Though the current studies do not include mesothelioma patients, a group of researchers around the world are embarking on an investigational series aimed at ‘rethinking human diets for cancer.’ In what one researcher has referred to as “the holy grail,” scientists are trying to find “something that cancer cells are uniquely dependent on,” and “by depriving them of that resource it makes them more vulnerable to things that we already use to treat patients.” The research is being spurred by a number of recent findings about chemotherapy drugs that are currently in use and which have proven disappointing in their effectiveness. A close study of each of these drugs has shown that taking them has led to reactions that have diminished their effectiveness, and that these reactions might be offset by a change in diet.
Among the group looking into how different types of cancer medications are affected by diet is oncologist and author Siddhartha Mukherjee, who wrote the Pulitzer-prize winning book The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer. Mukherjee points out that investigations have revealed that a high-fat, low carbohydrate diet known as the ketogenic diet has already been shown to slow the growth of lymphoma and endometrial cancer tumors by offsetting the destabilizing effect that its chemotherapy treatment, Aliqopa, has on the body’s insulin production. “Physiologically we’re discovering that not every calorie is equal,” he said. “You could have two different diets, equal in terms of energy, but with two very different effects on the cancer.”
These studies may point to significant advancements in the treatment of mesothelioma. If you or someone you love has been impacted by this asbestos-related disease and you need information or guidance on your rights, contact us at 1-800-966-2244.