What Are the Benefits of Naturopathy for Cancer?

Laura M. Sands

Among the benefits of naturopathy for cancer are a healthy diet and lifestyle, as well as boosting the body’s natural immune system. Naturopathic treatments such as acupuncture also help relieve pain and some of the nausea sometimes experienced during traditional cancer therapies. Other modalities, such as yoga and meditation, may help reduce feelings of stress and anxiety often felt when undergoing treatment to fight cancer. Individuals who have used naturopathy for cancer also maintain that activities like yoga help in building physical and mental strength. In addition to using naturopathy for cancer treatment, many believe that it can be used to actually prevent certain types of cancer, although that has not yet been scientifically proven.

Naturopathy involves eating a healthy diet of fresh fruits and vegetables.
Naturopathy involves eating a healthy diet of fresh fruits and vegetables.

While treating cancer with conventional methods such as chemotherapy and radiation, many people report feeling side effects such as constipation, fatigue and insomnia. When using naturopathy for cancer along with conventional treatments, however, some of these symptoms can be significantly reduced. This may be because naturopathic medicine helps strengthen the body’s functioning through healthy exercise, a healthy diet and natural stress reduction.

Exercises like yoga may help to reduce stress and anxiety associated with cancer and cancer treatments.
Exercises like yoga may help to reduce stress and anxiety associated with cancer and cancer treatments.

Trained naturopaths work with cancer patients and other professionals involved in the patient’s treatment to make dietary and lifestyle adjustments. Vitamins, minerals and herbs are used to supplement the diet in an effort to stimulate healing and healthy cellular regeneration. Naturopathic practitioners also counsel and guide patients in treating other illnesses that may be present along with cancer.

Experts in the treatment of cancer maintain that using naturopathy can be of some benefit in relieving symptoms and reducing the presence of secondary illnesses. Doctors and experts warn, however, that naturopathic medicine should never be relied upon as a primary treatment method for cancer. Healthcare providers always advise that individuals who are interested in naturopathy for cancer only seek help from a qualified naturopathic practitioner and that a medical doctor be made aware of all naturopathic treatments used in order to properly monitor a patient’s health while engaging in complementary medicine.

As naturopathy focuses largely on healthy lifestyle changes, there are some who believe that one of the primary benefits of learning about naturopathy for cancer is in learning how to prevent certain types of cancers, such as breast cancer. Some researchers have suggested that women in high-risk categories for breast cancer who use herbs and other plant-based foods may reduce their risk of developing breast cancer. Other disorders caused by hormonal imbalances, such as menstrual pain and premenstrual symptoms, may also be reduced by the use of naturopathic remedies.

Some women in high-risk categories for breast cancer who use herbs and other plant-based foods may reduce their risk of developing breast cancer.
Some women in high-risk categories for breast cancer who use herbs and other plant-based foods may reduce their risk of developing breast cancer.

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