The Bioecology of Cancer

Bio-Therapeutic Support and the Value of Nutritional Support and Cellular Detoxification


Broccoli, lettuces, tomatoes, cabbage in basket

Image © Michel Marcon /

Many aspects of diagnosis and therapy are required in the management of a cancer patient. If you, or someone you know is receiving cancer treatment and nutrition is not being fully addressed, a powerful and beneficial health procedure is being ignored.

Obtaining and following an individualized nutritional program to maximize the efficiency of the body's parts is important. It is impossible to say that everyone with cancer should eat the same diet. Nutritional advice should not be disease directed but should be based on height, weight, metabolic type and history, as well as considering the present state of health and current laboratory findings.

When cancer is present, nutritional procedures should not be used instead of following the advice of the primary physician, but should be used in addition to medical recommendations. Correct nutritional suggestions do not conflict with any medical treatment. In reality, many patients find improved responses to cancer treatment when they are accompanied by proper dietary procedures.

The Metabolic Assessment Program and Bio-Therapeutic Support

Metabolic Changes in the Cancer Patient

When planning a nutritional program for the cancer patient, the following metabolic changes often caused by the cancer should be considered:

  • There is usually a negative energy balance
  • The body usually spends more energy each day than it can produce
  • There is usually a negative protein balance
  • The body burns some of its own tissue as protein and a wasting is often evident
  • The taste (food likes) and appetite usually changes and can lead to metabolic imbalances
  • Glucose production is often elevated to meet increased energy
  • The Basil Metabolic Rate (BMR) usually rises, particularly in lung cancer
  • Tumors themselves produce secretions or hormones called cachectin and TEF (tumor enhancing factors) which are very potent and have remarkable cancer promoting activity. This is why immediate surgical removal of tumors is sometimes advisable.

Another factor to be considered in planning an individualized nutrition for the cancer patient is biochemical individuality. We are not created equal – physiologically. Genetically each individual has different strengths and weaknesses. Years ago, a Canadian physiologist, Dr. Hans Selye, put forth the premise that all disease (including cancer) is caused by stress.1 Stress, from whatever direction, creates the same problems in the body whether it is nutritional stress, traumatic stress, environmental stress, emotional stress, or just the stress of overwork or various excesses.

The Bio-Therapeutic Nutritional Support program takes into consideration the strengths and weaknesses of each individual. Recommendations are made according to the individual body chemistry and not directed to the specific diagnosis. Information including age, sex, physical findings, blood chemistry testing, history, metabolic type and the efficiency of the digestive system are all considered.

Cancer and Dietary Correlations

In 1982 the National Academy of Sciences reached the conclusion that 60% of all cancers in men may be due to dietary and nutritional factors.2 About that same time a study done by Doll and Peto (British statisticians) reported that up to 70% of cancer cases have some nutritional component.2 One would think that with the publishing of statistics such as these that everyone involved in the diagnosis or treatment of cancer would be fully addressing nutrition but that has not happened.

This information has been available for more than 20 years and more recent studies show similar findings. Yet, the emphasis is still surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation with very minimal acknowledgement of the role nutrition can play in the prevention and reversal of cancer. Not only is it important to understand that what we eat can be a potential cancer producing factor, but what we do not eat can cause nutritional deficiencies leading to the initiation of cancer in the body.

Types of Cancer

It is hard to describe or discuss cancer in general terms. An oversimplified definition of cancer is that normal cells stop maturing normally and start multiplying abnormally. As malignant cells arise from any tissue, they can also move (metastasize) to any tissue in the body and use nutritional resources. When cells relocate in the body, they can also form one or more masses called tumors. Malignant cells can develop at any age, with a variation of tissue origin. Soft tumors can form in blood and immune related tissue, these include leukemias and lymphomas. And hard tumors consisting of carsinomas and sarcomas, these develop from epithelial and mesodermal cells respectively. Multistage development of cancer makes the elderly more susceptible to most cell mutations. For adolescence the most common type of cancer originates from epithelial cells and by far the most common malignancy in children is leukemia.3

Theories of the Cause of Cancer

One of the leading theories of the cause of cancer is the malfunction or mutation of the genes that regulate division and proliferation. After mutation, growth factors turn on uncontrolled cell proliferation. The genes causing cancer are involved in signal transduction, DNA repair, cell growth and differentiation, transcriptional factors, senescense and apoptosis.4

When a cell gene mutates stimulating hyperactivity, tumor formation begins by the oncogene. Oncogenes can then cause cancer. In addition, a tumor virus can lead to cancer as well. The viruses have the potential to infect RNA and DNA and may transform them into tumor cells.


Often ignored is the theory that cancer can be caused by a progressive, gradual poisoning of the body from toxins present in our air, water, soil, and foods. Toxic substances are referred to as xenobiotics. Items such as pesticides, herbicides, toxic chemicals and metals are a part of our environment. In the mid 1990s the FDA did a study called the "Food Basket Study" at six different locations. The results of the study were never published. This study showed that the average food basket in a supermarket contained residues of 60 to 70 different pesticides. There are more than 100,000 different chemicals in use daily and 25 percent of them are considered toxic.5

A toxin is an agent capable of interfering with normal metabolism. We often think of toxicity as a result from some industrial accident or industrial wastes, but toxicity can come from many sources that most of us contact daily such as prescribed or recreational drugs, drinking polluted water, the polluted air we breathe, amalgams in our teeth, cleaning compounds, and even the cosmetics we use. These toxins can be present during the formation of original cells. Under ideal circumstances (perfect health), the body detoxifies and eliminates all toxins, performing the ongoing tasks of clearing and detoxifying.

The primary organ of detoxification is the liver. Failure of the liver to clear the body of accumulating toxins, leads, at some point, to the balance shifting in favor of the toxic environment and against the living body. Thus overloaded livers and kidneys can create a toxic cellular environment creating an internal environment favoring abnormal cell reproduction as in the case of cancer.

In certain types of cancer, specific causes can be considered such as tobacco smoke (either active or passive), over-exposure to sunlight, specific industrial chemicals, etc. Consideration should be given to the fact that a breakdown of the immune system of the body allows the development of cancer. The constant fight against many virus, bacteria, and toxic elements found in the soil, water, air and food supply can exhaust an immune system.

The Two Phases of Cancer Development

The initiation phase

Perhaps a virus or something from the environment, maybe radiation, or some harsh chemical pollutant, or some harsh food additives such as nitrites, coloring agents or preservatives, react with DNA to cause a mutation and repair does not take place.

Good nutritional practices may help develop and maintain a healthy immune system, thereby preventing the initiation phase of cancer development. Identifying and avoiding environmental and food carcinogens should be a part of any cancer prevention or cancer reversal program.

Smoking is a strong initiator. Do you smoke? If you do, you are increasing your chances of developing cancer – and almost every other degenerative disease, particularly heart disease.

Do you already have cancer and still smoke? You are decreasing your chances of a recovery.

Is your cancer in remission and you still smoke? You are increasing your chances for reoccurrence.

The promotion phase

The promotion phase begins at the end of the initiation phase. Certain factors are considered promoters of cancer growth and may determine whether or not cancer will develop even after the initiation phase is complete. When a strong carcinogen is present the promotion phase is bypassed and cancer occurs.

Some examples of cancer promoters are:

A high fat diet and inefficient fat metabolism. Gall bladder problems may be the first hint that a fat metabolism problem is present. It is understood that a diet high in fats and sugars can lead to elevated cholesterol levels and that this correlates with cardiovascular disease incidence.

The drug cholestryamine is often used to lower cholesterol. It does so by increasing formation of secondary bile salts. These secondary bile salts are known carcinogens. The use of this drug to lower cholesterol is a definite cancer promoter.

Frequently used drugs lovastatin (Mevacor) and gemfibrozil (Liopid) were suggested as carcinogenic by researches at the University of California at San Francisco and reported in Science News, March 2, 1996.6 Recent research has found that individuals with low levels of LDL have an increased risk of cancer.7 A very important key factor to consider is sharp decline of LDL with the use of statins. Statins lower LDL levels by blocking a key enzyme in the liver. It has also been suggested that cancer itself has a lowering effect on LDL and when statin drugs are added the lowered LDL may affect the natural immune function against cancer cells.

Most important, individuals with abnormal fat metabolism should promptly address nutritional deficiencies to help prevent and/or reverse cancer.

Nutritionally, it is important to identify harmful fats and sugars, both obvious or hidden in the diet and to be sure that all essential fatty acids are included in the diet. It is important to be sure that the enzymes amylase and lipase needed for the proper breakdown of carbohydrates and fats are present in adequate amounts.

Excessive alcohol consumption is a definite promoter for cancer of the pharynx, larynx, esophagus, liver and pancreas.

Toxic elements found in our soil, water, air and foods can be considered promoters of cancer as well as possible causes of cancer. Pesticides and herbicides are often spoken of as "hormone impostors" and interfere with ongoing healthy cell reproduction. These items should be identified and removed from the environment of those interested in preventing and/or reversing cancer.

Identifying and removing every aspect of cancer initiators or promoters can lessen the burden on the immune system so that immune activity can be more directed toward fighting the disease. We speak of this as "getting out of harm's way!"

Nutritional Intervention when Cancer is Present

If cancer is present, there are many points during the initiation and promotional stages in which intervention with nutrition can be important. In fact, there are some nutrients that will inhibit cancer at the initiation and promotion stage, or both, by deactivating the cancer and strengthening the immune system.

Cellular detoxification is the place to start clinical intervention. One very effective system has been researched for the past twenty years by A. Morgan Kratz, PharmD of Naples, Florida. Dr. Kratz's program features the use of homeopathic forms of nutraceuticals, termed homeovitics. The effectiveness of homeopathic cellular detoxification has been validated clinically. This approach has a positive effect on the bioecology of cancer.8

Some specific examples of nutritional intervention are:

Proper intake of Vitamin D can decrease cancer risk by at least 60 percent. Safe use of vitamin D3 can help and prevent cancer.9 If a new drug would become available tomorrow to reduce cancer risk by 60 percent without harmful side effects, can you imagine the publicity that would accompany its release? Yet a simple natural vitamin with proven evidence is ignored! Vitamin D levels are simply measured using a 25-hydroxy test.

A deficiency of iodine may be a factor in the development and progress of many types of cancer.10 Levels of iodine can be measured by urine testing called the iodine loading test.

Selenium has a direct toxic effect on cancer cells. As an integral part of antioxidation enzymes, selenium may help in keeping cell balance. As in Vitamin C, thiorexin reductase catalyses its regeneration.

There is a proven correlation between the cancer incidences and areas where food is grown in soil deficient in selenium.11,12

Vitamins A, D, E, K, Selenium, CoQ10 and other natural occurring antioxidants can be very important in cancer intervention. There has been a campaign of negative publicity against the use of antioxidants and other supplements, this without mention of positive antioxidant studies and those cancer patients dying of malnutrition.

It goes without saying, more studies are necessary to separate self interest, belief and opinion from true science. Failure to have supportive evidence creates doubt and hinders benefits from adjunctive therapies that could better help those in need; that is, cancer patients.

The Center for Vitamin and Cancer Research at the University of Colorado points out that an active nutritional protocol including natural sourced antioxidants may improve oncologic outcomes and decrease toxicity.13 In 2000, a book written by Ralph W. Moss, PhD, explains how antioxidants can greatly decrease side effects of chemotherapy and radiation.14 Further news and rebuttal information regarding antioxidants and pharmaceuticals is addressed by CancerDecisions Newsletter, Nov. 20, 2005.15

Proteolytic (protein digesting enzymes) can be effective nutritional intervention.15,17,18 Highly toxic substances called nitrosamines and ammonia are produced in the intestinal tract when protein is not broken down properly in the digestive tract. These compounds are known carcinogens. Not only are proteolytic enzymes important for the breaking down of the protein in the foods we eat, they perform a scavenging function to abnormal protein present in our body. Proteolytic enzymes, released from the pancreas, travel via the blood stream to identify and destroy abnormal protein in the body (cancer and other disease cells).

High fiber content in the diet will help prevent the promotion of cancer. While fat intake seems to be the deciding factor in colon cancer development, it appears that a high fiber intake along with a high fat diet will add some protection.

Nutritional Case Management of the Cancer Patient

The following 4 phases of case management is a part of every patient's program.

The first phase is the crisis or acute phase. If a crisis situation is present, please use whatever therapy is appropriate to deal with the crisis or specific disease, and at the same time, get out of harm's way and initiate phase two immediately.

Phase 2 or cleansing phase (48 days) may overlap all phases of case management. The first 12 days of the clearing is an initial activation of eliminative organs and systems using a homeovitic formulation aimed at general clearing of vital organs followed by specific formulations designed to release cellular toxicity of chemicals, metals and viruses. A homeovitic formulation to energetically complement all phases is used. Some refer to this as energy activation. The cleansing phase creates an environment where proper nutrition and healthy lifestyles can cause health. Let me repeat: the cleansing phase creates an environment where proper nutrition and healthy lifestyles can cause health.

Rebuilding phase. Stay out of harm's way and initiate a program of nutraceutical supplements to strengthen compromised organs/systems. Herbals, vitamins, minerals, glandulars, etc., are suggested as appropriate nutraceuticals. The cleansing phase and rebuilding phases sometimes overlap. If the cleansing causes abnormal cells to be dumped, we want to be sure the right nutrients and raw materials are present so that healthy cell formation can happen.

Prevention. Stay out of harm's way, keeping both your internal and external environments clean. Practice proper nutrition. Make necessary lifestyle changes. If the internal clearing and detoxification was not adequate we might use a simple followup program. Continue with appropriate natural products.

Nutraceuticals (Vitamins, Enzymes, etc.)

Often the question is asked, can't I get everything I need from what I eat? And the answer is, yes you can, if you eat the 100% ideal diet and the body that receives it is working at 100% efficiency!

In most cases, just changing one's eating habits will not be enough to meet the increased nutritional demands of cancer. Nutraceuticals (nutritional supplements) are a very important part of treatment protocols and can help correct metabolic imbalances.

The Bio-Therapeutic Nutritional Support program uses nutraceuticals to accomplish three things:

Substitution. If your body is not producing something in the amount or strength that it should, a supplement can substitute. Example – if the stomach is not producing enough HCl, it can be given by capsule or as a liquid. Or, if the pancreas cannot produce proteolytic enzymes in the amounts needed to break down abnormal cells as a result of cancer proliferation, taking enzymes may be called for.

Stimulation. When stresses from the environment have exhausted various systems of the body, nutraceuticals can be used to stimulate or "boost" an organ or process. Example – Vitamin B12 or other B vitamins can stimulate or "boost" liver function.

Support. A food supplement can be used as "concentrated food" to meet the increased nutritional demand created by a disease or illness. It can also help meet the increased need to rebuild a damaged organ, or to support a particular organ under stress. However, it is important to understand that a food supplement, no matter how effective, cannot replace the need for healthy food intake.

Glandular (Protomorphogen) Supplementation

Glandular concentrates are an important component of a complete nutritional program. These substances provide both immediate help as well as long-term benefits, and are particularly useful in the Bio-Therapeutic Nutritional Support program.

The efficacy of glandulars is generally recognized, but all too often overlooked in contemporary (usual and customary) medical practice. Most glandular supplements available are from the glands of organs of beef or pork. Ovine (sheep) glandulars show superior biological activity and should be used. Include organic sources of glandulars. Animals raised in New Zealand are considered the highest quality available.

Glandulars (protomorphogens) are used nutritionally for the following three principle reasons:

Active components: These are the biochemical substances peculiar to the glandular tissue being administered. The effect of the biochemical compound often is one of "substituting" an exogenous (outside) source to make up for the endogenous (within) deficiency.

Associated nutritional factors: There are a multitude of nutrients naturally present in tissue, including vitamins, minerals, amino acids, fatty acids, polypeptides, enzymes, etc.

Adaptogenic effect. This is the "support" role. We know that for a tissue cell to repair or replace itself, it must have the raw materials necessary. "Like supplies like" is the concept here.


Many aspects of diagnosis and therapy are required in the management of a cancer patient. If you, or someone you know, is receiving cancer treatment and nutrition is not being fully addressed, a powerful and beneficial health procedure is being ignored.

When cancer is present, nutritional procedures should be considered in addition to those outlined by the primary care physician. Correct nutritional suggestions do not conflict with any treatment whether alternative or orthodox. In fact, the nutritional needs of the person receiving drugs, surgery, chemotherapy or radiation are increased, not decreased. In reality, patients find improved responses to these treatments when a good nutritional base is present.


1. Hans Selye, PhD, International Center for Nutritional Research (since 1981). International Institute of Stress, University of Montreal, Quebec CA.

2. Journal of the National Cancer Institute 1981, Jan; 66(6):1191-308.

3. Cancer Incidence and Survival among children and adolescents: United States SEER program 1975-1995, 1999, Bethesda, MD, National Cancer Institute, SEER Program. NIH Pub. No.99-4649.

4. Deveraux TR, Risinger JI, Barrett JC: Mutations & altered expression of the human cancer genes, IARC Sci Publ 146:19, 1999.

5. CFSN/Office of Food Safety, April 2001, updated July 2008. Total Diet Study, Analytical Results.

6. James S. Gordon, MD and Sharon Curtin, Comprehensive Cancer Care, Perseus Publishing, ISBN 0-7382-0486-2, 2001, page 25.

7. Alsheikh-Ali AA, Trikalinos TA, Kent DM, Karas RH. Statins, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and risk of cancer. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2008; DOI: 10.1016/j.jacc.2008.06.037.

8. Janice Zoeller, Is Disease Caused by Toxins, published in The American Druggist, November, 1996, reporting a presentation made by Jack O. Taylor, MS, DC, DACBN and Gregory Ellis, PhD, at the 98th NARD convention, 1996.

9. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 85, No. 6, 1586-1591, June 2007

10. Stoddard II FR, Brooks AD, Eskin BA, Johannes GJ. Iodine Alters Gene Expression in the MCF7 Breast Cancer Cell Line: Evidence for an Anti-Estrogen Effect of Iodine. Int J Med Sci 2008; 5:189-196.

11. Yu MW, Horng IS, Hsu KH, Chiang YC, Liaw YF, Chen CJ. Plasma selenium levels and risk of hepatocellular carcinoma among men with chronic hepatitis virus infection. Am J Epidemiol. 1999;150(4):367-374.

12. Ip C. Lessons from basic research in selenium and cancer prevention. J Nutr. 1998;128 (11):1845-1854.

13. Prasad KN. Multiple dietary antioxidants enhance the efficacy of standard and experimental cancer therapies and decrease their toxicity. Integr Cancer Ther. 2004 Dec;3 (4):310-22. Review. PMID: 15523102

14. Ralph Moss, Antioxidants Against Cancer, ISBN: 1881025284

15. The Moss Reports,

16. An Alternative Medicine Definitive Guide to Cancer, Future Medicine Publishing, Tribune, CA, 1997, following references: Michael B. Schecter, MD, Enzymes that 'eat' cancer, page 375, William Donald Kelley, DDS, page 777, Jack O. Taylor, MS, DC, DACBN, pages 468 and 473-474.

17. Beard, J: "The Action of Trypsin..." Br Med J 4, 140-41, 1906.

18. Beard, J: "The Enzyme Treatment of Cancer" London: Chatto and Windus, 1911. Cutfield, A:"Trypsin Treatment in Malignant Disease" Br Med J 5, 525, 1907.To r1. ©2010

About the Author

Jack Taylor

Jack O. Taylor, MS, DC, DACBN, has developed a program for nutritional support to prevent disease and address and reverse degenerative diseases including cancer. An individualized Nutritional Assessment and Chemical Analysis is performed for each patient to determine an appropriate program.

See his Biotor web site for more information.Read more