Tuesday, September 18, 2007

German Wurzburg Cancer Trial Showing Real Promise With Ketogenic Diet

Schmidt and Kammerer using a high-fat, low-carb diet plan to treat cancer

How appropriate was it that I wrote a blog post a few months back entitled "A Dietary Defense For Defeating Cancer". With brain cancer, pancreatic cancer, esophageal cancer, kidney cancer, breast cancer, and prostate cancer all intricately linked to a high-carb diet, why hasn't the idea of livin' la vida low-carb as a treatment option for cancer patients even been considered within mainstream medical circles?

Well, now it has and with truly stunning results!

This Time Magazine article (which was e-mailed to me by about a hundred people--AFTER I had already seen it! THANKS everyone!) details the use of a high-fat, ketogenic (very low-carb) diet on cancer victims to see what impact it would have on their condition. The findings of the researchers has the entire world buzzing about the health BENEFITS of the low-carb lifestyle yet again--and it's about time!

In the article entitled "Can A High-Fat Diet Beat Cancer?" (although I'm not sure what that big double cheeseburger at the top of this story has ANYTHING at all to do with a high-fat, low-carb diet--that bad boy is MUCH higher in carbs from that big ole bun!), researchers Dr. Melanie Schmidt and Ulrike Kammerer, both from the University of Wurzburg in Germany, have been implementing the use of a high-fat, low-carb ketogenic diet on the most dire of cancer patients who have run out of treatment options since the beginning of the year. Without the use of any medications, they simply require the participants to slash their carbs and eat more fat.

By getting rid of virtually all the carbs in their diet, especially sugar which feeds cancer cells, the researchers replace that energy with healthy fat sources including hempseed and linseed oils, soy-based proteins, and animal fats and proteins. It's a supercharged version of the Atkins diet and more closely resembles the original low-carb diet plan from the late great Dr. Robert C. Atkins released back in 1972.

But, according to the story, this high-fat, low-carb treatment goes back much further than Dr. Atkins to 1924 when a German Nobel Prize winning scientist named Otto Warburg put forth what would be known as the "Warburg hypothesis" which concluded in the words of Warburg that "the prime cause of cancer is the replacement of the respiration of oxygen in normal body cells by a fermentation of sugar."

Did you catch that? Warburg said EIGHTY YEARS AGO that cancer THRIVES where sugar resides. So, the thinking goes like this: remove the sugar (and the carbohydrates that turn to sugar in the body) and replace it with fat, then the cancer cells will die. It was a BRILLIANT hypothesis that was lauded among the scientists and health advocates of his day, but somehow it has been forgotten by many in our modern culture who would rather sweep such forward-thinking methods for cancer treatment like this under the rug.

Not for Dr. Schmidt and Kammerer, though.

They've taken Warburg's lifetime of work and run with it in 2007. By removing sugar from the diet of cancer patients, can they stop the spread of cancer before it is too late? The whole world is watching with hopeful anticipation that this could be exactly what is needed to bring cancer under control.

Modern-day advocates of a high-fat, low-carb diet such as Dr. Larry McCleary, Gary Taubes, Dr. Barry Groves, Dr. Jay Wortman, Dr. Jonny Bowden, and Anthony Colpo, among many others have all laid the basic groundwork for furthering the theory that this method of eating is not just some "fad" diet for mere weight loss, but rather the optimal nutritional approach for living as healthy as you possibly can. And the concerns that people have about a high-fat diet are unfounded as long as you combine that high-fat diet with a low-carb one as these German researchers are doing with the ketogenic diet being used on the cancer patients.

This experiment has been dubbed "The Wurzburg trial" and is underwritten by a German food company named Tavartis which seems to stock a line-up of high-protein, low-carb products. So begins this journey to cancer-free living for some who have lost all hope when chemotherapy and other treatments failed them. It's not a certainty, but it is another option that many are not even told about.

Painful and arduous cancer treatments such as surgery, radiation, hyperthermia and autohemotherapy are so aggressive and potentially life-threatening that a more natural and quite possibly MUCH MORE EFFECTIVE treatment like a ketogenic diet could be a welcoming prospect for those who are dealing with this most dreaded of diseases to afflict the human body.

Sadly, Schmidt said a few of the cancer patients who attempted to eat a sugar-free diet couldn't handle not being able to drink sodas and eat chocolate. Um, hello? Have you never heard of DIET soda and sugar-free, low-carb chocolates like ChocoPerfection bars? You don't have to give these things up, you simply replace the sugary ones with a healthier version instead. And for a chance to live much longer than you expected, isn't it worth making a small sacrifice like giving up sugar to make that happen? This goes beyond my ability to comprehend.

By the end of the three-month study, the researchers were able to see five patients survive the high-fat, low-carb cancer treatment with INCREDIBLE RESULTS!

Here's what happened to them:

- They all remained alive and the cancer did not overtake them
- Their illness remained stable or even improved
- The tumors in their body grew slower, stopped, or even shrunk

AMAZING! And these improvements didn't go without fanfare within the lab where this was happening either. Kammerer said it was nothing but "positive reactions and an increased interest" in how this high-fat, low-carb diet was doing what it was doing. She is cautiously optimistic, though, since it was not a resounding success with all the patients. But it is an excellent first step in figuring out what methodology for treating cancer should be considered in the future.

Be sure to read about the other studies that have been conducted on cancer patients placed on a ketogenic diet in the Time Magazine story, including comments from Dr. Thomas Seyfried who is a champion of the high-fat, low-carb approach to treating cancer. He states in the story that the reason more clinical studies like this haven't been conducted is because of the close ties that the medical establishment has to the pharmaceutical industry which would lose BILLIONS annually if an all-natural cancer treatment were promoted. Shhhhhhhh! They don't want anyone to know that! OOOPS!

The Wurzburg trial is only the first of many studies that are coming down the pipeline. There's one happening in The Netherlands right now and another one in Germany slated to begin next month. While expectations are high, they are all being careful about proclaiming this ketogenic treatment option as the be-all, end-all for treating cancer.

Just like with weight loss, a high-fat, low-carb diet isn't for everyone. It's all a matter of how the individual will respond to such a diet and at the stage of cancer that they have. If a ketogenic strategy can be implemented early enough, then perhaps there is greater hope for those individuals. Rather than waiting to start livin' la vida low-carb until a LAST resort when nothing else has worked, why not try making it your FIRST option for getting the cancer under control before it can spread? That certainly seems to make sense to me.

And let's not forget all the health complications of eating a high-carb diet, including high blood pressure, insulin resistance, lower HDL cholesterol and high triglycerides, the onset of Alzheimer's disease, diabetes, and negligible weight loss. Why would you want to go through all of THAT whether you have cancer or not? How about avoiding these by going ahead and implementing a delicious and healthy low-carb lifestyle TODAY so you'll arm yourself for whatever ailments may come your way? Makes a whole lotta sense to me!

You can e-mail Ulrike Kammerer about her remarkable study at Be sure to THANK her for sharing this research with the world and encourage her to continue looking at ketogenic diets in the treatment of cancer.

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Blogger Science4u1959 said...

Wonderful, isn't it? It's exactly like prof. Yudkin said may years ago: "Fat is the most valuable food known to man".

I wonder what Ornish has to say about this :D

9/19/2007 8:08 AM  
Blogger melodiegale said...

Great article. Better yet, how about using a low carb diet to prevent cancer all together.

9/19/2007 9:33 AM  
Blogger Jimmy Moore said...

My conclusion EXACTLY, Melodie! :D

9/19/2007 9:44 AM  
Blogger Orvette said...


I'm puzzled about why the study by Dr. Thomas Seyfried didn't show improvement with the unlimited low carb diet? I enjoy not having to count calories doing Atkins and was bummed to see such a big difference between the diet that was restricted in calories and the one that was not. What are your thoughts on that question from what you've read?

9/19/2007 10:07 AM  
Blogger Jimmy Moore said...

THANKS for sharing Orvette!

Dr. Seyfried said:

"While the impact of the calorically restricted diet on brain cancer is significant, there is still much we don't know on the molecular mechanisms of action."

Dr. Seyfried admitted that they're still trying to figure out what works, so I wouldn't get too worked up about his study results necessarily.

He did say this when I wrote to him:

"The phenomenon basically involves a complex series of metabolic transitions following reductions glucose and elevations in ketones. Ketogenic diets simply provide somewhat more circulating ketone bodies."

And it's these ketone bodies that keep you healthy as so many have shown in their own clinical practice and research (see the links provided for Dr. Larry McCleary especially regarding brain health).

Again, I wouldn't make any hasty decisions or get upset over the results of one study. The main point is that there are improvements being made with those who restrict their carbs and increase their fat.

There's NOTHING healthy about a high-carb diet. NOTHING!

THANKS for sharing your comments, Orvette!

9/19/2007 10:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Jimmy,

This is definitely a great article for those searching for that perfect diet plan plus to treat cancer, now that's a bonus!

Thanks for sharing, my friend :)

9/19/2007 12:09 PM  
Blogger Orvette said...

Thanks Jimmy -- I'm a believer when it comes to eating low carb for health and weight management, no doubts there! I was just wondering if I needed to also be concerned about calories. I guess I'll just eat until satisfied and try not to stuff myself! That seems pretty reasonable after all...

Great articles, Jimmy, keep 'em coming!

9/19/2007 1:47 PM  
Blogger Jimmy Moore said...

Calories naturally control themselves when you eat a high-fat, low-carb diet, so it's not a worry for me personally, Orvette! THANKS!

9/19/2007 2:36 PM  
Blogger jsue4444 said...

A wonderful article, but I must post a caution about some soy products. For those of us with breast cancer who are estrogen receptor positive, we need to be alerted to some soy supplements which may give too high a dose of estrogens. See:

9/20/2007 11:24 PM  
Blogger Jimmy Moore said...

I agree about soy, Sue! THANKS for sharing this info.

9/20/2007 11:31 PM  
Blogger Markus said...

Has this study been published in a medical journal or is there only the article in Time at the moment?

9/26/2007 6:51 AM  
Blogger Jimmy Moore said...

It's still an ongoing study, Markus! Publication is imminent. THANKS!

9/26/2007 9:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"By getting rid of virtually all the carbs in their diet, especially sugar which feeds cancer cells"

It's not just sugar that feeds cancer, but glucose. So essentially all carbs would contribute.

Also I fail to see how hempseed and linseed oils are healthy. I'd like to see a study done where they leave these and the soy, along with any other synthetic foods out.

10/14/2008 3:44 PM  

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