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What Are the Complementary and Alternative Medicines for Cancer?

Ozone therapy is designed to starve cancer cells of oxygen molecules.
Eating a diet of fresh foods that are rich in vitamins and nutrients is a complementary treatment for cancer patients.
Article Details
  • Written By: Erin J. Hill
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 18 September 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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There are a wide variety of complementary and alternative medicines for cancer, including vitamin, ozone, and dietary therapies. These methods are often used in combination with more conventional treatments, but they are becoming more and more commonly used as a sole means for treatment. Not all medical centers offer such treatments, so patients may have to travel in order to receive them. As more studies are performed to learn of the health risks and benefits of such therapies, they may become more widely available.

One of the most popular types of complementary and alternative medicines for cancer is vitamin therapy. This usually involves vitamin C, and the premise behind this method is the idea that vitamins enhance immune function. If the immune system is working more effectively, the it can kill cancer cells much more efficiently. There are studies both for and against this method of treatment, but some proponents of this method claim that it has yielded excellent success rates.

Vitamin C therapy, or any other vitamin therapy, shouldn't be performed outside of a medical facility. Although it is hard to overdose on vitamin C, it is not recommended that patients attempt to take high doses of oral vitamin C without supervision. Injected vitamins have been show to work more effectively, and most doctors choose this method of delivery when treating patients. When use as part of complementary and alternative medicines for cancer, vitamin C therapy involves very high doses of this vitamin being injected intravenously.

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Oxygen therapy is another form of complementary alternative medicine used for cancer treatment. This can be done in a variety of ways, but sometimes hydrogen peroxide is used because it breaks down into oxygen in the bloodstream. The excess oxygen increase the body's immune function, and allows blood cells to more effectively destroy cancer cells. Ozone is another substance is often used in oxygen therapy. Both forms are injected into the body, although ozone can sometimes be inserted into the vagina or anus.

Dietary changes are also sometimes recommended as part of complementary and alternative medicines for cancer. Diets used are usually high in antioxidants and other immune-boosting substances, and low in processed foods that lack nutritional value. This method is usually not used alone, but in combination with other methods of treatment. There are also far less common methods of complementary and alternative medicines for cancer. For instance, some claim that cancer-fighting ingredients in breast milk may help shrink tumors if consumed in large enough quantities.

Patients should not treat cancer themselves using alternative therapies. These treatments require very specialized knowledge and dosages that are safe and effective enough for consumption. Every patient should speak with their health care team to determine which alternative, and conventional, treatment methods are right for them.

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