Most of us have had our lives touched by cancer in some way. Whether that’s through a friend or family member or in our own lives. Which is why I’m really excited to be interviewing today’s guest, professor Thomas Seyfried. Dr. Thomas has a Ph.D. in genetics and biochemistry and did his undergraduate work at the University of New England. While he has quite an impressive bio, his most current work centers on cancer as a metabolic disease.
Conventional thought says that cancer comes down to our genes and there isn’t much we can do about it. However, Dr. Thomas’s pioneering work in cancer research shows this may not be the case. His research points the finger at glucose (sugar) and the amino acid glutamine as feeding cancer cells. We talk about how to minimize these fuels as cancer therapy through things like low-carb diets, water fasting, and glutamine-targeting drugs.
While this approach isn’t currently the standard of care for cancer patients, Dr. Thomas is working very hard to make it more well-known. And even cancer patients who choose conventional approaches have still benefited from adding metabolic therapy to their treatment protocols.
We talk about ways to minimize our cancer risk through lifestyle and diet, and what the options are if there is a diagnosis. Dr. Thomas’s approach may be a little controversial, but it’s backed by an impressive amount of research. I hope you’ll join me as we dive deep into the cancer topic today!
Episode Highlights With Thomas Seyfried
- What cancer actually is and why it isn’t just genetic
- How mitochondria function is a big factor in the cancer equation
- What the Warburg study is and what it shows us about how cancer happens
- Why cyanide kills healthy cells but not tumor cells
- Cancer cells don’t use oxygen for energy, and what they use instead
- Warburg: cancer cells replace oxygen energy with fermentation energy
- How cancer cells use oxygen, not for energy but to create reactive oxygen species
- The only two fuels cancer cells use: glucose and the amino acid glutamine (both fermentable)
- His opinion: target the glucose and the glutamine simultaneously while transitioning the body to ketones
- The biggest cancer breakthrough in the last few decades? Reduction in smoking
- What are the root causes of cancer as a metabolic disease
- Provocative agents that increase the risk of cancer: chronic inflammation, age, carcinogenic chemicals, viruses, age, genes (like BRCA1)
- How to keep your mitochondria healthy to reduce the risk of cancer “Our genes are supremely capable of preventing cancer”
- Why he recommends periodic water fasting for mitochondria health
- How exercise helps support mitochondria
- What ketones are and why they are a super fuel for the body
- How to address the glutamine side of cancer cells
- What glutamine-targeting drugs are
- Why his approach is getting rid of cancer without the toxicity
- The reason that traditional cancer treatment like chemo and radiation can be more effective when used with metabolic therapies
- What he would do if he had cancer
“We can reduce the death rate by 50% if you view the tumor as a metabolic problem rather than a genetic problem” – Thomas Seyfried
Resources We Mention
- Cancer as a metabolic disease: On the origin, management and prevention of cancer by Thomas Seyfried
- Keto for Cancer: Ketogenic Metabolic Therapy as a Targeted Nutritional Strategy by Miriam Kalamian EdM MS CNS
- The Origin (and future) of the Ketogenic Diet – by Dr. Dominic D’Agostino and Travis Christofferson: Charity Publication: In support of Dr. Thomas Seyfrieds cancer research by Johnny Rockermeier, with Dr. Dominic D’Agostino
- Ravenous: Otto Warburg, the Nazis, and the Search for the Cancer-Diet Connection by Sam Apple
- 319: Everything You Need to Know About the Keto Diet With Dr. Dominic D’Agostino
- 134: Dr. Daniel Pompa on Fasting, Autophagy, Diet Variation, & Cellular Healing
- 255: Dr. Valter Longo on a Fasting Mimicking Diet & Increasing Healthspan
- Glucose ketone index calculator
- Levels – Glucose Monitor
- Movie: The Cancer Revolution
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- 635: Dr. Christopher Palmer on Is Mental Illness a Metabolic Disorder of the Brain?
- Water Fasting Benefits, Dangers & My Personal Experience
- Can Intermittent Fasting (Skipping Meals) Make You Healthier?
- The Link Between Sugar and Cancer
- How to Do a Sugar Detox (& Why Everyone Should)