Laura Bond, supplements and lifestyle medicine to boost your health and protect the planet
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Defeating Cancer on the Cheap

‘Good health makes a lot of sense, but it doesn’t make a lot of dollars.’ Dr Andrew Saul, health educator and author of Food Matters


In Britain, Australia and the United States, you are punished financially if you choose alternative medicine over conventional treatment.

Chemotherapy drugs are expensive – often tens of thousands of pounds– but since they’re covered by national or private health insurance, the patient usually pays only a small portion of that amount. Nevertheless, someone is footing the bill.

In 2011 Americans spent over $23 billion on cancer drugs. Yet despite the promises, these shiny new drugs consistently underdeliver. ‘Standard therapies, although free, condemn the patient to low survival rates,’ says Dr Garry Gordon, co-founder of the American College for Advancement in Medicine (ACAM). ‘Metastatic cancer five-year survival is 2.5 per cent; alternative doctors prove 38–60 per cent [five-year survival] is possible.’

However, holistic medicine often comes with a hefty price tag. After just a few weeks of intravenous vitamin C injections, ozone therapy, and investing in a far infrared sauna, mum’s credit card had already taken a battering. And that was before she flew to Germany for expensive blood tests.

While mum has been lucky enough to be able to afford these things, for many people alternative cancer treatments can be financially crippling. ‘It’s okay for you,’ people will say, ‘but I don’t have the money to see that specialist/order that supplement/travel overseas.’

Notwithstanding that money is a very real issue for a lot of people, there are effective solutions that don’t cost the earth. In fact, some of the best things a cancer patient can do cost nothing at all. For Professor Jane Plant giving up dairy led to recovery.

For Jane Wallis, a six-year bladder cancer survivor, apricot kernels and Essiac tea were, largely, the answer. ‘In a cash market the first step in stopping cancer is diet,’ emphasises Dr Garry Gordon.

Giving up sugar – cancer’s fertiliser – doesn’t cost a penny, and filling up on green juices, although time-consuming, is relatively affordable – even if it means budgeting in other areas.

Engaging with the natural environment also bestows positive health benefits and, in some instances, leads to profound healing. In Peace, Love and Healing, Dr Bernie Siegel discusses one case where Mother Nature contributed to a patient’s ‘spontaneous remission’:

‘Working outdoors, John maintains what I call a celestial connection and, like patients in the hospital who have shown to heal faster when their room has a view of the sky, he became healthier because of it.’

Changing your mental landscape can also change your life. Alternative cancer literature abounds with stories of tumours vanishing thanks to visualisation (Dr O. Carl Simonton, Getting Well Again), affirmation (Louise Hay, You Can Heal Your Life) and meditation (Ian Gawler, You Can Conquer Cancer).

While these books remind us of what is possible, for many people it is simply incomprehensible to rely on non-tangible treatments to heal cancer. The large majority of people crave radical action in the face of a terrifying diagnosis.

So what is available for those on a budget? In researching this topic I’ve learned that our world is rich in cancer-fighting substances. From broccoli sprouts and dandelion tea to shark cartilage and turkey-tail mushrooms there is a universe of affordable and effective options out there.

However, there are five treatments that have consistently cropped up in the expert interviews, survivor stories and the medical research I’ve done. These include turmeric, marijuana and salvestrols. Here are just a few things you may not know about them…

Turmeric:  You will find over 4000 studies on Medline about this ancient healing powerhouse and the molecule, curcumin, it contains. According to Professor Bharat Aggarwal, head of the Cytokine Research Group in the department of experimental therapeutics at MD Anderson, ‘So far there is not one cancer, at least in the test-tube, that curcumin cannot stop.’

Marijuana: Now legal in several US states marijuana has been shown to cut lung cancer tumour growth in half – according to a 2007 Harvard Medical study.

Salvestrols: These potent plant compounds offer the possibility of anti-cancer treatment ‘without the horrible side-effects’ according to one British expert I interviewed.

Extract adapted from the final chapter of Mum’s Not Having Chemo (Piatkus, £13.99 ) available in the UK from Thursday 7th of November (12th November in Australia).

In Mum’s Not Having Chemo I share the full story; I detail where you can get vitamin injections and how much turmeric to take, I provide practical advice from others who have beaten the odds and I share where you can go for molecular blood tests which will reveal the best treatments – alternative and conventional- for you.

The aim of the book is not to provide all the answers, but to raise your spirits along with a few important questions you might not otherwise have asked. Whatever road you decide to take, I hope it provides some comfort along the way.

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10 Responses to Defeating Cancer on the Cheap

  1. Eileen says:

    Great post (again!). I’m definitely making this recipe.

    Will we be able to purchase the book in the U.S.?

    • Laura says:

      Thank you Eileen! I have just sold the US rights, so stay tuned! x

      • Ann says:

        I cured myself of cancer with diet and vitamins and did have some expensive treatments but there are so many cheap things you can do – bicarbonate of soda is miraculous, my friend cured her liver cancer drinking that and also when my lymphs hurt i mix bicarb with warm water and coconut oil – the fat mobilises the bicarb to your lymph and cleanses it – always takes the pain away
        Oil pulling in the morning is also cheap and of course Qi gong can be done anywhere get that healing Qi flowing through you

  2. Vrinda khole says:

    Will it be available in india?

  3. Isabella says:

    Your advice sounds quite similar to that of David Serban-Schreiber in his excellent book ‘AntiCancer’ – have you heard of this and if so, what do you make of it?

  4. Stephen Watkins says:


    The study you quote is the 2.5% survival rate from is a study of a lesser used subset of chemotherapy drugs, and does not represent the actual survival rate – it shows the difference made by that particular subset of chemo drugs. And different types of cancer have widely different survival rates. For example, hepatic metastatic colon cancer 5 year survival rates are 59% – see

    You then list a 38 -60 survival rate is possible, but you don’t quote a report, study or anything to qualify that (even though I’ve just found one that shows conventional medicine survival rate of 59%).

    You are misrepresenting the facts, which brings everything you are saying into disrepute.

    • Laura says:

      Hi Stephen,

      Thanks for taking the time to comment. The 38-60% survival rate is a quote from Dr. Garry Gordon, a world leading physician, whose website is littered with links to the latest research from peer reviewed scientific journals.

      You are absolutely right that different types of cancer have widely different survival rates.

      For instance, the average survival rate for advanced pancreatic cancer is just three months when patients undergo conventional care – but for those choosing alternatives, the story can be different. Dr Nicholas Gonzalez in NY has had phenomenal success treating patients with pancreatic cancer using a combination of non toxic therapies. You can read a selection of his case reports on his website:

      When I interviewed Dr. Gonzalez for my book he shared the story of one man who came to him with stage four pancreatic cancer. His oncologist had given him two months to live. Instead the man lived another 14 years under Gonzalez’ care – and died, following a car accident.

      We can argue over the facts forever, but you cannot argue with the truth of a story. It’s also worth looking at quality of life. Too often physicians focus on shrinking the tumour rather than looking after the patient – an oversight that can be fatal. A 2008 report, covered by ABC news, found that chemotherapy contributed to a quarter of all cancer deaths. Please feel free to buy my book where you can find a full list of scientific references, and more inspiring stories. Best wishes, Laura

  5. Hi Laura. The lovely people in Hair Organics in Notting Hill showed me your book which I immediately started to eagerly read.

    I work with people via my course Mind Mood Mastery to develop mental and emotional health through Mindfulness. I also work as a Five Element Acupuncturist. So the book really resonated with me.

    My particular passion is to have antidepressants, sleeping pills and tranquillisers etc be a thing of the past, a redundant relic of an era which didn’t recognise the profound connection between body, emotions and mind. The scientific evidence is there. But it is obviously not popular with those who make mega-bucks from peddling pharmacological products rather than empowering people with the knowledge and means to create health.

    Thank you for your book and your commitment to people being truly well!


  6. Jean Ottobrino says:

    Hi Laura, Thank you for your book. I have read it cover to cover and will continue to go back to it. The information is fantastic and very helpful. I just hope to have the courage to take some of the advice if I am ever in need. The problem is it’s hard to convince others to go the chemo free route as I have tried to get my sister to do. Unfortunately she looks like she will not survive as is refusing chemo and not doing anything else.

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