Mindy: Though Tom’s surgery was very successful, nine of the 21 lymph nodes removed for testing during surgery contained malignant cells. For this reason Tom choose a six month course of chemotherapy to prevent the possibility of metastasis from any of the lymph nodes not removed in the surgery.
Tom: Traditional allopathic treatments for cancer focus on surgery, chemotherapy and radiation, but they offer nothing to support the cancer patient’s immune system or physical body. Some 40% of cancer patients die not from cancer but from the starvation that results from a loss of appetite and the lack of proper nutrition. And because chemo and radiation attack both cancerous and healthy cells, these treatments seriously weaken the patient’s immune system, so many other patients die from opportunistic infections that a strong immune system would have prevented.
Mindy: With these things in mind, Tom went to get advice from a Naturopathic Physician at Namaste Health Center in Durango, a clinic well versed in Cancer treatment and recovery. At the end of June 2014, Tom began a very disciplined regimen changing to a ketogenic diet (high fat, adequate protein and low carbohydrates) supported by systemic and digestive enzymes, vitamins and supplements. He also began weekly intravenous infusions of high dose vitamin C, R-Alpha Lipoic Acid and B vitamins and nutritional supplements to help those medicines be most effective.
Tom: In addition to a proper diet and supplements, it is also important to do aerobic exercise because tumor cells do NOT thrive in an oxygen rich environmnet. With that in mind at the end of June two months into the six month Chemotherapy regimen, we decided to hike up to Ice Lakes just outside of Silverton. We had hoped to make the climb all the way up to Ice Lake at 12,257 feet. It is a very steep hike beginning at 9,850 feet. As we climbed the steepness became very daunting, but we pressed on. And when my body didn’t think it could go further I pushed myself up to the lower basin at 11,600. So we had a great aerobic climb of almost 1800 feet! We didn’t get to Ice Lake, but I got to feel the exhilaration of climbing and being in an incredibly beautiful place with my sweetheart. Sharing such beautiful experiences is one of the rewards of loving and being loved. And the love and care given to my body gave me physical stamina not often seen in people undergoing Chemo.
“To fully thrive, we must not only eliminate the stressors but also actively seek joyful, loving, fulfilling lives that stimulate growth processes.” (Dr. Bruce H. Lipton) So love is good for your health, and fear and stress are bad for it. Fear and stress put the body into the fight, flight or freeze mode where blood flow is diverted away from digestion and your internal organs and into your body’s extremities.
Mindy: In early August, Tom began to experience such severe swelling in his left arm that he could barely bend his arm enough to touch his face. We went to the emergency room, where an ultrasound discovered that he had a clot in a vein in his left forearm and another in his left Jugular vein. He was given a shot of a liquid blood thinner and a prescription for another six syringes of the same.
A few days later we had already committed to be volunteers to help our local public radio station with a music concert in one of Durango’s public parks. We were making an effort to continue enjoying life by participating in Community events. Tom’s sister was visiting and she had also agreed to join us as a volunteer. On the day of the concert we weren’t sure if Tom would be physically able to work as a volunteer, but in his usual energetic way, he worked through his three hour shift with me and then all three of us enjoyed the remainder of the concert dancing on the grass in front of the bandstand.
Tom: This was one of the most significant problems that I experienced during my six months of Chemo. My mainstream Oncologist wanted me to take Warfarin (rat poison) to thin my blood to prevent further clots and perhaps to help these two clots dissolve. My Naturopath prescribed Vascuzyme, a supplement which contains nattokinase that is a natural blood thinner and does not poison the body. I chose the latter because the former requires weekly monitoring and in my view was much more dangerous. I was also able to use one of my Energy Medicine protocols to help my body absorb the clots.
It is unfortunately that the expense for most of what I have to do to stay healthy now that I have finished Chemo is NOT covered by Medicare or by my Medicare Supplement provider. This is not an uncommon experience for cancer patients in this country, because Medicare is set up to pay primarily for surgery (and an associated hospital stay), chemotherapy and radiation and anything that might happen along the way – like infections and blood clots – both of which I had to deal with. It also pays for periodic blood tests and imaging like ultrasound, CT and PET scans. Anything else – like proper nutrition and critical supplements – are considered by Mainstream medicine to be unnecessary. There is nothing in their regimen to directly support the immune system or to assure proper nutrition.