One of my readers, ‘Aniscadore’, has asked me about the pertinence of a treatment based on vegetable juices, along the lines of the "Breuss Cure". Breuss was an Austrian healer, born at the end of the 19th century. This is an opportunity to return to the subject of the possible benefits and certain dangers of restrictive diets, which should be managed with great care.

In rodents, severe caloric restriction has been shown to slow the progression of some cancers. In France, researchers at the University of Rennes have demonstrated that the elimination of some amino-acids (precursors of molecules called polyamines) slows the progression of certain cancers in humans, and contributes to reducing cancer-related pain.

However, BE CAREFUL. This kind of super-restrictive diet is not for everyone. Although it may have some beneficial effect, it can also be dangerous. The “Breuss Cancer Cure” has not been evaluated in any kind of systematic way in human beings, and personally I feel that it should only be followed under the supervision of a specialized nutritionist who is working closely with the patient’s cancer specialist. I recommend that if they want to try this diet, patients should restrict it to a period of two to four weeks, during which they can consume prepared fluids that contain carefully measured amounts of the essential nutritional elements while eliminating polyamine precursors. Then they can embark on a diet that reduces these same precursors as much as possible.

In Germany, a clinic on Lake Constance is specialized in therapeutic diet restriction and in this type of nutritional and medical treatment of cancer: the Klinik Buchinger am Bodensee. (The therapists there speak English and French as well as German). There may well be other establishments of this kind in the United States and the UK, but I am not aware of them. Perhaps someone could help identify clinics of this type near you? I’d be happy to post this information.

My best, David SS

ANISCADORE’S QUESTION :

Hello,

I recently attended one of your lecture, where a member of the audience brought up the Breuss Cancer Cure. I don’t want to recommend this kind of therapy without first asking you for your opinion. It’s a vegetable-juice diet that is supposed to last for 42 days; patients must follow it strictly, consuming only a mixture of juices, preferably using a spoon and keeping a little in the mouth for a time before swallowing it. It’s been demonstrated that consuming half a pint a day is enough for survival. During this period patients may lose between 10 and 33 pounds, but this doesn’t prevent them from feeling energetic and well.

The key element of the Cure is a renal infusion, taken as one cold half-cup, three times daily – or, even better, as two soup-spoons ingested every hour.

Bruno Vonarburg, a Swiss biochemist who is the author of “Medicines from the Earth,” has looked at the Breuss Cure and says “Given that proteins feed the development of cancer, I can see the advantages of following a treatment based on vegetable juice: the daily provision of proteins is stopped, and since the organism can live without them, the blood, which is drawn to proteins, clears the body of everything that’s superfluous – growths, matter and tumors. In a way, the “red juice” performs are carefully dosed, non-surgical operation.”

While I was writing you this note, a friend phoned me and I told her what I was doing. She responded, “I know about these German vegetable-juice diets. I cured my mother of a final-stage, generalized cancer with a diet like that, and she lived for another twelve years, completely well. She died, but it wasn’t of cancer – just old age.”