May 5, 2010
Dr. Henry Cheng
No, you read it right. That was no wrong spelling. “Phyting” came from the word “Phytate”. Out of the many herbal and natural products that claim to be beneficial to cancer patients, one stands out among its peers, and that is “IP-6” (Phytate, Phytic Acid). This is the only one that is developed by the orthodox medical profession and proven with double blind studies in laboratory animals. The discover, Dr. Abulkalam M. Shamsuddin, MD, Ph D, was a professor of pathology at the University of Maryland. His invention however was not accepted by any pharmaceutical company, because being a natural substance, IP-6 could not be patented. At the end, he had to approach the vitamins manufacturers to market his invention. IP-6 stands for Inositol hexa-phosphate. Inositol is a sugar molecule like glucose. Inostitol hexaphospate (IP-6) is a compound of insositol and six phosphate radicals. IP-6 is found in fibres especially in legumes and the bran of cereals
In his demographic studies for Cancers in Scandinavia, Prof. Samsuddin found that the Danes had a higher incidence of certain cancers than the Norwegians even though the 2 races have similar genetic and geographical exposure. Then through detailed analysis of their diet, the professor found that there is a lot of phytic acid in the diet of the Norwegians because they have a cereal and fish based diet. On the other hand, the dairy & meat based diet of the Danes did not have much phytic acid. Then he studied the effects of phytic acid on laboratory mice. He found that mice fed with a diet rich in phytic acid are less likely to get cancer, and cancerous mice that were fed phytic acid had a much better survival rate. He subsequently showed in his laboratory animals that Inositol hexaphosphate works through a few mechanisms. It decreases the rate of cancer cell division. It is a potent anti-oxidant so it protects healthy cells from degenerating into cancer cells. It is also a potent chelating agent that binds potentially toxic molecules that are carcinogenic. It is also an immune stimulant that activates natural killer cells that destroy invading cancer cells.
Being a chelating agent, IP-6 is to be taken by itself, on an empty stomach. Prof. Shamsuddin recommends two capsules of “CF IP-6” (Enzymatic Therapy) for normal people who want to prevent cancer. For high-risk individuals (with strong family history of cancer), he recommends 4 capsules a day. For pre-cancerous conditions (e.g. ulcerative colitis, leukoplakia, suspicious naevi, borderline Pap smear, PIN, etc.), he recommends 6 a day. For diagnosed cancer, he recommends 12 a day. For tumours over 5 cm. across and cancers that have spread, he recommends 24 a day. One scoop of the powder is equal to 8 capsules. It is controversial whether one should use alternative medicine together with orthodox treatment. Both Dr. Shamsuddin and Dr. Michael Murray recommended the concomitant use of traditional radiotherapy/chemotherapy and IP-6. They believe that IP-6 can potentiate the effect of RT and CT. RT and CT kills the cancer cells while IP-6 stimulates the NK cells to kill the cancer. In this sense, the advocate sounds reasonable. My personal opinion is not to take any herbal medicine within 2 weeks of surgery, radiation, or chemotherapy.
Dr. Henry Cheng is a medical graduate of the University of London, England, and is now Certified Natural Products Advisor in Pharmasave Downtown Cloverdale.