(Natural News) As cancer continues to grow in prevalence, people are increasingly looking for ways to prevent the disease and scientists are researching new treatment methods. While pharmaceutical companies continue to pour billions of dollars into developing synthetic drugs that won’t necessarily cure people but will certainly grow their bottom line, other scientists are taking a closer look at the benefits to be gleaned from the compounds provided to us by nature.
We’ve heard a lot about the healing power of foods like ginger and turmeric, but there is another natural compound that is starting to gain traction when it comes to addressing cancer. Astaxanthin, a fat-soluble carotenoid, has been shown to target cancer cells and destroy or disrupt them in every stage of development without damaging normal cells.
You might not have heard of astaxanthin before, but you’ve almost certainly appreciated it if you’ve ever admired the cheerful pink shade of flamingos or the beautiful pink-orange tone of salmon. These animals get astaxanthin by feasting on the algae that produces it or other animal that eat this algae, such as shrimp.
Astaxanthin has already been found to fight inflammation, which is at the root of cancer and other chronic diseases like diabetes. In animal studies, astaxanthin reduced the inflammation seen in mucosal ulcers, effectively preventing adenocarcinoma. Meanwhile, studies in human lymphoma cells found that it could interfere with pro-inflammatory cytokines like tumor necrosis factor-alpha.
That’s not the only way it helps to fight cancer, however. It has also been shown to protect against the oxidative stress caused by free radicals. This should come as no surprise when you consider the fact that scientists estimate its antioxidant power to be 6,000 times greater than that of vitamin C and 150 times higher than the anthocyanin pigments that give blueberries their health benefits.
Astaxanthin has yet another trick up his sleeve when it comes to cancer, promoting the death of cancer cells in liver and oral cancers in studies. It’s a useful finding for liver cancer, which has a high recurrence rate and can be quite difficult to treat. It also helps to improve the ability of healthy cells to communicate, which is something that can stop the development of cancer.
Once you do have cancer, astaxanthin can stop it from progressing and metastasizing into tissues, organs and bones. In addition, it can stunt tumors’ ability to form the new blood vessels needed to sustain them. Studies of lung cancer cells have also indicated that it can help boost the efficacy of conventional cancer drugs like pemetrexed.
In a noteworthy study that was published in the Journal of Marine Drugs, scientists gave mice with prostate cancer either a high or low dose of astaxanthin or a placebo. After 31 days had passed, the scientists discovered that the weight and volume of the tumors in those who were given the high doses dropped by a remarkable 40 percent. Meanwhile, those who received no astaxanthin did not see any tumor shrinkage. The low-dose group did not see any benefits either, which illustrates how important it is that people get sufficient dosages of the pigment.
Do you need more astaxanthin?
After learning about the many benefits astaxanthin provides in fighting cancer, the next question many people have is how they can raise their levels of it. The best way to do this is by consuming food like wild-caught salmon, coho salmon, and red trout. Some other good sources are shrimp, crabs, crayfish, salmon roe, and lobster.
If you’re not a seafood fan or you try to limit your consumption, you can also turn to supplements. However, there’s a high chance of heavy metal contamination given the source of astaxanthin, so this is one case where it is crucial that you get it from a trusted supplier that is lab-verified to be free of contamination.
Cancer is a frightening disease to face, but findings like these are making researchers hopeful that better prevention and treatment methods may be just around the corner.
Hundreds of Indonesian healthcare workers contract COVID-19 despite vaccination, dozens hospitalised
JAKARTA: More than 350 Indonesian doctors and healthcare workers have contracted COVID-19 despite being vaccinated with Sinovac and dozens have been hospitalised, officials said, as concerns rise about the efficacy of some vaccines against more virulent virus strains.
Most of the doctors were asymptomatic and self-isolating at home, said Badai Ismoyo, head of the Kudus district health office in Central Java, but dozens were in hospital with high fevers and declining oxygen saturation levels.
Kudus is battling an outbreak believed to be driven by the more transmissible Delta variant which has pushed bed occupancy rates above 90 per cent in the district.
Designated as a priority group, Indonesian healthcare workers were among the first to be vaccinated when the inoculation drive started in January.
Almost all have received the COVID-19 vaccine developed by Chinese biopharmaceutical company Sinovac, according to the Indonesian Medical Association.
While the number of Indonesian healthcare workers dying from COVID-19 has decreased significantly – dropping from 158 deaths this January to 13 this May, according to data initiative group LaporCOVID-19 – public health experts say the Java hospitalisations are cause for concern.
“The data shows they have the Delta variant so it is no surprise that the breakthrough infection is higher than before because as we know the majority of healthcare workers in Indonesia got Sinovac, and we still don’t know yet how effective it is in the real world against the Delta variant,” said Dicky Budiman, an epidemiologist from Australia’s Griffith University.
China’s Covid-19 vaccine flops in Singapore too
New Delhi: In a major setback to Chinas Covid vaccines, Singapore is not counting its citizens who received Sinovac Biotech shots as being vaccinated against Covid-19 due to lack of data to show that the doses are effective against coronavirus, especially the Delta strain.
“We don’t really have a medical or scientific basis or have the data now to establish how effective Sinovac is in terms of infection and severe illnesses on Delta,” local media cited health minister Ong Ye Kung as saying at a press conference on Wednesday.
The decision comes close on the heels of serious doubts arising over Chinese vaccines in Indonesia as those who have received the shots are also contracting Covid-19 and infections are surging in the country.
The Delta variant is currently the dominant strain of Covid-19 in Singapore and was identified in the city state in May. Only people who have received the Moderna and Pfizer shots, are being considered as vaccinated in the official records.
Singapore had allowed some private clinics to offer the Sinovac shot, CoronaVac, from mid-June. Around 17,000 people are reported to have received one dose of CoronaVac.
Local media had also reported Singapore’s director of medical services saying last month that evidence from other countries showed people who had taken CoronaVac were still getting infected.
Most of the vaccines being used by Indonesia have also come from China’s Sinovac Biotech. Some health workers inoculated with Sinovac jabs have been hospitalized due to Covid-19. A few have even died despite being fully immunized, according to a report in Nikkei Asia.
The Indonesian Doctors Association says that of the 14 doctors who died from the virus between February and May, ten had been fully vaccinated with Sinovac, while the rest had been given one dose.
Although there is a serious problem with Chinese vaccines due to inadequate data to show their efficacy, some countries are being forced to opt for them because of the cute shortage of vaccines worldwide amid the devastating pandemic.
102 people qualify for S$451,000 in Covid-19 vaccine injury financial aid to date: Ong Ye Kung
SINGAPORE — The authorities have approved S$451,000 worth of financial aid to people who had suffered serious side effects from Covid-19 vaccines in Singapore, Health Minister Ong Ye Kung said on Tuesday (July 6).
The payments have either been paid out or are being processed to 102 applicants under the Vaccine Injury Financial Assistance Programme (Vifap) introduced by the Government in January.
They were among a total of 292 applicants who had submitted a complete Vifap application as of June 25, Mr Ong said.
Of these, 159 did not meet the eligibility criteria and 31 applications are waiting to be reviewed by an independent clinical panel or pending more medical information from the applicant’s doctor.
Mr Ong was responding in a written answer to a parliamentary question filed by Ms He Ting Ru, Member of Parliament for Sengkang Group Representation Constituency, who had asked about the applications made and payments approved under the programme.
TODAY has asked the Ministry of Health (MOH) for details of these approved payouts.
Vifap provides three tiers of support to people assessed to be adversely affected by their Covid-19 inoculation.
The first is a one-time payout of S$2,000 for patients who need hospitalisation and medical intervention and who later recover.
The second is a payout of up to S$10,000 that will be given to those who were hospitalised and required care in a high dependency or intensive care unit, but later recover from the side effects caused by the vaccine.
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