Anticancer: A New Way of Life
By David Serban-Schreiber
To help people live better with cancer, we donate $1,000 to the American Cancer Society every month.
I found that taking control of my wellness through my diet was a very important part of taking control of my treatment. The Anticancer book by Dr. Schreiber was very helpful in this process.
About Anticancer: A New Way of Life
Author David-Servan Schreiber will show you how, through simple alterations in diet, lifestyle and attitude, you can tackle cancer alongside conventional treatments. This is a practical, insightful and individual guide that will allow you to make the best choices for your own health and well-being.
David Servan-Schreiber, M.D., Ph.D, is a clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and cofounder of the Centre for Integrative Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Centre. He has lectured at leading international academic centres, including Stanford, Columbia, Cornell and Cambridge Universities.
A very informative read.What he says makes sense and corroborates what Michael Pollan says in his In Defence of Food and Food Rules. I am sure if we took more notice of what Dr Schreiber advocates we would all enjoy a far more healthy life. The book is not only interesting but written in words that the ordinary person can understand. It is a book I keep for ready reference.
I work in Nutrition and support people with Cancer and this is probably just one of a handful of books I recommend to patients and their families. Well written, excellent scientific support and good personal input from the Author. Too many health / Cancer books put the fear of God into patients and create additional stress and anxiety; whilst this one provides good, honest information and support. The pull out mini booklet is a useful bonus.
This is one of the best books I have read in a long time, even though the title sounds a little tedious. Firstly, Dr Servan-Schreiber is a research psychiatrist, so is in the medical profession himself; by chance, he discovered he had a brain tumour. He took the traditional route of surgery followed by radiotherapy/chemotherapy and recovered. Later on, he relapsed and devoted his time to finding out why. Bear in mind, he has access to published research that most complementary and alternative therapists don't. Essentially, autopsies done on Asians show that they have just as many micro tumours as Westerners do. But they just don't develop into cancer. There are three main things which affect our chances of cancer gaining a hold: diet, exercise and stress. Dr Servan-Schreiber stresses we should take the best that medicine has to offer us and -at the same time - take responsibility for how we live our lives. Certain foods are shown to have amazing effects, especially green tea and turmeric. Organic is best, but even if it is not available, if we eat the right foods, exercise moderately and learn to manage stress properly, this is enough to manage the "terrain" so the seeds of cancer cannot take root. I have had treatment for a large brain tumour in the last 6 months, and this book reassures me that I can continue living without a relapse. Dr Servan-Schreiber has now done so for many years, so it can be done. I found this book to be so inspiring and informative (and not anti-conventional treatment, as so many of these books are), that I bought a copy for my oncologist. I might well buy another one for my local doctors' surgery as well. It's a message that needs spreading.
When I was given the diagnosis of breast cancer last year, I shrank from 'researching' my condition on the internet, as that seemed to be too 'intellectual' and brain-based, and also I realised there would be an avalanche of information and opinion out there - too much for me to process. I wanted to nourish my emotional self and find out more about my body - what I could do to help myself get well. Someone who had gone through the same as me a year or so before told me about this book, and I bought it. I found it immensely helpful. Here we have a doctor, born and raised in France but working as a researcher in the United States, inadvertently discovering his own brain tumour and shocked to realise he is not treated as a doctor but as the totally passive recipient of a process of surgery, drugs, chemotherapy, etc. When he asked what he could do to help his condition, he was told there was nothing he could do. With his French/European cultural basis, this seemed to him to be quite wrong and he set out to research everything he could find about how his own choices and actions might improve his chances and his quality of life. The book is therefore a humane and brave personal statement as well as a useful and highly informed guide to nutrition and self-care, and timely in its rejection of a passive or victim-like reaction to the diagnosis of cancer. It tackles full on the culture in which the food industry takes no responsibility for our health, and the medical/drugs industry takes no notice of nutrition as a means to acquire or maintain health. With the help of this book I have changed my diet, kept up my morale, improved my daily life, and refused to be medicalised since my successful surgery. I am not a Luddite against medicines when they are needed, but I am deeply sceptical of a colossally powerful industry in which each pharmaceutical remedy has side-effects which then require further remedies, and each toxic treatment produces more and more horrible and debilitating side-effects. The author gives a comprehensive reference section, including the famous 'China Syndrome' study and in fact I gave my first copy to my surgeon - I am not sure he read it, but it was my opportunity to try to change the working of the great panjandrum of modern medicine, which has become a 'sickness' service rather than a health service. So far, I am well and would not have done anything different if I was in the same position again. For me, this book is an uplifting guide to anyone seeking an intelligent response to the dreaded diagnosis. I see it received a very good review from the Daily Mail when it was first published. It's all too easy to become part of the great sausage-machine of cancer treatment - 'cut, burn and poison' they call it (surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy). Meanwhile, our bodies are totally miraculous in their ability to self-regulate and heal - and anything we can do to understand what we can do to help is a good thing. As an example: We have a diet high in dairy foods - and we are the only animal which continues to eat milk or milk products after infancy and using milk from other species, particularly cows. As a breast-cancer patient, for me, this relationship with milk has taken on a new focus. If you are eating beef or dairy products from cows fed on corn or soya instead of grass, you should know that their bodies are severely stressed on that (for them) un-natural diet, so their balance of omega-3, 6, 9 etc is wrong, and we are therefore taking in a food which is out of balance too. You can avoid that by eating only grass-fed beef products, or changing to (say) goats' milk because the farm diet of goats is less stressful to them, or avoiding beef and cow-dairy products. The author writes lyrically about how cows were/are raised in his native Normandy - something I have seen for myself, where the animals are treated with respect and affection, and the milk, butter and cheeses produced there are works of art as much as anything else, in the artisan food sector. I really do recommend this book. I have bought a new copy for myself and use it for browsing and for self-renewal. It has helped me out of any kind of victim-state I might have fallen into. People remarked on how resilient I was in my response to the diagnosis and treatment I had, and how well I look. This book is in large part responsible. It showed me how I could take a really active part in my own recovery, and gave me confidence when going to see my doctors and questioning them about their recommended treatments.