Listen, as Dr. Ring describes if fasting can affect a woman's response to chemotherapy treatment for cancer.
There’s some interesting studies right now that are looking at the impact of fasting on cancer that started with some studies that looked at cells and then moved to animal studies, and what they showed was that, when you fast, like a 48-day fast, this was done in mice – 48-day fast before getting chemotherapy protected the mice from the toxic effects of chemotherapy.
So mice that fasted before the chemotherapy did well; they survived. Mice that ate a regular diet, half of them died after getting the chemotherapy.
This study is now being looked at USC looking at the impact of fasting before chemotherapy for people who have lung and bladder cancer and again, the idea is, before getting the chemotherapy, if you fast, your normal selves go almost into a hibernation and become very resistant to stress and that protects them from the toxic effects of the chemotherapy and then, the chemotherapy will just act on the cancer cells which don’t have that ability to turn off.
So we may be able to, by fasting, allow a woman to get a larger dose, they will be able to complete their dose of chemotherapy without the side effects that they have on their normal cells.
This is still and in an, in an experimental stage right now and so it’s not something that I can whole-heartedly recommend for any woman who is about to go through a chemotherapy, especially when there are issues regarding weight loss and other kinds of things and they need for good nutrition, but I think it’s a really interesting idea and something that has some good science behind it.
About Dr. Ring, M.D.:
Melinda Ring, M.D., is an Integrative Medicine physician at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. Dr. Ring believes the patient and physician are partners in the healing process. She uses evidence-based approaches from other cultures to complement Western medicine treatment and stimulates the body's innate healing abilities. Her philosophy embraces treating the whole person, physical, emotional and spiritual dimensions, to achieve optimal health. Dr. Ring received her medical degree from the University of Chicago/Pritzker School of Medicine and has been practicing medicine since 1997.
Visit Dr. Ring at Northwestern Memorial Hospital