This is a brief outline of some alternative options for cancer treatment. I will not be adding fluff to this piece, just the facts I gleaned in search of the best alternative route to assist a very special client, my mother, in addressing her diagnosed early stage-one uterine cancer.
That's right....I got the call as I was currently seeing one client whose fiance was undergoing chemo for his cancer, and another who had just been diagnosed with thyroid cancer and opted to have her thyroid removed; she called me for pre-op and post-op support. It was also directly after I watched the first two hours of The Truth About Cancer Documentary.
Because my mother had very early stage-one uterine cancer that had not spread, and because she was at an age that did not require active use of her uterus, she was leaning towards a hysterectomy. The objective was to remain open, investigate and weigh her options, then determine the best course of action.
Over the years what I have witnessed about a diagnosis is this: It is often not so much about the diagnosis as it is the diagnosed. In other words, how one chooses to look at one's condition, and what one is willing to do about it has everything to do with how one journeys through.
My mother maintained a positive, open-hearted approach to her diagnosis; she allowed her full range of emotional reactions but, with an understanding of the mind/body connection, she committed to an appraisal of all aspects of the mind/body condition for clues to what she might benefit from releasing or making peace with emotionally. She meditated, self-reflected, adjusted her diet and diet-lifestyle, and truly embraced a belief that she would not only heal but thrive through this experience.
She chose not to work with doctors whom she found to be uncaring or dismissive, she interviewed every potential care provider, and assembled the best team for her. She made a conscious choice of who and when she shared this information; this assured that those she did confide in would most likely be reflections of her belief in full recovery rather than fan the flame of worry or doom-and-gloom.
She enlisted me as her advocate, nutritional support to vet protocols, do additional research, ask questions, and weigh-in on recommended protocols. I feel it is crucial to have, at least, a general advocate if one can. Regardless of what plan of treatment one opts for, advocates in the health arena are instrumental at every step and stage, especially when there is so much conflicting information in circulation, and when you may be finding that your focus is currently challenged or that you're not feeling well enough to consider the many details required to make the best choice for you.
Whether someone chooses a straight western route or alternative road it is important for one to believe in the chosen course of treatment, to stay open to trying different methodologies if one seems fruitless or ill-matched, and to consistently get additional opinions and input. Finally, it is key to embrace one's own powers of healing with an intention to thrive, should this be genuine, and in this way, empowerment has a chance to flourish. When one is empowered they may find even a cancer diagnosis can lend itself to playfulness, lightness, and opportunities to laugh; my mother and I laughed our way across the globe in search of the best protocols for her....it was hard for those we met along the way to comprehend that we were on a mission to rid her of cancer because we were having such a good time in the process!
Where To Start
After three calls and appointments with western doctors to get their input we turned the dial to the alternatives to see what was offered. (*Gerson was off the table because my mother HATES enemas...)
In the past, my go-to doctor for those seeking alternative cancer treatment was Dr. Nicholas Gonzales. Dr. Gonzales unexpectedly died last year but leaves behind a legacy of work on the subject of cancer; his protocol is outlined in a book and online. His wife runs as a non-profit committed to promoting his life's work, and his partner of 30-years still runs the practice in New York City, and implements his plan.
I first learned of Dr. Gonzales from The Food Renegade Cancer Summit back in 2011. I think both the first and second summits are important and fascinating listens. (While dated, I believe you can still purchase them upon request via the hyperlink above.)
Dr. Gonzales was a western doctor whom had worked in the Mayo Clinic and served on its board. He was dismayed by the failure rates with chemo and conventional cancer treatments, and believed that there were really only two cancers that benefited from chemo. He left the Mayo and went onto forge his own practice and nutritional approach to treating cancer, and experienced tremendous success. I met a patient of his once that explained how he helped both herself and her husband heal from cancer. He was extremely impressive on that summit. That said, his protocol is stringent for the average American whose diet is far from what was required on his regimen. His protocol involves many supplements, enemas and lifestyle changes. As well, he insisted that the patient be 100% on board with the beliefs behind alternative modalities and nutritional treatments. Finally, and especially for those who live outside New York City, his fees were not negligible. My mother called and spoke to his surviving partner but subsequently decided that the program was too much for her to take on so we moved on...
Apart from the somewhat dilapidated building, the rusted, empty birdcage in the pock-marked circular driveway, and the greasy spoon diner that served meals to the patients who should not be eating anything on the menu, the Hoxsey is run efficiently, and well-populated with people at all stages of treatment, many with great success stories or having come by way of hearing one. On the day we were there, people had arrived from as far as Greece, New York, the Midwest, Arizona, Sonoma, CA, and Los Angeles. Several of the long term nurses were volunteers whom themselves had experienced successful healing with the protocol.
That said, there were certain moments to raise an eye; my mother's assigned doctor (as they are) did not seem to speak the best English, the dietary protocol is not stringent nor updated nor as thorough as I would like, and its application does require certain adjustments that make daily implementation of the protocol challenging. Aside from its many restrictions, certain foods such as salt of any kind disrupts the efficacy of the tonic which my mother found to be foul tasting. Avoiding salt if you are prone to eating out is not easy, this was a primary concern for my mother whose social life revolves around social dining, and this was a non debatable reality. Along with this is the understanding that sometimes you need to take the tonics and supplements several times a day which meant figuring out how to transport them and work eating schedules around them. As well, the protocol is expected to be followed for no less than six to eight years.
My mother is 77, she was game though leery.
When we returned home, she took the tonic, supplements and a host of Chinese herbs prescribed to her. Neither she nor I recalled being forewarned by her doctor that sometimes a strong reaction can occur to the herbs in particular. That night she had an intense reactive episode that felt like an extreme case of food poisoning that left her dehydrated from retching. She never wanted to take that protocol again...
Onto The Next
Friends of mine had told me about this woman healer, Yashi Kuntz, in Berlin, Germany who was successfully treating their family, one who had cancer, another who had various imbalances. They learned of the clinic from other friends who had a father twice cured of cancer by this woman. I decided to investigate.
The clinic is in a lovely building at the lower levels of Yashi's home in an upscale suburban neighborhood in Berlin. It was always bustling with clients of all ages, a large and welcoming staff, and nightly mediation groups; it seems to be a little mecca of Westside LA in terms of "New Age" spirituality for Berlin.
I love what Yashi and her staff are doing on several levels; we are pretty in sync dietarily though not as much as I wished, but then Germany is under the impression that their food is not as compromised as ours. Unfortunately, this is something I may not fully agree with having spent a week there in search of clean food, investigating the climate, and now with the imminent purchasing of Monsanto by Germany's Bayer.
That said, they are oriented in quantum healing, and this is very much simpatico with my orientation. As well, they practice a form of homeopathy that is much more in-depth and germane to the traditional homeopathy than I feel you find easily in the States, or so has been my limited experience with the practice. As well, they work with certain intravenous protocols that are illegal in the states yet very impressive, and they also do a lot of work with a specific kind of acupressure for the feet. I must say, I was most skeptical of this last treatment modality but after having had five sessions, I feel that there is merit to its application.
I need more time with these protocols to fully weigh-in yet, of all the professionals we encountered, these woman were by far the most impressive in terms of a true and genuine desire to heal, and lending an energetic feeling of being true healers. This is particular to Yashi Kuntz, the founder and head of the clinic. Yashi has that intuitive sensibility and openhearted warmth that seems tapped into unlimited consciousness...its hard to explain what it feels like to be in her presence but I felt confidence in her.
Yashi also has a legacy of success stories from her 30-years in practice.
Her protocols are much more mild and "user-friendly" with uniquely prescribed dietary restrictions and a gentleness about it all, that my mother felt it was doable. While my mother does take the protocol three times a day with need to adjust eating before and after, it is the easiest to adopt of all protocols that we considered.
Back Home and Off to Cedars
In the end, my mother and I had already concurred that a hysterectomy made sense in her case though we agreed it was prudent she attend two weeks with Yashi to strengthen her immune system and prepare her body for surgery, and help annihilate additional cancer cell spread.
My mother did excellently in surgery; a few hours afterwards, she had to get up and walk the hospital floors, and all of the nurses were amazed with her strength and vitality. She healed easily and well, and we attribute some of this to Yashi's protocols for sure, though my mother's overall self-care and mindset played an important role. She is continuing with the protocols until all cell and cell membrane blood tests (specific to Yashi's work) show the targeted improvements she is wanting.
I do want to mention that my mother had her surgery at Cedars Sinai in Los Angeles, and the area were we were, the North Tower, was extremely well run with personal and hospitable concierge service from beginning to end.
Four months later, and mother is happily, healthily cancer free! This month she did a forty-day consecutive yoga workshop, and is planning to spend a month sculpting in Italy this summer! Go Mom!
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