In stage 1, normal cells get a mutation that leads to "initiation", which is a term indicating the cell has become immortal for the purpose of dividing endlessly. Folate greatly reduces the risk that your cells will be initiated, so it is important to get enough folate.
In stage 2, initiated cells undergo "promotion". Promotion occurs when the initiated cell divides many times. When this happens, the growth control mechanism of the cell is likely to break, so the initiated cell divides rapidly, thus becoming a tumor. This process is facilitated by folate, increasing the risk of cancer.
In stage 3, the tumor cells, which are already initiated and promoted, metastisize. That means they lose their normal attachment properties, and migrate around the body, causing tumors in many places. Metastasis is also facilitated by high levels of folate.
Thus, getting more than 400 mcg of folate is especially important when young, so cells do not become initiated. But as we get older, most people have many initiated cells already, and too much folate will encourage them to become cancer. But you must continue to get the 400 mcg per day, because otherwise more cells will get initiated.
NOTES ON NUTRITION DURING CHEMOTHERAPY
1) FOODS TO REDUCE CANCER RISK Cruciferous vegetables: These dramatically reduce the risk of a variety of forms of cancer. Cruciferous is a word that is used to describe a certain type of vegetable. Another term that describes these same vegetables is brassica. Vegetables that are considered to be part of the cruciferous (brassica) vegetable 'family' include asparagus, beets, bok choy, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, chard, collard greens, kale, kohlrabi, rutabagas, turnips, and watercress.
2) There was an entire symposium on Nutrition and Cancer published by AJCN in 2003. We are learning incredible amounts about diet and cancer, and now tailored to specific types of cancer. For preventing cancer, there is more generic guidance. But if you have a specific family history or risk for particular types of cancer, it is important to do research on your particular concern through both good health practionner and good search of the scientific and medical literature.
White paper on additional components to multivitamin:
Cancer (5. 900,000 new cases per year 1996 in US)
5. rates per 100,000
prostate breast colon heart disease
Japan 4.6 8.3 9.8 117.9
US 22.1 32.5 20.3 308.8
Bladder cancer: RDA multivitamins plus 40,000 units vitamin A, 100 mg vit B6, 2 g vit C, 800 IU vit E, and 90 mg zinc.
REMEDIES FROM NUTRITION SALES BOOKS/PRODUCTS:
Cancer, bladder 01. Lamm, D, J. Urol., Jan, 94
5. A, B6, C, E, selenium, zinc- pg 5
5. breast cancer - acidophilus, garlic, C, B, calcium and magnesium - pg 43
5. pg 74 - vit A and selenium; pg 76 - cervical cancer - vit C, folate, lycopene
5. pg 82 - advantages of Japanese diet - less fat, more carbohydrate, fiber, minerals, vitamins - seaweed gives calcium; tea gives C and E; low salt
5. pg 95 - take megadose of vit E for colon cancer prevention; pg 295 - C 500-1000mg, bioflavonoids 100-200 mg, vit E 200mg, beta-carotene 25,000 iu, selenium 100 mcg
7. colon cancer - need vit D
7. need vitamin E, vitamin K, B6 may help with drug effects; vitamin C; need Ca; zinc; folic acid; D, iron, selenium, vanadium
UC, Berkeley Wellness Letter 14: 3 (Sept 1998) "The Save-Your-Skin Diet"
"Three years ago research at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston showed that people who already had ...skin cancer and were put on a low-fat diet (20% or less of their calories came from fat) developed only one-third as many lesions and tumors as those on a high-fat diet (38% of calories from fat). Now, as reported in the JAMA, new research finds that a low fat diet (less than 20% of calories from fat, with at least five servings of fruits and vegetables daily) significantly reduces the development of actinic keratoses as well as actual cancers." "A high intake of vitamin C (500 mg), beta carotene, and selenium from food, plus a vitamin E supplement of 400 IU, were among the recommendations that emerged from this study"
Buiatti, E. et al, "A case-control study of gastric cancer and diet in Italy: II. Association with nutrients", Int. J Cancer 45: 896-901 (1990)
1,016 gastric cancer patients, 1,159 controls "Risks of GC were found to vary significantly with estimated nutrient intake. Risk rose with nitrities and protein, and decreased in proportion to intake of ascorbic acid, beta-carotene, alpha-tocopherol, and vegetable fat. The associations with nitrite and beta-carotene tended to fade, however, in multivatriate analyses adjusting for intake of other nutrients."
Birt, DF, "Effects of the intake of selected vitamins and minerals on cancer prevention", Magnesium 8: 17-30 (1989)
"overview of...involvement in cancer of vitamins A, C, and E and of calcium, selenium and zinc. Both of these vitamins [C & E] have inhibited carcinogenesis by preformed carcinogens at several sites, but enhancement has been observed at some sites when excess vitamin treatment was studied. The potential role of calcium in the prevention of colon cancer is being pursued...an inhibition of cancer by dietary selenium...but enhanced carcinogenesis was observed in some studies on skin, liver, and pancreas cancer. Data suggest that zinc deficiency may be a factor in esopheageal cancer...however,...retarded tumor growth in zinc-deficient animals."
Rogers, AE, Zeisel, SH, and Groopman, J, "Diet and carcinogenesis", Carcinogenesis 14: 2205- 17 (1993)
"Recent general reviews of the epidemiologic and experimental literature on diet and cancer are available as are reviews focused on particular organs, foods or nutrients, or carcinogens."
Table 1: nutrients and food components that influence carcinogenesis in animals
vitamin A, retinoids bladder, skin, mammary gland, respiratory tract, colon
methionine, choline liver, mammary gland, pancreas, colon
selenium colon, liver, skin, stomach, mammary gland
vitamin C skin, stomach
Block, G, Patterson, B, and Subar, A, "Fruit, vegetables, and cancer prevention: a review of the epidemiological evidence", Nutr and Cancer 18: 1-29 (1992)
"Approximately 200 studies that examined the relationship between fruit and vegetable intake and cancers of the lung, colon, breast, cervix, esophagus, oral cavity, stomach, bladder, pancreas, and ovary are reviewed. ..protective effect found in 128 of 156 dietary studies"
Lamm, DL et al, "Megadose vitamins in bladder cancer: a double-blind clinical trial", J Urol 151: 21-26 (1994)
65 patients; RDA multivitamins plus 40,000 units vitamin A, 100 mg vit B6, 2 g vit C, 400 IU vit E, and 90 mg zinc. "Recurrence after 10 months was markedly reduced in patients receiving megadose vitamins" (91% vs 41% reccurence)