Thursday, 17 March 2016

Nutrition, renal carcinoma, and kidney health

I flew to Yellowknife last Friday March 11 and met with Dr Nicole Redvers at the Gaia Clinic. Nicole is an excellent naturopath. Nicole had saved Sandra's life in the past so it only made sense that she could advise me on what natural remedies and nutrition would tackle my renal carcinoma, as well as advising on how to make my one remaining kidney healthier. Details on that discussion will appear in the next blog.

Then on Saturday Lynn organized a kidney goodbye party brunch. Derrick was there too of course, and their friends David C and Candice. We toasted (well, baconed and pancaked actually) the demise of my cancer-ridden left kidney. Sunday followed with our weekly worship, lunch at the Red Apple, and Yvonne's usually scrumptious supper at the Pikes where we talked until nearly midnight. 

On Monday I went to Vixen Hair Den for a long awaited haircut. There Aileen gave her opinion that all that was wrong with my one remaining kidney, which is doing so poorly that it now falls into the "chronic kidney disease" category, is that my poor kidney is missing its now long gone twin. It is moping and unhappy about its new lonely life.

 On Tuesday, March 15 I met with Lorie Crawford, an experienced Holistic Nutritionist, for further advice on how to use proper nutrition to help my malfunctioning solitary kidney. I will be receiving considerable followup information from her by email, including recommended recipes. This interesting nutrition info will be in my next blog as well.

The definition of chronic kidney disease is when the ability of the kidney to filter blood decreases according to the glomerular filtration rate (GFR). It seems that the GFR does not depend upon whether I have a solitary kidney or two kidneys. Apparently my kidney function was normal back in September 2014. However, now the GFR is 38 whereas the normal value for a healthy kidney is >60.  However, this level is not yet serious, but is of some concern.

When kidney function is abnormal nutrition becomes very important. For example, animal protein in the diet causes more problems regarding waste elimination capability than vegetable protein. And red meat is much more difficult than white meat such as chicken or turkey. Fish is the best meat choice.

On Wednesday, early in the morning of March 16 I visited my friend Anson who works as an air traffic controller at the Yellowknife airport. He gave me a tour of how all their systems work. That made me excited about flying again. I presently hold a VFR Private Pilot license with a Night Rating. But I haven't flown as pilot in command for several years. I have resolved to publish a New York Times bestseller so that I have the money to buy a Cessna Citation jet, or a high performance turboprop aircraft!! Now I have to get back to writing writing writing! At 10:30 I flew back home to Inuvik. One short hop in a Boeing 737 from Yellowknife to Norman Wells, then another shorter hop from Norman Wells to Inuvik, arriving at 13:00. Then a nice winter's nap in the afternoon.

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

Cancer Healing - more on the nutrition connection

During the past two weeks I have been busy addressing anxiety and depression that comes along with a life threatening disease such as cancer. One very useful technique is known as Tapping EFT, where EFT stands for Emotional Freedom Techniques, and the physical tapping technique offers relief for various physical, emotional and personal performance issues (for example see Since I have suffered from depression since early childhood I have to be very careful to address any symptoms that appear immediately (lethargy, anxiety, fatigue, fear). Even impatience, wanting to heal immediately, is a symptom that depression is on the way.

I accompanied Sandra to Tuk on the Mackenzie River ice road for the week of February 22. I had a relaxing time at a bed and breakfast, near the school in Tuk where Sandra was one of the trainers for a mental health first aid course. I did some writing and some learning about how to use the Tapping techniques to quell my  anxiety and impatience with the healing process. I am still not three months into recovery from that kidney/lung/heart operation for cancer, but I expect to be back to normal strength and energy. However I remind myself that my friend Bill in Yellowknife, when 25 years younger than me now, had a cancerous kidney removed and it took six months for complete recovery.

This past Sunday afternoon, our friend Ron, Sandra and I went for a hike on the trails in the woods, lakes, and on the Mackenzie River near Inuvik. I managed 45 minutes and was very tired at that point. But that is a good start on getting my hiking strength back.

On the nutrition size I am reading the 1997 book by Dr. Patrick Quillin entitled Beating Cancer with Nutrition. Quillin is the author of the article I mentioned in my February 18 blog about the importance of minimizing glucose and sucrose sugars in my diet to slow cancer growth and/or eliminate cancer cells. In the 1997 book Quillin refers to a 1992 textbook written to record three international scientific symposia entitled Adjuvant Nutrition in Cancer Treatment. I have that book on order through Abe Books, my favourite second hand online bookstore.

Both Aleta Karstad, my cousin who was completely cured of leukemia many years ago, and a doctor friend who I will simply refer to as Dr R, referred me to the importance of the spice turmeric in cancer recovery. Dr R pointed out that turmeric was a superlative antioxidant and useful for nutrition to battle cancer. Aleta drew my attention to the key active constituent in turmeric called curcumin. This led me further to discover a discussion of research results in
where I quote regarding 2011 research at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center: "curcumin actually seeks out malignant cancer cells and alters the regulation of DNA in order to kill them. And unlike synthetic anti-cancer drugs, curcumin leaves healthy cells and DNA alone so as not to cause harmful side effects."

Aleta pointed out the importance of using olive oil, black pepper and turmeric together for most potent cancer fighting results. So you can see my cooking is taking another turn, to maximize the use of turmeric at every turn!

My good friend Dr R also made this remark in an email today: "Maybe you have the genes that degenerate cancer cells once the primary (tumour) is gone." This was an encouraging thought. I have wondered about that. Could the cancer be shrinking away partly because the source of the original cancer, the left kidney, has been removed? I will try to seek out more information about those genes he mentions.