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If you weren’t already amazed by turmeric’s healing powers (it has TONS, in case you haven’t heard), here is another bit of awesome info.

A recent study has shown that curcumin, a compound found in turmeric, is capable of inducing programmed cell death (also known as apoptosis) even in triple negative breast cancer cells.

Triple negative breast cancer (also known as TNBC) gets the name because its cells do not have the usual receptors for estrogen, Her2/neu, and progesterone. This makes the cells extremely difficult to treat because those receptors are the ones conventional treatments target.

As a result, TNBC is seen as the most aggressive and most dangerous form of breast cancer. And, since targeted treatments are ineffective against it, TNBC is all the more likely to be treated with more general forms of chemotherapy, which cause more harm to healthy cells.

Overall, around 20 percent of breast cancer cases are triple negative, meaning a significant portion of patients are facing these issues right now.

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Fortunately, the study conducted by Zheijian Provincial People’s Hospital in China, has shown that curcumin can even effectively suppress and destroy triple negative breast cancer cells.

Curcumin for Triple Negative Breast Cancer

turmeric raw and powder
The study only adds to a rapidly growing body of experimental evidence suggesting curcumin’s future potential as an effective treatment for even the most treatment-resistant forms of cancer.

The study, like many of the others, was conducted in vitro (meaning on cells in a petri dish). For some detractors, this is a point of objection, and it may be a bit too early to claim effectiveness right now.

However, the evidence is definitely pointing in the right direction, and we can only hope to see randomized, double-blind, and placebo-controlled human clinical trial in the near future. That trial will give the ultimate answer regarding curcumin’s viability.

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But for people suffering from breast cancer now (as well as any other type of cancer) any additional aid to, or substitute for, chemotherapy may be a blessing.

In that case, adding turmeric to your diet, or supplementing curcumin just may be the last resort (but hopefully is just one step towards prevention or recovery).

The Cancer Machine and Curcumin

Even if curcumin turns out to be one of the solutions we have been looking for, it may unfortunately be many years (if the time ever comes at all) until we see official support from cancer foundations.

Even the most visible non-profit foundation related to TNBC, the Triple Negative Breast Cancer Foundation, focuses almost entirely on raising money and awareness to bring about a pharmaceutical cure in the future.

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In some ways, though a cure would definitely benefit those in the future, this is a let-down to those suffering right now and in the time to come.

Surely, removing and addressing the causes of breast cancer should a priority as well. Why cure something that can be prevented entirely?

Perhaps it all comes down to money. What organization stands to gain from investing in research that will not produce a marketable product? Why waste money to let people know they can just buy turmeric at home?

Other Natural Triple Negative Breast Cancer Treatments

Though, like turmeric and curcumin, these natural candidates remain in pre-clinical stages of testing, they also show a similar promise.

You may be interested in further researching:

One day we will have all the answers, but we have to start somewhere.

Note: Turmeric may thin the blood, so make sure to NEVER take it if you’re on these medications!

Sources:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23023821
http://www.healthline.com/health/triple-negative-breast-cancer-outlook-survival-rates-stage
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19818349
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11857414
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26472972

Image Sources:

http://www.venusbuzz.com/wp-content/uploads/Breast-CA-diagram_nationalbreastcancer.org_.jpeg

http://guiltfreefoodguide.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/turmeric.jpg

 

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