Side Street Style: Losing friends to Cancer, New Alternatives & Immunotherapy

Side Street Style

A UK family travel and lifestyle blog

09/12/2018

Losing friends to Cancer, New Alternatives & Immunotherapy


wellbeing


Cancer. The word no one wants to hear but will at some point impact our lives in one way or another.

My first realisation of the devastation that cancer can cause was when I was a teenager and a family friend, whose daughter was in school with me, fought hard against a brain tumour. She lost her fight. My mother and I visited her while she was ill, it was the first time I had seen what cancer does to a person and to a mother, and the effect cancer has on a family. When I was in my early twenties, my aunt was diagnosed with breast cancer. Again she fought hard, had endless bouts of chemo which made her incredibly ill from which she had very little rest. She unfortunately passed away.

With both of these there was a level of acceptance, they were adults in their 50's and 60's which, of course, is still very young but was slightly easier to understand. What really stopped me in my tracks was what happened last year, I lost my two longest friends to cancer within 10 months of each other. Two people who had always been there for me, who I have known from the age of 7 - both healthy, both active, and both taken way too young and, to be completely honest, I am still in disbelief they are no longer here.

Having two friends, both near to my age go through something like this was an emotional rollercoaster as well as an eye-opener into the reality of what cancer and going through gruelling treatment is like. They both passed around 18 months post diagnosis and had very different journeys. One tried everything from rounds of chemo and radiation to trial drugs, while my other friend didn't have any treatment at all except for some medication to manage pain - his peace and acceptance is something I will forever be in awe of.



Alternative cancer treatment


Of course, during this time I did a lot of research because when you’re in this type of position, you feel like you have to do something no matter how small that may be. It also made me reflect a lot on my own situation and what I would do if I was diagnosed with cancer. To be completely honest, I think this is something that has crossed most parents minds at some point or another. With anything in life I have always been a strong believer in a more natural approach while still remaining open minded in regards to medication as modern medicine is so innovative and advancements are being made all the time.

What I also learnt (and witnessed firsthand) was how destructive chemo and radiation can be as they are toxic for the body. Chemotherapy and radiation do not discriminate between healthy cells and cancerous cells, while reducing and killing the cancer, it also kills the immune system so while you have an initial reduction in cancer it often can come back and far worse, this is what happened to my best friend (of course this isn't always the case, I am only talking from my experience).

I would like to point out these are personal views, each person’s approach would be different and with anything in life, you have to go with what feels right with you and get as much advice as possible before making any decisions. If you read the news, however, you probably have come across the breakthroughs that are being made with Immunotherapy which is a treatment that uses certain parts of the person’s immune system to fight and attack cancer cells and according to the Cancer Research Institute it's already proven successful in treating some previously incurable cancers as well as being the first line of treatment for many others.



Wellbeing for cancer


I do, however, feel that when it comes to something like this, multiple approaches need to be taken which is what Akesis Life, an integrative oncology centre in Bangkok Thailand does, as they step away from the use of high-dose chemo and radiation, and offer Immunotherapy alongside other integrative cutting-edge science-based treatments. They design individualised wellbeing integrative cancer programmes that focus on being kind and restorative to the body while targeting and getting rid of the cancer cells.

When it comes to cancer and having witnessed friends endure horrible treatments which only offered small benefits (in their case's) I think as a society we really need to be more forward thinking. Chemo and radiation are often offered first even when the effectiveness is known to be low with certain cancers. But there are places like Akesis Life that rely on science, not chemo, to help patients enhance their immune system in a healthy and kind way.



cancer alternatives


This integrative cancer treatment centre is headed by Dr Thomas Lodi who is part of the American College for the Advancement in Medicine. Dr. Lodi s a true believer in integrative medicine and has helped educate thousands of doctors worldwide, especially those who are unsatisfied with the current cancer treatment system in hospitals today. You can see why people travel from around the world to Akesis Life and #SayNoToChemo. The integrative healing approach is the path I would aim to follow should it be a direction my life takes one day and I was in the position and had the opportunity to do so.

*Sponsored post. I was asked by Akesis Life to talk honestly about this topic and the words and views expressed in this post are my own.

10 comments:

  1. Now that more and more cancers are emerging in our lives, we have to panic.
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    1. It does certainly seem to be more prevalent in modern society and diets than ever

      Laura x

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  2. Cancer is such a horrible disease and it's so tough when someone is diagnosed. A close friend of mine was diagnosed at just 27 and she's battled a few times but it's back again and I hate to think what might happen to her x

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    1. It really is horrible and can completely empathise - two of my closest friends battled cancer over the past years and its just awful for anyone to go through that

      Laura x

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  3. I love that so many people are interested in alternatives to the traditional cancer therapies, hopefully they will be available to more and more people over time.

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    1. Yes I agree Jenny, I think a combination of trying and using many different methods can really help

      Laura x

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  4. It's beneficial to discuss issues and treatments surrounding cancer and we need to do it more. It's so difficult to see anyone suffer with cancer, especially young people x

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    1. Yes I think there needs to be more open dialogue about things like this and completely agree awful for anyone to go through this

      Laura x

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  5. Cancer sucks. I've been lucky so far that I haven't loose a loved one to this horrible disease but I watched my mum going through really hard time loosing her friends. We are lucky to live in the age where we have more options and improving technology.

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    Replies
    1. I totally agree cancer does suck! Yes its also good to see more improvements are being made all the time
      Laura x

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