Ayurvedic Treatment for Cancer (Herbal Oncology)
What is cancer?
Cancer is an abnormal cell growth disease that can get out of control and spread to surrounding organs and tissue. A damaged or abnormal cell can multiply and spread to surrounding cells, which can form a tumour and possibly spread to other areas of the body.
What causes cancer?
There is no one cause of cancer. Cancer has many possible causes and risk factors associated with it, and every type of cancer has varying risk factors. There are, however, several common risk factors that are associated with developing cancer:
- Genetic predisposition
- Alcohol use and obesity
- Excessive exposure to sunlight and ultraviolet light
- Damage or mutation of the cells
- Smoking or chewing tobacco
- Second hand tobacco smoke
- Lack of physical activity
- Exposure to radiation
- Carcinogens such as asbestos, radiation, exhaust fumes, tobacco, arsenic, etc.
Types of tumours
A tumour is considered cancerous or malignant if it has the potential to spread or invade nearby tissue. Abnormal cells may break off the main tumour and spread to different parts of the body via blood vessels or the lymphatic system. Malignant cells may also grow back after the surgical removal of the tumour.
Benign tumours do not spread or invade nearby tissue, and tend not to grow back after removal.
What are the symptoms of cancer?
The symptoms of cancer will vary depending on the type, and sometimes do not present until late in the disease. The symptoms can include:
- Unusual bleeding
- Skin changes
- Indigestion problems
- Trouble swallowing
- Unexplained weight loss
Ayurveda in supporting cancer treatment
Ayurveda takes a holistic approach to supporting the treatment of cancer. Different herbs are used according to the individual nature of each patient, the area of the body that is affected, and the aggravated body energies that are involved.
Ayurvedic treatments focus on strengthening the whole body and not just aiding in the treatment of the malignancy. Ayurvedic herbs may be used to promote circulation, assisting in cell rejuvenation, and improve the body’s immune system.
An important part of treatment is making sure the mind stays relaxed and free from stress. Meditation, yoga, counselling, and pranayama (controlled breathing) may be recommended as supportive measures to help decrease stress.
Ayurvedic treatment for cancer
The Ayurvedic approach to supporting the treatment of cancer may include:
- Abstaining from food and lifestyle choices that may imbalance the three fundamental energies (tridosha), vata, pitta, and kapha
- Improving digestive functions
- Using Ayurvedic treatments alongside chemotherapy or radiotherapy, or as post-surgery care
- Using Ayurvedic medicines, herbs, and tonics that may help minimise the side-effects of therapies.
Lifestyle and diet recommendations
Some dietary and lifestyle changes may be recommended during Ayurvedic treatments, which can include:
- Reducing sugar intake
- Eating plenty of whole grains, fruits, and vegetables
- Eat easily digestible food
- Avoid high-fat foods
- Avoid smoking and alcohol
- For a natural way to support the treatment of cancer, make an appointment at our clinic.
For a natural way to support the treatment of cancer, make an appointment at our clinic.
What is Panchakarma?
Panchakarma is a Sanskrit word meaning ‘five treatments’ or ‘five actions’.
Panchakarma is used to treat the root cause of a problem and aids in balancing the body’s fundamental energies (tridosha). This method may be used to help maintain overall good health as well as aid in easing disease.
It is advised to undergo Panchakarma on a seasonal basis to help improve digestion, metabolic process, and cleanse the body.
Panchakarma is made up of five steps:
Vamana (medicated vomiting)
Vamana is used to remove any of the body’s five elements (doshas) that have been impaired in the upper part of the body. An herbal emetic substance is used to induce vomiting with the purpose of eliminating impaired kapha and pitta doshas.
Virechana (medicated purgation)
Virechana is the downward elimination of impaired doshas or waste products. This treatment aims to expel impaired doshas from the stomach, small intestine, liver, and gallbladder to the gastrointestinal tract for eventual expulsion.
Vasti/Basti (medicated enema)
Basti is the main treatment used for vata disorders, however, can also be used to treat other dosha disorders as well. Many different herbs and other substances can be used to make a Basti such as milk, honey, oil, broth, salt, herbal paste, and many others.
Basti can come in two parts:
1. Niruha or Asthapan vasti – also known as a decoction or cleansing enema
2. Anuvasana or Sneha vasti – meaning ‘that which remains inside the body for a long time without causing harm’, and mostly consists of oil
Nasya Karma (nasal medication)
Nasya is a process used to clear the head and neck region by administering medications through the nostrils. This process may aid in the prevention of ear, nose, throat diseases, and may treat hair loss or greying hair. Nasya controls all the doshas of the head and may affect the senses and motor organs in the head.
What are the benefits of panchakarma?
The benefits of panchakarma include:
- Better functionality of digestive process
- Restoration and maintenance of health
- Improvement in functionality of sense organs
- Improved skin appearance
- Increased stamina
Panchakarma may aid in boosting the body’s rejuvenation process and immunity. Please contact our Melbourne clinic for more information or to set up an appointment.