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Targeting Cancer Cell Metabolism

Using anti-cancer Food, Spices, Supplements and Repurposed Drugs

"Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food"

Musli Mix
Fresh Produce
Green Juice
Patient on Scale
Low Calorie Salad
Health Shake

The Anti-cancer cocktail

"The cocktail is the magic bullet"

      Dr Raymond Chang

( Integrative Oncologist )

"Combinations, combinations, combinations !"

Jane Mclelland 

( How to starve cancer )

"Monotherapies will not bring lasting remissions. One has to target all angiogenesis pathways"

 Dr Judah Folkman 

( Discoverer of angiogenesis)

The following steps can be crucial in both preventing and controlling cancer and putting it into remission :

  • Elimination of all forms of sugar and processed food

  • Elimination of high glycemic foods ( at least in Stage 4 cancer)

  • Regular daily  consumption of low-glycemic anti-cancer foods that inhibit cancer pathways ( given below )

  • Intermittent Fasting

  • Repurposed Supplements and Drugs that inhibit cancer pathways ( given below)

  • Moderate Exercise

  • De-stressing your life

  • Evaluate Low Dose Metronomic Chemotherapy ( MLDC) that boosts the immune system and inhibits angiogenesis versus Maximum Tolerated Dose (MTD)

What is a Cancer Pathway :

This is a very small snippet from a EGF/MAPK/c-Myc/MNK1 pathway that results in cancer cell division and proliferation. Some steps in this pathways can be targeted by the elements given in the table below, slowing down and / or blocking cancer progression. 

Growth Factor Signalling Pathway.png

The current standard of care in cancer mostly looks at the cancer pathways involved in genetic mutations and targets these using chemotherapy, which has

  • severe side effects 

  • produces secondary cancers over long-term use

  • leaves the cancer stem cells untouched which become a source of relapse

  • mostly targets gene mutations which are a moving target because there can be too many mutations both at the time of diagnosis and also during chemo treatment, called Multi-drug resistance (MDR) leading to relapse.

  • A single tumour itself at a single site can have many mutations making it very difficult to target all of these leading to relapse. 

In contrast, the metabolic theory of cancer targets established cancer pathways involved in cancer cell metabolism.

  • quite remarkably nature has provided us with the tools to target these pathways involved in cancer cell metabolism

  • many in vitro and in vivo scientific studies conducted at top research centers have shown that many food items inhibit these cancer pathways !! 

  • these natural anti-cancer food substances are pleiotropic, i.e. they inhibit multiple cancer pathways at the same time and amazingly have few to no side effects

  • these metabolic pathways, unlike genetic mutations,  are relatively fixed and do not change as much over time.

  • cancer scientists and doctors have discovered that these pathways are also inhibited by many common drugs that have already been approved by FDA for other puroses !! Hence, they are called re-purposed drugs

  • because these off-label drugs are FDA approved and have been in use for many years by hundreds and thousands of patients, their pharmacology, mechanism of action and side effects are very well-known.

  • targeting these pathways kills the cancer stem cells as well as the fast dividing cells diminishing chances of a relapse due to stem cells roaring back

  • because there is no patent on these off-label drugs, supplements and food items, there is ZERO incentive for pharma companies to do Phase 3 clinical trials on these. Hence these have not become part of standard of care despite overwhelming scientific evidence as well as anecdotal evidence of their efficacy. 

  • None of the food items and re-purposed drugs cause secondary cancers. On the contrary, these food items lead to all kinds of healing in the body. 

Cancer cells love sugar

In the 1920s, Dr Otto Warberg discovered that cancer cells consumed glucose in a markedly different and extremely inefficient manner than normal cells. This dysregulated mechanism is called aerobic glycolysis or Warburg Effect, in his honor.


This was such a seminal discovery that he received the Nobel Prize for this in 1931. 

A normal cell will produce 36 units of energy (ATP) for one glucose molecule whereas a cancer cell will produce just 2 ATPs for the same glucose molecule. This has extraordinary implications.

It means a cancer cell must consume prodigiously more glucose to carry out the same unit of cellular work as a normal cell. Keeping in mind that unlike normal cells, cancer cells display uncontrolled growth, this means that their glucose requirements are a quantum times more than those of a normal cell. Conversely, glucose restriction creates a lot more stress in a cancer cell than a normal cell and can be used therapeutically. 

A remarkable features of the Warberg Effect is that it is a characteristic of ALL cancer cells, irrespective of cancer type, genetic mutation, cancer patient, tumour site or stage of the cancer. Every single cancer cell shows the Warburg Effect for the duration of its life. This is in marked contrast to the genetic mutations which keep changing and offer a fickle target for therapy and therefore are a cause of relapse. 

The universality and constancy of the Warburg Effect is used in PET-CT scans to detect the position, size and stage of all types of cancer cells in the body.

It is ironic that the standard of care utilises the Warberg Effect to diagnose cancer cells in the body but does not use this characteristic to treat the cancer cells. 


Role of the nucleus and mitochondria in the origin of tumors.


The image below summarizes the experimental evidence supporting a dominant role of the
mitochondria in the origin of tumorigenesis. Normal cells are depicted in green with mitochondrial and nuclear morphology
indicative of normal respiration and nuclear gene expression, respectively. Tumor cells are depicted in red with abnormal mitochondrial and nuclear morphology
indicative of abnormal respiration and genomic instability.

(1) Normal cells beget normal cells.

(2) Tumor cells beget tumor cells.

(3) Delivery of a tumor cell
nucleus into a normal cell cytoplasm begets normal cells despite the persistence of tumor-associated genomic abnormalities.

(4) Delivery of a normal cell nucleus into a tumor cell cytoplasm begets tumor cells or dead cells but not normal cells.


The results suggest that tumors do not arise from nuclear genomic defects alone
and that normal mitochondria can suppress tumorigenesis.

Original diagram from Jeffrey Ling and Thomas N. Seyfried,

transferring genes to normal cytoplasm.j

The Warburg Effect is the foundation upon which the metabolic theory of cancer is based but its a lot more than just the Warburg Effect.


The metabolic theory encompasses the glutamine pathways, the fatty acid pathways, and all the cancer cell signals, proteins, genes, cytokines  that are utilised by the cancer cell or that influence the cancer cell generated from the surrounding tumour environment. 


One of the fundamental targets is angiogenesis, the ability of the cancer cell to generate growth factors that attract the formation of blood vessels towards itself, allowing it to grow and also to escape from the primary site to spread to other places in the body. No angiogenesis, no metastasis. 


Metastasis remains the primary reason people die from cancer. 

Here is just one of many instances of "natural remission" brought about by the metabolic theory of cancer, and documented by the British Medical Journal :

Here's an example of a re-purposed drug Metformin bringing about a dramatic remission in a Stage 4 cancer patient. 

However, in most cases of stage 4 cancer is like a house in which all the rooms are ablaze and all the cancer pathways and elements are alight. In such a dire situation, the safest approach is to block as many elements/pathways as one can. At that stage, the fire of cancer has to be starved of anything that it can use as a fuel. 

The table below lists down all the elements involved in cancer cell metabolism, including angiogenesis, that can be inhibited using 

  • diet

  • supplements

  • re-purposed  drugs 

If you block a certain element then all the downstream elements in that cancer pathway are automatically blocked, so one does not need to block all the elements given in the table below.


I will publish more on this later.

(The cancer pathways table below will scroll sideways and down)

Cancer Pathways Table

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