Introduction
SECTION - Causes and Characteristics of Cancer - Part 1
INTRODUCTION TO TREATMENTS
Causes and Characteristics of Cancer - Part 2
CHELATION
Hydrogen Medicine
Magnesium Medicine
Bicarbonate Medicine
Iodine Medicine
SELENIUM MEDICINE
Diets, Fasting and Super-Nutrition
CO2, Cancer and Breathing
Oxygen Therapy for Cancer Patients
Cannabis Medicine
Final Considerations

Lesson 34 – Lack of Sleep Can Cause Cancer & Every Other Problem Imaginable

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Sleep is pivotal for human health, well-being and longevity. Sleep is often considered as a powerful elixir of wellness and vitality. Insufficient sleep, on the contrary, has devastating consequences including setting us up for cancer and other serious diseases. Many adults in the developed world suffer from chronic insomnia, and cancer patients are particularly prone to it, researchers note in Sleep Medicine. Even though sleep disorders have been tied to worse outcomes for cancer patients, oncologists have not offered a clear picture of what to do about it and often make the situation worse.

Insomnia is common among cancer patients, occurring in approximately 30% to 50% of the cancer population, which is probably a conservative estimate since that is what it is known to be in the general population. According to the National Sleep Foundation approximately 70 million people in the United States are affected with sleeping disorders. Approximately 12 million Americans have restless legs syndrome, (a sleep and movement disorder characterized by unpleasant tingling, crawling, creeping and/or pulling) feelings in the legs, which cause an urge to move in order to relieve the symptoms.

The interactions between cancer pain, insomnia, fatigue, and depression/anxiety are complex, warranting treatment plans that focus not only on the relief of specific symptoms to improve quality of life but also on the impact of treatment on other related symptoms. Unfortunately, oncologists don’t have a clue on how to help their patients through any of this. Though doctors know that treatment of insomnia in cancer patients can improve cancer-related fatigue, immune functioning, and overall quality of life, insomnia in the context of cancer is rarely treated because most doctors do not know where to start.[1]

Pain is one of the most common symptoms experienced by cancer patients and is one of the primary factors that precipitate insomnia in this population. Fatigue, which can be painful, is also commonly reported by cancer patients, with a prevalence of nearly 80% in some tumor types. Cancer-related fatigue occurs most often after surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, or immunotherapy and has been reported by cancer patients to be the major obstacle to normal functioning. Being in pain is obviously one of the biggest obstacles to a good nights rest.

Many are the reasons for sleep disturbances and the National Sleep Foundation says that half of Americans between the ages of thirteen and sixty-four rarely or never get a good nights sleep. According to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a third of U.S. adults say they do not get the recommended amount of sleep each night. For adults, that's at least seven hours a night. Poor sleep affects everything.

“No one enjoys the desperation that sometimes can surround trying to get to sleep. The decimation of sleep throughout industrialized nations is having a catastrophic impact on our health, our wellness, even the safety and education of our children. It’s a silent sleep loss epidemic. It’s fast becoming one of the greatest challenges we face in the 21st century,” said Matthew Walker, an expert in sleep at UC Berkeley and author of the best-selling book Why We Sleep. Dr. Walker goes as far as arguing that the lack of shut-eye is a slow form of self-euthanasia.

Studies show that people with Alzheimer's often have sleep problems. And there's growing evidence that people with sleep problems are more vulnerable to Alzheimer's. The brain waves generated during deep sleep appear to trigger a cleaning system in the brain that protects it against Alzheimer's and other neuro-degenerative diseases. Thus we can assume this holds true for the entire body so good sleeping would protect, up to a certain point, the cells being overwhelmed by all the toxins that can lead to cancer.

My oncologist told me that one of the greatest benefits for any breast cancer patient is good, sound sleep. He also said, “Sleep allows your body to heal. If you’re not getting quality sleep, your body won’t heal properly.”

Bret Hartman wrote, “Everyone is obsessed with sleep. And they know they’re not getting enough—hence the growing demand for sleeping pills. The FDA estimated that almost 30 million prescriptions of three drugs were filled in the USA in 2018, none of which addresses any of the causes of sleep disturbances.

Getting quality sleep is not a luxury. Good sleep is critical to health, metabolism, immune function as well as mental health; Sleep deprivation makes us dumber, more forgetful, unable to learn new things, more vulnerable to dementia, more likely to die of a heart attack, less able to fend off sickness with a strong immune system, more likely to get cancer, and it makes our bodies hurt more.

According to a 2008 survey[2] of 1137 employed U.S. adults, most Americans were already losing sleep over news of a declining economy, increased cost of food and energy, rising unemployment, mortgage foreclosures and plunging home values. The study said 9 of 10 respondents were losing sleep over economic turmoil. The vicious cycle of economic stress, lack of sleep, diminished immunity and magnesium depletion, which is a serious cause of cancer and insomnia, is fully evident in the medical literature. The problem, and cancer rates, are continuing to get worse as the stress mounts and magnesium deficiencies continue to deepen.

[1] Clin Cornerstone. 2004;6 Suppl 1D:S15-21. Cancer pain, fatigue, distress, and insomnia in cancer patients.

[2] ComPsych Corp-Reuters Oct. 27, 2008

Insomnia and Cancer

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During cancer treatment, anxiety, depression, deep fatigue, digestive-system problems, breathing problems, hot flashes, night sweats and pain can all keep you from falling asleep and staying asleep. Studies have found that insomnia alters immune and endocrine function, and has a powerful influence on the risk of infectious disease. Since cancer treatments such as chemotherapy may also predispose a person to infections, this can be double trouble.

Sleep disturbances are associated with aberrant patterns of cortisol secretion, such as those found in insomnia, which are known to significantly depress the immune system, particularly the cells of the immune system responsible for mounting a defense against tumors. When we don’t sleep our bodies produce fewer natural killer (NK) cells and less melatonin, both of which can be implicated in increasing our risk of cancer. NK cells our in the front lines of our immune defenses. Sleep deprivation is also known to cause inflammation, which is one of the basic causes and characteristics of cancer.

Without sufficient sleep, our bodies makes fewer cytokines, a type of protein that targets infection and inflammation, effectively creating an immune response. Cytokines are both produced and released during sleep, causing a double whammy if you skimp on shut-eye.

Circadian Disruption is Carcinogenic to Humans

What’s more, night time and sleep are the time our circadian rhythm cycles down activity so we can renew and repair cells as well as detoxify poisons. If we do not sleep well we tend to feel horrible because the accumulating toxins do not get removed but instead sit in the cells where they continue to damage cell respiration and many other cellular processes causing yet another potential setup for cancer.

There is no shortage of evidence of a link between insufficient sleep and the risk of cancer. In particular, people with circadian rhythm disorders—in which the body's biological clock is disrupted because of shift work are at increased risk. Researchers suspect that the disruption in the circadian rhythm poses a risk for developing cancer because the body's internal clock affects so many biological functions. One theory is that the suppression of melatonin at night (which comes from exposure to bright light) could be partly responsible. Indeed, scientists have seen this link in animal studies; for example, when they manipulate the sleep/wake cycles of rodents for an extended time, cancers grow faster. The disturbance in circadian rhythm caused by shift work may also increase the prevalence of gastrointestinal problems. Peptic ulcer disease is more common in shift workers.[1]

Interestingly, the hardest to kill cancer cells have completely turned off their internal clocks so they can eat 24/7. And even more interesting is the recent discovery at the Ludwig Cancer Research Center that sodium bicarbonate turns the circadian rhythm back on making the toughest cancer cells easier to kill.

One study showed that insufficient sleep might contribute to breast cancer recurrences among postmenopausal women and the development of more aggressive forms of breast cancer. Another study suggests that disrupted sleep increases prostate cancer risk. Lack of sleep distorts our genes, and increases our risk of death. Insomnia disrupts the creation of sex hormones like estrogen and testosterone, and leads to premature aging.

A study in the International Journal of Cancer found a relationship between women's irregular work schedules and the rate of breast cancer. Researchers compared 1200 women who had developed breast cancer between 2005 and 2008, with 1300 women who did not have a cancer diagnosis. They found that the rate of breast cancer was 30 percent higher for the women who had worked shifts.

Insomnia is defined as “An inability to fall asleep or remain asleep long enough to feel rested, especially when the problem continues over time.” In an effort to combat this, as many as 25 percent of the people in the United States use medications to help them sleep.

[1] BMJ 2019; 365 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.l2327 (Published 26 June 2019) Investigating causal relations between sleep traits and risk of breast cancer in women: mendelian randomisation study

Pharmaceuticals Vs Magnesium, Medical Marijuana and Infrared Sleep Therapy

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Taking pharmaceutical sleeping pills do not resolve the issues of sleep disturbances. People are actually increasing harming themselves with sleep drugs, many of which contain "Black box" warning labels which are required for brand name drugs including Lunesta, Sonata and Ambien, among others, to caution patients about their possible side effects. Eszopiclone, zaleplon and zolpidem are insomnia medications that help patients fall asleep or stay asleep easier by slowing brain activity, the FDA said, but hidden in the box are highly disruptive and dangerous side effects for some the morning after use.

“If you take sleeping pills, you will bring yourself into sleep mode, you will succeed in getting yourself into bed and shutting off the light, but in the morning you are not the same person. You don’t function. The quantity of pills I need in order to fall asleep will turn me into a zombie the next day. My brain is erased; people speak to me but I don’t function. How can you live like that? How can you work like that, study, go out of the house, communicate with people?”

The newest generation of sleep aids causes strange side effects including sleepwalking and short-term amnesia. Ambien, the nation’s best-selling prescription sleeping pill, shows up with regularity as a factor in traffic arrests, sometimes involving drivers who later say they were sleep-driving and have no memory of taking the wheel after taking the drug. Steven Wells quit using the drug Ambien after becoming concerned after several episodes in which he woke up to find he had messily raided the refrigerator and after an incident in which he tore a towel rack out of a wall.

Magnesium Deficiency and Sleep Disturbance

We find none of these side effects when taking magnesium to help one relax and sleep. Animals placed on magnesium-deficient diets will commonly develop disorganized sleep and periods of wakefulness.[1] Sleep problems occur more frequently in adults as they age, making it increasingly difficult to deal with stress. Magnesium supplementation partially reverses age-related sleep abnormalities.[2] Magnesium is an essential mineral that plays a major role in the functioning of the muscular-skeletal system. Magnesium allows the muscles to relax, providing a calming effect that allows for deeper relaxation and better sleep.

We have already seen how magnesium deficiencies can cause cancer. Now we are looking at how those same deficiencies can cause sleep disorders, which then also can lead to cancer.

Insomnia is one of the central, or neurotic, symptoms of chronic magnesium deficiency. A number of parasomnias (night terrors, nocturnal verbal and motor automatisms, restless leg syndrome) are highly correlated to magnesium deficiency. When we lose magnesium we lose sleep and then we lose our balance emotionally and then depression or hyperactivity can set in.

In a study by Dr. W. Davis, MD, 99% of his patients who used magnesium chloride had rapidly induced sleep that was uninterrupted. Dr. W. Davis used magnesium chloride as a means of combating insomnia. The researcher reported that sleep was induced rapidly, was uninterrupted, and that waking tiredness disappeared in 99% of the patients. In addition, anxiety and tension diminished during the day.[3]

[1] Neuropsychobiology 27: 237–45, 1993

[2] Pharmacopsychiatry 35: 135–43, 2002

[3] W.H. Davis and F. Ziady, "The Role of Magnesium in Sleep", Montreal Symposium, 1976

Restless Leg Syndrome

According to the National Sleep Foundation approximately 12 million Americans have restless legs syndrome, a sleep and movement disorder characterized by unpleasant (tingling, crawling, creeping and/or pulling) feelings in the legs, which cause an urge to move in order to relieve the symptoms.

Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) is a chronic, disruptive disorder where one feels an urge to move their legs to stop an unpleasant sensation such as pain, aching, itching or tickling in the muscles while lying down or trying to sleep. Many cases of RLS can be mild but in more severe cases the symptoms can often be intolerable.

Having a sleepless night now and then can be annoying. However, when you have restless legs syndrome (RLS), going without sleep night after night can make life miserable. You may be so tired that you just feel like crying.

On some sites, you will read that there is no cure for Restless Leg Syndrome; however, once diagnosed, your doctor will recommend a treatment plan to decrease symptoms, few of which will help.

Magnesium oil (chloride), when applied transdermally to the legs, is effective in relieving restless leg syndrome (RLS).

Restless leg syndrome symptoms and anxiety are related to each other and result in severe sleep disorders. Even a mild deficiency of magnesium can cause increased sensitivity to noise, nervousness, irritability, mental depression, confusion, twitching, trembling, apprehension, and insomnia.

Magnesium is an essential mineral that plays a major role in the functioning of the muscular-skeletal system. Magnesium allows the muscles to relax providing a calming effect that allows for deeper relaxation and better sleep. Dr. Carolyn Dean says, “A hundred years ago we enjoyed a diet high in magnesium with a daily intake of 500 mg. Today we are lucky to get 200 mg. However, calcium in the diet has never been higher. This high-calcium, low-magnesium diet, when coupled with calcium supplementation, can give a calcium to magnesium imbalance of 10:1 or even higher — which constitutes a walking time bomb of impaired bone health and heart disease.”

According to government data, 68% of Americans do not consume the recommended intake of magnesium and 19% of Americans do not consume even half of the recommended intake. Yet sites like Healthline misinforms the public saying, “It’s rare to have a true magnesium deficiency, but certain conditions such as gastrointestinal disease, diabetes, and pancreatitis can upset the body’s magnesium balance.”

“I have had restless legs every night for the past 45 years. The severity has gradually increased over the years and has led to several visits to the doctor. I have been on 4 different medications, none of which helped. On a whim, I bought a bottle of magnesium spray oil from the chemist and have been using this twice a day on knees and calves. I have also started taking a magnesium supplement. My RLS symptoms have almost completely disappeared. I still feel twinges in the evenings but they do not last more than a few minutes. I apply the oil as needed. It stings a bit and dries the skin but the disappearance of this wretched condition more than makes up for any temporary discomfort.”

Breathing Retraining Will Help You Sleep

Most do not know it but in reality we can use our breath as an ally in good health and sleep. Soviet and Russian MDs found the following relationship between automatic (or unconscious) breathing patterns (how you breathe during sleep), the morning results for the body-oxygen test and the quality and natural duration of sleep.

Respiratory 
Frequency

Body oxygen 
test result

Duration 
of sleep

Quality 
of sleep

>26 breaths/min

<10 s

Often >10 hours

Often very poor

15-26 breaths/min

10-20 s

Often >9 hours

Often poor

12-20 breaths/min

20-40 s

6-8 hours

Insomnia possible

7-12 breaths/min

40-80 s

4 hours

Excellent

5 breaths/min

2 min

3 hours

Excellent

3 breaths/min

3 min

2 hours

Excellent


How we breathe is serious business especially for cancer patients. One can test one’s breathing by counting how many breaths we take a minute and also test our control pause, how long we can hold our breath after we breathe out. These tests together can tell us more about our health or state of disease than most other tests and are especially important because they point the way to what we can do to effect changes in our physiology.

The American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine published a study on "Sleep-disordered Breathing and Cancer Mortality." Medical scientists already know that Sleep-disordered breathing (SDB) has been associated with total and cardiovascular mortality, but an association with cancer mortality had not been studied until now. The new study suggests that baseline SDB is associated with increased cancer mortality.

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If you’re struggling with sleep, waning vitality and health, and for sure if you have cancer, you will want to have a direct way to combat the downward spiral of faster and faster breathing. Expect to get fairly quick results if you train with the Frolov breathing device, which was originally released in Russia for asthmatics. This simple device takes the place of your own personally yoga breathing teacher. Cancer patients who work on slowing down their breathing experience better sleep and improved energy throughout the day. For more details Breathing Steps to follow: falling asleep quickly.

Medical Marijuana

It is interesting to see that like magnesium, cannabis can be used to treat cancer as well as sleep disorders. In September of 2010 the New York Times reported that, “People with chronic pain who took just a puff of marijuana three times a day got some mild pain relief and, with rare exceptions, did so without getting high,” a Canadian study reported. The patients, who suffered from persistent nerve damage that did not respond to other pain drugs, also reported better sleep and less anxiety.” One can get CBD, which is medical marijuana without the THC, meaning you will not get high.

A patient with PTSD, who takes marijuana, said she now shuns the array of medicines and sleeping pills she took because of the side effects. “If you take sleeping pills, you will bring yourself into sleep mode, you will succeed in getting yourself into bed and shutting off the light, but in the morning you are not the same person. You don’t function. The quantity of pills I need in order to fall asleep will turn me into a zombie the next day. My brain is erased; people speak to me but I don’t function. How can you live like that? How can you work like that, study, go out of the house, communicate with people?”

"Sleep is a vital part of life that affects our productivity, mood, and general health and well-being," said Rebecca Robbins, lead investigator and postdoctoral research fellow at NYU Langone Health, in a statement. "Dispelling myths about sleep promotes healthier sleep habits which, in turn, promote overall better health."

BioMats for Better Sleeping

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Far infrared bedding is comfortable, warm and bathes your body in far infrared rays. Far infrared has been shown to improve circulation, enhance the immune system, improves the skin and will help put you to sleep. Everyone I know who has one loves BioMats and many people sleep on them every night. Most people can’t imagine life without them after they have one. Ninety-five percent of people experience pain reduction, relaxation, rejuvenation, and mental and emotional ease in just 15 minutes.

“I’ve been suffering from numerous ailments for many years. Some of my problems were sleeping and insomnia, sinus, tonsillitis, leg cramps, arthritis (especially a swollen right knee), and hair thinning. I was worried of going bald! Sometimes daily, I would suffer with severe headaches, coughing and right shoulder pain. Numerous times I visited specialty doctors and massage therapists. I ended up spending a lot of time and money, and I never got better.”

“One day a friend introduced me to the BioMat. After I lay down for about 30 minutes, my back pain was relieved. I have been using the BioMat for one good month now and all of my symptoms are alleviated. I have good sleep and my sinus problems are gone. My blood pressure is normal and my hair has stopped falling out also.” Mila J. Chicago, IL

A BioMat will put you to sleep faster than just about anything else. You can sleep on them all night at low settings for deep relaxation, warmth and comfort, as you regenerate cellular energies all night. Instead of taking valuable time out of your day to do far infrared therapy you can make good use of sleep while promoting healthy relaxed sleeping patterns.

Melatonin

Numerous studies have established melatonin as an effective anti-cancer treatment. It inhibits cancer cell growth and proliferation; it destroys cancer cells, stops angiogenesis (new tumor blood vessel growth), and prevents harmful forms of estrogen from stimulating cancer cell growth. Dr. Julie Chen writes, “There was a meta-analysis of randomized, controlled trials using melatonin as adjuvant therapy or alone for cancer patients, and researchers found that there was a 34% relative risk reduction in death in the melatonin user group. Another study looked at patients who had advanced cancer in the breast, lung, gastrointestinal tract, head or neck.

When given chemotherapy either alone or with 20 mg/day of melatonin, there was a reduction in side effects of low platelet count, fatigue, mouth sores, heart complications, and neurotoxicity in the melatonin group, and higher rate of survival.”

Ancient Minerals magnesium lotion Goodnight is a quick absorbing emulsion containing 25mg magnesium w/ 3mg melatonin per ml. Melatonin is a ubiquitous, broad-spectrum antioxidant in the body promoting more restful sleep. However, oral supplementation of melatonin is not without its drawbacks due to its rapid clearance by the liver (roughly 85% first pass liver degradation). However, research has shown the skin to be a much more efficient pathway for melatonin uptake—and, transdermal delivery, particularly in a lipid base, allows for a slower absorption of melatonin into circulation (i.e. natural time release).

Magnesium ion partially reverses sleep EEG and nocturnal neuroendocrine changes occurring during aging.[1] According to Dr. J. Durlach, the biological clock and magnesium status are linked, and a balanced magnesium status is important for the function of the mysterious pineal gland. Durlach sees the psycholeptic sedative effects of darkness amplified by magnesium. There probably is a strong relationship between melatonin and magnesium; certainly relative amounts of light and darkness affect the pineal gland and its production of melatonin.

[1] Held K, Antonijevic IA, Kunzel H, Uhr M, Wetter TC, Golly IC, Steiger A and Murck H. Oral Mg(2+) supplementation reverses age-related neuroendocrine and sleep EEG changes in humans. Pharmacopsychiatry. 2002;35:135-43.