijuana at first for cancer patients.  Through years of research science is seeing a whole range of potential use for cannabis as an alternative treatment for many types of chronic pain disease.

“Persistent and disabling pain can have numerous and sometimes multiple causes, including cancer; AIDS; sickle cell anemia; glaucoma, cancer, shingles, multiple sclerosis; defects or injuries to the back, neck and spinal cord; arthritis and other rheumatic and degenerative hip, joint and connective tissue disorders; and severe burns.  Pain is not a primary condition or injury, but rather a severe, frequently intolerable symptom that varies in frequency, duration, and severity according to the individual (Chronic Pain and Medical Marijuana, ASA PDF Brochure# 888-929-436.  See end of article for brochure details).

“A recent study conducted at University of California at Davis, 17 April 2008, 38 patients experiencing neuropathic pain from varying diseases; diabetes, spinal cord injuries, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, chronic pain, HIV/AIDS-related neuropathy, etc., were given marijuana cigarettes, some patients with zero% THC, 3.5% and 7%.  Students through each session took the same number of puffs to ensure uniformity.  Thereafter, it was determined marijuana reduced pain intensity significantly over a 5 hour period/per trial.  It should also be noted, memory tests and cognitive skills appeared to decline, but not more, or less significantly than narcotic pain killers (Complete Study, Contact MPP “Marijuana Policy Project Director of communications Bruce Mirken, 202-215-4205, or visit http://MarijuanaPolicy.org).”

“The smoking of cannabis, even long term, is not harmful to health….”  So began a 1995 editorial statement of Great Britain’s leading medical journal, The Lancet.  The long history of human use of cannabis also attests to its safety—nearly 5,000 years of documented use without a single death.”

“Substances similar to or derived from marijuana could benefit more than 97 million Americans who experience some form of pain each year (U.S. Society for Neuroscience, 1997).”

“The role that cannabis can play in treating chronic pain.  After nausea and vomiting, chronic pain was the condition cited most often to the IOM (Institute of Medicine) study team as a medicinal use for marijuana.”The study found that “basic biology indicates a role for cannabinoids [a group of compounds found in cannabis] in pain and control of movement, which is consistent with a possible therapeutic role in these areas. The evidence is relatively strong for the treatment of pain and intriguingly, although less well established, for movement disorder (Commissioned Study by the White House, by the Institute of Medicine, 1999).”

“Inhaled cannabis provides almost immediate relief with significantly fewer adverse effects than orally ingested Marinol (the only legal THC hemp extract pharmaceutical, DEA Class III authorized drug schedule prescription).  Inhalation allows the active compounds in cannabis to be absorbed into the blood stream with greater speed and efficiency. It is for this reason that inhalation is an increasingly common, and often preferable, route of administration for many medications.

“One problem with cannabinoids is that they are very fat-soluble, so that makes them very difficult to formulate the drugs into pills or injections.  One way that’s being looked at by some pharmaceutical companies is using the kind of inhaler that asthma sufferers use.” Smoking is obviously a big health hazard and scientists are looking at ways of delivering the drug to the body (ASA Americans for Safe Access, www.AmericansForSafeAccess.org).”

“Cannabis may also be more effective than Marinol because it contains many more cannabinoids than just the THC that is Marinol’s active ingredient. The additional cannabinoids may well have additional and complementary antiemetic (effective against vomiting and nausea) qualities. They have been conclusively shown to have better pain-control properties when taken in combination than THC alone (U.S. Society for Neuroscience Conclusion).”

    “The Compassionate Use Act passed in 1996 expressly provides that “chronic pain” is a condition for which physicians are authorized to recommend marijuana without threat or fear of punishment for providing a full range of treatment modalities to care for patients in pain.  However, Federal policy on medical cannabis is filled with contradictions.  Cannabis is a Schedule I drug, classified as having no medicinal value and a high potential for abuse, yet its most psychoactive component, THC, is legally available as Marinol and is listed in DEA Drug Schedule III Classification for physician prescriptions.  For those that don’t know, Class III prescriptions fall under the same legal prescribed DEA classification, such as Tylenol.  To add insult to injury an average month supply of Marinol will cost you ~$500.00.  A medical marijuana script-license provides you the right to produce and self medicate without the outrageous cost to alleviate chronic pain but has a double jeopardy possibility of imprisonment at the federal government’s discretion!  Is the government trying to figure out a way to make money by controlling a multi-billion dollar industry at the expense of suffering people in pain?  How much lower could we stoop as a nation?

    Currently, laws that effectively remove state-level criminal penalties for growing and/or possessing medical cannabis are in place in Alaska, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.  Thirty-six states have symbolic medical cannabis laws (laws that support medical cannabis but do not provide patients with legal protection under state law).  Reference,  Compassionate Use Act, 1996 – Key organizations; Drug Enforcement Administration, (DEA) Federal Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Americans For Safe Access (ASA).

“By comparison, the side effects associated with cannabis are typically mild and are classified as “low risk.” Euphoric mood changes are among the most frequent side effects. Cannabinoids can exacerbate schizophrenic psychosis in predisposed persons. Cannabinoids impede cognitive and psychomotor performance, resulting in temporary impairment. Chronic use can lead to the development of tolerance. Tachycardia and hypotension are frequently documented as adverse events in the cardiovascular system. A few cases of myocardial ischemia have been reported in young and previously healthy patients. Inhaling the smoke of cannabis cigarettes induces side effects on the respiratory system. Cannabinoids are contraindicated for patients with a history of Cardiac ischemia.  In summary, a low risk profile is evident from the literature available. Serious complications are very rare and are not usually reported during the use of cannabinoids for medical indications (Chronic Pain and Medical Marijuana, ASA PDF Brochure# 888-929-4367).”

“Institute of Medicine, “Nausea, appetite loss, pain and anxiety… All can be mitigated by marijuana… For patients, such as those with AIDS or undergoing chemotherapy, who suffer simultaneously from severe pain, nausea, and appetite loss, cannabinoid drugs might offer broad spectrum relief not found in any other single medication (Marijuana and Medicine; Assessing the Science Base, 1999).”

“Where morphine fails, marijuana may work. That’s the major finding of British research into the pain caused by nerve injuries, a pain known to be somewhat resistant to morphine and similar drugs that are the gold standard for treating just about any other kind of serious pain.  It’s known that if you injure a nerve, the morphine receptors in the spinal cord disappear and that’s probably why morphine isn’t a very effective pain killer for such conditions as shingles, people who have had an amputation or perhaps if cancer has invaded the spinal cord (Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience Report & London’s Imperial College, Andrew Rice).”

“One of marijuana’s greatest advantages as a medicine is its remarkable safety. It has little effect on major physiological functions.  There is no known case of a lethal overdose; on the basis of Animal models, the ratio of lethal to effective dose is estimated as 40,000 to 1. By comparison, the ratio is between 3 and 50 to 1 for Secobarbital and between 4 and 10 to 1 for ethanol. Marijuana is also far less addictive and far less subject to abuse than many drugs now used as muscle relaxants, hypnotics, and analgesics.

The Chief legitimate concern is the effect of smoking on the lungs. Cannabis smoke carries even more tars and other particulate matter than tobacco smoke. But the amount smoked is much less, especially in medical use.  The technology Dr. Grinspoon imagined in 1995 now exists in the form of “vaporizers,” which are widely available through stores and by mail order.   (Journal of the American Medical Association, Lancet editorial, Dr. Lester Grinspoon, 1995).”

“There is indeed great concern in the medical community about the need to find better pain relief for damaged nerves, but that progress is being made (Dr. Kenneth Mackie, an associate professor in anesthesiology and physiology at the University of Washington in Seattle).”

“The use of medical cannabis has been endorsed by numerous professional organizations, including the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Public Health Association, and the American Nurses Association. Its use is supported by such leading medical publications as The New England Journal of Medicine and the Lancet.”

    Although I’ve cited main points on pain relief through cannabis use, there is much more information with regard to the legality, use, risk and benefits of such use.  I found this brochure (referenced below) very informative where I decided it and other scientific references would be best to highlight cannabis information in a citation format.  I highly recommend you read this report in its entirety if you believe cannabis use would benefit your chronic pain problem.  Below I’ve left references for you to further your research on the topic.

Most of the citations I listed above can be found in (Chronic Pain and Medical Marijuana Brochure#888-929-4367) put out by ASA (Americans for Safe Access), Free PDF report file: http://www.safeaccessnow.org/downloads/pain_brochure.pdf.  Brochure# 888-929-4367, ASA).

You can also make inquiries by mail to: Americans for Safe Access (ASA), 1322 Webster Street, Suite 402, Oakland, California 94612.  Visit their home page for much more information on current medical marijuana use, advocacy, dispensaries, legislation, etc., at www.AmericansForSafeAccess.org, or call ASA @ 1-888-929-4367.

    Be sure to check with your state public health division laws to find out more about medical marijuana use, grow site & use rights… e.g., possible zoning grow site, use, geography restrictions, limitations, etc.   State reciprocity, card issue and federal- state law use conflicts, etc.

 Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET.  2009 Copyright, All rights reserved.  Mirror Athlete Enterprises Publishing @: www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your free eNewsletter.





What Is Dementia, Can Anything Be Done?

23 12 2008

Our family has been blessed as we’ve not know dementia.  I’ll make a slight correction to this statement.  My grandmother before she passed at 92 years of age appeared to have had signatures of some form of dementia beginning in her eighties.  Dementia is defined as a cognitive function decline beyond what might be expected as normal aging.  It is a disease that destroys brain function within various centers of the brain by way of many possibilities. Cognitive memory & brain function loss is not solely a cause and effect of Alzheimer’s disease.  Alzheimer’s is the most common and familiar form of cognitive brain function degradation loss.  This disease becomes more of a risk for those after age 60.   I wrote an earlier article on Alzheimer’s disease with strong ties to aluminum as one of the cause pathologies that put healthy brain function at risk (In Our Health Repository).      

While Alzheimer’s affects approximately 4.5 – 5 million people in the United States by gradually destroying one’s memory; fortunately, current treatment can slow down the progression and destruction of brain functionality dramatically.  Alzheimer’s is also the most common form of dementia and leading cause of death in the United States.  Those once diagnosed have an average mortality rate of 10 years.  However, there are those that beat these statistical mortality averages by living more than 20 years after being diagnosed.   Our younger population is not immune from Alzheimer’s.  Those at greatest risk for developing some form of Dementia are those 65 and older.

Dementia pathology (disease cause, progression and development), impacts the cortical and sub cortical brain function and can manifest its symptoms and disease through known and unknown cause agents.  Nutrition, diet and/or behavioral deficiencies leading to and/or influenced to cause dementia are “lightly” noted within this article.   Key pathologies and nutritional deficiencies that lead to Dementia: Alzheimer’s, Alcohol-Induced Dementia, Frontal Lobe Degeneration, Huntington’s, Hypothyroidism, Parkinson’s, Vitamin B1, B12, Folate Deficiency, Syphilis, Hypoglycemia, AIDS Dementia Complex, Severe Depression, End Stage Renal Failure, Cardiovascular Disease, etc.   It is beyond the scope of this article to list all potential Dementia cause pathologies.  Instead, awareness to possible cause pathologies and recommendations will assist you and your family in prevention, recognition, awareness and immediate attention to treatment.  There is an extensive list of pharmaceuticals that appear to slow down the progression of any one of these cause pathologies leading to dementia.  There is no cure for dementia, prevention is the best course. 

Recommendations:
1.  See Geriatric Psychiatrist-Neurologist if patient is forgetful, confused, doesn’t recognize people.
2.  If diagnosed with a form of dementia – Seek medication to slow down the progression.
3.  Dementia Prevention – Live an active mental-physical lifestyle, read books, work puzzles, get involved in community activities, services, volunteer work, etc.,  aerobic daily walking, etc.
4.  Studies show moderate (1-2 Drinks/day) consumption of beer, wine, or distilled spirits may help.
5.  Low blood pressure medications appear to have a dementia health benefit per medical studies.
6.  Mediterranean Diet – Consume plant foods (fruits and Vegetables), olive oil, cheese, yogurt, fish, poultry, no more then 1-4 eggs/week, keep total fat intake at 25%, consume less red meat.
7.  Supplement diet with a quality daily mineral-vitamin and cognitive brain complex supplement (see our Wellness Company Program).

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET.  2008 Copyright.  All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Publishing @ http://www.mirrorathlete.com,  Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.