Breast cancer ranks among the most common cancerous diseases for women in the world. Experts say that 1 in 7 females will receive a breast cancer diagnosis in their lifetime. Although around 23% of breast cancer cases in the UK are deemed preventable.
Though breast cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer among women, it’s something that many specialists are still researching, and striving to fully understand. Though we have medical treatments available for breast cancer, most professionals believe that a holistic approach to breast cancer treatment may be the most effective way to overcome common problems.
Integrative oncology is a multidisciplinary and evidence-based approach to cancer treatment. The practice complements hospital strategies with nutrition and supplementation, lifestyle modifications, and other efforts.
Microbiota and the Role in Oncology
Research indicates that the microbiota of women with breast cancer is different to that of healthy women. Studies suggest that certain bacteria could have some impact on cancer development, and the responses that people have to therapy.
One of the most prominent functions of the gut microbiota is the regulation of the hormone metabolism. The gut affects the oestrogen levels in women, which is an important risk factor the development of breast cancer.
A holistic approach to breast cancer treatment includes looking for ways to balance that microbiota. Mushroom and mycology supplementation could be the answer.
Mushrooms have long been a popular food item for many cultures, but their medical properties are also significant. One study found that specific types of mushroom can have different impacts on the microbiota for women with breast cancer. Effective mushrooms included Shiitake mushrooms, Maitake, turkey tail, and others. Studies note that these mushrooms contain therapeutic agents like ergosterol, arginine and lectin.
The compounds in medicinal mushrooms have been found to reduce tumour growth, improve immune cell counts in people undergoing radiation and chemotherapy treatment, and inhabit the growth of enzymes in breast cancer cells that create excess oestrogen.
The Effects of Mushrooms on Breast Cancer
A holistic approach to breast cancer treatment can benefit significantly from the use of mushroom supplementation. One of the most researched mushrooms in the oncology landscape is turkey tail, which includes a therapeutic compound known as PSK. This substance can increase the effectiveness of the monoclonal antibody therapy for breast cancer patients. Data from clinical trials find that this substance can deliver significant benefits as both a supplemental treatment and preventative strategy.
A study from America published in 2012 also found that up to 9 grams of turkey tail mushroom was enough to build immune system performance in people recovering from cancer treatment. The study indicates that the substance may be effective at reducing the risk of relapse.
Reishi mushroom is another substance heavily recommended for the prevention and treatment of cancerous tumours. Reishi mushroom and G.lucidum extract has been found to drive better responses to chemotherapy than in patients who aren’t taking supplementation. G.lucidum can also stimulate the immune systems of the host by increasing CD3, CD4, and CD8 lymphocyte percentages.
Coriolus versicolor has an impact on cancer results too. In a set of three meta-analyses, conducted with over 9000 patients experiencing different kinds of cancer, researchers found that Coriolus versicolor combined with chemotherapy significantly improved the survival rate of patients by up to 9%.
Using Mycomedicine in Holistic Treatment
Although further research is needed into Mycomedicine and the mushrooms that work to prevent, and treat cancer issues, the current information is promising. Mycomedicine seems to be a powerful solution for patients that need further immunomodulation, ensuring their body responds correctly to the right treatments.
Mycomedicine as part of a holistic approach to breast cancer treatment could significantly improve quality of life of people undergoing treatment. In fact, medicinal mushrooms can deliver greater energy levels and endurance to patients going through chemotherapy, when weakness is a common side effect that may slow down treatment outcomes. Many supplemental medical mushrooms can also assist with issues like inflammation and chronic pain which may affect people who are struggling with cancer diagnoses.
Medicinal mushrooms and its fungi derived bioactive compounds, delivered in supplemental form, represent a safe and effective way to enhance the performance of standard cancer treatment procedures.
As the research into Mycomedicine and breast cancer continues, it’s likely that more clinicians will begin introducing nutraceuticals based on medicinal mushrooms into their full strategies for holistic treatments.